Each and every day we’re bombarded with new blogs and articles that claim to have the next big secret to writing a successful blog post. Though these articles are usually full of good tips, the secret to blogging is that there is no secret – there’s no magical code or piece of advice that will make your blog reader-worthy. However, there are a few basic blogging practices that are always crucial no matter what blog you’re writing or who you’re writing for. Whether you’re a newbie or a pro, there are always ways to refine and refocus your blogging skills. If your goal is write an awesome blog, connect with readers, and build a community, the following fool-proof best blogging practices are the “secrets” to success. The Voice Your first step should always be to evaluate the voice from which you’re writing. If you’re writing for an organization or outside client, be sure you’ve carefully researched their messaging, phrasing, and writing style – your goal is to blend your voice in with their content. If you’re writing for yourself, focus on being conversational. You want your words to leap off the page so readers feel like you’re talking directly to them, writer to reader. Be you. Create such a unique and specific blogging voice that readers can tell who you are without glancing at the author line. And since you’re chatting with readers conversationally, don’t be afraid to let your passion shine through. Readers appreciate when you’re real and authentic with them. They also appreciate humor. Do your best to be punchy and witty and even if you’re not brick wall caliber, readers will appreciate that you tried. The Logistics Blogging and novelizing are not synonymous, so don’t make your blog posts the length of a paperback. Frankly, having too much text bores people and readers will quickly move on. Shoot for posts to be no more than five paragraphs long. If you have to go longer, use bold text, headings, page breaks, or images to liven up the lengthy text. After focusing on length of your blogs, you might also wonder about frequency of posting. Some popular blogs post 3 – 10 new blogs each day. This is pretty ambitious, but also a good reminder that you want to attract readers to come back several times throughout the day. If you’re lacking in content, posting once a day or every other day is still enough to keep the conversation going. But no matter how often you post, each time you post a new blog, don’t forget to share it. Include a link to your blog in your email signature, post new pieces on Facebook and Twitter, and ask friends or other bloggers to share your content. You could write the wittiest, most informative post in the world, but if you don’t push it out there, it won’t get read. The Connection A blog isn’t a blog without reader interaction. Nobody wants to spew out their thoughts all day without any reader response – that’s why engaging readers is critical. Make your content relevant and find real ways to connect with your readers. A simple way is to just ask readers for their thoughts and opinions. Even throwing the question out there will encourage people to take the time to respond. Diligently monitor comments and be ready to respond. You want to be sure to respond in a timely manner, but remember to think carefully about what you write to readers – don’t respond if you’re angry, tired, or annoyed. If responded to the right way, readers will appreciate that you chose to engage with them directly, and they’ll automatically feel more connected to any future content that you write. But don’t feel pressure to respond to every single comment. Only address comments that will keep a conversation flowing – ignore anyone who wants to criticize your writing, agitate other readers, or disrupt your community. Need some help implementing these best practices on your blog? Contact SocialNicole today! Photo Credit
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