Do you suck at writing blog posts?
I do. When I started TheVisionFamily, my writing was a big sucker! So much so, that my mom hated it as well.
So, I got frustrated & googled - how to write a blog post?
I researched it all. But ALL I found was shitty advice & repetitive tips that don't work in 2019 anymore.
So, what works in 2019?
The PEN Framework
Regardless of how amazing or horrible of a writer you are, the PEN framework is determined to help you write eye-popping blog posts in 2019.
Let's dive right in.
How to write a blog post?
Let's face it, Blogosphere is crowded - there are over a billion blogs today!
How on Earth will you stand out when more than 2 million blog posts are published daily?
Here comes -
The PEN Framework : Influence by Content!!
- By Varun Gera
Here's the deal:
The PEN Framework will give you the superpowers to make any blog post go viral!
In fact, you'll become unstoppable!!
What is PEN Framework?
The PEN Framework is a practice cum process developed to create viral/evergreen blog posts from scratch!!
Note: The practitioners of PEN framework will not be able to produce ordinary content onwards! Proceed at your own risk...
The PEN Framework is divided into 3 parts:
P - Discover a big problem
E - Trigger emotions by agitating the problem
N - Solve their problem by storytelling
P + E + N = PEN
Now, let's see the PEN framework in action -
If your blog post isn't solving a problem, then there's something wrong.
The bigger the problem you solve the bigger will be the chances of it going viral.
Here's how you can find non-negotiable problems -
1. Define your target audience (2 minutes) -
Slip into Their Shoes!
Before writing even a single word - Define & understand your audience.
Here's what I personally do -
Tactic #1: Before writing another blog, close your eyes for a minute & perceive the world with the vision of your audience.
This will allow you to write in the language they understand & boost your credibility!!
The bottom line?
Create buyer personas & leverage AIDA for mind-mapping -
Take it from Kulwant Nagi -
After understanding your audience, it's time for the strategy -
2. Choose your topic & approach (7 minutes) -
I. Answer The Public -
Head over to answerthepublic.com & type in your industry popular keywords.
For example - I have entered 'blog post'
You can see almost every question your readers ask Google, i.e. their problems related to your industry...
Here's what I finalized -
Now, Understanding + combining the above three, I got -
Parent Topic - how to write a blog post?
That's what people want to learn/know in the first space!
I personally prefer the 'how' category but you can listen to your gut feeling & select the best 2-3 questions accordingly.
II. Validate your Topic -
Next step is to validate the worth of the topic we chose above:
Use Google keyword planner or KW Finder to make sure people are searching for it -
As you can see, people search for "how to write a blog post" 4.4k times a month in India alone!
Also, "how to write a blog" is with the same intent & seems promising for SEO efforts!
Congratulations, Validation completed!
Note: If you're a beginner, choose a long-tail keyword with low competition & monthly searches b/w 100-10k max.
The Bottom line?
Finalize a topic which people love not what you want. Also,
3. Research (30 minutes) -
No, I'm not talking about keyword research,
Research is to see what everybody else has seen and think what Nobody Has Thought...
Understand the anatomy of virality -
Time for a nitty-gritty secret...
I. Buzzsumo -
Go to Buzzsumo.com & enter the topic (how to write a blog post) you finalized above -
You can see what's already gone viral - the treasure!
Now, Choose 3 winners and open them in new tabs, then
II. Search it on Google -
Search your keywords on google -
Now, that's the cornerstone content!
They have passed the SEO test of Google with flying colors: open the top 5 results in new tabs & now -
III. It's magic time!
Viral Content + Cornerstone Content = Evergreen Content
The recipe of evergreen content is to boil cornerstone content & add the salts of virality!
Here's, how it works -
For a second, Become a reader & read/skim all the blog posts we opened above. You'll find that -
Cornerstone content from Google makes you feel more confident & expert in your topic.
On the other hand,
Viral content presents a unique and creative approach of the same topic & help you remember the information by storytelling in a visual format!!
Ideally, your blog post should mix both ingredients in proper amounts to impress as well as educate readers!
Note: Don't forget to collect relevant data & figures to embed in your blog post!
According to Microsoft, people now have a shorter attention span than goldfish with 9 seconds...
So, what should you do to stop people from leaving your blog post?
Trigger their emotions
Here's how to do it -
4. Craft a magnetic Headline (11 minutes) -
The fun fact?
So, what should you do?
Place a hook in your 'headline' to entice readers & Leverage FOMO - Fear of Missing Out for hunting the prey!!
Grab the attention of your readers by an irresistible offer in your headline which they can't afford to miss!
→ You can Promise to help your audience achieve their goals or leverage Curiosity Gap like Upworthy -
Upworthy is one of the world's fastest growing media companies who counted 88 million visitors in their first year - 2013, leveraging curiosity gap!!
Can you feel the heat, now?
Yeah, it's hot!
Listen what Istiak has for you -
Bonus Tip - Before proceeding further, make a basic outline of your blog post! Leverage subheadings throughout your blog post to impress readers cum skimmers!!
5. Write an irresistible introduction (15 minutes) -
For cinema lovers -
The introduction is the trailer of your blockbuster movie (blog post) & people don't buy a movie whose trailer sucks!!
So, how do you create a stunning trailer?
SPO Formula: Story - Problem - Outcome
In fact, you're here because I implemented SPO formula in the introduction of this blog post -
Story - Give your readers the first dose of emotions by telling a story!
Problem - Talk about the problem you'll solve
Outcome - Don't tell everything you will cover (solution) instead make them more curious about it!
The bottom line?
Leave them begging/craving for your content.
A blog post should be narrative i.e. tell a story!
Humans are born storytellers: the need for stories is rooted deep inside our brains.
As long as humans have existed, we have been hardwired to satisfy one urge. (No, it’s not what you think.) I’m talking about storytelling.
So, if you can tell a story that hooks people, drives them through an emotional roller coaster, you'll do extremely well!!
Let's get back to basics for a second...
Why blog & What is a blog?
The first Weblog or Blog Links.net was started by Justin Hall in early 1994 to share his thoughts & stories publicly!
Since then, blogs are used for different objectives by different people but the purpose remains the same: to tell stories!!
Storytelling & Blogging: The inevitable marriage!!!
So, if you are not telling a story, then you are not blogging!
Here's how to tell a story that hooks people to listen:
6. Write: Unleash the Storyteller (3-6 hours) -
The stage is all set, the audience is getting crazy...
It's show time!
Write the body -
Warning - You can't afford to ruin your audience mood now - Maintain the rhythm & emotions of your headline, introduction & give them what they want!!
Write the body with just one purpose in mind - to get the next sentence read!
And then, the sentence after that & so on, all the way down to do what you want: Call to Action
I. Pick one topic/subhead to start with -
Choose the most comfortable topic first & then present your unique perspective on the same!
Be creative & write like an expert cum friend!!
II. Empower the backbone -
Boost the credibility of your blog post by embedding relevant facts & figures!
People don't read ordinary stuff...
So, you should make bold claims and use the data & research (collected in the 2nd step) to back up your points & link to the trusted sources for reference.
III. Connect the dots -
Make your blog post sound like a story by using content currency.
7. Kiss with Content Currency (33 minutes) -
Keep it sweet and simple (KISS) with Content Currency
Content Currency is used to gain the trust of readers by trigerring their emotions using images, videos, GIF's & other visuals in your blog post!
Here's the deal:
Content Currency bribes the readers to stick to your blog by storytelling!!
And humans always remember good stories & storytellers like -
Google Reunion - The heart-touching story & cinematography was a remarkable breakthrough in brand films!
With a whopping 14M+ views on YouTube alone, it went viral & many people (like me) still carry this story along - unforgettable!!
The Bottom line?
Tell me the facts and I’ll learn. Tell me the truth and I’ll believe. But tell me a story and it will live in my heart forever!!
Not convinced yet?
Don't worry, take it from WPBlogging360 thinker in chief -
The bottom line?
The readers are corrupt! Bribe them with content currency!!
Wait... Here's a bonus tip for you -
Bonus #1: Psychology of Fonts -
Every font inherits a unique personality & purpose!
In fact, the human mind perceives the font subconsciously before anything -
So, choose your font wisely.
The mighty PEN framework has come to a close... you now know - how to write a blog post!!
Are you tired of writing blog posts that no one reads? I've been there too...
But The PEN Framework has changed things for me & it can do the same for you too provided that you use it properly!
The bottom line?
To write like Hemingway you need a pen - The PEN Framework!
Share your thoughts in the comments: Will you use The PEN Framework to write your future blog posts or pencil is more economical to you?