How to Make a Blog that Converts Leads into Clients!
Updated: Jun 25, 2021
Client research, SEO, design, tone, language, images, and knowing when to outsource to rise to the top of the self help biz.
As a wellness professional, you know that there is so much more to health than just diagnoses and prescriptions. It is so much more than simple bodily dysfunction and cure. Health is a dynamic mind-body cyclical system that is often a direct expression of the emotional and mental experience of the individual.
Our feelings trigger hormonal and chemical reactions, these reactions influence our physiology, and after a while, can take an enormous toll on our physical health. Our physical experience subtly transitions from its beginnings of child-like potential and energy, to living heavily, burdened with the physical and emotional disappointments and jaded expectations of our past and fears for our futures.
You know this experience deeply - the melancholy and fear of seeing something more out there for you, but living just outside your reach. Whether it’s confidence, self love, financial success, finding your life partner, having more energy, fitting into your clothes better, healing past traumas, transforming self destructive tendencies, creating a balanced and joyful life - You want it for your clients. And you deserve it for yourself as well.
You see where you want to go, and ardently send out cold emails to potential clients between listening to all the podcasts and streaming all the Ted Talks. You’ve even jumped on board the social media train and are attempting to wrangle the industry titans: Facebook and Insta. (Sending you luck my friend).
You’ve splurged on the ads, and have seen some short-term success in boosting your business. Way to go! But what happens after the short-term excitement of seeing your ad and getting invested in you wears off?
What are you offering people that incentivizes them to stick around? That one time nutritional ebook is helpful for snagging that email and a one-time purchase, but that means you’ll have to expend the same explosive energy on a huge campaign every time you want to dredge up some new clients...
Luckily, there’s another way. An easier way. One that costs “62% less than traditional marketing and generates about 3 times as many leads”
Content Marketing. Custom content that engages not only the clients who click through your social media and ads, but that captures the organic search traffic from potential clients who are looking for the answers you are providing. The icing on the cake? Google takes note of your relevance too.
The algorithms for how Google ranks websites are always changing, but the one system that remains consistent? Value. Google crawlers rank you higher as you provide consistent material that is relevant to what people are searching, and engages them. Engagement looks like having low bounce rates, comments, and shares for your content.
The content itself? Google can’t crawl for videos or podcasts yet, so the best way forward is still drumroll please: BLOGGING.
So how can you make a kick-ass blog without sounding salesy and looking like you’re salivating over each client? Let’s take a deep dive into the different components you should be paying attention to while you begin crafting your blog.
Picking a Topic: What Problem are You Solving?
One of the hardest parts of blogging is just getting started. There are millions of pieces of content floating around, and we’ve all been hit by imposter syndrome, analysis paralysis and despair in the face of our mountain of goals.
So break it down! Think about the clients you already have. Who are they? What experiences bind them together, and what are they struggling with? People want to read what is relevant to them. Start off by bringing up an experience that is specific to the daily lives of your clients, and you’ll automatically be granted more focus as you tap into their reticular activating system.
Are your clients typically women in their mid 30s-40s with a moderate amount of disposable income who take care of household responsibilities and are struggling with the transition to homeschooling during COVID-19 and the Stay At Home Mandate?
If so, creating an article that empathizes with their experience and offers tools for dealing within the difficulties of their situation, changeable or not, could offer a safe and non-judgmental space of loving contemplation that this audience craves.
Are your clients young ambitious high-powered 20-somethings who are making mad-money-moves and setting the world ablaze in their ambition, but at the end of the day come home to hollow relationships and a life devoid of intrinsic purpose?
For this client, you might write an article that speaks to how to keep pursuing their goals while finding balance through introspection and mindfulness. It might be difficult for them to imagine sitting down to read an article on mindfulness. But an article on productivity that emphasizes mindfulness and balance? That could be just what they need to finally catch their breath.
Of course every person is different, and generalizing experiences can only get you so far. The more specific you get, the more relatable you are. Even if the experience is different, speaking to the truth of how the small moments in our lives truly affect us, and giving space for your readers to understand and meditate on themselves is a gift.
In offering comfort in your writings and helping people solve their real-life problems, you mark yourself as a trustworthy, genuine and reliable source of inspiration and information for both future readers and search engines.
Spur Your Readers On with a Strong Call to Action
Now of course - just throwing up a blog and providing amazing content that engages your readers, builds trust and puts you on Google’s Radar isn’t the end. Without a strong CTA, you are delivering amazing material, but not giving your readers any clue as to the next steps for them to take!
I’ve seen countless life coaches write amazing soul-connected and science-backed blogs, but then just sign off, instead of letting their now FULLY engaged readers know what they can check out next, or what other services you offer them.
The heart-centered entrepreneur in you may have just stopped dead in their tracks. Nope! It seems too sneaky, too smarmy - just icky over all to plug yourself in an article that isn’t even about you, it’s about your clients.
You may flashback to detox tea ads and get rich quick schemes that purposefully play to people's fears and hopes, promising the world and taking people’s money, time and ambitions, all the while leaving their pockets a little lighter than before.
You offer a sustainable, life-enriching service that you have put your heart and soul into… You Will Never Be Those Companies.
And while you are definitely not the same as those companies, you do understand the value of marketing psychology. It is always better to speak with clarity and intention. Do so in your blog as well. People want to know how to keep up the momentum with the growth they experienced reading through your content. They want next steps - they want MORE of you. Make it easy for them to access everything you have to offer simply by reminding your readers that it is there.
No need for flashy, gimmicky sales techniques and false promises.
When you finish that article on Chronic Stress and the Top 6 Ways to Reduce It, you can finish with, “If you’re looking for more resources on how to deal with chronic stress, I’ve created a program just for you”, and link to your program.
You can be open and honest, while still clear in what you have to offer.
Don’t shy away from what you want - be proud of the value you offer, and help people find it so they can reap all the benefits of working with you!
Get that Organic Search Traffic with SEO
SEO, aka Search Engine Optimization, aka the Big Baddie of the World Wide Web. What to make of this monster? Let’s dive in.
Search Engine Optimization reflects the tailoring of web content to reflect organic search traffic, i.e. what people are searching on any given day. It is how people find you on the internet, and how Google knows how to rank you and for whom.
When you add certain keywords and long-tail key phrases that mirror what people are searching, Google crawlers (a helpful tool that categorizes and catalogues all pages of web content on the internet) mark you as relevant to their searches. The more searches you are relevant to, the more Google classifies you as an authority in your niche.
This is why blogs are so important - remember - Google needs this content just as much as your readers. When you are consistent in the key words and phrases you use, you carve out a section of the internet where YOU are the expert. You pop up earlier on search results - good thing too, since studies show most people don’t go past the first three pages… ruh roh.
Of course engagement and sharing boost your rankings as well, but we’ve already covered making a blog post for your audience. How do you find keywords and long-tail key phrases?
There are a few ways to go.
The first and easiest: Google Search Bar.
Let’s say you want to write an article on Kicking Bad Habits to the Curb - head to google and look up some larger keywords, like Bad Habits. Scroll down to the bottom of the page, and you can see related searches. These are some organic search long-tail key phrases you can pepper into your article that will usually have lower competition because they are more specific. You can also look at the frequently asked questions to see what other specific information people want.
Next up, Google Ads Account.
If you don’t already have one, you can also make a Google Ads Account for free. When asked to start a campaign, just click Expert Mode to move forward without having to purchase anything. You can then head to the planner section, where you can type in keywords and phrases to see what competition and search averages come up. Ideally, phrases with low competition but high search volumes present the greatest value.
You’ll also find in doing SEO research, you can outline your blog post more quickly and with intention. You can shape and organize your explosive passion and endless thoughts by using search questions to outline your blog post, making it more engaging and relevant to your readers.
SEO research should always be a part of your work - don’t worry too much about the various algorithms and specific tricks and tips people sell - no matter what people claim, very few are actual experts on the constantly changing algorithms Google uses. Google prioritizes relevant and authoritative information for the user above all else.
Anyone remember the Panda upgrade in 2011? That was one of Google’s biggest algorithm changes which effectively redistributed first page standings from content farming businesses that were gaming the system, to value-dependent content.
Remember, Above All Else - Value Floats to the Top.
Prioritize value, and shape with what your readers want to read, so both your readers and Google can find you. SEO is your life-line, without it, people will not find you in this sea of content. Make sure you always give some time to SEO research, but don’t worry too much - you are the value. Be consistent in showing up and the rest will solve itself.
*Reminder* SEO is a long-game approach - it may take a few months for your website to start moving through the web rankings, but the payoff is worth the investment!
*Secondary Reminder* SEO & Market Research are time consuming and stress-eliciting. Depending on your current goals and workload, you might want to consider outsourcing your writing needs.
This is a big one, and one that very few people actually make use of. Haven’t you ever seen a sight that was beautifully designed, but whose tone didn’t seem to be consistent, or match the brand design?
The money-mindset master whose site is so cluttered with bright shiny buttons to kickstart your life today that you feel like you’re about to have a panic attack just by looking at the insane amount of stimulation and bright colors splashed across their page?
How about the wellness experts who have valuable content presented in unreadable enormous blocks of text, or written in a stream of consciousness style without clarity of purpose, or written in jargon-filled legalese that turns a human journey into an automated process of chemicals and un-inspiring steps?
All elements of your business should come from your values as they align with your goals - your clarity in your purpose helps all the other elements fall into place.
Language & Tone
This comes back to knowing your ideal client. What wording is present in their everyday lives and will instantly make them feel comfortable and relate more to you and the information you share?
Even more subtle - tone. I find this depends on the subject matter as well as the audience. Humor is always a brilliant way to relate to people, but if you are handling a delicate topic, a tone of nurture, unconditional love, and support might be the way to go.
If you’re talking about procrastination, it might make you more relatable to filter in some self-deprecation at the obstacles we constantly see (and set for ourselves), to lighten the mood.
While both of these elements should be seen as secondary to the value you provide, they are very helpful at forging a subconscious bond between you and your reader. Share your opinions when they validate experience - everyone feels a little bit alone and unheard.
Your voice is uniquely your own, and just as you might change your tone or language in a session depending on the client, so should you pay attention to the grammar, ease of reading, emotive tone, and specific language used.
Although this should be applied to your website as a whole, the physical formatting of your blog really matters. Here are some questions that can help you clean up your blog and make it more readable:
1. Is there anything you should cut that is redundant or aside from the main focus of this post?
You can always save it for your next article!
2. Is your writing in big blocks versus digestible bite sizes pieces?
3. Are you adding emphasis to certain words or phrases to help skimmers spot important
4. Which fonts are you using - do they add to the clarity or are they distractions?
5. Am you over- or under-using italics and bolding? What do you want to make sure people see?
Headlines & Subheaders
The best headlines consistently have between 6-13 words and grab attention right off the bat.
Don’t sacrifice clarity for clever though!
Try throwing in some commonly searched power words, like ‘The Best of, The Secret to, Top 10 Ways to, the Science-Backed Strategy to, How to...’ - you get the point.
Infuse power words that will hook your reader at the get-go. Present the information they are searching for at the top so they are willing to trust you for the remainder of their journey through your blog post.
Subheaders - these break up your text into subsections and makes your blog not only more readable, but easier on the eyes as a whole.
Pro tip! Use your SEO research to organize your subheaders - it will help structure your blog post for the readers interests, and helps skimmers find their way to the relevant information before bouncing out of your website without a second thought.
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words. Not only do photos give your readers a mental break from the strain of reading, analyzing and contextualizing the valuable information you are giving them. It imparts your readers with an experience. It adds flavor and tone, and is a fun way to make your content more relatable and engaging for your audience.
Images transport your readers to another place; another experience; another emotion. It gives people visual inspiration and trust of the path forward. It lets their imagination take them away from what they ‘know’ to be true, to what is possible.
The Key? Choose photos that add to your message, but don’t overwhelm or distract. There are plenty of services that provide Royalty Free Images that you can edit or use as is to make your blog more dynamic, such as Unsplash and Pexels.
There are also plenty of photographers who focus on creating stock images specifically bundled for health, wellness, and prosperous living. Check out Tanya Shafer Photography if you want your own custom bundle of themed images to inspire and ignite your readers and turn them into devoted clients. Those three up above are hers!
Outsourcing & Options
And last, but certainly not least: Outsourcing. Yes, I am a copywriter. Yes, this section is self-serving. But it is also a very valid and important consideration as you seek to grow your business and incorporate the above into your blog, website and inbound marketing strategies.
Everything I’ve written above will get you started on the right path. If you stick to the principles of consistency, value, and empathy with your readers, you will carve your way through the internet throngs and find a resting place for your business. But truly dedicating the time and energy to doing as much market research and creating informative, evidence-backed and engaging articles ranging in the 1000-3000 word range can be draining, especially if you are also working full time with clients and developing programs and ideas for future business growth.
Pro Tip! Articles ranging between 3,000-10,000 words tend to get the most engagement and shares, a fact which doesn’t seem to lighten your workload…
It’s for this reason that many business owners find that outsourcing their copywriting needs to someone who knows the ins and outs of creating custom content that reflects the needs of their market audience saves them money, time, and stress.
With Demand Metric reporting that 86% of business-to-consumer companies use content marketing, and 62% of companies outsource their content marketing, you would not be alone in choosing to hire someone to custom tailor your self help content just for your readers.
The Key? Make sure you’re a good match. Don’t just hand over the keys to your kingdom without a 15-30 minute discovery call to see if your tones and expertise lines up, or whether you even get along at all.
I love working with heart-centered business owners because I know they place their value in making sure their readers walk away feeling better than when they first came across your website. Make sure your copywriter feels the same as you, and run a trial project first before signing up for a bundle package that leaves you contractually tied to someone who just doesn’t get your brand or style.
All in all, hiring a copywriter can be a great and cost-effective move to build your organic traffic through high-value content that incorporates detailed market research and search engine optimization so your message reaches your readers with little to no additional effort on your end.
Growing your business through blogging is a great way to not only show your expertise and instill trust in your value with your audience, but also to tap into your reader’s sense of reciprocity.
People feel more inclined to give when they’ve already been gifted loads of information that has a positive effect on their lives without any expectations of returned favors.
Engaging with your readers authentically and with your brand purpose of helping them improve their lives, whether it’s through your nutritional programming or in gently embracing the intuitive feminine divine - blogs are the best way to build and grow your authority, reputation, and dedication to your message of offering people ways to improve their lives.
Remember - don’t start perfect. Don’t start at that fantastic but still fictional end goal you dream of at night.
Put yourself out there, a little bit at a time. There are no wrong ways to start, and you can learn more and make new choices in the future as you go. Be yourself and speak from the heart - people are searching for you and are CRAVING trust and authenticity right now. Be the voice that gives them hope and connection, and there is nowhere for you to go but up. As they say, value rises to the top - so get out there and show your value!
I hope you enjoyed my thoughts. Comment below and let me know what works for you and what you want to see more of! If you're looking for help with your content creation, I got you covered. Feel free to schedule your Free 30-minute Discovery Call here.