How to Successfully Blog – 13 Tips That Work

How to Successfully Blog – 13 Tips That Work
Blogging is a great way to promote your product or service, or even just your ideas or recipes. Trends for how to best market and expand the reach of your content rapidly changes and it can be difficult to stay abreast of the trends. While you may be an effective blogger, using tried and true tips and hints, these may be limiting the reach of your content. We have compiled some of the most effective tips for how to get the most out of your blogging and how to get your content to the most people possible.
The pros have shared some of their best secrets for how to keep your blog successful, popular and, most importantly, visible to as wide of an audience as possible. What follows are some great tips that you can employ today to help increase the visibility of your blog.

1.  Embrace the Podcast:
Many people would love to read more, if they simply had the time. This does not mean that they are not interested in what you have to say or offer, but many people do not have the time to spare to read countless articles or transcripts. A lot of people are providing audio versions of their latest content and are reaping huge benefits by doing so. Some professional bloggers have begun to make audio recordings of their latest posts and upload them as podcasts, which can then be easily accessed via RSS feeds. 
This allows your viewers multiple ways of quickly and easily accessing your content. And trust, people will use these new features. Some bloggers who have integrated podcasts of their content on their site have seen truly remarkable increases in traffic. Remarkable to the tune of sometimes upwards of thousands of percent increases in site traffic. It is so simple to put up free copies of your podcasts on sites like iTunes, which further expand your potential audience base.
In addition to tons of new traffic, some bloggers who have started utilizing podcasts are also seeing more engagement with their content. This means that more people are commenting on content than before, opening up healthy and constructive dialog. 
2.  Provide Facts and Cite Your Sources:
People tend to be skeptical by nature, and have to be even more so in today’s environment where unwarranted claims can cause a firestorm of controversy in no time at all. We like facts and want you to back up your claims with relevant data and supporting information. It is even more helpful to ensure that readers can even double-check your sources if they desire. Transparency is a huge issue of concern for web users.
The pros suggest using facts and data as much as possible to support any claims you make on your blog if you wish to have your ideas embraced and taken seriously. Providing cited facts makes the content seem more unbiased, professional and thus worthy of talking about and sharing. It can pay huge to take the time to find numbers that back up your ideas or assertions. 
3.  Promote Engagement in Your Content and Provide Means of Sharing:
People want to be engaged when reading content. This is, ultimately, what determines whether or not they read the article to the end and even take the time to comment on it or share the post with their friends. By adding social links, the ability to share, and hooks throughout the post to elicit readers’ reactions, you help to ensure that they read the post in it’s entirety. Allowing comments (though it is understandable that you may wish to moderate the comments before they are posted to your blog publicly) gives users the ability to interact with the you as the writer, as well as other readers.
Creating an outlet for dialog is a great way to engage your users and to encourage their participation and likely their return to your blog. It is simple to make your content easily shareable on the most popular social media sites like Google + and Facebook. This allows readers to share your content with their social circle which can dramatically increase your potential readership.
4.  Start an Email List:
Successful bloggers swear by the email list as a great means for engaging users and expanding your potential reader base. The key is to make your content available via an email subscription, and then also make it as easy as possible for users to sign up. Suggestions to increase the visibility of this email option and increase participation in email subscriptions start with an easy sign up box that should appear prominently on your blog.
If you have forms or comment sections, forums, etc., it is helpful to also include opt-in boxes that allow for fast and easy email subscription. This makes it easy for readers to access and read your content without ever even having to visit your page. Your updated content will simply appear in their email.
5.  Hook Users with Creative Blog Name and Post Titles:
Remember just how much content is available on the web and even how many blogs there are in existence. You have be clever and creative to stand apart from the crowd and entice readers to your blog as opposed to the umpteen other choices they have. This is why it is so very important to be clever and take the time in naming your blog as well as the titles of your posts. This can, in an instant, determine whether or not your blog is attractive or appealing to a reader. It is, many ways, their “first impression” of your content and if they don’t find it interesting, they aren’t going to read it or tell their friends.
6.  Take Full Advantage of Analytics Tools:
Analytics tools are not new but the most successful bloggers will tell you just how valuable they can be. There are tons of free analytics tools, like Google Analytics and Site Meter, which provide increasingly detailed information about users. This data is invaluable as it tells you, in black and white, what users are looking at on your site. This will show you a variety of key insights that you can use in keeping your blog interesting and relevant.
First and foremost, these tools will tell you how many unique visitors you have, how long they visit your site, and how they came upon it to begin with. You can use this information to see what content is the most popular and give you an idea of how readers are referred to your site. It isn’t necessarily useful to simply know how many people visit your blog as so many people will click on it and leave without ever viewing your content or learning about your brand, product, or service.
By seeing where people stop scrolling, how many pages they view, how long they spend on your blog, and so on, the more accurate picture of your readership you get. This information is a great tool for helping to strategize on content ideas, as well as means with which to better engage readers. 
7.  Know Your Competition:
There is a blog for pretty much every product, service or idea imaginable. This does not mean your blogging endeavors are futile, but rather that everyone faces stiff competition for readers’ time and there will always be a competing site. Rather than try to pretend your competition doesn’t exist; it is helpful to take the time to see what your competition is up to. Regularly see what your competitors are up to and talking about. This can give you ideas for content on your own site, as well as giving you keen insight on what people interested in your product, service, or ideas are getting from “the other guy.”
You can see, by the engagement and popularity of competing sites, what your competitors are doing successfully and unsuccessfully to attract and retain their readership. This information can be vital as you can learn from others’ mistakes as well as get unique ideas on how to better focus your content to make it more attractive or appealing to current and potential visitors. 
8.  Be Consistent in What You Have to Offer:
People come to expect a certain thing and are often disappointed when you deviate from that purpose. If, for example, you run a cooking blog, it does not make sense to suddenly start writing about sewing and knitting. You need to have a theme, which may seem like it would limit your audience to a niche, however, what it does is to give your blog a focus and consistency. You need fresh and unique content, but it should revolve around the theme that your blog was intended to focus on to begin with.
9.  Be a Guest Blogger and Utilize Them Too:
Highly successful bloggers of today constantly talk about the value of guest blogging on other sites and getting guests to do the same on yours.
Guest blogging is an excellent way to get the name of your product, service or idea out there and links to your blog around the web. The more links to your blog that exist, the higher it will appear in search engine results, which will significantly increase the traffic you see to your blog. There are a ton of benefits to developing relationships with other bloggers and site owners. You widen your potential audience and get those incredibly valuable backlinks on your site. You also develop positive relationships with other bloggers, which, as a networking tool, can also prove quite valuable.
Having experts on your subject of interest come and talk about your subject can create a buzz and add an air of credibility to your blog. It is affordable and easy to engage the use of a guest blogger on your site. As guest blogging invariably provides back linking, you might even be able to get this service for free as it can be a mutually beneficial relationship. Even better than a guest blog is a guest interview as multimedia really gets a lot of hits and attracts visitors. Podcasts and video interviews are a great addition to your blog and add to the appeal, credibility and popularity of your content.
10.  Stay On Top of SEO:
Keywords and search engine optimization is still important, but as we have seen in the changes to search engine algorithms, producing quality, relevant content is what counts. A bunch of keyword stuffed gibberish does not suffice to take your blog to the top of the search engine results any longer. It is useful to employ the use of keywords, but in a natural, meaningful manner, not awkwardly inserted in errant places to try to boost one’s subsequent ranking. There are a great many tools that give you access to current and up-to-date metrics on what people are searching for and what terms they are using. These can be invaluable to helping you target your marketing terms more effectively.
Other tools for on- and off-page optimization are still incredibly important and though there are constantly changing rules on how pages are ultimately ranked, it is imperative that you keep abreast of them as using the new and approved tactics for SEO is truly valuable to keep your blog relevant and successful.
11.  Always Create Timely, Quality Content:
In addition to being consistent in what you write about and how many days a week you post your content, it is important that you write quality blog posts. It can be difficult to regularly come up with compelling and relevant content, but as a blogger, this is the most important part of the gig. You can look at competitors sites as well as hot search engine results to get ideas for potential blog posts if you are at a loss for what to write about.
As noted below, you can also utilize relevant content written by others to help fill the void if you are lacking in content.
12.  Utilize Media:
A key trick used by highly successful bloggers is integrating relevant media into their blog posts. By simply adding a related image to your blog post, you make it “sexier” and more appealing to readers. We are visual creatures and much research has shown that readers like images and videos. Linking to YouTube videos of conferences or presentations, relevant videos, and so on, is another great way to integrate media into your site. It is simple to embed pictures and videos directly into your blog posts.
By taking the time to find an image or video for your posts can have a significant positive impact on how many people read your content and engage with your site.
13.  Share Relevant Content:
It can be draining trying to come up with continually fresh content, but that is what it takes to be and remain a successful blogger today. Quality content is of the utmost importance and it can be incredibly difficult to churn this out day after day. While it helps to rely on unique content for your blog, it is completely acceptable to fill some of your days content with that written by others. Sharing relevant content is a great way to provide a fresh post on days where creativity or time is lacking. 
The Internet is a very fluid and dynamic, constantly changing environment. What worked best for bloggers yesterday may not be what works best for bloggers today. The above stated tips are the latest tricks to expanding and maximizing the reach of your product, service or idea. The web is continually gaining more influence over our everyday lives, and it’s importance in the expansion and success of a project, product, service or idea cannot be understated. Utilizing the latest tips that have worked for professional bloggers worldwide is a great way to stay ahead of that proverbial curve and keep your blog at the forefront.

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