Blogging Tips – 7 Things a Successful Blog Needs
Becoming a blogger is a great undertaking, and it can be worthwhile. These 7 blogging tips will help you make your blog stand out from the others.
Bloggers who choose a blog topic they aren’t interested in often end up abandoning their blog, dooming it to spend a life of boredom gathering dust in the blogosphere, waiting for “someday.” If you aren’t passionate about your blog’s topic, it will show in your writing, and your readers will quickly become disinterested, too. Blogging with your interest in mind makes the time spent stringing words together much more enjoyable.
The old “write what you know” adage applies to bloggers as well as other writers. The more knowledgeable you are about your blog’s topic, the easier it will be to write. When you’re familiar with a topic, you’ll know which experts to interview, what resources are available, and what questions newcomers to your niche frequently ask.
A third thing your blog will need to be successful is not only your personal interest, but the interest of others — your audience. Pick a topic broad enough to interest an audience that is identifiable, accessible, and large. This will help generate more activity than a topic that that relates to just a handful of readers. Conducting thorough market research will help you find who your readers are, what they want, and how to let them know you’ve got it.
A well-focused topic presented from a unique slant is another essential of successful blogs. Most bloggers take a common subject and write about it from an uncommon approach. To catch and retain a reader’s attention, you must take a seemingly worn-out topic and give it some pizzazz by presenting it in a way the world hasn’t yet seen. The Julie/Julia Project is a good example of a unique blogging approach. The blog was about cooking — a fairly common topic. But Julie developed a unique angle, or “slant,” for her cooking blog. She blogged her way through an entire recipe book written by the popular late chef, Julia Child. And that unique blog became a major movie.
Developing an effective marketing and promotion plan is another key to the success of your blog. Once you’ve chosen a topic you’re passionate about, given it a unique slant, and have identified and located your target audience, it’s time to let that audience know about your blog. Successful bloggers use both online and offline promotion strategies. In addition to developing a specific marketing plan, watch for impromptu opportunities to share with others about your blog.
Blogging can be one of the most gratifying activities you can engage in, yet it is time-consuming and can be a lonely endeavor. There are ways to involve your family and friends, but when it comes down to it, you’ll need to spend a lot of hours sitting in front of your computer monitor. Alone. Developing a system for your blog will help streamline time spent blogging. Also, staying focused on your initial purpose for blogging will keep you motivated to stick with it. Make a list of “whys” you’ve chosen to blog. Write those reasons on a note card and post it in a prominent place on your desk. When life gets in the way and you’re struggling to squeeze in time to blog, think of the audience you hope to help, the extra income streams you plan to develop, and the potential business growth a blog can produce.
Finally, for your blog to become a success, it will need your control. If you’re using your blog for any type of professional or business purpose, make sure you are the one who maintains control of it. This includes ensuring your name and email address are listed as your domain name’s administrative contact. If you have another person or company register your domain for you, request that you be named the administrative contact.
Control is one of the top reasons most professional bloggers recommend choosing a self-hosted blog over a free blogging platform. Most free blogging platforms don’t have the flexibility that content management platforms, such as WordPress, offer. And if you closely examine the terms of service for free blogging platforms, you’ll note that in most cases, the company providing the service retains the right to stop the service or suspend accounts without notice.