In blogging, there are many different interpretations for success. For some, it’s pageviews and unique users and for others, it’s the income they’re able to generate. There are loads of blogs out there and many ways to monetize your content, so we won’t focus on that today. Instead, this post is about how to be a better blogger.
Because when you’re providing good content, people will want to read it. And when they want to read what you’ve written, they become subscribers, they find you to social media, they want to engage with you, and they want to support you! But being a good blogger/content creator always comes first.
write often… really often
Create a habit of writing frequently and commit to it. By writing daily (or at your chosen frequency) you’ll start to hone your craft and become a better writer… a better storyteller. And the better you get at writing, the easier and faster it will be for you to create meaningful content and posts for your blog. This doesn’t mean that you’ll publish everything you write. Honestly, a lot of it may get deleted, but your confidence will grow and your skills will get better.
I personally write every day. My goal is to write for at least 30-45 minutes a day. That happens whether I’m writing poetry, journaling, creating content for the blog, or finishing up a chapter on my next book. You don’t always have to be writing for your blog. To be a good writer, that also becomes an amazing blogger, it doesn’t matter what you write about, as long as you are spending time with your craft consistently.
create content for your target market
I often here new or aspiring bloggers say that they don’t know what to write about. The truth is that if you feel that you’ve run out of things to write about, you probably don’t have a strong connection with your audience. You may be thinking ‘audience… what audience?’ If you’re a newbie blogger, I completely understand.
Start by thinking about who you want to read your blog.
- What are they interested in?
- What’s their age and education level?
- What do they need help or advice with?
- What can you write about to help them?
Take the answers to these questions and compile a list of topics, phrases, and ideas that you can write on to help them.
keep it simple… no, seriously
Our attention spans are short. Let’s just put that out in the open. You have limited time to have your readers full attention. Make it easy for them to connect with your writing. Use the first paragraph to summarize the post.
Get them interested in staying put and actually reading what you have to say. Then, use subheaders to outline the content and break it down into easy to digest sections. Inevitably, you will have readers that don’t want to read every word. Keep it simple, yet high impact, for them. A reader should be able to read (only) the headlines of your post and still have a general understanding of your point.
short and simple is the new black
You’re writing an article, not a book. When you’re passionate about something, it’s easy to give a thorough and in-depth perspective on it. And while that will sometimes be okay and you’ll captivate your audience, more often than not, you’ll need to edit what you’ve written – heavily. Make sure that you’re communicating your point in as few words as possible. When you do anything more than that, you’ll lose your reader in the fluff.
And before you ask, sure longer posts can be better for SEO. But you have to consider if you’re writing for web bots or real live people. Me personally, I write for humans. They’re my readers and my customers and my tribe – and I’ll always put them first.
measure your progress
Understanding the data from your blog is important. While comments used to be a good way of measuring engagement, I’ve learned that just because people don’t leave comments, doesn’t mean they’re not reading your content. For example, I have several readers read a post, not comment on the post, but go tag me in a post review they’ve written on social media. The important thing to pay attention to is if you’re getting feedback at all… or if it’s always crickets. If your readers are enjoying your content, they’ll find ways to let you know.
Analytics are important too.
If your blog is hosted on WordPress and you have JetPack, you’ll be able to see how many people have viewed each blog post since it was initially published, right from your dashboard. No matter what platform you use, you can always access Google analytics custom reports to learn what the most popular pages on your site are, how many unique users you’ve had, and where your blog traffic is coming from.
Blogging has no barrier to entry, so there are a gazillion bloggers out there. Or so it seems. You can literally set a blog up in less than an hour, why wouldn’t people take their chances and see what happens. With so many bloggers on the scene, you may wonder what will make your blog unique. And while you might be right on your assumption that there are a lot of fish in a sea of blogging mediocrity, if you choose to hone your craft you’ll surely stand out!