This article is a guest post by Melanie Deardorff
Blogging for your health and wellness business isn’t a must, but with your passion for spreading the word about holistic health, the ease and attraction of popular blogging platforms like WordPress and the marketing emphasis on getting content out so you’ll be found online – the idea of blogging is oh-so-appealing to many of us.
Whether writing comes naturally or is more of a struggle, one way to ease your stress is to follow a formula or template, of sorts, that makes it easier to blog. Here are four post styles with suggestions on how you can use these to create interesting content for your health and wellness blog:
Health coaches, personal trainers and others in our field often find themselves in full-on instruction mode. We’re regularly advising clients (and often, family and friends) how to take on healthy lifestyle changes. And that’s what makes an instructional or how-to post pretty perfect for us! Using an example of how to eat healthier at work, here’s an outline you can follow as you draft an instructional post:
- desired outcome for the reader (learning how to eat healthier at work)
- benefits she could discover (weight loss or weight management, increased energy, lower calories, saving money vs. going out for lunch)
- ideas on how to do this (choose fiber-rich fruit and vegetables, a balance of protein and carbs, eat in much more often than eating out)
- action steps to follow (purchase healthy food at the store, prepare the food on Sunday, package the food for Monday-Friday lunches)
- wrap-up and conclusion (re-cap the main steps and benefits of eating healthier at work and challenge the reader to try it)
Because we’re trying to affect change, what better way to encourage readers than with a motivational post that’s upbeat, actionable and encouraging! Here’s how to inspire readers with a client success story (of course, don’t share the person’s name without express permission), or you could share a personal story about how you made a positive change in your attitude, diet, activity or lifestyle.,
- a particular challenge (your client wanted to get fit for a half-marathon)
- the opportunities and rewards (how you helped him set goals, the plan you developed together, how he’d feel meeting the goal)
- the journey along the way (how you worked together, your support and what he did to work toward the goal, including the ups and downs)
- the happy ending and inspiring “win” (how the client met his goal, completed the half-marathon and felt a great sense of accomplishment – and think how cool it would be to include a photo of him crossing the finish line)
Many of us in health and wellness are life-longer learners, and we love staying abreast on health and wellness topics. Avid blog- and book-readers, trend-spotters and industry-watchers, we’re frequently bursting with news and information to share. A blog post is a great way to inform and enlighten. And don’t forget the impact of a post supported by great images, charts or a dominant infographic that tells the story.
- sharing a summary of the news (sourcing, quoting and linking to the new study)
- offering perspectives on what this means (how the news supports or contradicts previous schools of thought, including yours)
- providing readers with other facts (additional links or studies for those who want to learn more)
- drawing conclusions (sharing your experience or education on the topic, including your clients who benefited from eating less fat and sugar)
Perhaps the easiest post to write could be sharing a new revelation or long-held philosophy – something where you can really show your personality. For example, last night I was reminded that just 20 minutes of walking outside can put me in a happier place than sitting on the couch catching up on Facebook. Using this experience, I could write a post about:
- what I did and how a reader might learn from my experience (I was tired after work – you’ve been there, right? – but I promised myself I’d walk every day this week, with our without my walking-partner neighbor)
- how I coached myself to a better behavior and how a reader could do the same (I told myself a short walk is better than none, and I was able to use the time to clear my head without the fun distraction of walking and talking with my neighbor)
- what I’ll take away from the lesson (that even though I need to spend time on the computer and writing for this blog, I still need to make time for exercise and stress-reduction)
Following a format or template is one way to make blogging easier. Because blogging was one of my New Year’s resolutions, I’m working hard to discover other ways to speed up my time spent blogging, conquer my perfectionist tendencies and still write something that both you and I will think is worth our time.
Melanie Deardorff is a veteran marketer whose focus has been digital and social media marketing since 2009. Based in the U.S. Midwest but transitioning to more of a digital nomad (work from wherever) lifestyle, Melanie partners with companies of all sizes and industries, including nonprofits. A special passion of hers is helping small companies, including health and wellness-focused businesses, stand out and be authentic online.