Sometimes, just creating content that offers consumers good information, educates them about your products or services, and identifies how your business meets a need is enough.
But sometimes, it’s not.
You need blog content to perform a host of different functions. Good blog content will do all of these things–inform, educate, meet a need—and more. Capturing leads and going viral are two more functions of good blog content.
However, viral, lead-generating content is perhaps the most difficult kind of content to pull off.
Tackling a blog post that can go viral and capture leads requires careful crafting. Let’s break down how to create a viral blog post that generates leads.
Step 1: Create a compelling headline
This element is one of the first things consumers see. It has to command attention and get people to click through to actually read one word of the blog that comes after it. Humdrum, routine titles won’t cut it. Instead, get edgy and creative, and go with buzzworthy, memorable titles.
Take the title of this blog post for example. We hope it caught your attention, and it probably did–since you’re reading this blog. But what if we had gone with something less eye-catching:
Learning to write blog posts.
The components that your blog must have.
A little more catching, but not very distinctive.
Demystifing the viral blog post.
Now, that’s a title! It draws you in with the appeal to create a “viral” post, which means drawing lots of traffic to your site. What small business isn’t in hot pursuit of that goal? And the use of “demystifying” shows you that we’re going to take the mystery out of the equation and show you what it takes to generate a viral article.
Step “B” of creating the headline involves addressing the headline’s SEO. Simply creating a catchy title isn’t enough, unfortunately. The title must also appeal to the SEO rules-to-live-by. To ensure your title catches the eye of search engine bots so you rank high, it should:
- Use relevant keywords in the title.
- Use relevant keywords in the alt tags.
- Use relevant keywords in the body of the post, too.
Step 2: Include a call-to-action
Once you lay out of the information in the article, educate readers, or establish your authority, you need to strategically design a call-to-action to get the readers to perform the next step.
Through the call-to-action, you can get readers to move to the next step of the buying stage, by offering free resources, opting in to an email list, attending a webinar, etc. So make sure each blog post has a call-to-action.
Step 3: Include links
Internal links—or hyperlinks to other pages on your website—and external links—links going to other blogs—help to drive your blog’s virality. Use the latter sparingly, though. Every time you use an external link, your risk losing readers to another website. So use these strategically to cite a source, for example. Internal links are best used to direct readers to more information that’s relevant to your call-to-action for that particular blog.
Step 4: Take advantage of white space
Use the area around the blog to capture readers. Sidebars are a great way to include other relevant calls-to-action, like a newsletter signup or blog alert. That way, no matter what stage of the buying process a consumer is in, you offer an option to meet them where they’re at.
Step 5: Pop up
When a consumer tries to close the web page, a pop-up can capture these potentially lost leads. Right before the page closes for good, the pop up appears, asking readers to perform an action—such as signing up for a free report or getting blog updates. Pop ups help businesses increase conversion rates, reducing bounce rates and abandoned pages.
A strategic plan for creating blogs that go viral includes creating an SEO-driven, compelling headline, adding a C2A, linking where relevant, using white space and employing pop ups. With the right strategy and interesting content, you’ve got a recipe for blog-virality success!