What are the rules of blogging? | A step by step Guide
Last updated on 15th Jul 2020, Blog, General
The 10 Golden Rules of Blogging:
1. Start with an SEO friendly infrastructure. WordPress for example has so many useful plugins such as Netconcepts SEO Title Tag 2.1 that make life (and Marketing) easier.
If you are going to be using social media then you consider having the buttons available below each post.
Consider this, you write a stellar piece of content that is very social media worthy, you submit it to Digg and it’s getting votes. If you don’t have a Digg button you are probably missing out on votes. People want to read the piece and Digg it. Are not as likely to Digg it if they have to go back to Digg to do so.
Socialize Me! WordPress Plug in is helpful for helping to build friends and your community. blah, blah! technology reviews this plug in well here.
2. Make sure that the design of the blog looks like a blog. Your client will want to make sure that the blog maintains the site’s overall look and feel. This is very important but it’s easy to go overboard here.
Don’t keep too many aspects of the Site’s overall template so that the blog looks more like any other page on their site and not like a blog. A blog should be written in a more relaxed tone than your regular pages and it should look more relaxed too.
Save the Ads for the rest of your site.
3. Write a Killer Headline EVERY time ” Headlines have a huge impact on whether your Blog is going to cut through the clutter. Whether your reader finds you through their RSS reader, a keyword search or through social media, a killer title can make the difference of whether its going to get clicked on or not.
4. Keep your posts scan-able. Only 16% of people actually read blogs word for word the rest (84%) merely scan. Make your posts more scan-able by utilizing:
- Lists ” easy to scan and read, and typically interesting. Paragraphs are often too difficult or time consuming to read, and are actually avoided.
- Formatting – Use bold, CAPITALS, italics, underlining, to emphasize points. Don’t go overboard as you run the risk of frustrating your reader. Also consider changing font size, color and style to draw your readers eyes to your main points.
- Headings and SubHeadings – Large, Bold words that act as visual cues of what is happening in the subsequent content are effective ways of drawing readers further into articles. Make these intriguing, yet descriptive
- White Space – lot’s of it. Give your copy room to breath.
5. Try to keep the length of blog posts between 400 ” 700 words. An easy rule of thumb is limit your post to one major idea per post if you’re trying to cover more than 1 idea, break it into a series of posts.
6. Get to the Point – be succinct in your writing.
7. Use Pictures/Images – Research shows that readers eyes are drawn down the page by relevant pictures. As Michael points out in don’t forget the images and video, it only takes less than minutes to locate, apply tags to, etc an image for your post.
Good quality images can make a site look incredibly professional. The converse is also true, for example, in most cases clip art is just not appropriate for a Business Blog.
8. Build Credibility by linking out. – the more you link out to other notable sites, the more educated you look as a blogger. Guilty by association can be a good thing.
Plus, when you link to another blog post, that bloggers platform will ping them with your link or trackback. Linking out is a great way to get the attention of other industry authorities.
9. Make sure you disclose relationships where necessary (don’t pretend). It’s a lot easier to Manage one’s Online Reputation by avoiding mistakes versus fixing them after the fact. Most social media issues arise from people pretending to be something that they are not.
Perception is everything. I have no idea if Max is who he says he is but Max’s travelog from the Guardian got hundreds of negative responses to his explanation of who he is and why he’s blogging.
10. If this is a business blog then write for your reader. You can take a lot more leeway with a personal blog, but the average commercial blog reader doesn’t care what you had for breakfast.
Think about needs your readers are looking to satisfy? It is possible to come up with really good content ideas for even the most challenging of industries. Remember that good content adds to the body of knowledge. The days of keeping all your knowledge close to your chest are gone.Know Your Audience
The first step in coming up with blog post topic ideas is to consider your audience. Put yourself in the shoes of who you imagine to be your blog’s ideal reader. Think about what questions they might have related to your overall blog topic.
- Take Regular Polls — If you’re struggling to determine what’s most important to your readers, a simple solution is to ask them on social media. Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ have ways you can build a poll right into your post. Think of 3-4 topics you’re considering and ask people to vote on the one they like best.
- Polls aren’t just a one-time thing, either. You can use ongoing regular polls, changing the topics, to keep on top of your audience’s changing priorities.
- Study Your Own Blog — If you’ve already got readers, review their comments on your posts. You may discover what tangential topics they’re interested about or problems that they’d like to solve. You can also use your blog’s analytics to consider topics that might be relevant to your readers based on geography, language, their browsers, or the devices they use.
- Review Mining — Find products or services you think that your audience might be interested in and then look for reviews about them. Amazon is a great source of product reviews, but you can also check retail sites like Best Buy. For services, check for Yelp and Google reviews — as well as sites like Angie’s List if you have a subscription to them. For thoughts about working for different companies, try Glassdoor’s reviews.
Negative reviews are great for discerning “pain points” that your audience might be experiencing. However, positive reviews can also be a way to profile your audience by highlighting things they like.