Running a blog can feel like you are talking to yourself when you don’t have an audience yet. Getting the audience is not an easy task given how fierce the competition is nowadays. No matter how narrow or unique your niche, there will be dozens of other bloggers writing about the same thing. However, there are numerous ways in which you can slowly but steadily build up a circle of loyal readers for your blog. So, how does one make profit through blogging?
Below, we listed down some of the best blogging tips that anyone can use to take their blog from anonymous to an award winning one. We will be discussing things you can do, why are they important and how can they help you take your blog to the top.
Different Kind Of Approach To Link Sharing
When writing a blog, you need to link authoritative websites with relevant content to whatever that particular blog is about. This, together with great writing and SEO, will significantly increase chances of your blog ranking high. Once you get yourself next to the authorities, you can expect others to do the same for you. Meaning, it’s likely that other bloggers will start linking your content.
Anytime you share link love, email the person you mentioned in your blog and thank them.
They’ll probably find your post through their Google Alerts eventually, but still, a personal note from the actual blogger is always appreciated. It’s also more likely to stimulate word of mouth AND cement a new relationship, since it is grounded in value, respect and connectedness.
Another tip for making connections: picture the people who would give their right arm to acquire the valuable expertise you realize you possess. Then email them every once in a while to tell them you were thinking of them when you published a specific post. Personal shoutout, even when done personally, works wonders. They will check out the post (and likely other posts too) and there’s a high chance they will share it on social media. Meaning, a free promo and larger audiences.
Ask Readers Some Questions
Here’s why this is the best of all blogging tips: Questions aren’t questions. They’re catapults. That’s the best part. Once they’ve been asked, it’s neurologically impossible for the human brain not to seek answers. Think about YouTube. Probably the only platform that no matter how small a blogger is, or how small their engagement, there are questions under almost all of their videos. How could that be?
Have you noticed the tactic that every YouTube blogger uses in all of their videos? At one point during a video, they ask a question related to the topic they’re discussing and they ask viewers to share their opinion in the comments. You need to do the same. And be creative with what you ask.
So: Ask dangerous questions. Ask disturbing questions. Ignorant questions. Killer questions. Ouch questions. Penetrating questions. Upside-down questions. Soul-shaking questions.
Make your readers stop, nod, gasp and say, “Wow.” A powerful example is a question like, “What are you doing that makes absolutely NO sense?”
When you do this, you enhance your Questioning Practice. You sort of provoke your reader to wonder into an unexpected, unencumbered territory. Surpassing the threshold level of understanding whatever it is you are discussing. However, it’s important to be mindful. Ask only relevant questions and don’t be insensitive.
It’s honestly better to ask them to share their personal experiences. It has been scientifically proven that humans love telling such stories. And that it’s much easier to share something personal to strangers on the internet than to those closest to you offline.
Formatting your content is just as important as researching the topic, great sentence structure and no grammar mistakes. Using lists in your formatting is one of the most important aspects. If you want to get any engagement at all you have to use lists. Here’s a thing about lists. Hardly any reader you will get has enough time read an article from the beginning to the end without missing a word. They are most likely skimming through. And lists are very useful in this case.
Make lists using bullet points or similar formatting options. Each platforms (such as WordPress or Google Docs) offers several different options you can choose to fit the style of your article. In general, there are two main types of lists: unordered and ordered ones. The first one uses bullet points, the latter one uses numbers. Either can be an optimal choice depending on the type of article you are dealing with.
The attention span of a human being is about six seconds. If you do the math, that comes out to reading four lines of written text. So, unless you want to bore your readers and risk them tuning you out like a Tony Little infomercial, remember two words: LINE BREAKS. Bulletins create those. Understand The Caveman Principle. As for what you have to include in lists. Just single out the main points and make the sentences short with no fluff.
Would YOU read your blog every day? The key to writing a great content is to empathize with your reader. Put yourself in their shoes and look at your blog with a critical eye. this way, it’s so much easier to see what needs to be fixed. Being genuine will help you a lot. You don’t have to have a how to guidelines or blog about something super popular, what you should have though is the reason for blogging.
Readers can feel when someone is writing for the sake of writing. Don’t start a blog if you aren’t passionate about the niche you choose to write about. Aside from passion though, it’s important to be somewhat of a professional in the field. Offer your own unique insight but back it up with facts and statistics. And make things aesthetically pleasing.
It’s hard to guess whether what you consider good will be approved by your readers. So, just as we mentioned above, ask for the feedback. There’s always a room for improvement.
Blogging is not literature. Even the blogs dedicated to literature focus on offering something useful and personal to the readers. Something they can use in their own work. That is the reason why the majority of readers click to read a post in the first place. To see the problem from a different perspective. And to get answers to questions they may have about something they want to learn more about.
What have you accomplished that people would not only respect, but also desire to learn and utilize to gain the same benefits for their own experiences? Blog about that. More tips, better. Higher chance a reader will get the inspiration they need and come back for more. So the advice here is to brainstorm some tips in each of your articles. Be the idea generator.
Everything that we have discussed this far and everything we are going to talk about below can be comprised in two words: be useful. But the specific thing we want to focus here is something lots of bloggers do, whether intentionally or unintentionally. Don’t ask too many questions is what we mean here. It’s great to ask some, as we have already discussed above. But readers are coming to you to get answers to THEIR OWN questions. It would be pointless to visit a website in hopes of solving a problem but leaving even more confused.
This is a seductive writing trap that’s easy to fall into. It’s easier to ask questions than to deliver actual practical and useful solutions. So the challenge stands: without context, without knowledge and without a solid content to support your claims, you will look like an amateur writer. This gives readers the impression that you can’t really think of anything good or original to say, but you were given the task of writing, so you just decided to ask a bunch of questions.
Call To Action
Close each post with a Call To Action. This is a sort of a response mechanism that can alter reader behavior. It’s a writing tactic often used in the persuasive content writing. Simply put, it’s when you direct your readers towards something they need to do using the text of your message.
To give you an idea here’s a simple example: for instance, you want readers to make a donation to a children’s charity organization. You can write a blog about child welfare and close the article by asking them to donate. The asking part should have a form of an encouragement rather than a demand. This way you will increase chances to persuade your readers to actually donate. If you fail to draw clear reasoning behind your call to action and make it look like a demand, it’s likely you will offend people. And come across as patronizing.
Call to action doesn’t have to be about a social issue or something similar. Let’s visit the YouTube blogger example again. The most famous catchphrase among YouTubers is: don’t forget to like, subscribe and click the notification button to not miss out on new videos. Or something along the way. This is a prime example of call to action. And it’s always timed towards the end of the video. You can do the same for your blog. Ask readers to comment, share and visit again.
Implement Content Management System
To have a content management system should be very important to YOU, as it makes the blogging experience much easier and more enjoyable. We are going to once again recall YouTube blogging. Most successful YouTube bloggers put out new videos two or three times a week on a fixed day. Their audience is aware of it (they do mention the timing a lot in their videos). This makes it easier to check out the new content when it’s fresh. Super good for rankings by the way.
Compile a post cue or an editorial calendar in your Content Management System. This is one of the blogging tips that prevents you from throwing together some half-assed post last minute. The suggestion here is to stay at least two weeks – approximately 10 posts – ahead. You can make up the “system” yourself, or you can search online for some free content management tools. Don’t forget to set reminders just in case.
Create Writing Schedule
One more tip here that ties back to the point above: create writing schedule.
Have you heard of two types of working habits people can have? The ones that belong to type A rely on deadlines and schedules. The second type rely on random bursts of energy. Truth be told neither is a bad thing. But if you want to generate any leads at all, don’t be the second type.
It’s important to give yourself a break some time. But you should be responsible to your readers even in that. Just put out an announcement that you won’t be updating your blog for a period of time and give reasonings as to why. This way you won’t experience sudden loss in the amount of readers you get because of inactivity.
How many times should you be posting?
As a beginner, post every single day. It’s good for SEO and rankings which is what you need to get somewhere. If you’re on vacation or sick, have about a dozen posts ready to go in case of emergency. Most blog platforms have schedule-posting feature. Use them.
Don’t Use “Humor”
What we mean here, is mainly so-called “dark humor”. Unless that IS you niche. It won’t come out funny. Any over-determined action produces its exact opposite reaction, says The Tao De Ching. Just be funny in a witty way. Allow your natural hilariousness to shine. Don’t joke about sensitive topics or you will offend someone.
This is an extremely crucial point to take into consideration, especially now, when the “cancel culture” is sweeping the internet. And most of the time rightfully so. Trying to be funny about everything may cost you more than simple reduction in the amount of readers. Negative promotion is the best promotion doesn’t work here.
Remember: Don’t make your readers do your job for you. Research before you start writing, link authoritative sources where relevant, stick to the topic, try to give readers practical ideas they can implement right away, offer them a unique insight, but most importantly, be informative.
It’s not just about the experiences you’ve had. And it’s not just about the lessons learned from those experiences. It’s the direct and practical application OF those experiences to the daily lives of your readers. Hopefully having something to do with making something useful, like money.
Here’s a tip for you: select either a Niche Topic or a Niche Market. Generalization will only succeed if you are:
A. A celebrity whose fans will read anything you put out. The huge following celebrities have gives them enormous advantage over those without any background. Think about celebrity make up brand owners like Selena Gomez and Rihanna. A single announcement that they are going to launch a new product guarantees it will be sold out and talked about by every single beauty influencer on all digital platforms.
B. Similar to the first one, an influencer in the blogging industry. Authorities can get away with general talk. Beginners can’t. That is because they have earned the luxury by putting out great content year after year.
C. If you are smart enough to fool your readers into thinking you are giving them something of the value.
Get Help From Free Online Tools
There are many digital tools that can help you optimize your content. Most tools offer variety of services starting from SEO optimization to grammar check and formatting. On WordPress alone, there are over 55’000 plug-ins with new ones added on a weekly basis. This is great because it means you can get help over virtually any problem that may stand in your way. But be careful during the selection process not to waste time on something that can’t do the job well. For instance, never trust a rewriting bot as it makes the text sound unnatural.
It should also be mentioned that most tools have both free and paid versions. Free versions are a good choice on a tight budget. However, they are limited in their scope of helpful services. If it’s not enough for you, try to look for the platform that offers variety of subscription fees and select the least expensive one.
Give Readers What they Want
Your blog should be reader centric. Meaning, it should be customized according to your reader’s expectations. Now this is a bit hard to do at the beginning. Simply because you don’t have any readers to start with. In this case what you should do is research popular blogs within your niche. What do they look like? What kind of content are they putting out? How are their articles formatted? You can get the inspiration from them.
Once your own readers start to flock in, ask them to give feedback in order to customize your blog better. And for the love of God, don’t write fluff. If they wanted fluff, they would read fiction. So here’s a top-notch blogging tip: make sure your content is high quality.
Sit down and physically write out your answer(s) the question: “If everybody did exactly what you said, what would the world look like?” Once you’ve got 5-7 answers, consider that to be a framework of your personal philosophy. Then, every day when you post, all you have to do is ask this follow-up question:
“Is what I’m blogging about right now giving my readers the tools they need to BUILD that world?” If it’s not, trash it. Simple as that.
Speaking of which.. toot your own horn. Higher quality content earns you the right to be a little more self-promotional. And you should never shy away from self-promo because if you don’t do it, nobody else will. Link your own content in new articles alongside other relevant sources. Share and recommend your blog on your social media. Especially in popular Facebook groups with a huge following. That’s literally your target market right in front of you.
Once you get to the place of confidence stop quoting Einstein, Rumi, Jesus and Seneca. Quote YOU. If you want to position yourself as a Thought Leader, you need to quote yourself, or else nobody else will. You will know when to start doing this when you start seeing numbers. Before that though, quote and link the authorities in relevant niches.
One thing to not forget here is to only do this once you are confident about your blog. If the quality is not that great, it looks like a mess layout wise or you haven’t been getting satisfactory feedback, it’s better to sit back and wait for the timing to be right.
Align Your Blog With Your Website
Ideally, your blog and your website should be the same thing. However, if that’s not a possibility, no worries. Here’s what you do. Make sure your blog has a few static pages built in where you talk about you, your products and services and your philosophy. If your blog host doesn’t allow that, just make your static pages actual blog posts with the comments turned off. Cool little trick to make. Make a “Meet Your Name” at the top of your blog where readers can click on to check you out.
What You Should Be Blogging About
- Identify your TRUE expertise and inventory your negotiable personal assets. Then blog about that.
- Know your blog value. Imagine someone was going to pay you $1000 an hour to rent your brain. What questions would they have to ask you to get their money’s worth? Blog about that.
- Make a list of what do you do and what can you offer people to make them want to pay you. Blog about those.
- Recall what it is everybody is always asking you about. Why would they do that? Most likely because you possess a unique and helpful kind of knowledge about the topic. Just simply enhance your audience and blog about that.
- Nobody cares about the things you’ve done. They only care about what you’ve learned. Is that what you’re blogging about? Remember Seth’s Tip: Notice things and give them names. Also: Pick a lane, take a side.
Extra tip for you: Read The Best.
Just read Seth Godin’s or Brian Clark’s blogs every other day. Do what they say, do what they do. Learning from the best increases the chances that you will become the best.
One more tip: Make Up Your Own Words.
Here’s a fun experiment: Go into the preferences section of Microsoft Word and click on “Custom Dictionary.” Then, click on “Edit.” It will formulate a list of every word you’ve right-clicked on and added to the dictionary while writing. You’ll be able to go back in time and see what terms you invented. Then, write out their definitions. Then blog about that.
Make it easy for people to share your blog using social bookmarking composite tags, i.e., “Share This” at the end of the post. One more way you can achieve getting good WOM is by purchasing URL’s for specific blog posts. This makes it easier to share the entire sequence with readers. Plus, this strategy enables you to bookmark key topic ideas for future blog posts. It also protects your copyright. You need the trademarking for branding purposes to increase authority and make yourself known.
Some blogs require readers to subscribe before they’re able to read full posts. If you’re good, they’ll be back. And if you’re really good, they’ll be back with their friends. If you’re really, REALLY good, they’ll be back with their friends and their wallets.
Comments are blogging tips of their own. Some blogs don’t allow comments from readers unless they’re registered users. So you get a few spam comments. Who cares? Community is more important. Dialogue is more valuable.
Make Your Blog Visually Pleasing
Blog aesthetics are just as important as the content and website architecture. You don’t want it to look like a mess. Even if you offer the most valuable information, nobody will be willing to check it out unless you implement great visuals into it. Blogposts shouldn’t look like academic articles people only read because they have to.
Here’s two things you can do here. If you are tight on the budget you have no other choice but to learn how to build a good-looking blog yourself. There are online tutorials as well as free sources you can use to help you achieve this. It doesn’t have to be anything complicated. Simply put relevant images and videos where necessary; employ infographics too. Anyone can do this things.
But this should be your last resort.
There’s a huge difference between making your BLOG POSTS aesthetically pleasing and making your BLOG do the same. When you are not a professional you can’t take care of the things like article alignment or a decent landing page. These are technicalities web designers specialize in. And they take time to learn about them.
Hire a professional blog designer. Don’t download one of those crappy templates from Blogger.com. DEFINITELY don’t try to do it yourself. And certainly don’t commission your sixteen year-old to whip it up on Photoshop during study hall when they should be reviewing for their calculus final.
Pay Attention To The Title
Remember the headline of this very blog post? Re-read it. Ask yourself what drew you to it. Then replicate that persuasiveness in your own posts. That’s a practical blogging tip with an example too.
The title is what draws the readers in. Therefore, it should be to the point; not too long but also not too short. Think of something unique or witty. Like a magazine headline. It should also be in alignment with the content of the blogpost. If it’s not, you will have a high bounce rates. Meaning, the visitors will click away without engaging with the content. This can ultimately lead into taking down of your blog.
Teach People The Secret To Something
People don’t care how good you are; they care how well you’re going to help them become. People don’t care what you do for a living; they care what you’re passionate about. People don’t care if you’re having a bad day; they care how you’re going to help them have a better day. And lastly, people don’t care about your company, they care about the problems your company can solve. Got it?
Relevancy is the number one blogging tip you should be aware of. Sure, nobody cares about your dog, but they MIGHT care about the 47 lessons your dog taught you about customer service. Remember: Ideas. Content. Guts. Lists. Lessons.
And relevancy again. Maybe nobody cares about your dog, but they MIGHT care about the blog your dog writes every day. Make it funny and cool and use great pictures. Create a personality and writing voice for your pet.