Estimates are roughly 2,800,000 people in the world are bloggers. Enough to wonder, is there a gene that makes us blog? Based on the bloggers I’ve spoken with, there is. Here are 3 essential things to learn and 5 things unique to you.
3 ESSENTIAL THINGS TO LEARN
- STRATEGY: Don’t begin without one. Who do you want to influence? What are key content points? What are headlines and what action do you want readers to take? Critical questions? Absolutely, but ones you can answer once you know what to ask.
- ANALYTICS: Regardless of your strategy, you blog to build a community. People who share your interests and count on you like you count on them. The way you’ll know if they’re there and more keep coming is through measurements. There are many tools. Primary ones are Google Analytics, AddThis for social sharing and Feedburner for e-mail subscriptions to your RSS feed. When you publish a new blog, you’ll want to use short links for your social networks. All are openly available.
- TECHNOLOGY: Technology is great but technology doesn’t make your write better. I am fascinated with available plug-ins, widgets and blog themes and spend a good amount of time with them. That said, it never will be the reason to blog or why people read blogs.
5 THINGS UNIIQUE TO YOU
- INSPIRATION: The motivation that begins every blogs and strikes all of us in a different way.
- VOICE: A way of telling a story in an area where you’re passionate and an expert (e.g. travel, technology, health, marketing or personal development) as only you tell it.
- ENGAGEMENT: Your own way of responding to comments, starting a dialogue and being timely about it with those who want to interact with you. eMarketer says it is #1 way to build trust in social media.
- AUTHENTICITY: The discipline to post regularly, the ups and down of readership, the choice to write words from the heart or keywords for the search engines. They’re all teaching situation to establish a character unique to you.
- RECOGNITION FOR OTHERS: Chris Brogan says you recognize 12 people for every own time you promote yourself. It seems pretty easy but it’s easy to forget. In that vein, I’d like to give a shout out to Margie Clayman who has started a community to recognize 30 great blogs each week. It’s on Twitter at #30Thursday. It’s a great idea and you should check out Margie’s blog, Musing on Marketing and other Morsels.
A great resource for bloggers is a conversation hosted by @MackCollier every Sunday at 9 pm on Twitter at #blogchat. Here, some of the best bloggers elevate the craft and business of blogging through their experiences and insights. As many as 1,000+ have participated in a conversation, an extradinary concentration of “best in class” people sharing and learning in one place at one time.
For everyone with a blog and an idea, passion, business or brand behind it, there’s a community of people waiting. Don’t let them down.