This year one of the focuses I’m planning for AngEngland.com is another big blog series. I still get emails and comments about Ten Habits of Successful Blogging. So this year I’m going to focus this series less on the attitudes of successful blogging and more on the action steps we can take.
These are twelve steps to blogging success I want to cover in 2012. Each month will explore one of these steps in-depth and take a closer look at all the ins and outs. So without further ado here are the twelve steps to blogging success
1 – Decide to Treat it Like a Business
This is the step where you put on your business mindset. I loved the quote from Darren Rowse he shared in his BlogWorld Expo Keynote Session – Blogging Motivations. He said, “If you want your blog to be a business “one day”….Treat it as one Today!” and that’s exactly what we’ll talk about in January.
- 12 Business and Blogging Books to Read in 2012
- Professionalism and Productivity BlogWorld Expo Session Video
- Women Who Mean Business – Interview with Mom, Incorporated Author
2 – Understand Your Core Message and Branding
Once you decide your blogging goals, it’s time to settle on your core message. The beginning of branding yourself and your blog. This also involves being consistent and figuring out what to say – and what not to say.
- What’s Your Message? – Do you know your core value?
3 – Don’t Ignore the Technical Details
Ah yes – those pesky little details. Things like security, hosting your own website, the basics of SEO and more. I’ll cover the best resources and how to get on the right path technically without going insane.
4 – Consider the Visual Elements
Design is so important. So are photographs and other visual elements. Learning how to use design, graphics, photographs and videos effectively can help you build a more successful blog. The other element of visual cues we’ll discuss in step 4 is how layout and structure effects readability of your site.
5 – Plan Your Content Strategically
One of my personal favorites – the content. You know me – always something to say. Good content strategy means assessing what you have on your blog, and planning what needs to be created next. It also means choosing keywords wisely and following an editorial calendar.
6 – Remember and Honor Your Readers
What would a blog be without our readers? Not much! Connecting with readers means that you aren’t writing for “followers” – you’re connecting with friends. Building relationships. Creating a community around your blog means that you are honoring your readers as equals. As valued.
7 – Reach Your Audience Where They Are
Use a variety of means and methods to spread your message so that readers can easily stay connected. Rss, email newsletters, and mobile-friendly websites are all some of the ways you can make it convenient for your readers to be found.
This is where we touch base on some best practices – facebook and giveaways, pinterest and recipe stealing, and a bunch of others. We’ll examine some of the most interesting ways to build a conversation outside of your blog and the pros and cons of the most popular social networks.
9 – Create or Offer a Product for Sale
One of the best ways I’ve found to monetize a blog is to offer a product for sale. Whether that’s your own product, or someone else’s doesn’t matter. And of course, a “product for sale” can also be your own services – a consultation gig, a blog design or graphic work.
10 – Build Traffic and Market Yourself
Lots of tips coming in this step for how to build traffic and put yourself out there. Sometimes you need to just take a leap of action here – even when you feel a little outside of your comfort zone. Part of it is just having the confidence to say, “I have something valuable to offer the world!” Traffic building can happen organically and naturally – especially when you have a smart plan.
You’ve heard the saying “Two heads are better than one” and that is definitely true in the blogging community. Some of the best things I’ve done in my blogging is to reach out to others. Attend conferences in person and connect with other bloggers. Reach out and create a joint venture project. Publish guest posts, or invite guests to post on your blog, and share your communities.
12 – Evaluate and Change When Needed
Learn how to read your analytics and use them to create a blog plan: new content ideas, new communities and blogging friends, and make note of pages that need to be cleaned up. You should regularly tweak your strategy based on what works, what your readers are asking for, and what you are learning in your personal and professional life.
These twelve steps to Blogging Success in 2012 are going to be exciting to explore in-depth. I’ll list resources, in-depth techniques and expert guests. If you have any recommendations feel free to let me know.
Which of these twelve steps of successful blogging do you need the most help with? Follow the hashtag #12steps on Twitter and subscribe to this blog to keep up!