More blog hits, pleeeease!

15 Nov

I have always been a fan of journaling. Throw me a cute blank journal and a nice ball point pen, and I’ll have at it! But as far as the blogging world goes, I sometimes feel like a lonely fisherman on a boat in the middle of the vast ocean. I keep casting my thoughts out there, as well as my opinions and emotions. Yet, for what? No return. Which is why many times when I began blogging I would just pull in my “line” and retreat in the cabin to write for myself. Offering no one my thoughts left to not having the chance to being rejected by the world. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who feels this way. When your blog isn’t being read, it is a sad, sad day.

Recently, I read a blog post by Susan Young, contributor on Ragan’s PR daily team. Her post, titled 8 Ways to Increase Traffic To Your Blog. In a nutshell, here are her tips:

  1. Stick with one thing- Discover what you are passionate about and write about it! If you focus on one thing, people will think you are an expert in that field and you will attract a select audience to your blog. You know that old phrase about not being able to please everyone? Same goes for your blog. So choose something and go for it!
  2. Read everything in your industry– Once you decide what you want to focus on, educate yourself on it. Read anything you can get your hands on pertaining to your topic you want to write about so that you truly will become an expert.
  3. Write for the reader– People who follow blogs are just that, normal people! They aren’t college professors who will intensely be grading your paper. So write casually, yet meaningfully and become personable to your reader so they are no longer just following a blog- they are following you!
  4. Solve their problem- I’m just going to straight up quote Susan Young on this section, because I love the way she worded this: “When you consider yourself a problem-solver and not a salesperson, people will be attracted to you and your  message. Write with the sole purpose of helping your reader to ease their challenges. It’s not about you. Be the solution.”
  5. Involve them– Ask readers questions in your writing. They will feel that you are speaking directly to them and will be more compelled to comment. Don’t you agree?
  6. Keep it reader-friendly– Catchy headlines stand out, and pictures and bold break up the blog. We are all skimmers, so make your blog in nuggets and easy to pick out what is most important or valuable to them.
  7. Forget the rules- the only rule, is that there is no rules! Do whatever is going to inspire you.
  8. Focus on the positive- No one likes a “negative nancy”. Unless your blog is intended to be a cynical view point and draw on that humor. Otherwise, don’t write when you are in a bad mood. It will drive readers away.

Also: Add flair and fun to your blog with vlogs. Which are video logs of yourself. This helps readers actually hear your voice and get to know you on a deeper level.


3 Responses to “More blog hits, pleeeease!”

  1. kewood10 November 15, 2010 at 11:25 pm #

    This was a really beneficial blog post. I feel you in the sense that it sometimes I’m blogging to a big white wall. And maybe sometimes I am. These are great tips to make our blogs more interesting and reader-friendly on continual bases. Don’t worry Rachel! I’m here in the blogger world with you!
    Oh and btw. I REALLY like the analogy you used with fishing. Very creative and effective.

  2. mshoults November 19, 2010 at 9:49 pm #

    I love journaling, too! I felt the same way about blogging: does anyone really want to read this? I thought a blog was just an online journal that anyone could read…and who wants their journal all over the internet? Not me. It wasn’t until this PR class where I actually learned the uses of a blog.

    Whenever I blog, I feel like I’m leaving a long voicemail message. I just keep talking, but I don’t hear anything. Eventually, someone might listen to the message and respond. But in the meantime, I’m just talking and talking and hoping someone finds it interesting enough to comment on. I hear you!

  3. Barbara Nixon November 29, 2010 at 2:42 pm #

    Melanie — Interesting analogy: a blog post and a long voice mail message. I hadn’t thought of it that way before.

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