Throughout my four weeks with the team at Radix, I took on a wide range of B2B blog posts – covering everything from powerful algorithms on social media platforms to the hit 2012 film Pitch Perfect.
Working across such a diverse range of topics and formats, I’ve picked up dozens of tips from each piece of feedback I received – helping me improve with each new task I was given. And if you’re looking to develop your B2B blog writing, they might be useful for you, too.
So here are the five best blog writing tips that I’ll be using in the future…
1. Plan your structure before you start
This tip may seem obvious; however, I didn’t realise how helpful making a structured plan was before starting a blog.
Previously, coming straight from an academic setting, I wouldn’t spend much time planning due to the ever-looming deadlines hanging over my head. But, after spending time at Radix, I now understand how beneficial it can be.
By having a structured plan, I could understand exactly the marketing objective, the audience I was writing to, and the key messages I should include. I could also expand further in the plan, bulleting exactly what points I’d be making and in what order. I found it a clear way to see if the blog flowed before I even started writing it.
2. Don’t go overboard with data
Another tip I picked up was to not overwhelm the reader with data.
When you have lots of statistics to back up what you’re saying, it’s easy to want to include it all. After all, using data is a great way to build a convincing argument, prove a statement, or support an idea. It can also be used to condense large amounts of information into manageable chunks, making it easier for the person reading to digest.
However, overusing or presenting an entire data set will defeat the purpose. You need to embed it into your argument, and explain how it supports your points, otherwise it’ll slow the narrative. Sticking to one or two strong pieces of data often makes the blog much more compelling.
3. Avoid even numbers in listicle headers
An unusual tip that I learnt at Radix was to avoid even numbers when writing headers. In a listicle approach, research suggests that odd numbers attract greater traffic and catch readers’ attention. They tend to work better than even numbers due to being more memorable and playing on superstitions (even numbers are seen to be unlucky).
BuzzFeed’s blogs are a great example of this: ‘If You’re Finally Ready To Get Rid Of Your Clutter, Here Are 29 Products To Help’.
Research has even shown that humans tend to struggle to process more than nine items in a row. So, by simply breaking up larger chunks of information into odd-numbered batches, and keeping the list short, the brain can process the information more easily.
4. Don’t try to become an expert
Typically, when given a copywriting brief, you’ll need additional research to grasp the whole concept – especially if the brief itself isn’t very detailed to begin with. So, a fair amount of your blog writing time will need to be spent researching. However, I found it easy to fall into the trap of looking too deeply into research – straying away from what the key point of the blog originally was.
When researching, I learnt you only need to gain enough information and knowledge to complete that single piece of writing, and you don’t need to go far beyond the scope of the project. The client is the expert, so we don’t need to be.
In fact, in a training session on effective proofing led by Verity, I learnt the accessibility of a piece of writing is also incredibly important – you should aim for your writing to be understood by a 13-year old. That’s easier to achieve if you’re not loaded down with too many technical details you might not need.
5. Write the end of your blog first
When I started writing my first blog, I found myself stuck, staring at the introduction section. I found it difficult to write a summary of what will be in the blog when it wasn’t even written. But in his training session on structuring blog posts, Matt told me that starting at the final point, and working your way backwards, was often the best way to start.
This meant that by the time I had got to the introduction, I would already have all my points written and laid out, meaning I could use all this information to make a well-rounded summary of what was to come in the blog.
Picking up skills: the Radix internship
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed spending my August with the team here at Radix. I’ve developed tonnes of new skills and have a wider range of knowledge about different areas of writing.
It’s also given me a head start on my introduction to marketing (I’m just about to head off to the University of Brighton to study Marketing Management), and I’ve picked up tips I’ll be using for years to come. I hope they’ll prove useful to you too.