Blogging can have many perks and benefits, even if you’re only doing it because you enjoy writing about a particular subject. The idea of starting a blog can be really daunting for newbies, even though in most cases it’s fairly simple to do. The best thing you can do is take it step by step, and just get started. Once you’ve started, you won’t be able to stop! Here’s a simple guide to blogging to help you on your way.
Start Blogging for the Right Reasons
First of all, make sure you’re blogging for the right reasons. If you’re blogging for money and free stuff, you’re going to get bored pretty quickly. It can take a blog years and years to reach that kind of success, so you definitely need passion for the subject you’re writing about if you want this endeavour to last.
Decide on Your Niche
So, you know you’re blogging for the right reasons. Decide on a niche. What do you absolutely love writing/talking about? It could be a blog on just one specific subject, e.g. ‘training your cat’. It could also be a blog that focuses on multiple subjects, such as pets and animals in general. It could be a total mix of anything you like!
Write Content You’re Passionate About
Don’t force yourself to write about something if you’re not passionate about it, as it’ll shine through in your writing. You should feel excited to write about something. When you write content you feel passionate about, you’ll get a much better response. Only write about something if you have something to say.
Take High Quality Photographs
A blog wouldn’t be complete without high quality photographs to accompany it. People are much more likely to click on and read a post if it has pretty pictures. Your pictures should be clear, nice looking, and large enough to break up your text. You can include as many as you like. Sometimes, picture heavy blog posts are better than word heavy. People only usually scan through blogs anyway! There are lots of tips on how you can do this yourself, for example:
- Make sure lighting conditions are good when snapping photos.
- Use a high quality camera.
- You can use your iPhone, just make sure the conditions are right!
- Style your images just how you would an outfit to make them look more attractive.
As well as using images to break up your text, use paragraphs and subheadings. This makes it easier to scan.
Never Copy Content
Copying content is a huge no-no. Nobody likes a copy cat. Your content needs to be totally original and unique. Try to make it as helpful as possible too. Use humour if you can!
Always Credit Pictures
You can use pictures that aren’t your own in some cases, but you must always credit them. If you don’t, you could get in big trouble!
Don’t Expect Success or Money Right Away
Again, this is the wrong reason to begin your blog in the first place. Even if you’re not doing it for money or free stuff, expecting success right away would be foolish too. A very small number of blogs experience success in such a short amount of time. Be realistic when setting your goals. Eventually, you might just be able to make a good side income with your blog, or even a full time income. It takes a lot of hard work though, so you must be prepared!
Differentiate Yourself from Other Blogs
Nobody likes a ‘me too’ blog. Why would you write about exactly what other blogs are writing about? Do your best to differentiate yourself, and put a spin on your blog. Why should people read yours over others? What makes yours unique and special? If you can be humorous with your writing you’ll get lots more readers, shares, and exposure. Something like the rage comic maker could add a dash of humour to your posts.
Keep Things Consistent
You can’t blog once in a blue moon and expect to get a large following. You should be consistent even if you only want a small amount of success. It’s ok to post just once per week, providing you stick with that commitment and your blog posts are high quality. It’s much better to produce less, high quality posts than lots of substandard posts. Blogging a couple of times a week is ideal. Some bloggers do it every day or every other day, but this could be too much for newbies.
Engage With Other Bloggers
You must engage with other bloggers, as this will help you to get more exposure and readers. Engage with them over social media, read their posts, and write valuable comments. When I say valuable, I mean add your own thoughts to a post they’ve written, rather than just writing ‘great!’, or another spammy looking comment. Writing valuable comments can help drive people to your own blog. Sometimes, bloggers like to team up to create super posts and blogs too!
Hosting competitions on your blog can help to get your name out there. A simple ‘like and share’ competition should be enough to start building your readership. Make sure your offering is valuable enough to make people want to join in. It doesn’t need to break the bank though; most of the time, people just enjoy trying their luck!
If you begin to establish yourself as a blogger who knows what they’re talking about, you may be able to guest post for other blogs once in a while. This will send some of their readership back to your own blog, and you can share your readership with the blog you’re writing for. You need to approach blog owners politely and with a well thought out proposal. Remember, they’re busy, so don’t waste their time with paragraph upon paragraph. Keep things short and sweet. Don’t get ahead of yourself either; a top blogger isn’t going to let you write for them if you’re just starting out.
I hope you found this guide useful. Good luck on your blogging journey!