How to Write a Popular Blogby Contributor
A blog is essentially an online, interactive journal. The content of blogs can cover anything from gardening to international politics. Some bloggers write about their individual experiences in diary format, while others write product reviews or news briefs. To write a successful blog you must conduct research, be dedicated and have passion for the subject-matter.
Find your niche. Whether you want to start a celebrity gossip blog or a presidential campaign blog, think about what will set your posts apart from others. Approach subject matter from an unusual angle or write in a distinctive voice. A popular blog is innovative and stands apart from the competition.
Learn from the pros. Visit popular weblogs and adopt their best practices. Pay close attention to subject matter, writing tone, formatting and user comments. If you admire a particular blogger, send him an email asking for advice on starting a new blog. The worst he can do is ignore the request.
Write precise, keyword-rich titles. To maximize appearance of a blog in search results, include two to three relevant keywords. Titles must be succinct, but adequately descriptive of blog content. The trick is to provide as much information in as few words possible.
Be consistent and current. Bloggers' success hinges on their following. Those who stick to a writing schedule fare best, as readers can rely on the blog as a source of up-to-date information. For best results, write blog entries daily. Of course it's fine to take occasional vacations, but remember that for every day you're away members of your audience will turn elsewhere.
Provide accurate information. Many bloggers are self-declared experts in a particular subject area, but they may consistently misrepresent the truth in their entries. Take time to research and check facts. If you're writing an editorial piece, make it clear to readers that you're expressing an opinion and open the topic to debate.
Format carefully and proofread all entries. To make a blog easy to read, use at least a 12-point font, boldface titles and subtitles and leave plenty of white space. Before publishing an entry, check for grammatical errors, typos and awkward phrasing. Blogs that contain numerous mistakes look unprofessional, a turn off to many readers.
Market the blog. Provide links to related sites and cite other bloggers by name. If you recognize your peers' work, they're likely to return the favor. Another simple and popular marketing tool is the RSS feed, which allows users to search vast amounts of content for relevant information. Archive all entries to increase site visibility and maximize search results.
- check Post future blogs before taking time off. You can write entries and designate a publishing date so readers can view new content when you're away.
- check Write on topics about which you're passionate. Blogging is usually fun at first, but requires a lot of work and can be draining. Love what you do to avoid burnout and to keep content interesting. If you're not interested in the content you generate, your readers will catch on.
- check Respond to all user comments and questions. Interaction with readers is a crucial element of blogging and builds lasting relationships between you and your audience.
- check Be patient. Most blogs don't take off right away. For best results, consistently create quality content. It's also important to have realistic expectations. Your blog may never be extraordinarily popular, but if you enjoy what you're doing, you may decide to continue posting indefinitely. Blogs can generate a comfortable income for some, but it's best not to quit your day job until your site takes off.