Day six of the DC Ladies Blogtober is here. Today’s challenge is to share my top five blogging tips for a new blogger. This is what I’ve managed to figure out thus far.
1) Get connected. Get to know other bloggers. These bloggers don’t necessarily have to be in your niche or write about your topic. Other bloggers can be a fantastic resource for ideas, second opinions, opportunities, support, encouragement, and trouble shooting.
How does one meet other bloggers? Comment on their blogs, connect on twitter, or send an email. Every blogger was new to the game at some point and most are willing to at least say hello.
2) Be Yourself. My favorite blogs to read are the ones in which an author is genuine. Faults and all, I enjoy when a blogger’s personality, thoughts, and feelings are conveyed through clever writing.
Keep in mind that the internet is a vast resource. Most of the information that you have to offer can be found elsewhere. What makes your blog unique is you. Some of my most popular posts made me feel very vulnerable when I hit publish.
On the other hand, don’t try to be something you are not. I stop reading as soon as I feel the author is being phony or trying too hard to push a desired image.
3) Decide in the beginning what you want from your blog. Do you want to advertise on your blog? Is your blog an extension of your company’s website? Are you trying to connect with others in your field or interest? Or, maybe you just want to write for your own purposes?
Knowing these things before hand will help you decide on the appropriate blogging platform, find your reader base, and will assist in planning a strategy. It’s easier to deal with these things in the beginning than have to shuffle everything around later.
For me, I determined that I wanted my blog to be a place to vent and connect with other parents like myself. I knew that I didn’t want to blog for a long term and wanted Charlie to have her privacy as she grew. This information impacted my choices.
Things like advertising, paid posts, and so forth did not feel right for what I wanted from my blog. Plus, I know I want to wrap up my blog when Charlie turns three.
4) Social media matters. Blogging is social. A social media presence is key to increasing your blog readership. Interact with your readers and let future readers know that your blog is out there.
This is an area that I could improve quite a bit. If I had the time, energy, and drive, I would use Facebook like a mini blog and post pictures, updates, and questions unique to that account. In addition, I would update Twitter a few times a day with something funny or thought provoking. Finally, I would have lovely Instagram images and Pinterest worthy graphics.
Social media accounts shouldn’t be entirely self promotional. Share other articles, news items, blogs, or things of interest to your readers or followers.
5) Be creative and experiment. Almost every website, book, or article on blogging will attempt to discuss SEO, click bait, and successful blog post formats. Yes, these things do work in driving traffic. But, it doesn’t necessarily build readership if someone visits your blog once for click bait.
Use the blogging basics as tools and build on them, change them, and make them your own. Don’t be afraid to write a post that doesn’t follow popular post format. Take chances and try something new.