By now, writing blogs may seem a little passe. After all, isn’t there something like 100 ga-jillion out there? Who’s really listening to these things anyway?
Well, the answer to that question is a trusty old, “It depends.” If you take the time to do a blog well, it could be lots of people, with sites like HuffPo doing more than 110 million unique visitors per month. If not, you’ll be worse-than-ridiculed. You’ll be forgotten.
In the following article, we’re going to give you the seven factors you should be paying attention to when creating a blog. But first, let’s talk about why a blog still matters.
Why Starting a Blog Still Matters
Now that social media is upon us, it’s easier than ever to connect and communicate with an audience. It’s also free unless you plan on advertising.
So why even bother going to the expense and trouble of starting a blog? There are several reasons.
It Is a Messaging Platform
Your blog serves as a direct messaging platform to the masses. So what, the social media enthusiasts might say. Facebook does that, doesn’t it?
Well, yes and no. With sites like Facebook, you essentially play by their rules. That polices the types of content you can promote to your audience.
Putting the hard work in to turn your blog successful ensures you avoid their control. And that can help you keep your audience no matter what Facebook or Twitter decide about your content.
It Attracts Your Hardcore Fans
It’s easy to find you on social media. The tradeoff? Most of those relationships are completely superficial and not in the least profitable.
And even if they are profitable, all it takes is a social network changing one or two policies to shut it off overnight. That can happen if they feel you’re abusing their platform.
With blogs, people must take an extra step to seek you out. That says something about their level of interest. Those are the kinds of relationships you should be developing.
It Aids with Branding
Successful blogs are updated pretty frequently. That gives you unlimited opportunities to promote your brand with each new post.
It Is Versatile
Having your own website gives you power over how the content is delivered to your audience. Contrast that with a social network like Twitter that only allows 280 characters or one like Instagram that limits your videos to no longer than 60 seconds.
Short or long, it doesn’t matter with your blog. You can create and post content without compromising it for a specific platform.
It Can Add Value to Your Audience and Your Bottom Line
Blog posts are typically written or produced with the goal of educating, informing, or entertaining the audience. Sometimes all three! This creates value for the audience.
Furthermore, it can create value for you by driving your audience to sales pages, deepening their involvement with your site, and establishing you as an authority. It’s a true win-win!
Now that you know why blogs are still relevant, it’s time to put one together. As you do so, try to keep these seven elements in mind.
Your platform is the content management system you have chosen. WordPress is the most popular, but there are others you might prefer. Do some research ahead of time to see which is easier to play with in terms of design and publishing.
There are hundreds of plugins that can enhance the presence of your blog. SEO tools like Yoast or spelling-and-grammar-checkers like Grammarly come to mind.
You shouldn’t consider starting a blog without them. But you should consider which ones will be necessary for your purposes.
This is the big one when it comes to how to create a blog. Start by making time to create the content. Choose a physical environment that’s conducive to creativity.
Build works that showcase your personality, writing or producing with an audience in mind. But before you write a single word, move onto the next section.
Great writers are first great readers. Becoming a great reader as a blogger means reading a vast array of content, including other popular blogs in your industry or topic area.
This activity will give you new insights into your passion. And along the way, it’ll put you in touch with research and data that’ll make your writing sizzle.
Yes, your blog should be updated often. But how often? That’s the question you’ll need to answer for yourself.
Some say post everyday. Others say post, at minimum, once per week. Still, others like Maddox have found success posting whenever they want.
The real answer to the frequency question is post as often as needed. And to figure out how often that is for you personally, sit down and write out a list of article titles you’re really passionate about.
Next, weigh that against your available time. Then, write a few out to see how long it takes you. After saving a few up, determine a publishing schedule based on how long it takes you to produce content and how active your topic or industry is.
Writing the content is a small part of creating a blog that’s successful. Next, you have to promote it. There are a few ways you can do this:
- Paid advertising on search engines and social networks
- Word-of-mouth among friends and community members
- Participating in other industry-specific forums or comments sections
- Appearing on podcasts or YouTube (your own or other users’ channels)
Your number one goal is to connect with others. And that means another type of writing: marketing copy.
How will you market yourself to others? Practice your pitching, and go for it!
For every image, infographic, video, or written piece of content on your site, target the appropriate keywords. Look for specific ones to avoid getting lost in the heavy competition of more general terms. And for more SEO expert tips, follow the link.
Writing Blogs Is More Than Just the Writing
Writing blogs isn’t your only job if you want yours to be successful. But it’s one of the most important things you can do to attract, grow, and keep your audience.
Follow the advice here, and you’ll be well on your way. And for more expert business advice, check out some of our other blog posts. Good luck!