I’ve been blogging for quite awhile. And I have one tip for my other bloggers on how to run a successful blog. Incase you didn’t know, this blog is not my first. I actually started Uptalker less than a year ago at this point (2019). But I’ve run several blogs, my longest-running one is Oatboat.com. And that was where I first found my success as a blogger.
So what’s the one tip?
My one tip may sound oversimplified and unprofound, but I think it’s important and many bloggers miss it. Ask anyone for advice on blogging and you’re bound to hear “build community” or “engage people” or some variation of that. And if I were to answer the question: “what’s your one tip for bloggers?” I’d answer with that one thing; engage people.
I may be wrong, but I feel as though few people actually explain what engaging or building a community looks like. I’d like to expand on that and give some real-world applications that you can start implementing for yourself.
Community: how to do it
Now that we know what the most important thing to blog success, we can start talking about how to achieve it. Before I start, I have to let you know that this process, although it’s very rewarding, is a long and tiring process. You really can’t skip this step though, so the sooner you start on it, the better.
The number one most important, most beneficial thing you can do is find people, real people that want to help you. And I know, they can be hard to come by, but they are out there. When I say “help you” I’m generally talking about getting people to write a post for your blog.
Invitations to people for this can look differently. But you could try something like this if you are strapped for cash:Hi *awesome blogger (please replace that),
Hi *awesomeblogger (please replace that with their name),
I saw your articles on (wherever you found them) and thought they were great! I have a blog of my own and I was wondering if you’d be interested in writing for it.
Let me know what you think.
It’s really as simple as that. And some people will ask “why would anyone want to write for free?” and the answer to that is pretty simple as well. They are either trying to build a writing portfolio, or they are wanting to build links and networks that point back to their own business, blog or just their own social media. So, there are reasons why, and there are a lot of people still looking for opportunities like this.
Where do you find them?
There are several places I searched for bloggers. Twitter is probably the place where I had most success. But you want to be sure that you’re asking good writers. You don’t want to fill your blog with junk. So I recommend checking their work and making sure it will fit well in your blog.
Instead of starting with Twitter, you can find niche blogs that fit your style and look for writers on there. Look for their social media account links, usually above or below the article, and give them shout. Tell them how much you loved their work. Flattery goes a long way in this world.
Medium.com may be a good place for you as well. It’s filled with writers, many of whom do not have a blog other than their medium blog. Before you send out a bunch of messages, check to make sure they’re still writing. If their last post was 2014, save yourself the trouble of messaging them.
This isn’t all about what others can do for you
Building a community is not just about the writers you have, it’s about the readers too. If someone comments on your blog, they should get a thoughtful response. No one comments on an article thinking the author will reply to them, but when they do, it blows the person away!
If you’re not already taking steps to nurture your community, start doing it right now.
In the meantime, leverage other communities
Building your own community takes time. In the meantime, use other communities to grow your readership and your own community.
One of my blogs once covered a lot of gaming topics. I wanted to grow my readership, so I searched for communities of gamers. I found one site that I really liked that let me submit links to my articles. It was N4G.com and it proved instrumental in growing my readership.
So I encourage you to do some digging and find where communities like you want are already.