Monday, April 4, 2016

The Newbie Corner - Blogging 101

Are you thinking about starting a blog or do you need some pointers on the basics? I've put together a number of tips that helped me when I was a newbie:

1.  Naming your blog - While this might seem like a no-brainer, it had me stumped. I finally settled on Christian Writer/Reader Connection because I wanted to bring readers and writers together.

Choosing a name reflecting your blog's purpose will help attract a readership. Who is your audience? Some blogs identify themselves as Christian (like mine) or relate to a particular topic. Readers might want to review books on their blogs, while writers might offer tips on the craft, marketing, the publishing scene, or their personal journey.

2.  Visit other blogs - Get to know other like-minded bloggers by visiting and commenting on their posts. Contact them and ask them if they'd add you to their blog list. Offer to return the favor on your blog.

3.  Be consistent - This is one of the most important aspects of blogging. Make a schedule and stick to it. Some bloggers post once a week, while others post every day. Christian Writer/Reader Connection posts Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. People want to know you'll have fresh content when they visit. If they see you haven't blogged in six months, they won't bother to return.

4. Use Share Buttons - When visitors enjoy your content, they'll often share it on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media outlets. This gives your blog more exposure. Add This is one site that provides this type of button.

5.  Social Media - Facebook has groups dedicated to bloggers. I belong to one called, "Christian Bloggers." You might also want to look up Christian Bloggers Network. They give tips on blogging, as well as opportunities for you to ask questions.

6.  Use Graphics - People love pictures. I use Free Images or my own pictures. If you love photography, combine your hobby with your blog.

7.  Post Length - Anything on the Internet tends to be fast-paced and designed for short attention spans. Keep your posts to 300-500 words. If a post gets too long, people will skim through it and eventually stop coming around.

Writers:  If you have a blog, how often do you post? Do you have any additional tips you'd like to share?

Readers:  Do you have a blog? What are some of the difficulties/questions you had when you started?

Photo Credit: Svilen Milev


quietspirit said...

Susan: Usually, I post on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. When I returned to blogging the end of December, I felt the need to go to two days a week while I was receiving in-home therapy.After I finished therapy, I did return to three times a week posting. I shared with those who read my blog my need to cut back my posting frequency.

Karen Lange said...

These are excellent points, Susan. A blog takes a lot of thought and work, but the rewards are many! :)

Natalie Aguirre said...

These are great tips, Susan. I didn't know about the Facebook groups.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Quiet Spirit - I also dropped to two posts per week for a time, but I'm back to three. It seems to work best for me.

Hi Karen - Yes, it can take me an hour or more to pull together a single post.

Hi Natalie - Welcome! Yes, Facebook groups have helped me gain much exposure both for my blog and my books.

Have a blessed week!