How To Write an Article About Pillar Content (Long-form Video)
1. Write the draft article using the transcription.
Make sure you have at least 200 words and take screenshots that show what you’re trying to convey. Placing a colored box around important numbers is the best way to draw a reader’s attention.
- Green for positive things, e.g. what something should look like, or what the reader should add.
- Red for negative things, e.g. what something should not look like, or what the reader should delete.
Write succinctly. Break up long paragraphs for easier reading. Be clear and concise. Start with the numbers or Metrics. Give it context by telling the story behind them, then make recommendations that form a strategy as to what they can do to improve.
For content ideas, paid services such as FancyHands and Fiverr are great resources to use. The turnaround time is a few hours and the cost is just under $3 since we have a package of 50 tasks for $130 a month. The service is limited to US customers. You can sign up at www.fancyhands.com.
You should also reach out to the authors of the blog you’ve been commenting on, asking them for a few quotes on your topic. Attribute their quote, add their photo/headshot, and link to their website.
Make sure to let them know the article is live via their Twitter or Facebook page so others who follow them can benefit from their insights as well (and get a little traffic/awareness to your blog).
2. Include interesting pictures & links to other articles to support the content.
DO NOT use stock images or ones lifted from Google Images.
DO NOT use the same link TWICE in an article.
DO NOT link to other sites unless it's an affiliate, partner, or client since that bleeds link juice (which hurts our SEO).
We DO want to link to related articles along the way and at the end. For example, in an article on cross-posting on Twitter, we'd want to hyperlink "cross-posting" to a blog post about the different ways to cross-post (on Twitter, Facebook pages, LinkedIn, etc). And link to related terms-- not shamelessly, but at a normal rate (which you'd typically see in blogs).
Let's not link out unless it's a specific page for an article or affiliate code.
For example, we don't link out to top level domains unless it's a client or one of our properties.
3. Proofread/Use an editing service to tighten up your article.
Glance over your article, looking for any typos and capitalization errors. Use a spelling/grammar checker app (e.g., Grammarly) on the whole article. Trim out adjective overuse and watch out for phrases that inflate your article needlessly like “However”, “On the other hand”, “Meanwhile”, “The fact that”, and “Actually”.
Always write using the active voice, not passive. An active voice is where you promote action as the subject of a line. For example, “I wrote this article” is active. “This article was written by me” is passive and pointlessly bloated.
Break up your article into chunks by hitting enter every 3-5 lines. This makes reading easier. That’s how this course is structured.
Editing services such as www.draftin.com have professional editors who will edit your writing for a small fee. They’ll help you with the issues above, trim down your article, and avoid other issues, such as alliteration, which is a string of words sharing the same first letter (e.g., “Peter Piper picked a pair of pickled peppers”). Break them up or use a thesaurus. Other examples are:
- Don’t end on prepositions, or “linking” words like “with”, “beneath”, “on”, “during”, etc.
- Stomp out weasel words. For example, “Some people say” is dubious since it’s not clear how many people said it.
- Don’t ask rhetorical questions, because who likes those?
- Stay specific and write succinctly.
- Exaggerations make your articles a billion times longer and add ambiguity.
- Comparisons are messy, like eating a box of chocolates left in the sun.
- If you’re short on money and/or time, ask a few friends to look it over following the above guidelines. Remember these 3 C’s for editing: Write consistently, concisely, and structure cleanly.
- Verify that the article does not have any Low-value / Unrelated / Broken links.
- Use Link Whisper (https://linkwhisper.com/) to manage internal links and RankMath(https://rankmath.com/) to adjust titles, descriptions, and body copy.
- Link Whisper is just down below your article, if you scroll down. Choose which link makes sense from the variety of links they give you to include.
RankMath is in the top right corner. Hit that button, check it out, and see if you can figure out what it does. It helps you with SEO on the page.
At the end of an article, consider what the most relevant next step is for the reader. It could be learning how to boost posts so that the organic posts get traffic. It could be learning about the Content Factory to be able to repurpose content at scale. Pick 1 or 2 items that you believe are most relevant.
4. Link to thought-provoking content with relevant anchor text.
Anchor Text is the text that appears highlighted in a hyperlinked text and that can be clicked to open the target web page.
When researching your topic, keep a list of articles that can sprinkle into your final work. These links are usually from blogs you’ve had contact with or contributed to.
When linking, make sure to avoid using the “Click Here!” anchor text. Instead, use text that portrays what the link is about, like why you shouldn’t steal your competitors' traffic.
Don’t over-promote yourself, otherwise, you’ll be labeled as a spammer. It’s fine to have a URL in every paragraph or subtopic to drive your point home, but absolutely NO affiliate links or blatant for-profit material.
5. Dress up your article with formatting and summarize key points.
Adding small flourishes to your content helps readers retain key points more easily. Bold key statements, “italicize quotes from others”, and take advantage of headlines to break your article into sections. Recap major points at the end.
Bold key statements.
Italicize quotes from others.
Use headings and subheadings to break articles into sections.
Reiterate major points at the very end of your article using bullet points, as we used in this list.
Finally, end with an invitation for your reader to respond. “What do you think?”, “Has this ever happened to you?”, “What should I do next?”. There are countless ways to spark a conversation, so try a few and let us know how it goes (Just like that!).
6. Give your article a snappy title.
Once your article is done, it’s time to give it a killer headline that summarizes what your article is about and why your audience should read it.
It helps to lay out the numbers, what they mean, and how the reader benefits from them, such as “I have 602 Sales Reps Right Now Making Just Over $1 a Day” by Logan Young. Look over the following articles for some examples:
- How to write headlines at https://copywritingcourse.com/how-to-write-headlines/
- The Ultimate Idea-Inducing Creativity-Enhancing Sample Headline Collection
7. Categorize your post & add keywords.
Before you post your article, make sure you have it properly categorized. WordPress has a robust category system that allows you to keep what you’ve written about organized, so make sure to file each article under the appropriate section.
Keywords, (or “tags” as WordPress calls them) are special words you can reference in your article to help the search function categorize the post. These also help readers glance over the article list and see what it mentions, giving a small boost to the article’s SEO ranking as well.
If you mention a proper noun in the article, chances are you can use it as a tag. For each topic, use up to five keyword tags to describe it.