How to Start a Business Blog (with no budget)

How can you develop a blog for your new business?

Elli from Botswana wrote in to ask how she could develop a blog writing framework for her new accountancy business.

She says, ‘Writing article after article is a bit of a grind. Is there some way I can speed up what I’ve written or re-use it somehow?

To solve this, we need a writing framework. This will help you write many interrelated articles very quickly. If done right, it keeps readers, customers, and search engines happy.

Let’s dive in.

There’s two areas we need to focus on: speed and volume.

Volume.

How can we increase the word count?

Here’s some of the email I wrote back to her.

Hi Elli,

Someone who has helped me a lot is Chris Knight, the CEO of EzineArticles.

He writes about developing writing frameworks that you can use to speed write.

Here’s how I approach it.

Say you’re going to write about Hedge Accountancy.

Start off by writing an overview of hedge accountancy, say 1,500 words.

Next identify the five advantages that hedge accountancy offers.

Next flip it around and identify the five disadvantages.

This should be easy to write as the advantages are still fresh in your mind. Essentially, you’re looking at it from a different angle and adding some more details.

Now that you know that advantages and disadvantages you can create an FAQ.

All you have to do here is summarise what you’re written in the first two articles using a Question and Answer format.

Using this FAQ post, you can then create a checklist. It’s the same content but you’re going to write it as a series of steps to follow. Again, you can sprinkle in some additional text to increase the word count and offer the reader more information where possible.

For example, I have a framework for How To articles that lets me get 500 word articles out in less than 15 min. It works like this:

  • Identify the problem
  • Explain how you’re going to solve it
  • List the steps as a numbered list
  • Summarize what you’ve covered

We should now be able to create list articles. 5 ways to test hedge accounts… 7 warning signs for hedge accountants, 3 little known facts about hedge accountants, and so on.

Let’s recap.

  • First, write a pillar article. Think of a tree trunk and branches. This is by far the longest article.
  • Think of the questions readers will likely have about hedge accountancy.
  • Then take some of the content in the pillar article and reshape it into a How to, FAQ, List, Features, Benefits, Risks, and Little Known Facts about Hedge Accountancy.

As you can see from above, you’re really writing one article – the pillar. Then you’re taking parts of it to create sub-articles that branch out.

Remember, don’t copy and paste.

Reshape content to fit different styles.

Some people don’t want to read long articles, they want to find a specific fact.

FAQs solve this.

Others want to know the risks or the gains or the unknowns.

So, write short articles on these points. Where possible, add more detail to flesh out the article.

The simplest way to do this is to write a topic sentence at the top, and a summary at the end.

Readers like this as they tend to scan. They read the topic sentence, scan down the page, and stop to read the summary. Then, if they’re impressed, they go back to the start and read down more slowly.

The final point is this.

Publish frequently.

See what works. See what readers like. See what they’re hungry for.

Then give them more of that. Ignore what the experts say.

Look at what works on your site, then do more of it.

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