Are you completely new to the world of blogging? If so, welcome! You will find that blogging is an incredibly worthwhile hobby, and one that can bring you heaps of joy and success. But in order to get to that stage, you need to make sure that you are blogging in the right way. Get your blog slightly wrong, and you won’t attract all the readers you had once dreamed of.
Thankfully, learning to blog right isn’t too difficult. I’ve learned so much over my past 18 months as a blogger, and now I want to give something back to the blogging community by sharing my secrets of success. So if you want to help your beginner blog get on the right track, read on! Here are all my tips and tricks that all new bloggers need to know.
Find Your Niche
First of all, you need to decide what you want to blog about. There are so many topics and subjects out there, all of which will have its very own readership and fanbase. Generally, most bloggers write about things that they already have a good background knowledge of. Maybe the topic they choose is their hobby or line of work. But, whichever topic you decide to write about, it is important that you find your own niche in the subject. After all, there is probably already so many bloggers writing on that one subject and you need to be able to stand out from the crowd! So for instance, if you are interested in blogging about food, why not start a gluten-free or dairy-free blog? That way, you are appealing to all those readers who need to follow specialist diets. My new food blog is focused on low GI food and family food. This blog is less of a niche and more family, lifestyle and some midwifery. I personally like the freedom to be able to write about anything that takes my fancy, but for a fast track to success, find an untapped niche.
Visual Content Helps
One very important thing for all bloggers to remember is that you will be unable to grow your audience simply with written content. These days visual content is incredibly important. Get it right, and it will help to hugely boost your audience. The first step to getting great visual content is to find amazing photos. It will be a lot easier to use your own photos which you have taken. That is because you will own all rights to them and won’t have to credit them. However, if you don’t have a very good camera, or you need some pictures quickly, you can always get creative commons pictures. These are photographs which the photographer allows others to use for free. You can’t just use any old photo from Google or you could end up with a hefty fine for copyright infringement.
Reading about your life and times can be interesting for some, but on the whole, readers want to get some use out of your post. Can you show them a craft or recipe? Have you got some advice or experience to share? Put in relevant links where appropriate, and do step by step guides and instructions. Think about the sort of things you like to read, who your target market is and what they want to see. Try offering a free printable, worksheet or tutorial.
Set Up A Mailing List
Once you start blogging, it is also a good idea to set up a mailing list for your blog. Mailing lists have been around for years already. Companies started to use them initially so that they could spread news about their latest products and services. Well, nowadays bloggers have jumped on the mailing list bandwagon and are finding them extremely useful for growing their audience. Mailing lists are great because they are a much easier way to reach people compared to search engines and social media. Google and social media websites keep on changing their algorithms which can make it tricky to always reach your target audience. However, with a mailing list, you can send everything you want them to see straight to their inbox. Sites like Mailchimp and Mailmunch make it super easy to set up. You can sign up to mine at the bottom of this post, where you’ll get a weekly update of my posts and the odd special offer.
Social Media Is Super Important
Sure, social media websites may continually change their algorithms. But you should still see them as one of your best friends when it comes to blogging! It is an easy way to get your content straight out there to the people who matter. Even if you already have your own Facebook and Twitter accounts, it is a good idea to create some just for your blog. That way, people who know your blog name can easily find you on social media. Once you get set up on these platforms, be sure to share each and every blog post that you publish. Remember to use lots of hashtags so that they are seen by as many people as possible. You should also try and follow as many other bloggers as possible. Pick people who blog about similar things to you. This will give you a great network of people who will be willing to share your work. Just remember that you will need to promote their blog posts in return as well! I’ve written some separate guides on Twitter and Pinterest which you might find useful.
Improve Your IT Knowledge
Now that you have your blog all set up and ready to go, it could be useful to give your knowledge of coding, IT and computers a bit of a boost. This will come in handy if something ever happens to your laptop or you run into another IT issue. You will need to fix any IT problems quickly so that you can return to your blog as soon as possible. If you go through a period of not sharing any content, your followers and readers may think that you have abandoned your blog. This could cost you traffic and readers. If you ever do run into a major problem that you are unable to fix, there will be plenty of firms who specialize in IT support who will be able to come to your rescue.
Pay For Promotion
Gone are the days of getting any worthwhile promotion for free. These days, you should expect to have to pay for quality promotion. Don’t worry, though; it won’t break the bank! You can get Facebook and Twitter sponsored posts for just a couple of pounds. These sponsored posts are shown to a lot more people than those who follow you. You don’t have to do it, but it can help. I’ve done it occasionally. Another great way to promote your blog is to pay for advertising on other websites. Would you rather keep your promotional costs down to a minimum? Then the best way is to strike a deal with one of your blogger friends. Maybe they would let you place an ad for your blog on their site if you agree to do the same for them on your blog? The whole ‘you scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours’ mentality will go a long way in the world of blogging!
Follow these tips, and you will find that your audience drastically increases!
Disclosure: this is a collaborative post, all opinions are my own
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