Read time: 5 minutes
I say this often, but it’s worth repeating for those of you who haven’t read my other articles:
Writing a surf camp blog is actually quite easy!
The challenging part is developing a content plan, avoiding the pitfalls that kill blog posts and sticking to said plan for as long as it takes to generate increased traffic.
But this isn’t an article about developing content plans.
Nor is it about the average time it takes for a blog to take off (6 months or more in case you’re wondering).
In this article, we talk about the things that sink surf camp blog posts. Rendering them either unreadable, unattractive or just downright uninspiring.
Don’t waste your time or the readers.
Commit these blog writing sins to memory and learn from other people’s (see: my) mistakes.
By doing so you can create engaging blog articles that show off your brand’s personality and actually provide value to your audience.
Because that’s what having a surf camp blog is all about.
1. Not posting at least once a month
Posting only when you feel like it isn’t a great strategy. Neither is posting an article once a quarter or (clutch my pearls!) once a year.
So just how much should you post in order to see results?
There’s actually no magic number. It all depends on the size of your surf camp or surf tourism business plus how much time you have.
As a rule of thumb though, the more you post, the more traffic you tend to get. With businesses who post multiple times a week seeing the highest results.
But don’t stress.
Nobody expects a fledgling surf camp or surf house to post 3 to 5 times per week.
If you can post at least twice a month or, better yet, once a week, you’ll be doing much better than 99% of the other surf tourism businesses in your area.
That I can guarantee.
2. Large blocks of text on your surf camp blog
Tell me… what looks more readable to you?
Modelling of surfboard performance via computer fluid dynamics was previously limited. It showed only what should work in theory. These digital tests could then only be supported by a team rider sessioning a new design in a variety of ocean conditions. And then either confirming “Oh, yeah mate this board goes unreal” or “Nah. Don’t like it.” Not very effective.
Modelling of surfboard performance via computer fluid dynamics was previously limited.
It showed only what should work in theory.
These digital tests could then only be supported by a team rider sessioning a new design in a variety of ocean conditions.
And then either confirming “oh, yeah mate this board goes unreal” or “nah. Don’t like it.” Not very effective.
Unless you read dictionaries for fun, chances are that the text with breaks between each sentence looks way friendlier.
And as a surf blog writer, I can testify that this makes your articles more effective. But why are shorter sentences better?
There are a few reasons for this:
- Most internet users scan, not read
- They’re suited to short attention spans (e.g. most of the population)
- There’s less information to filter through
- Shorter paragraphs encourage you to read on
- Each sentence can drive home an individual point
Another point to consider if you’re writing your own surf camp blog is that shorter sentences and paragraphs are better from a proofreading perspective.
It’s much easier to edit one sentence at a time, rather than a massive block of 100 words or more.
Although if you’re writing after a big day at work or forcing yourself to put phalanges on the keyboard, you’ll probably make a few errors regardless.
This leads us to my next point.
3. Poor spelling and grammar
I didn’t know what career path I wanted to take when I was at school.
But when you throw in the fact that just down the road was a super fun lefthand wedge and it’s pretty clear now why my exam results were never that good.
Maths was a write off. Geography wasn’t all that challenging. And learning a second language?
As a young kid growing up on a remote stretch of coastline in Australia, speaking German, Spanish or Japanese didn’t seem particularly advantageous (although now I’m married to an Austrian).
One subject that I did love though was English.
And much to my teacher’s surprise (and my own), I excelled when it came to poetry, literature, essay writing and all that other fun stuff.
This means that I’m quick to identify poor spelling and grammar in a surf camp blog post or on a surf business’s website… but I’m not alone.
Google is less likely to give your page a tick of approval if the spelling or grammar is poor. Not to mention that it distracts readers from processing your overall message.
More importantly, though, spelling mistakes and grammatical errors look sloppy and unprofessional… even if the rest of your business is anything but.
This can make people trust your brand less, which will in turn push them towards your competitors. And that’s a big ol’ bummer.
If you want people to read your surf camp blog but you’re not 100% confident in your English language skills, hire an English native to write it for you.
Or at the very least get them to proofread your surf camp blog before you hit the publish button.
There may only be one or two mistakes to correct, but it’s the small details that make a big difference.
4. Confusing or clunky headlines
The headline of your article appears everywhere.
On the Google search engine results page.
On your surf camp blog page.
As a preview when shared on social media.
And at the top of your post.
The goal of your headline is to catch the eye of your ideal reader. To make them stop doing whatever it is that they’re doing. To pay attention.
And you can’t do that if you write clunky or confusing headlines.
Here’s what I recommend:
- Be ultra-specific
- Add an element of urgency
- Pique their interest with a curious turn of phrase
- Be useful
- Be surprising
- Use statistics
- Frame it as a question
I’ve already given you a few tips on how to write effective headlines that you can find by reading this article, but here are three other examples of good headlines:
- 1,000 ways to level up your surf camp blog (specific)
- How to become the surf camp that influencers want to book with (useful)
- A new surf camp marketing trend that’s changing the game (interesting)
Essentially, you need to spend a decent amount of time formulating a good headline.
It’s pretty much the only reason why we click on surf camp blog articles these days.
5. Never linking to surf camp blog pages
The whole reason we write surf camp blog articles is to help our audience.
It’s as simple as that.
So why don’t we help them navigate to other important pages on our website by providing helpful links?
I do it and you should too. Chiefly because you can make life easier for the people you care about, but also because these links will contribute towards you being found on search engines.
You see, search engines find the best pages about a topic by crawling the web. They then promote it to the top of the search results page. This is how you get visitors.
Links assist with this process given that they denote authority on the subject (for example: surf camps in France). Something that Google absolutely loves.
Internal links are exactly the same, except that you give yourself that little mark of authority by connecting one article on your website with another. And the more links you have, the more authority you receive.
This will ultimately help you rank higher for specific topics or keywords.
So don’t forget to link all articles on your website. Otherwise, you do yourself, your site and your visitors a massive disservice.
6. Choosing a boring subject to write about
There are almost endless topics for you to write about when it comes to a surf camp blog.
Guest experiences, safety tips and checklists on what to bring when you arrive are always incredibly popular.
But do you know what’s not popular?
Anything that’s not relevant to your surf camp or a topic that you yourself wouldn’t care to read about.
For example: nobody wants to read about the different types of sand at your local beach. Nor do they want to read an article that answers an obvious question. And articles with inane infographics? Not worth the pixels they’re printed on.
You have to write about things that your audience is interested in.
You should also try to write about things that other surf camp blogs don’t already cover.
Do your research. Have past guests fill out surveys on what they want to read. Talk to your staff about what they believe will make a good surf camp blog post.
Whatever you do, make sure the idea has legs and that you can provide a high level of insight.
Because anything less than awesome just won’t cut it.