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How to Write a Great Blog Post

This post explains how to write a blog post on ExploringTM1.com. It covers writing the post, making sure it is well structured from an SEO and readability perspective, and the meta-information that is required.

Target Audience

The target audience for ExploringTM1 is a professional TM1 administrator or consultant (with a preference for administrators).

Style

ExploringTM1 has a specific style that we’d like to maintain. It is friendly, slightly laconic, professional and informative. Essentially it is a a little bit casual, a bit fun, has colour and an enjoyable place to find a solution.

Login

Go to ExploringTM1.com and login.

Write the Blog Post

After logging in at the top of the page, click “+ New” and select “Post”

That will create a new post and present you with the editor.

Title

Enter a descriptive title. This is what Google will display as the primary link in search results. Make it descriptive and enticing for a reader to want to click on.

You can assess how good your Title is by looking at the top right corner of WordPress and you will get a score. Try to get above 70 if possible! You can see where I started with “How to Write a Blog Post” and then modified it to “How to Write a Great Blog Post” and the change in the Heading store to 72/100.

Body

In the body of the post

  • Add an introductory paragraph
  • Insert a heading that describes the issue being solved. Style it as “H2”
  • Add a paragraph that describes the issue you will then be discussing how to solve below.
  • Insert a heading that describes the solution. Style it as H2
  • Add a paragraph or two that explains how to resolve the problem statement.
  • Add a Notes heading and style it as H2
  • Enter a short paragraph including any relevant notes.

Code

If you are pasting in code (from, say a rule or TI), please format it as "Preformatted" and then select "Code". This will mean that when it is copied and pasted, it will not include all the formatting junk with the code.

Images

Images are vital to a great blog post. To insert them take a screenshot of what you are trying to illustrate, rename it so it is relevant to the blog post (so NOT just the default file name!), and insert it into the post.

Call to Action

The blog is a source of leads. Please add a simple Call to Action at the end of your post. A simple “If you need some help with blah, blah, blah, please get in touch and da, de, da, de, da, de, da”. Don’t worry about adding a Contact Us form immediately underneath the CTA as that will be added by default.

Warning about Microsoft Word and Google Docs

Please DO NOT copy and paste from Word or Google Docs. Both applications include a heap of junk along with the visible copy. Write your post directly in WordPress. It is very easy and makes for a clean post! If you have written in Google Docs or Word, then simply copy the text and paste into a text editor first. Then copy again and paste into your blog poster simply paste special, text.

Warning about ChatGPT etc.

These tools are great for background research, but we don’t want them to be used as the primary source of copy for our blog posts. Their style, language, spelling is all wrong. By all means use them to research your topic, but not for writing the post.

Yoast

Yoast analyses your post for two things: SEO and Readability. We want to end up with two green lights in Yoast.

Keyphrase

The first thing to do is enter a keyphrase that you want Yoast to assess your post for. For example, if this guide was a blog post, I would enter “Write blog post”. Yoast will then assess the post for that expression and advise you below about the use of the keyphrase through the post. 

If you can use synonyms for your keyphrase, add them in the section below the primary Yoast analysis.

Note Yoast will interpret not just explicitly the keyphrase, but the combination of words in it

Meta Description

The meta description is what Google will display when it displays a link to your post. This should be informative and must encourage the reader to click. The meta description should be between 120 and 156 characters.

Slug

The slug is the text that appears after the domain. This auto-populates based on the title. Take a look at it and if it looks great, just use it. You are welcome though to change it if required. It should include the keyphrase

Post Metadata

On the right-hand side of the WordPress window, you will see a sidebar with a whole lot of metadata you can assign to the post. The following is really important to make sure that your blog post writing is not in vain!

Categories

The category structure is well established and should be followed by using the Categories that are available. Please don’t add a new one without talking to John first. Please choose just one or two, a maximum of three, and if more than one, select one as the primary category.

Tags

Tags are more freestyle. Many tags already exist, so start typing and then select those that are appropriate for your post. You may select or enter as many tags as are appropriate, without going overboard and confusing both the site and search engines.

Access Levels

This determines if someone has to login to see the entire post. If this is desired, tick the “Explorers” access level.

Featured Post

If your post is a ripper, let’s feature it on the Home page by ticking the Featured post box.

ExploringTM1 is a very colourful site. People like the fun tone and images. Find a great image from somewhere, rename it (this is an absolute must!), and then set it as the featured image. The featured image needs to relate to the post, but will probably not be some techy image or a screenshot (for example, when talking about children in a dimension, I used an image of a family, or on a post about cells, I used an image of a gaol cell.

It is suggested that the featured image be at least 1200 by 675 pixels. I try to do that, but am not too fussed if it is slightly smaller than that.

After setting your Featured Image, it will appear like this on the ExploringTM1 home page. This is important as it adds colour and vibrancy to the site:

Written a Blog Post? Now Publish it!

Now that you have written your blog post, you need to publish it. Just head up to the Publish button in the top left corner and hit Publish. If you are an Editor, you will be able to publish immediately. If you are a Contributor, then you will need to Submit it for Review by an Editor. Most people are Contributors.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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John Vaughan

John Vaughan

John is a CPA, MBA and has been a Performance Management consultant for over 25 years. He is the founder of ExploringTM1 and highly regarded for his experience combining financial management with corporate planning, reporting and analysis. He lives in Sydney with his wife, two of his three children, their cat, Freckles, a bunch of chooks and some fish. John is a sports nut, who played rugby until he was 40, started playing football at 54 and loves being outdoors.

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