There are some people who say that blogging is an easy career. Those people have probably never started a blog or written one. The fact is that not everyone is up to the task of regularly maintaining a blog. Sure, anyone can jot down some thoughts and post them every so often, but this isnâ€™t really the kind of blog weâ€™re talking about. Blogging can be a career that sustains you, fulfils you creatively, and acts as your main source of income, but you have to take it seriously. Hereâ€™s how you can make your blog the best it can be.
Establish your brand
Even as a blogger, having an established brand is extremely important. Itâ€™s no longer enough to simply tap away at a keyboard and hope you manage to attract an audience. Instead, youâ€™ll need a solid brand identity, a sense of what your blog is about and why itâ€™s different to all the other blogs out there. To create a brand identity for your blog, come up with a catchy and succinct name, strong visual branding, and a unique writing style. All of these things go together to create the brand identity. Itâ€™s not so difficult when you break it down into constituent elements!
Engage with your readership
Thereâ€™s nothing sadder for a new blogger than seeing comments go unanswered. Obviously, if youâ€™re getting thousands of comments a day, then first of all youâ€™re very lucky and secondly you arenâ€™t expected to reply to them all. Still, keeping up reader engagement is a good way to improve your blog. Letâ€™s say youâ€™re writing a daily horoscope blog. Ask your readers what their signs are, what their horoscopes have in store for them, and how theyâ€™re going to realise those predictions. Have a conversation and get to know your audience better.
Make sure itâ€™s well-formatted
It goes without saying that a good-looking blog is very important. Youâ€™re not going to get very far in the blogging world if your blog is poorly-optimised and doesnâ€™t look great. Image is almost as important as content; any good writer can construct a great blog post, but if itâ€™s not formatted well, then nobody will want to read it. There are plenty of sites out there – WordPress, Squarespace, and Wix are examples – that will help you format your blog. If you donâ€™t have any computer expertise, donâ€™t worry, because thereâ€™s always help out there.
So youâ€™ve set everything up just the way you like it and youâ€™ve started steadily generating content for your blog. The trouble is that youâ€™re just not getting many readers. Nobody seems to want to engage with your blog. Why is that? Are you doing something wrong? The answer is likely to be no – blogging just takes a long time to take off. You might be writing for a year or two before anyone seriously starts paying attention to your blog, and thatâ€™s alright. If you love what you do, then a delay between writing and getting an audience shouldnâ€™t bother you too much.
Add calls to action
If a reader chances upon your blog, they might just read the content, appreciate it momentarily, and move on. In the age of widespread high-speed internet access, not many people have the time to pore over your blog and find your social media details for themselves. If you want people to stick around, donâ€™t be afraid to add calls to action to your blog. These include asking people to follow your social media accounts, directing readers to giveaways, and asking people to share your article via their own social media pages. All of these are excellent ways to increase reader engagement.
Create great content
With all of these branding exercises and extra tips, it can be easy to lose sight of the fact that at the heart of every great blog is simply great content. If your readers realise that your content isnâ€™t up to snuff then it wonâ€™t matter how amazing your blog looks, you simply wonâ€™t attract a large audience. It may not be the first thing people notice about your blog, but content works in tandem with visual appeal to create a blog that people will want to revisit over and over again. Practice creating excellent content before you commit to your blog on a large scale.
Donâ€™t worry if posts fail
Itâ€™s natural for some blog posts not to get the exposure that others have. You canâ€™t dictate what will become popular with your readership. Similarly, you shouldnâ€™t simply aim to recreate posts that have become popular, because that will smack of desperation to a large part of your audience. Simply write as you are and donâ€™t worry if certain posts arenâ€™t performing as well – this is a normal part of blogging. When your blog takes off, your readers will revisit it and rediscover all this great content that they didnâ€™t even know was there, so you can think of it as a future insurance policy. You can even repost!
Optimise your blog for SEO
SEO is one of the most important aspects of blog content. Making sure your content is optimised for SEO means that people will be able to find it more easily when theyâ€™re searching for your subject on Google. Practically, SEO means using certain keywords and phrase combinations, as well as keeping your sentences short and using a fairly straightforward register. Basically, if you want to know how to engage your audience with SEO, write more like Ernest Hemingway and less like Charles Dickens! Donâ€™t worry if you donâ€™t get it straight away – it takes time to become skilled at SEO optimisation.