- Do listen. Don’t follow. You can learn a lot by listening to other people. But that doesn’t mean you should be a blind follower.
- Trust the process. No one is an overnight success. Besides, there’s no definite end to your journey as a blogger.
- Be real. Lying is exhausting. At any given time, you should feel free to express your opinions.
- Never stop experimenting. Step outside of your comfort zone. Why would you want to do the same thing day in and day out?
- Have fun. If you aren’t, what’s the point? Blog about what you love.
- Always take care of yourself. Your health and happiness come first.
- Give back. As much as you can. You’re not on an island by yourself. Reach out to other bloggers. You don’t have to do this alone. We’re all in the same boat.
- Stay patient. Sooner or later, all your labour will pay off.
- Focus on the positives. Small wins are worth celebrating. When you’re struggling, remind yourself of how far you’ve come.
- Just blog. Blogging is what you make it.
I’m a hypocrite, I know. I don’t like the term “life hack” and I don’t think you can truly “hack” anything in life. Nothing replaces hard work. Nothing. But there are some things I’ve picked up over the years that have made my life easier. And more efficient.
I’ll all about managing my time well. Never waste a minute you don’t have to.
Bookmark certain sites you’ll use often. I personally bookmark the WordPress editor, my blog’s home page, and the Reader. It’s quicker to click a button. Besides, I’m not about the navigating through multiple sites or typing in a URL life.
Use templates. They are your best friend. You can use the template of a previous post for new posts. For my writing contests posts, I don’t write out all the informational categories such as Type of Entry or Fee (if any) for every competition. I don’t even rewrite it for new posts. I have a template saved as a draft so I can copy, paste, and fill out accordingly. How much time have I saved using templates? A lot.
Now you know. And if you knew already, I just wasted your time, didn’t I?
I’ve shied away from doing a post like this for several reasons, which I won’t get into right now.
But someone sent in a question over at my Tumblr blog, asking me for advice on getting followers, so I thought I’d adapt my reply and share my tips here as well.
I didn’t start my blogs with the intention of growing a following or having anyone read my writing. That being said most of us want someone to appreciate our work. I think you really have to enjoy making videos, taking photos, etc., to continue doing it even without a following. If you love the creative process, you’ll not only enjoy blogging a lot more, you’ll also attract like-minded followers.
I don’t claim to have the largest following in the world, but I have come a long way. I remember those days when I had zero followers, which is why I’m grateful to have some now. I’m still trying to wrap my head around why anyone follows any of my blogs. Thank you if you do.
I’m very particular with how I run my blog so I can’t claim to do what most articles or other bloggers will tell you to do. This is what has worked for me. It might not work for you (or you may not agree) so take what does and toss what doesn’t.
- Post consistently. Aside from rare occasions where I forgot or a technical mishap occurred, I post (original content) at least once every day. Anyhow reblogging (which I don’t do) or anything else that keeps your blog active works as well. You can schedule posts to go out on certain days if you know you’ll be away from your computer and living your life.
- Post at certain times. I have experimented with this. Frankly, I just post when it suits me best. I will say that posting at a peak time when many bloggers are online means more people have the chance to see your work, although you’ll be competing with more content. Posting at other times when there’s less traffic means fewer eyes stumbling upon your content but a higher chance someone will see your work and share it. If you’re like me in that you don’t care then just post what you like, when you like.
- Find a niche that will attract an audience. Granted different people will like your blog, but see if you can narrow down who you’re writing for. On the same lines, narrow down your purpose. What do you hope to achieve with your blog?
- Stand out. Do something or make stuff that people can’t find elsewhere. Rather than reblog everything I come across, I create my own articles. Post original content whenever you can. When you first start out it’s hard to get noticed. Over time people will.
- Tag your content with common tags. Obscure tags are funny, but people won’t actively search for them. Come up with relevant and prevalent tags for your posts so more bloggers can find your work.
- Pay attention to your layout/theme. If your blog is hard to read, hard to navigate, etc., you’ll turn potential followers away. Keep it simple. Keep it neat.
- Approach others. I’m horrible at striking up conversations in real life and on the Web so I’m a total hypocrite for including this.
- Be kind to everyone. Respect people even if they don’t respect you.
That’s all you’re going to get from me today.
You don’t need to post every single day.
Seriously…the world won’t end, the sky won’t fall, and the walls won’t collapse on you.
- Edit, proofread, and revise your posts to perfection. If a mistake occurs once in a while, the blogging God(s) will forgive you, but when it happens all the time…it starts to become a sin.
- Ensure your posts are meaningful. Inform, entertain, persuade, educate, whatever the purpose may be so long as there is a purpose to your madness (i.e. your ramblings, musings).
- Read other blogs to see what they do well and what can be improved upon. That said don’t make the same mistakes other blogs do such as tiny or too hard to read font, too many plugins, etc.
- Give back to the community. With a click of a button this is simple, easy, and should be straightforward. Give to others what you would like for yourself.
- Be realistic about the work and time you put in compared to the results you expect. To quote someone who shall remain incognito, “Garbage in, garbage out.” My little spin on that would be, “Gold in, gold out.” What you put in is what you will get out. As cliche as this sounds there is truth to you reap what you sow.
In case you missed it this was the first installment: Blogging Tips For Pros, Amateurs, And Anybody In Between
Since I am feeling rather generous today here are 5 blogging tips to improve your blog, increase traffic, and ensure readers come back for more.
- Your titles are IMPORTANT. Invest time into writing an attention-grabbing one. This will spur people to click on your post because they are interested.
- Quality over quantity. One excellent post once a week is better than five mediocre barely there posts.
- Allow people to comment on your blog. This creates a feeling of interaction and inclusion.
- Promptly respond to comments in a respectful manner. Remember if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say it at all.
- Be personal but be professional. Feel free to share a part of your life with readers as long as you keep it appropriate.
Check back tomorrow for five more.
*The second post with five more tips: More Blogging Tips For Pros, Amateurs, And Anybody In Between
Before you jump into the foray known as blogging, remember to take a few things into consideration.
Related article: Before You Jump Into The Foray Of Writing
- Lower your expectations or expect to be disappointed. No, your blog won’t be an overnight success. No, you won’t gain 10,000 followers in one day. No, you won’t be paid $1,000 for every visitor that stops by. If you can accept the fact that your blog won’t be a hit overnight, you won’t be disappointed and you are more likely to stick it out. As your blog continues to grow so does your desire to attract more readers. When this happens you’ll have a fire in your belly to continue blogging because more and more people are reading what you have to say.
- Try your best to master basic grammar concepts, simple spelling rules, and fundamental sentence structure. You may turn off some readers if every sentence in your blog post has a glaringly obvious error. You don’t need to be the best writer in the world but mistakes can be distracting from your overall message. Indeed, some mistakes might completely destroy your credibility. So don’t forget to proofread your posts before you hit the publish button!
- Establish an audience. One big enough that you’ll appeal to many people interested in what you have to say but narrow enough so that you aren’t trying to please everybody.
- Finally, have fun with it. One of the joys of blogging is being able to interact with people on the other side of the world. Like other posts, comment on other people’s blogs, re-blog, share, and do everything positively. Blogging should be fun, enjoyable. So make it fun. Enjoy the blogging experience!
You’ll be happier if you lower your expectations, attract more visitors if you can write well, connect with the right people, and love blogging more with the right attitude!
Go ahead. Jump into the foray of blogging.
Wishing you continued success on all your blogging endeavors.
After one entire month of blogging, I have learned one important fact: although writing a blog is great, reading many other blogs is even better if you plan on improving your own.
I’ll keep this post short and sweet.
Today to celebrate my one month anniversary of my blog, I will practice what I preach and read more blogs.
Also I would like to extend my gratitude to all those that have supported my blog during this short period of time. Thanks for all the likes, comments, questions, re-blogs, and everything else the awesome WordPress community has done.
Here’s to another great month of blogging, connecting, and interacting with everyone in May!
More posts about writing and blogging are coming your way soon. I promise.