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Friday, February 07, 2014

A Few Blog Tips

I've been blogging for almost two years now so it's safe to say that I know what I'm doing! <---That was clearly a joke, but I hope you'll listen anyway.
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I figure I'd put together a list of a few things that I think (keyword: I or think, depending on how you look at it) every blogger should know.  I've even categorized them for your convenience! Are you ready?!? Here goes...

Blog Design
  • Include a search box and / or archives so people don't have to go through every post to find something they're looking for on your blog.
  • Have a fresh, clean, clear and easily readable design. 
  • If you can't do the above yourself, hire a designer.  Click {here}, {here}, {here} or {here} for a few options.
  • If you're on the Blogger platform get rid of the blogspot.com, it's less than $15 per year, and it's more professional, especially if you're trying to take your blog to the next level.

Post Tips
  • Learn the definition of niche, then identify and develop yours.
  • TRY to Include a photo in every post, even if it's just a picture with words like {this} post.  But don't feel like you can't post a picture-less post every once in a while.
  • You may not have a photo for a particular post, like this one, so use stock photos, like iStock for example, or creative commons photos on Flickr, when necessary.
  • Ask a question at the end of some posts.  It provides a guide for readers when they comment and improves your chances of having someone comment.
  • Take the time to do some research when discussing a particular topic.  Some posts should take more than just a night or two to write.
  • Decide how often you'd like to post and stick with it. Even if it's just once per week on the same day each week.  Consistency is key.
  • You do not have to post everyday to be successful!  

Social Media (e.g., Twitter, FB, G+, etc.)


  • Include a clickable link to your site within the About section of your Facebook fan page. It should be somewhere directly under your profile picture so that people don't have to search for it.  Do this for your G+ profile too! Please, I beg of you :)!
  • When posting on your fan page your best bet is to include the direct link to a particular post within the comments section after uploading a photo and / or text. FB is very finicky about how many people they let see your fan page posts, especially when a link is included within the body of the post.
  • Also switch it up when posting on your fan page! Sometimes just include a photo with the link or just text with a link or just text no link (it should be in your profile anyway), remember?!
  • Another thing about fan pages. Facebook is forever changing it's algorithms. Now, if you're not paying to play your reach is going to be minimal. This doesn't mean that you don't need a fan page because brands expect you to have one, so don't don't delete it or feel that it's useless just yet. Besides, as you grow you may be able to create a budget specifically for sponsoring your content via Facebook.  It's my understanding that sponsored content on Facebook is killing it from a referral standpoint.  Let's face it, Facebook knows what they're doing (even when it's a bit upsetting at first and affects our wallet).
  • Treat others the way you want to be treated (yes, this applies in the blogging world too).  Arguing / fighting via social media is one of the most ridiculous things I've ever witnessed!

Sponsoring
  • If you use in-post ads to shout-out your sponsors at the end of your posts include a sentence above the Ad so that people know it's not a part of your post or signature. A quote from the sponsor would be ideal instead of saying "Check out this month's sponsor".
  • Make sure there is a clickable link to the sponsor's site within the line you include above the in-post Ad since people who follow by email won't see the Ad.
  • Only sponsor blogs that have a similar niche and style as you. it wouldn't make much since for a mom blogger to sponsor a fashion blogger, what the readers of each are looking for is different.

Blog Growth and Sustainability


  • Don't get caught up in analysis paralysis when it comes to researching and learning more about how to blog well and grow.  Looking to multiple websites for information can be overwhelming.  Find at least one (maybe two) websites that are doing what you're trying to do and details how they're doing it.  Read them relentless and use them as your go-to source of information on how to develop.
  • Giveaways and link-ups can make people aware of your blog and maybe even raise your numbers but that doesn't equate to actual readers. You must engage!
  • When hosting or participating in group giveaways you'll get the most out of it if there aren't too many people in the group or too many things to follow per person.  People aren't as patient as you might think just because you're offering something for free (I'm certainly not in regards to this). 
  • Don't compare your beginning to someone else's middle..."comparison is the thief of joy".
  • Create a mission statement for your blog (at least if you're serious about your blog). It'll keep you focused.
  • Set goals for your blog and focus.  Once achieved set new ones and repeat.
  • Enjoy what you're doing or stop doing it.
  • What works for another blogger may not work for you.
  • Visit other blogs and leave sincere comments. If you don't have anything genuine to say don't say anything at all.
  • If you want to grow. Develop a business plan, implement that plan and monitor your progress. Documented goal setting is the key to obtaining results.
  • Grow organically by posting great content, consistently and responding to your reader's comments (right on your blog, if at all possible).
Do you have anything to add?

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8 comments

  1. Great post. Thanks for the tips. I've only been blogging for a few months. I really enjoy it, and like meeting new people and exploring their blogs. I agree about the link ups and giveaways . Sometimes it's too much. I know I spent 15 minutes or more on one yesterday. Best wishes to you for more great years.
    http://pastriespumpsandpi.blogspot.com/

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  2. This is such good advice! I was actually thinking about losing my BlogSpot.com. I looked at godaddy.com. What are some others you'd suggest??

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  3. I love the donut social media graphic. I would think that that's second nature to most of us, but I guess if you're new to it then maybe not :-) I also agree about the giveaways. I usually only do the entries for people I already follow. I follow a lot of people on various medias and don't really want to add to it unless it's someone I really like!

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  4. I just started blogging so this was really helpful, thank you! I love your blog so much that I nominated you for the Liebster award! Check out my blog for more details (:http://nostalgicteens.blogspot.com/2014/02/the-liebster-awards.html

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  5. I've been blogging for over two years as well, but this was so helpful!! Love this! The donut part is awesome!!
    ~Sara
    Sincerely, Sara

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  6. These are great tips!!! I love hearing about what works for other bloggers!

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  7. Great tips. Especially the Facebook link one. I'm always surprised that my Facebook posts are only seen by 20 out of the 800 that like my page. I also need to work on removing the bloodspot from my blogger url. Love the donut illustration
    k at www.beautystyleandgrowth.blogspot.com

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  8. Great post Nicole! I found this post from your interview on Jasmine's blog! You have many great tips that I am not doing and need to implement. I am going to click around more now as I really enjoyed this post!

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