Remember back when we went home from school and straight to our computers to write about our days and secret crushes on the platform Xanga? If you were around in the early to mid-90’s, might ring a bell.
Blogging has been around for quite some time now and is only gaining popularity by the minute. While anyone is capable of starting a blog, the matter of upkeep and consistency is what makes blogging harder than it looks.
So what is a blog, you ask? According to the Google dictionary, a blog is “a regularly updated website or web page, ran by an individual or small group, which is written in an informal or conversational style.”
There are many types of blogs; personal blogs, collaborative blogs, corporate blogs, you name it. Your blog can be about anything – political, fashion, health, lifestyle – depending on your niche, and what you’re passionate about, there’s sure to be a blog about it.
If you are new to the blogging world, here are some helpful tips to get you started:
- Take some time to brainstorm some topic ideas for your first couple of blog posts.
- Show some personality – blogging is writing but is personal. If you want to widen your audience and get more viewers, it’s best to be relatable. Most people are drawn to blogs that they can relate to and within real life.
- Blog consistently! It’s important to always keep up with your blog posts, whether it’s once a day, twice a day or even weekly, it’s always good to be consistent.
- Before hitting the publish button, take at least 30 minutes to edit and reread your posts.
While blogging may seem easy for most – it can be a challenge (believe it or not). While you want to try and make it the best blog you ever created, it’s easy to make common mistakes – below are seven things you must forget when starting a blog:
Not Sticking to Your Brand/Theme
One of the most important things to remember when starting a blog is to always stick to your brand’s theme. What I mean by this is, if you are first starting out and writing about food one day and then the next day writing about politics; these topics are completely non-related and will not help you grow your niche.
Before starting a blog, as stated above, it’s important to brainstorm ideas on what the sole purpose of your blog is about and what kinds of topic posts tie-in to issues in your industry, niche, etc. This will help you find your niche and grow as a business; after all, that’s your main goal right?
Believe it or not, blogging is almost like a full-time job – when you actually sit down, make a blog, and start writing, you don’t realize how time-consuming it truly is. While you may have the best few topics to write and share, one or two is not enough. To keep the flow going, posting once daily or weekly is definitely a must – that is if you want to continue building your following. Once someone or people get hooked, they will be interested in coming back for more – so you better believe your site is up-to-date with new content.
You Have No Personality
One of the best things about blogging is to share your passion with the world in your own words. While blogging may seem intimidating to others – just remember to be yourself!
Most people who read blogs are hooked on blogs that are the most relatable! It allows them to get to know the blogger on a personal level and the ability to trust the person easily! Writing a blog post is not anything like writing that term paper for school; it’s much more fun and personable. So just let go, and have fun when you write your blog posts!
Thinking You’re Not Good Enough
Starting a blog can be scary – as you are putting your own words out there with the knowingly intent of getting both positive and negative feedback. The Internet can be a harsh world don’t get me wrong, but that shouldn’t stop you from wanting to start a blog!
Best advice is to stop overthinking it, and just do it. No matter how many people are reading your blog, there is at least one other person in the universe that also agrees with your opinion. A little faith and personality will go a long way.
Copying another Blogger
Everyone is unique in their own way, and copying someone is just a waste of your own self! When you start a blog, one of the things you should be doing is looking at other blogs to get inspired and to get an idea of what a blog is about – but inspiration is one thing, full-on copying and plagiarizing someone else’s work is just on a different level and is not something you should be doing.
It won’t help you grow as a brand and will honestly not make you look good. And if you do end up using someone’s content, make sure you are citing their writing and/or giving them credit.
Trying to Make it Picture-Perfect
While you may be a perfectionist – blogging will never be “perfect.” When you make your posts too perfect, it may just sound fake to a reader’s eyes. Blogging isn’t supposed to be perfect; there will always be more things you can do to make a better post. More images, better phrasing; just stop obsessing and hit publish.
At the end of the day, nobody is perfect. And when you stop obsessing, you may actually get more viewers interested in your content. Because we are all human, after all.
Not Marketing Your Content
So you start your blog and write a few posts but realize nobody is really viewing it – why? When you blog, it doesn’t stop there – in order to gain exposure and traffic, one of the best tools out there is the use of social media. If you are on social media, make sure you are utilizing these platforms by sharing your newest posts to the world!
Make sure you are using your niche’s hashtags, to get the write audience seeing your posts!
Usman Raza is a freelance writer, marketing specialist at Crawford and O’Brien and co-founder of Usman Digital Media. When not working, he’s probably spending time with his family. Follow him on Facebook @usmanraza40 and Twitter @usmanintrotech.
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