Writing content that converts is more than just doing keyword research. Don’t get me wrong keyword research is necessary! But understanding your audience is even more crucial. It’s not your job to sell; that’s the job of the sales page. It is your job to presell that is to warm up your audience, so they are receptive to your recommendations. When you are doing this successfully writing content that converts is relatively easy.
The reason most people start with keyword research is that they have no audience when they first start a blog. Blogging in the first six months is a very lonely experience. You feel as though you are the only person reading your blog in the universe, and in truth you probably are. Over time when you develop your content, your tribe will come.
Until it does, it’s quite difficult to understand your audience. You can’t ask them directly, so you have to be a little bit smart about your research. Going to forums and hang out where your target audience hangs out. First of all be very aware that you have to define your target audience.
For instance, if you are in the money making niche you are targeting more specifically than people who need more money. Think about it there are about 6 billion adults on the planet and how many of them that you know has enough money? That leaves 6 billion people with the problem. However, if you target all of them, you will end up by appealing to none of them.
The Sieve Versus the Funnell
Imagine two kitchen utensils, the colander, and the funnel. A colander is round like a bowl with a lot of holes in it. It’s usually used in the kitchen to drain water from solids. So if you cook say rice or peas, you pour them into the colander which retains the food, but the hot water rushes out. A funnel, on the other hand, is triangular in shape with a thin narrow but long base. It is very broad at the top, and if you were to fill it with sand, there would be thousands of grains of sand at the top.
However, the weight of the sand would crush down because it narrows as it goes down the sand becomes more compact. This is what should be happening to readers of your blog. There are a lot of readers that the top; they narrow down in numbers. However, those numbers become more concentrated or more interested in your content until that the base of the funnel where it’s very narrow there are only a few grains of sand compared to the top. In blogging terms, these are people who are buyers. They are much more crucial than your readers at the top because reading your content has converted them into buyers.
Interact with your target audience
Read their blogs
Read what your competitors have to say! Do they have a lot of comments on their blogs? If they do then they are interacting well with their audience. Their content is engaging enough to encourage their readers to reply and make suggestions and comments.
Join similar groups on Facebook
type in your keyword on Facebook and join groups or your target audience hanging out. Introduce yourself in these groups. Listen and observe the problems that you will have to address. A Facebook group is a good place to develop your personality. Yes I know you have probably developed your character already but I’m talking about your blogging persona. You may not necessarily be yourself or you may be yourself but targeting certain aspects of your personality.
Once you have your blog set up, there are several things that confuse the reader at worst or at best muddy the waters. Keep your blog with plenty of white space. Break up your content using headers. I try to insert a header at least every 400 words. It makes your content look less dense and easy to read.
Keep your navigation super simple. Your readers are not going to spend precious time trying to find where you put content they will simply leave and find elsewhere. You can have too many bells and whistles on a blog. Keep the theme very simple and don’t have animated icons or images that jump out at people unawares.
Make sure you install Google Analytics because you can find how long your visitors stay on each page. This sorts out what content is engaging in which content isn’t. You will find when you start that the majority of your readers will stay less than 30 seconds! That’s not even long enough to leave the home page.
Try not to lecture your reader
Don’t use a higher all the time. Use the word “you”. This makes the reader feel involved it makes them feel that you understand them. Try and be a little bit casual. Imagine you’re leaning on the door post of your kitchen, looking in at your friends sitting right around a wooden table. Suppose you have a mug of steaming coffee in your hand and you’re just chatting to them as though you haven’t got a care in the world.
Having said that trying gets the point quickly don’t waffle! Your readers have a very short attention span. Everybody understands stories and they are very effective way of conveying meaning to your audience. By definition your stories about you but turn them round to your reader by using words such as
“I don’t know about you, but”
“if you’ve ever done this, you will know what I mean”
“have you ever had this happen to you?”
Don’t glide your readers with science or industry jargon keep it simple. Above all keep your copntent real.
Writer’s Block comes about because we are all victims of an evolutionary accident. What is this accident? Well, let’s just say that you have a part of your brain that still believes you’re a lizard. For this part of your brain, time has stood still, as it was one hundred million years ago.
It wants you to stay alive. In fact, the only function of this part of your brain is to ensure that you do stay alive. It is designed to keep you out of the jaws of predators. At the same time, helping you to become a more successful predator.
However, the chances of a saber-toothed tiger chasing after you today are relatively slim. So instead, your lizard brain reacts to non-threatening, modern stressors as if they were primitive, life-threatening situations.
As a result, you fight, freeze or flee from deadlines, success, interpersonal relationships. All the thing you really always wanted to do as if they were a rabid pack of stampeding tyrannosaurs.
So, when you’re facing crippling writer’s block, you’re actually facing your own ingrained, evolutionary survival behaviors. When you look at that empty computer screen or a blank sheet of paper thinking about content and deadlines, your lizard brain sees trouble.
It doesn’t understand the niceties of creativity or the responsibilities of earning a living. That’s stuff for the newer, more rational, parts of your brain. Instead, this ancient remnant of a long gone age interprets your stress as a signal to freeze. Freeze – don’t take action. Don’t solve the problem. Above all, don’t move. The result is a classic case of writer’s block.
Fortunately, when it comes to writer’s block, this situation is fairly easy to fix. The first step is to recognize that the writer’s block is because your lizard brain doesn’t realize that you are not under any threat of immediate death!
Next, take a moment also to recognize that the block is a direct result of your lizard brain unconsciously affecting your behavior. In response to the perceived threat, your reaction is to freeze. Finally, purposely ignore this unconscious reaction. Instead of freezing, do the opposite.
Take action and solve the problem by doing the one thing you want to do the least – start writing. Once you begin to break down the behavior by moving forward, you’ll find that the writer’s block itself will break, and your creative juices will flow. I t doesn’t matter if you type a laundry or shopping list, just write.
Lizard Brain, Procrastination, and You
There is an old Spanish proverb that says tomorrow is the busiest day of the week. For those prone to waiting until the last minute to get a job done, procrastination is a destructive curse.
It causes untold stress. It ruins reputations. It contributes to financial hardship and it places a solid roadblock on the road to success. The irony is that the tendency to procrastinate is because an evolutionary survival mechanism that hasn’t adjusted to the pace of the modern world.
The source of procrastination is located deep in the most ancient part of the human brain. The area of the brain known as the amygdala. It sits at the very base of the brain on the top of the spinal column. The amygdala is responsible for controlling most of your unconscious decisions. The amygdala drives hunger and thirst, sleepiness and wakefulness and pulse and respiration.
The urges to eat, sleep, procreate and survive are common impulses shared by many different species. The motive force behind all these needs is the amygdala. In fact, if you were to compare the amygdalae of a human being with a horse, an ostrich, and a boa constrictor, the only anatomical difference you would see is size. Each separate amygdala functions in a remarkably similar way, no matter the species.
So, how does this all tie into procrastination? Well, when faced with a need, the amygdala can only respond in one of three ways – fight, freeze or flee. Depending on the situation you fight, or take flight.
So, when an upcoming task or deadline happens, the amygdala misinterprets the stress. It thinks the time limit is a life threatening situation and subconsciously tells you to freeze. While this was a useful strategy fifty million years ago, today it directly causes procrastination.
The easiest way to combat what is, in essence, a mixed-up brain signal is to recognize where the impulse to procrastinate comes from consciously. Once done, it becomes harder and more difficult for the individual affected to give in to the urge to freeze. Eventually, the habit of procrastinating falls away, along with its harmful effects.
How to Fight Lizard Brain
So, you read the title of this article and probably thought “Huh?” That reaction is not unexpected. To know how to fight lizard brain, you have first to know what lizard brain is. Fair enough.
The term “lizard brain” is a modern connotation of the anatomical term “reptilian complex” or “R-complex”. The term, “reptilian complex”, in turn, refers to a specific part of the human brain known as the amygdala.
The amygdala is the part of the brain that controls basic functions and needs, things like pulse, respiration, hunger and sleep.
It is also one of the oldest parts of the brain, from an evolutionary standpoint. We share the structure of our amygdala with sheep, goats, snakes and lizards. Because of this, the r-complex is also the source of rigid assumptions, fear and compulsive behaviors.
The r-complex has newer, more developed areas of the brain, the limbic system, and the neocortex surrounding it. This means that the assumptions and fears generated by the r-complex in an effort to satisfy basic needs interact with complex brain functions like rational thought. The resulting mix of signals can, and does, result in some fairly negative behaviors.
These lizard brain behaviors range from phobias to snap judgments to procrastination to writer’s block and more. They arise because the r-complex is designed to work in only one simple mode. When confronted with a challenge, such as hunger, or a perceived threat, such as a frightening situation, our lizard brains gives us only three possible choices – fight, freeze or flee.
Fight or Flight
Back in the day, say fifty million years ago, these were valid day to day options that helped keep our distant ancestors alive and kicking. If you were hungry, you killed something and ate it. If something was trying to kill and eat you, you froze or ran away. In other words, the amygdala helped you to live to fight, freeze or flee another day.
In the modern world, these options are limited by convention and circumstances. In addition, they are not always valid, ethical or legal. If you’re hungry, you can’t just kill the neighbor’s dog or rob a convenience store to satisfy your need for food.
Instead, a better approach is to recognize that the lizard brain is there in your head, doing what it always has done, sometimes for better and sometimes for worse. Knowing when the effects of the lizard brain are for the worse is the key to controlling these effects.
The Negative Effects of the Lizard Brain
Everywhere you look, you see the effects of evolution and natural selection. The grass and trees in your yard are there because of it. The food in your pantry and refrigerator are there because of it. Your pet dog or cat is there because of it. Most importantly, when you look in the mirror, you are seeing a product of the process of evolution as well. You are here because of it.
Evolution, as you may know, is driven by the twin engines of mutation and genetic drift. Cells replicate by making copies of themselves. During this process mistakes happen. This is a mutation. Most times the mutation is harmful. Occasionally, the mutation is beneficial. These types of “mistakes” then get passed on to the next generation.
Genetic drift occurs naturally over time among all genetic populations, especially those separated from each other by the distance. When enough time goes by, the two separate populations are sufficiently different to constitute different species.
What does this have to do with the negative effects of the lizard brain? Well, nature is nothing if not efficient. As evolution proceeds through mutation and genetic drift, things that might be slightly obsolete get coopted into new uses they weren’t originally designed for. A perfect example of this is the amygdala in the human brain.
Source of Lizard Brain
The amygdala is the source of “lizard brain” behaviors precisely because it is the genetic remnant of the brain possessed by a reptile that lived hundreds of millions of years ago. That dinosaur existed in a world much different than ours. The world was full of simple needs and simple dangers. In essence, you ate something or you were eaten. The lizard that possessed this brain needed only three basic instinctual impulses to survive. Depending on the circumstances, it needed to fight, freeze or flee.
How Lizard Brain Works
The lizard brain in our heads still operates, in the same way, today. The difference is that there isn’t a lot of eating or be eaten situations in modern society, so fighting, fleeing or freezing are often inappropriate responses to modern situations. What happens instead of fighting, people exhibit rigid, kneejerk behaviors and anger. Instead of fleeing, people become unreasonably frightened. Instead of freezing people procrastinate or unintentionally sabotage themselves.
Realizing where these inappropriate responses come from, and why, is the first step to dealing with “lizard brain” behaviors. Simply because there is the remnant of a lizard brain in each of our heads, does not mean that we have to actualize these ancient, and largely obsolete, reactions.
Unreasonable fear is a crippling and debilitating phenomenon that affects nearly everyone at one time or another. This fear can prevent the affected person from fully enjoying a particular experience. It can also inhibit that person to such an extent that they forego particular experiences or events altogether. This prevention or inhibition may eventually occur often enough to actually hold the individual back from achieving goals, potential and overall success. This type of chronic fear is unreasonable. It robs a person of the very thing they hold most dear – life itself.
Fear Is An Evolutionary Tool
The emotion of fear is, in and of itself, a very useful evolutionary tool. Quite simply, it helps to keep an organism alive long enough to guarantee procreation and, as a result, another generation of similar organisms. It’s sensible and reasonable to be afraid of something that has a good potential to cut your life short. However, when fear has no grounds it makes no sense. Let’s take a look at this phenomenon a little more closely.
Fear, both reasonable and unreasonable, originates at the base of the brain known as the reptilian or R-complex. This is one of the oldest parts of the human brain. We share its structure with many other species, including lizards. Hence, it’s other common name – the lizard brain.
Besides producing the sensation of fear, the lizard brain also largely controls many of the basic autonomic functions of the human body. The job of the lizard brain is to keep the owner of the brain alive. However, the lizard brain evolved at a time when danger, as well as the stress caused by danger, was relatively straightforward. You either ate or were eaten. The lizard brain dealt with that simple situation very efficiently.
The problem is that modern stresses usually do not involve life-threatening situations. Lizard brain does not understand this. When mundane stress is experienced it still misinterprets this stress as critical. This misinterpretation is the source of unreasonable, groundless fear.
The easiest way to combat this unreasonable fear is by using your rational mind to reinterpret the situation. This is done by calmly assessing the circumstances causing the fear. Once this is accomplished and you’ve seen that the situation is definitely not life threatening, ask yourself what the worst possible outcome could be. This rational examination of your fear calms the lizard brain, thus reducing the severity, as well as the occurrence, of that fear.
If you see the word “personalization”, and you stop breathing, – either because you hate the idea of standing out of your comfort zone or are you paralyzed by analysis. You’re about to feel a lot better about working your own style and voice into your online business efforts. I’m going to show you how toPersonalize Your Content- Own it.
For many people, introverts or not, personalization is something they don’t understand or don’t want to do. After all, isn’t making money online all about being able to stay anonymous and rake in cash?
No, it’s not actually.
The Road to Success
Working from home online is about finding your passion for helping other people, and reaping both monetary rewards and personal satisfaction from your efforts. Personalization elevates you from anonymous, possible scumbag (in the eyes of a wary consumer), to a trustworthy source of valuable information.
Some misguided marketers like to start threads in forums that say something like, “Content is dead” or “Article marketing is no longer viable.” The truth is, the one phrase, “Content is King” will always be correct because the content is what conveys information from an authority figure to the person seeking information.
The Importance of Content
For a marketer, content is how you get found online. Search engines crawl the web with what are known as spiders or bots – and they index these pages like a library catalog.
Whenever a consumer comes along to Google searching for information, they reach into their stores of files and present what they consider to be the possible top matches for the person using their service. Without content on your site, you won’t be one of the options shown.
Define your Content
Content is what informs consumers on a buying decision. Graphics are nice and all, but it’s words that tell a person what a product or service is, why they need it, and how it will change their lives.
It will never become obsolete. No matter how hard you want it to or wish it didn’t have the power that it had, content is crucial to the success of your online business success.
But there’s a right and a wrong way to do it. Sterile, keyword-laden content is the wrong way to do it. Content reliant on spammy backlinks is wrong. Personalized content is right.
Back In the Day
In the past, length was one thing that many marketers focused on. It used to be what you could get away with, a 100 or 200-word flimsy post filled with keywords, and you’d rank high.
Then marketers got spanked by Google and figured it must be the length that got them into trouble, so they stretched their content out to 500 words or more. For awhile, it worked, too!
Keyword density became next on the hit list. Marketers started getting penalized for having too many keywords in their content. Suddenly all those expensive tools they’d invested in, and the long hours spent researching the right words and phrases they could dominate with were all a wash.
Where to put the content became an issue. Google slapped article directories, with a vengeance. All that content people had listed with a strategic call to action were worthless – not ranking anymore.
Web 2.0 sites like Squidoo got beat up. In defense Squidoo, started closing accounts of people who thought their content was perfect. It was unique, just the right length, had keywords, etc.
The Reality Check
Everything people had stressed to you in the past about how to create content that worked online – had now been demolished. It can send you reeling, paralyzed about putting any more effort into your online content creation.
Now was the time to learn how to create a real sustainable business.
The only solution to this is to start writing personalized content. With personalization, length isn’t an issue; keywords aren’t “key.” You can put it anywhere and everywhere and rest assured that Google’s not going to slap it down.
Personalization is the only characteristic that has stood the test of time. It’s what attracts a faithful, loyal audience and what will help you become a leader in your niche with very little effort.
Getting Personalisation wrong
Some people don’t really understand what personalization means. They think it means that they have to spill their deepest, darkest secrets onto the web. That’s not it at all!
It conveys emotions. When you want someone to buy something you’re promoting, you don’t just write about specifications that a product seller or manufacturer can say.
That’s like a friend asking you which doctor you recommend, and you spouting off the credentials of a local MD. Facts don’t tell the actual things that make people want to spend money. It’s emotions.
To Personalize Your Content- Own it.
Learn how to use adjectives when you write and express what you feel when you use or read or learn from something. It’s a simple phrase of, “I felt so ____ when I read that!” It could be:
Remember your blog reader is sitting there nervously reading your product review because they want to learn a strategy so bad, they need you, their trusted leader, to tell them you felt relieved. Once you have done that, then that feeling will flow over to them, and they’ll feel more comfortable buying the recommended item.
Over time this relationship will blossom. Tomorrow we will investigate how to Stand Out From The Crowd, And Your Tribe Will Come
The following are essential rules in the lesson entitled How to Write a Truly Atrocious blog post.
Make sure that you write about something completely unrelated to your readers. Make sure that the topic does not interest anyone in your target audience.
Rule 1 Part B
Write the blog post in the dryest possible form, drag it out so that you readers have lost the will to live after the first four lines. Make doubly sure that they are turned off reading the post before they even start by writing a headline that is both unrelated and uncompelling.
Let’s face it you don’t want your readers to be grabbed by the throat really gripped by what you are saying. Add " how to" in the title; after all, it worked for Dale Carnegie; and there is no way advertising has changed in the last eighty years! After all, why to reinvent the wheel.
How to Write the World’s worst blog post.
With Crappy images preferably ripped off! Make sure that you add an entirely unconnected image, or better still no image at all. If you add an image, forget to use the alt tag and completely forget to attribute that image. Under no circumstances use an infographic that may impart some useful knowledge. Preferably use a celebrity image, especially one that excites no one, why would you need a relevant graphic?
No clear call to actuon
I mean you are in a hurry to write a blog post that will pay you boat loads of money. Who has time to put a graphic in, and of course there is no necessity to make sure that there are no spelinge mistakes.
While you are at, it never uses paragraphs or headlines that would break up your post and make it easier to read, after all, you are only going to write 350 words, and grammar can’t be that important in the lesson about how to write a truly atrocious blog post.
Don’t inject any humor whatsoever in the article, because if you do, your reader may glean something of your personality, your irrepressible bounce and respond to you personally. you don’t need comments, or social media shares – right.
How to Write a Truly Atrocious blog post.
The importance of keywords.
Make the maximum use of keywords, – use them at least twenty times per seventy words. Who cares whether your post makes sense, you don’t need anyone to read it, it does not have to make sense. In fact, only Google will notice it, and you can be sure your prospective readers won’t, and who gives an s*** that Google will notice it for all the wrong reasons.
All you need is for them to press the buy now button, nothing else matters. Talk down to your customers; it really does not matter what they think of you. Why would you want your reader to share the content on social media? Make sure that you make your readers think that you are only in it for the money because that is all you are in it for – right!
But numbers are compelling write, seven is a magic number, so I suggest you write about seven benefits of buying that dog lead. This is especially true if your blog is about growing the largest Aspidistra in the world. Make sure your niche is evergreen because everyone wants to know about how to grow organic parrot food (notice the " how to" in that sentence). I mean you may grab the attention of an Urdu speaking Pakistani who is struggling to learn English. He will not be sure what the blog is about, but hey all those how to's will help. if nothing else it will teach him how confusing the English language is , so job done.
Make sure that you have a call to action which is ambiguous, or better still no call to action and in no circumstance tell your customers what they need to know. Why should you know and understand their problems? Remind yourself that your object is how to write a truly atrocious blog post, there is no need to find and write about the solutions your target audience need. Be sure to make the call to action as hardline and crass and you can, one way to do that is to engage your readers by saying buy now every single sentence. Get to it buy now before I tell you what you why you may need it.
The final rule of how to write a truly atrocious blog post is never planning your article; I mean who the heck has time for that. There is no need to make it relevant to the last post, or the next post. What we have already established it is not relevant content to the blog, so why should it be pertinent to the content. Who needs linked content with a clear message, the only thing that is necessary is the buy now button, now go and press the fr*********** thing before I have to tell my poor long-suffering Urdu speaker why it is helpful. Under no circumstances use a high-quality training program like Wealthy Affiliate because you will learn how to identify a targeted focused niche market and communicate effectively with them.
You can also use it free of charge without going premium and without giving any of your credit card details, I mean who wants to join over a hundred thousand like-minded people who are prepared to help you every step of the way. You have access to the two owners, Carson and Kyle, all the time. Hey, they may be reading this as I speak and rewriting their lessons! In the final analysis you may as well find the easiest possible training to get yourself started. The internet is a confusing place when you first start to use it to make an income. Avoid the majority of the opitafalls by getting the rignt training.