25 Blogging Tips You Have to See

I started blogging in 2006 and have learned a few things that helped my business over the years. So here are 25 blogging tips, how-to’s and lessons learned for writers, non-tekkies or newbies!

 Blogging Tips by Laura Benjamin

Blogging Tips, Lessons Learned and How-to’s

  1. You don’t have to consider yourself an “expert” in order to have a blog. You know something that would benefit others. Just start. You’ll learn as you go. People are drawn to your unique “voice” much more so than the topic you choose.
  2. The more personal you make it the better people like it. Avoid boring, predictable “oh so professional”, corporate-speak writing.
  3. Get your own name as a domain name (Godaddy or Bluehost are affordable resources) I made the mistake of letting my name go when I worked for the City of Colorado Springs and they required I shut down my business. Now, it’ll cost me $900 if I want to get it back. Thus, the reason for my hyphenated domain name!
  4. Blogging adds depth and interest to your website. The good folks from Rainmaker.FM say to now focus on “the media not the marketing” as you build your site/blog.
  5. Your culture, branding or personality can shine through your writing. Be adventurous. Take a camera with you everywhere and take your own photos vs using stock images. In particular, avoid pictures of people in suits with their arms crossed. (You know the ones I’m talking about) Use at least one image in your blog post, preferably at the top. Don’t use pictures from Bing Images or other people’s blogs because of copyrights.
  6. If you’re serious about your business or cause, avoid setting up a free blog site on Blogger, Typepad or WordPress.com. You don’t own that “real estate”, they do. And your  domain name will reflect it. (MarySmith.wordpress.com vs MarySmith.com)
  7. Purchase a hosting package (about $80/year) at Godaddy, Bluehost, etc., connect it to the domain name you bought and then upload free WordPress software to the site. (It’s one of the options you’ll have once you purchase your hosting package and domain)
  8. Get a book on copywriting and write snappy, intriguing blog post headlines. Ex: 14 Strange Ways To…, How to Avoid Goofy People at Work, etc.
  9. Writing the blog is only part of the equation. Distributing it is the other important part. Sign up with an email marketing service (MailChimp, ConstantContact, Aweber.com) and put a signup form on your blog so people can add themselves to your list.
  10. Focus more on building your email subscriber list than spending time on social media. Again, because you don’t own any “real estate” on that social media platform. They can change the rules (Facebook), shut you down or start charging you at any point.
  11. Write regularly. Once or twice a week is good. Subscribers will soon anticipate getting your blog post. You don’t want people to tire of you and tune you out by blogging too often. Try to stick to a schedule.
  12. Make a list of the most relevant keywords your customers would type into a search engine to find you or your business and pay you money. (That last part is very important) Then use these keywords in article titles, subtitles, categories, “tags”, the text of your article, permalinks (what shows up in the URL) etc.
  13. Title your images using relevant keywords rather than IMG0227. Also use keywords in the “alt text” field after you upload the image into the media folder of your blog.
  14. Don’t add people to your blog subscriber list without their permission. There’s nothing more infuriating than having someone add you to their list and then expect YOU to opt out if you don’t want it. There are spam laws against that.
  15. To get subscribers, offer a signup form to people you meet at networking events, conferences, your speaking engagements, etc. Ask friends to forward your blog post to others if they find it useful.
  16. Insert social media “share” buttons on your blog so people can forward your articles.
  17. Use a larger font size. People now read blogs on mobile devices so tiny print is tough on them. It’s also hard on “mature” readers.
  18. You can set up your site so the home page IS your blog. Mine is set up that way at Laura-Benjamin.com OR you can set it up as MarySmith.com/Blog where your home page holds other content about you, the business, your cause.
  19. You could also buy an interesting domain name (Pistachio, LittleGreenFootballs, StuffWhitePeopleLike) for your blog and set it up outside your normal website. Some will do this to take advantage of a keyword rich domain name when their home website doesn’t contain any keywords.
  20. The longer your blog site is up, the better the search engines like it.
  21. Check out Problogger.net – his site is full of very useful blogging tips. His book is worth buying (I get no commission to recommend it).
  22. You’ll also want to take a look at this useful and free “How to Start a Blog” guidebook atFirstSiteGuide.com. I’ve already heard from one friend I sent it to that she now feels a whole lot better about launching her blog.
  23. Here’s another good resource from Mike at StartBloggingOnline.com. His home page is full of useful tips.
  24. StartABlog123.com offers a number of helpful posts as well as a blog platform comparison guide so you can evaluate them all at a glance.
  25. And finally, another useful resource from Matt Banner on how to start and grow a blog.