Thursday, January 3

Mama Kat Thursday: Blogging Tips

 
Welcome Back!
Today's Mama Kat Prompt Is:
"Share any blogging tips you picked up in 2012."
First, you might like to know what sort of blogging experience I have. 
Well, I've had 2 blogs, this one being my second. The first one was a Bravenet journal, which I had for many years, but when I decided I needed a blog service with broader capacities, I  moved here.That was a year ago.
I've also operated several websites with a couple different services, which has made me well versed in many of the technical aspects of setting up an on-line presence, and I have a degree in advertising/marketing.
 
So, here's some basic tips from my realm of experience:
 
#1)  Decide what your purpose is.
Do you want to share a cause, discuss politics, journal a life's journey through something, like weight loss or illness; share a devotional, share a hobby, share photos, connect with family or just yell about your bad day at work?
Perhaps most importantly: do you care about who reads it?
 Do you want to attract readers or do you not care about that?
In my case, my first purpose with my Bravenet blog was personal expression, but my purpose with this one was to attract regular readers.
 
#2)  Choose a free blogging/journaling service that best suits YOUR purposes.
I chose Google Blogger because it gave me more decorative freedom then Bravenet, supported html widgets, didn't have a photo limitation and, probably best of all, included automatic indexing into Google's search engine.
Google also offers a connection to Google+, which I've found has doubled my readership.
If you want readers, making your blog known to search engines is vital.
Most blog services won't do this for you, which means you'll have to do it yourself by going to Google's or Bing's "submit URL" and typing in your blog address.
Also you'll want to make good use of "key word" labeling or "tagging" for ALL your posts, which will help search engines find your stuff.
One point on blog decor: make sure your writing content is clearly visible and readable against your chosen background. Decor, no matter how pretty, is worthless if it makes your blog unreadable!
 
My remaining tips are for those interested in attracting regular readers:
 
#3)  Post Interesting.
Interesting content will attract readers interested in your content.
Plus, if you make your content what you're truly interested in, you'll stay inspired.
 
#4)  Post Regular
There's nothing worse then visiting a blog that hasn't been updated for a week or more.
 That will lose readers.
Consistent readership means consistent posting.
Having a schedule where you post certain things on certain days is a really good idea. It gives your readers an expectation.
Plus it helps prevent writers block.
For example: my goal is a variety blog that is educational and/or entertaining Monday through Thursday.
Monday is cooking/recipes, Tuesday is art/fashion from Polyvore, Wednesday is Gardening and Thursdays are Mama Kat Blog Prompts.
 
#5)  Post Good
By good, I mean at least use your spell check.
I find nothing more annoying then trying to read a blog full of typos.
I also prefer no swearing, but that's just me.

#6)  Most Importantly: Be Patient and Persistent
Don't give up. Be faithful to your blogging.
Blogging is actually hard work, a mini-job all in itself.
It has taken a whole year to get my readership stats up from zero to 30-50 daily.
 

6 comments:

giveitawhirlgossipsquirrel said...

Good tips! The search engine one is clutch. Visiting from Mama K's :)

Trissy-T said...

Great tips! Thank you so much. I'm pretty new to the blogging world, but have been trying to find ways to increase my readers. Thanks for the wonderful ideas!

Check me out at http://musingsbymet.blogspot.com

Mama Kat said...

All great tips! Especially that one about Mama Kat's on Thursdays. ;) I couldn't agree more with your advice about staying patient and consistent. It takes so much work to keep this space functioning and relevant!

Brad said...

Thanks for the advice! I'm new to the blog world and I'm taking all the tips I can get. Wait... that didn't sound right. You know what I mean.

Lisa Lewis Koster said...

Great pointers. I totally agree that blogging is hard work!

Leslie aka Mother Robin said...

This is really helpful. I walked away from blogging a year ago, and now would like to be very intentional about it. I like your idea of having a blogging "schedule" to help with writer's block, and that you've validated using a blog for personal reasons (journal, blowing off) rather than just informational or marketable stuff. I hope I can raise my readership and these tips should help--IF I follow them! :-) My latest post
I Have a Crush on My Math Teacher

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