10 Blog Tips For New Bloggers
Let’s get real. With over 255 million websites online, starting a successful blog is difficult. While you may think that your blog idea is “special”, there are millions of other people that are thinking the same thing: My blog is interesting. It is special. I am special. This is a good idea. That may be true, but the key to starting a new blog is more than meets the eye.
Here are 10 blog tips for new bloggers:
1. The URL
When a search engine looks for your website, it starts by referencing URLs — hence, the importance of a good URL. Your blog needs a memorable and heavily searched URL. Pick out a few blog names or general topics and visit Google’s Keyword Tool to find out what people search for. If there is a large amount of people searching for a certain word or phrase and Google shows low competition, consider using that word/phrase in your URL.
2. Social Networks
Many people would suggest signing up for every social network possible, but I do not. Create a few social media accounts for your blog–starting with Twitter, Facebook and Google+. If you can manage and grow a social/interactive presence on these networks, then you are ready to branch out to other social networks. There is nothing worse than a dormant social media account. It’s called “social” media for a reason–interact with your audience.
3. Meta Data
Most blog sites (i.e. WordPress, Blogger, etc.) provide an easy-to-use interface with the option to add widgets and plugins. Search for a blog SEO plugin and download it. This plugin will sync with your blog entry form and allow you to include Meta Keywords, Meta Description, Alt Text and Titles Tags. Make sure you use your keywords in the body of your blog and always complete your meta data input. Completing meta data forms and tagging your blog with a strong set of keywords is crucial and will pay huge audience dividends in the long-run. For WordPress, try Yoast.
4. Content is King
If you’re writing for an audience, you have to know them and create content that they want to see. Create content that is rich and do it often (i.e. original videos, pictures, text, etc.). According to Hubspot, businesses that blog twenty times per month see five times more traffic than companies that don’t.
5. Distribution is Ace
Content may be king, but distribution is ace. Reaching out to other blogs (a.k.a. blogger outreach), submitting your RSS feed to blog directories is imperative. Building an online presence through referral links is a great way to develop a footprint online–start with blogroll requests or trade and go from there.
6. Offline + Online Networking
Offline interactions is one of the sure-fire ways to boost online interactions. Grow your personal and business networks by attending blogger meetups, conferences and local events. You’d be surprised how much this will help you run a successful blog.
7. Promote & Help Others
As humans, we love ourselves and we are selfish. As a blogger, use this. Don’t promote yourself, your events or your company in your blog–nobody cares. Instead, build a passion around your content by helping others. Feature other peoples’ work, promote worthy companies and provide advice. People are more likely to share a post if it is about themselves, right? A great example of this can be seen in Brian Clark’s work at copyblogger.
8. Lots of Video
Videos are the most consumed online content; you must include videos in your blog. If you’re able to create original content, do it. If you aren’t able to create original content, visit Vimeo or YouTube and find videos before they go viral. On YouTube, videos with around 300 views and thousands of likes are likely to go viral–their unique algorithm creates a glitch in viewership reporting after 300-310 views on videos that go viral. Here’s one of our favorites explanations of YouTube from YouTube Partner, Josh Sundquist:
It doesn’t have to be an iPad, but give away something desirable. Fill in the blank: I would you enter a giveaway for a ______________. Whatever you want in that blank would probably be a good thing to give away on your blog. Giveaways drive interactions like commenting and social sharing.
10. Branding Is Everything
If you’re going to spend money, hire a designer to design your website. A creative, unique and professional website layout portrays you positively. Remember, perception is reality– a good blog design equals a good website.
Additionally, seek out interviews and guest posts on your blog with people you look up to. These thought leaders’ name on your website is a good thing for your blog and brand.
About The Author: Ryan Park, is Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Arrae Creative Agency, creator of Adventured.com, contributing writer for The Social Media Monthly, Colorado Avid Golfer and The Elephant Journal.