Look who’s back with another Blogging 101 post!
I mean, you already knew that, but . . . it’s me. I’m back. Hi. Hello. Good afternoon.
Today’s Blogging 101 topic is blog growth – namely, the easy-but-we-all-be-too-lazy-to-do-them blog habits and tips and tricks we can all use to make our blogs better than ever. Why am I posting this now? Because I’m not in the Christmas spirit, but I am in the New Year one. And. as New Year is a time for growth and productivity, I thought it might be nice to implement some of that onto my blog, so I’ve made a list of goals and resolutions I’m going to try. And what I do for me, I share with you. However, I’m sharing a list of my actual New Year resolutions nearer the time, so these are just a few ideas for some of you!
There are two parts to this list: #1 – Optimizing your blog and current followers. #2 – Reaching out to gain new followers and opportunities. Note: these aren’t just about gaining followers, they’re about improving your blog quality. It’s not all about numbers (unless you’re blogging for business, then I guess it is…) it should be about you loving what you’re doing and being proud of it. But . . . well, money is never a bad thing.
- Take good quality, original images, perfect for ooh-ing and aah-ing over and perfect for sharing! And watermark them too please. Well lit, pretty pictures are the types your followers will actually look at, the type they’re more likely to share and just make your blog look a lot more well done. I found this really lovely blog earlier (ParisianPages) and the first thing I thought was “ohmygosh, I love the way she puts her images together”. You may not think images are that important, but trust me – they are. So make ’em better. (And now you can really tell that I’m talking about myself here, can’t you?) Also – this increases the chances of your blog being shared through brilliant sites like Pinterest.
- So maybe start investing in all those useless props the professional bloggers have making their photos look even more fabulous than usual – I don’t mean go out and buy them (although cheap Primark rings work pretty well, so I’ve been told) but maybe instead of chucking your magazine away you use it. Or you could do what I did in the photographs for this post and use free curtain samples – I got them from here and they send them completely free; not even P+P.
- Brand your blog (logo, images etc) – this is actually a part of why I redesigned my blog. I like to think, at least, that my theme is consistent and looks good and matches my content, as well as kind of getting the . . . personality
nope, I don’t think that’s right well, that’s unsurprising really; she hardly ever is I don’t see you having any helpful contributions– we’re going with personality – of my blog across too. Branding your blog includes your design, your colour scheme, your logo, the fonts you use . . . essentially, your branding is just how you present your blog. Eg: serious, political blog with bright pink background? No.
- Redesign your blog. Okay, well your blog may actually be perfect and may not need redesigning, or it may be doing the job – but it doesn’t hurt to spruce things up a bit. Attractive things = attention. Imagine this – you’ve read a Liebster Award post and you’re clicking through nominees. Finding new blogs, exciting stuff. The first one you click on – generic, no widgets, no colour; the writer doesn’t use images in their post either, so . . . it’s just basically a word document. Now, I would click off. But I am a deficient human being with a terrible attention span, so I guess not everybody would. But still. Another issue with this is that your content is not easily displayed – say someone really likes your writing, and wants to read more on that topic. Where do they go? What do they click? Do they know this? Design has purpose – find yours and fix it.
- Blog consistently. Blog properly. Quantity does not substitute for quantity. Not in any way.
- Get to know your followers, check up on your followers and read their blogs. I’m not saying do this for everyone, as there are some people that follow me who have blog topics 1,000 miles away from my little, insignificant life, so reading their blogs is just illogical. But when someone leaves a comment on my blog, I will always check their blog out once I get around to it. If I like it and it’s relevant, I’ll follow back – and, from then, I will read their posts. Obviously, only do this to the extent that you enjoy it, but it’s more about appreciating your followers. If someone takes the time of day to read my admittedly long ramblings, I will take the time of day to show them my appreciation.
- Give back to the community. Now this one is going on my resolutions list – blog posts that are actually helpful. Whether this is a tutorial, an advice post, or whatever . . . this leads on to my next point, but original content is always brilliant for engagement.
- Write more engaging posts. Posts that will strike conversation, or drive people to leave you a comment. Good examples of this are: current topics, things happening in the world, a news story . . . things people have opinions about.
- Monetize your blog.
Okay, so those are a few tips you can use to play up what you already got – but here are some little tricks to grow.
- Start branching out to different blogging platforms. This is something I never do either, don’t worry – but Blogger has a massive blog community that you could be interacting with. So don’t just stick to WordPress bloggers; try some new ones.
- But branch out to WordPress bloggers too. We’re gang.
- I seriously mean it – branch out. Find two new blogs a week at minimum (search tags, see who your favourite bloggers follow) and say hi. Not only is this good for networking, you’ll also start to see what you like/dislike, what you find interesting, what you want to try yourself, yada yada.
- Implement SEO into your posts.
- Actually, I’d suggest more Create a few SEO optimized posts.
- Self-promote. Okay, so the only time I’ve actually done this (but it works) is through The Hunt (a site where people literally just ask other people to find things for them) – so, if you’re on the internet and you see a possibility to self-promote do it.
- Join blogging networks.
- Grow your social media and use it. Don’t just tweet to pass time on the train, use it to chat to other bloggers, tell your followers you have a new post coming up . . . social media is a brilliant way to connect with an audience.
- Collaboration posts.
- Create a viral pin.
- Make a Youtube channel to add another layer of media to your blog.
- Complete a blogging business plan!
If you managed to get all the way down here, props to you! You definitely have the dedication you need to succeed in the blogosphere! I hope this was helpful, although now I’ve reached the bottom of the post it doesn’t feel it. But I didn’t want to go too in depth for any points because then this post would become ridiculously long and, as they’re resolutions, they are really up to your interpretations!
So, that’s today’s post done . . . vote below to tell me what my next Blogging 101 post should be! And – what are your blogging resolutions, guys?