Ah, blogging can be such fun – getting all your thoughts on paper, crafting material that you love and that you know can help others. It is a lot more fun to blog, though, when you know that you have people reading your posts. You need an audience when you write! Would you like to know how you can build up your readership and increase your blog’s influence? Well, here are some tips you can use.
- Know thy audience (or wished for audience)
Who are you writing for? Or, who would you like to be writing for? (Besides yourself, of course: all writers write for themselves.) Are you trying to be a food blogger? Or write about art and music? Health blogger, anyone? Or, maybe you are trying to be a mommy blogger? (Yes, there are a TON of blogs devoted to moms and their daily trials and joys.) Ah, you might be a fashion blogger, no? There are so many options for target markets. You need to find yours. Pin it down. Narrowly define it. If you want to develop a large readership you need to become an authority (or at least a semi-authority) in your target market. You are not going to become a big name in the blog community if you write about one hundred and one topics. Pick one (or at least no more than three).
- Don’t write about just anything
People are busy. They don’t have time to read boring articles. If you want your blog to be read, you have to make it interesting. Put some thought into each post. Don’t just write about the first thing that pops into your head. Take the time to craft an article. Pick a topic. Expound on it. Be creative. Make your post flow. And, do NOT just jumble together some interesting facts about your topic. Add narrative. Throw in some interesting anecdotes. The best test to find out if what you are writing might interest your audience is to ask yourself if you would want to read what you just wrote. Do you find your blog interesting? If you want to pick up some more tips and tricks, look here.
- Keep it simple
People are busy. They don’t have much time. Do you have time to read through a three page blog post? No? Well, no one else does either. So if you want to hold your audience’s interest, you need to keep your blog posts short and sweet. Think about a TV show. You get to watch a 10-15 minute segment before they cut to a commercial. Just before the commercial break there is an exciting line or scene to peak your interest and keep you watching the show. Think of each blog post as that 10-15 minute TV segment. Keep your post short, sweet, and simple. Then, leave your read with a hook to bring them back for your next post.
- Be consistent
Have you ever found a blog, become interested, and then gone back to read more only to find that there are no new posts? After a whole week? Doesn’t that frustrate you? It is just like having a TV show lose funding and stop mid-season! You don’t want to frustrate your readership. If you want to hold your audiences undivided interest, then you need to post consistently. That doesn’t mean that you have to post several times a day, or even every day. (Don’t be like that nosey guy who sat next to you at your friend’s last party and who just couldn’t stop talking!) Through your blog you are carrying on a conversation with your audience. It is okay to stop talking some days. Just make sure you write at least three times a week. Check out this article for some more great information.
- Understand your motivation
Why do you write? Are you trying to grow a business? Starting a business blog? Get a message out to people? Just because you like to write? It is important that you identify why you are writing. Why, you ask? Because your audience will guess at your motivation sooner or later. And they won’t be happy if you have misrepresented yourself to them. If you have something to sell or market, then tell your audience exactly what you are doing. If you are trying to get a message out to people, then let your audience know that you are writing out of a passion for your topic. Be truthful. It will endear you to your audience. It will also help you to pick topics to write about and stay motivated in writing them.
Now, have fun and write!