Has blogging become a chore for you? What used to be the first thing on your to-do list is now the last thing on your mind.
You now dread having to write for your blog.
Having a blog is a huge commitment that many new bloggers fail to recognize. Not only do you have to come up with blog topics frequently, but you need a consistent content schedule and awesome and share-worthy posts. It’s a lot of work.
And it’s easy to ditch your blog if you don’t have anyone coming to it in the first place. I mean, who’s going to miss your content?
Well, if you’ve lost focus on your blog because no one’s reading it, maybe it’s time to give your blog the ol’ kick in the butt.
Make it so readers come to your blog regularly and want to share your content.
The One Thing That Makes a Blog Stand Out
Do you read Sue Anne Dunlevie’s blog on Successful Blogging? Or, Neal Patel’s on Quick Sprout?
What’s the one thing they have in common?
They have proven themselves time and time again on their blog.
Readers flock to read their posts because they know what they’re talking about. The high level of engagement isn’t a result of the attention each post gets with social sharing.
It’s a result of how they reveal themselves as a credible and authoritative source in their niche.
So, how can you, with your blog, command such credibility?
Am I Freelance Writer, a Blogger, or Neither?
Before I began my online writing business, I was a stay-at-home mom. And before this? I was an Applied Behavior Analysis Worker in the school system.
See, my background is in Psychology and education. For most of my early adult life, I poured my passion into understanding children with autism and working closely with them using applied behavior analysis, a type of behavioral therapy.
But, when I had my twins, I decided to stay home and raise them. While my husband has his own lucrative e-commerce business, we still needed my salary in order to live comfortably.
That’s where freelance writing sprang up. I decided I could be a writer, and shortly thereafter I created my website and blog, Innovative Ink.
So, why am I telling you this story? It’s because even though my background isn’t in journalism or creative writing, I have proven myself on my blog and with my big client list, that I am a writer and a blogger.
See for yourself. Here are some posts on my blog about freelance writing:
And, here are some posts about blogging:
So, how did I prove myself as a freelance writer and blogger? Part of how I managed to do this was by doing 3 simple things.
1. Provide Useful Information
Blogs are meant to be social. They aren’t meant for you; they are meant for your readers. So, why would you blog about anything other than useful content?
I’m not saying you can’t have a personal diary on your blog. But, if you want to grow your traffic, or, heck, generate some traffic to your site, you absolutely need to make your content useful.
How do you know what you’re providing is useful?
- Has it been written before? Most likely, talked about topics are ones that get written about the most. While you don’t want to regurgitate information that’s already been said, if you can present it in a new light, angle or with a differing opinion, you are providing useful content.
- Is there a need? If you try to find the answers to your questions and come up empty, I can bet other people are coming up with the same conclusion. This is a sign that this topic would make for a great blog post.
- Am I giving my readers something to act on? Great blog posts have a call to action (CTA). It’s something you tell your readers to do. It can be anything from leaving a comment, answering a question or signing up to your newsletter. Readers will find your blog post more useful when they have to act.
Having useful information also goes a long way towards social sharing. No one will share your post if they don’t think it’s relevant or useful.
2. Provide Supportive Information
It’s good blogging etiquette to always back up your claim. There’s a lot of information online, so when you state a fact or statistic, you need to source it.
That’s why it’s recommended to link to your sources. Not only does this prove to your readers you’ve done your homework, but it also helps in providing relevant links.
Relevant links can come in the form of external links or internal links. It’s especially great if you can offer internal links of other posts you have written as a way to expand a topic you are writing about.
This goes a long way of proving your credibility.
The more content you have and the more you can provide internal links to, the greater chance a reader will hang around your blog and invest their time in reading your posts.
When you have supportive information on your blog it can also help with:
- Illustrating your point. Sharing a relatable story, statistic or fact helps with getting your point across. My paragraph on talking about Sue Anne Dunlevie and Niel Patel, illustrated my point of proving yourself on your blog.
- Telling your story. No one wants to read a blog post without any facts to back it up. When you can pinpoint a quote or use a graph to visualize your story better, then incorporate them into your post.
- Adding value to your content. Anything you use to back up your story or claim shows readers that you’ve put a lot of thought into your post, creating a valuable piece of content.
3. Package Your Post to Reach the Most People
It isn’t enough to only have useful and supportive information. What do you do once you have all this information?
How do you write a blog post that will get people talking, commenting and sharing?
I’ve talked a lot about how to create good blog posts:
I’m pretty sure I have the formula down pat. But, even though I have many posts talking about crafting a killer blog post, there’s still plenty of things you can do to give your post a boost in popularity.
- Include more “you” language and less “I” language. Blog posts are meant for readers so make sure you include them while you write.
- Avoid the passive voice as much as possible. You want your writing to be effective and that requires an active voice. While it’s okay to use a passive voice, don’t use it all the time.
- Create a road map for your readers. Start with a headline that hooks your readers into reading further. Next, keep your readers entertained with an engaging introduction. Finally, help them along the “journey” of reading your post by having subheadings.
Have You Proven Yourself Yet?
Becoming credible in your niche can take a short time for some and a long time for others. I found these three things to be helpful in proving myself to my readers.
How do I know this is working?
My traffic is growing weekly. I have hundreds of shares for each post. I have numerous comments that often spark a conversation.
So, if you are struggling to gain more readers for your blog, remember to provide:
- Useful information
- Supportive information
- Awesome information
The start of generating traffic and social shares begins with killer content. Are you ready to prove yourself?
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