I try to see everything as an opportunity, including my mistakes. After all, it’s a great way to learn and level up. I see everything you add to your website, or your internet presence in general, as an opportunity to better connect with your audience and reinforce your brand. I’ve previously written about your website’s About or Bio Page and what to include, and how many people don’t take full advantage of the opportunity there. Truthfully, the same advice applies to everything on your website, including your blog posts.
Beyond helping you connect with your existing audience, ideally, your blog is allowing new fans to find you through search. With that in mind, consider that you’re not just picking up a conversation with an old friend each time you write a post, you might be introducing yourself for the first time. So consider what essentials you want to be sure to include so no one feels left out. When I work with my author website design clients I strategize with them about what kind of content to include on their sites to try to take advantage of every available opportunity for them to connect with a new fan, or a media outlet, or a publisher, etc.. and if they’re going to have a successful blog I communicate that it’s important that they consider the title of each post carefully, in addition to the content.
The title of your blog posts is not the time for metaphor or vagueness. This isn’t to say you can’t inject a little humor, but consider that if a potential fan is going to land on your blog post based on a search they performed it’s much more likely that someone would search for “Destination Fiction With a Strong Female Lead” over “Rachel’s Dream Destination”, for example. Even if Rachel is your leading character, if no one has heard of her it’s not going to bring you as much traffic as explicitly spelling out your blog post’s topic.
Titles like, “My First Post” or “Today’s Post” aren’t helping you in any way. They don’t let the reader know what to expect, they don’t help search engines help people find your post, and they’re, well, boring.
Instead, consider identifying a key phrase associated with your post that might be something that someone might search for, where your blog post would be a satisfying result. And if your work falls into a category that’s easily described, like a book genre (eg: psychological thriller), or a service (eg: education), or an outcome (eg: inspiration) keep a list of those words for what you do and consider including them in your post titles.
You don’t want your titles to be long sentences, think of them like the story titles in news or magazine articles. Short, sweet, and to the point. There’s an artistry to this, but with some forethought, you’ll get the hang of it and it will pay you back dividends for years.