Here’s the thing: Anyone can write a blog–and many people do–but most have trouble finding and building an audience. In this post, I’m going to share my top blogging advice on how to write a blog readers love and will visit regularly.
Blogging Advice #1: Develop a Plan
This should always be a work in progress. On Day 1, you may have a very vague idea of what you’re trying to do. Hopefully, you’ll have a better idea on Day 1,677, but your plan should ALWAYS be open to revision.
Blogging Advice #2: Be Yourself
Don’t put on a “blogging mask.” If you’re a perky person, be perky on your blog. If you’re known for your frankness in the real world, by all means be frank in the blogging world. The last thing you want your blog to do is help you create multiple personality disorder.
Blogging Advice #3: Put Readers First
The problem with many blogs is that the blogger seems to be blogging only for himself, which is fine if he doesn’t want readers. However, I’m making the assumption anyone reading this post wants readers. As such, think about how you can serve your readers best–from your content to tools that make it easier for your audience to follow your blog (such as e-mail and RSS feeds).
In this 4-week course developed by social media guru Dan Blank, new and experienced bloggers alike will learn how to create and maintain a blog that amazes readers. This course will cover how to create an editorial calendar, how to master SEO, how to interact with readers on your blog, and so much more. Click to continue.
Blogging Advice #4: Think SEO
SEO is short for search engine optimization, which itself means creating content that displays higher in search engine results (places like Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.). To improve SEO, do keyword research on each post. Then, optimize each post. Click here to check out my tutorial that covers how to write a blog post with SEO and other blogging advice in detail.
Blogging Advice #5: Connect With Your Audience
One way to connect with your audience is to allow comments and respond to those comments. Another way to connect is by making thoughtful comments on other similar blogs. Plus, connecting with relevant bloggers and readers on social media sites counts as well.
Blogging Advice #6: Employ Sound Blog Design
Limit paragraphs to 2-5 sentences. Use headers and lists (numbered or bullet points). Include images. When done right, blog design also improves SEO by including targeted keywords in headers and image file names.
Blogging Advice #7: Include Images
Speaking of images, they are very important. First, they improve the look of each post. Second, they often improve the look of each post on social media sites, such as Facebook, Google+, and Pinterest. Third, they help SEO–if you label your files with your targeted keywords.
Blogging Advice #8: Create Editorial Calendar
Whenever you’re dealing with content, it helps to create an editorial calendar. This rule proves true for blogging as much as writing a newsletter or editing a magazine. While you can make your calendar as loose or firm as you wish, it helps to generate ideas ahead of time and avoid blogger’s block.
In this OnDemand webinar, Meredith Barnes (digital maven for Soho Press) covers what you should and should not blog about, how to develop a community with your fans, who your audience is, and more. Click to continue.
Blogging Advice #9: Provide Relevant Links
The important word here is relevant. If you have relevant internal links (links on your own blog/website), then include those first. If you don’t have relevant internal links, share relevant external links (links from outside sources), but make sure they open in a new window–so that readers don’t completely leave your blog.
Blogging Advice #10: Make Blog Easy to Share
There are a few ways to make your blog easy to share. For one, be sure to promote each blog post any way you can, especially on social media sites, in e-newsletters, on relevant message boards, etc. Another way to make posts easy to share are to include social sharing buttons. Most blogs include these tools, but click here if you’re completely clueless on how to add a social media share button to your blog.
Follow me on Twitter @robertleebrewer
Read other posts on blogging strategies: