The 14 Keys to Successful and Influential Global Blogging

The death of blogging has been predicted for many years. Social networks such as Facebook and MySpace provide easy to use multimedia publishing platforms to share your life’s experiences and insights with the world, that at first glance seemed to offer an alternative to blogging that would lead to its demise.

The 14 Keys to Successful and Influential Global Blogging

As Mark Twain was famously quoted

The news of my death is greatly exaggerated

Blogging isn’t dying it is just “evolving“.

You only have to look at the success of platforms such as Tumblr over the last 2 years with traffic levels currently at 90 million visitors a month (12 months ago it was only 10 million) to realise that “self expression” has indeed become the “new entertainment

Blogging is becoming much more social and visual and is indeed becoming a “publishing genre” in its own right.

Three Types of Bloggers

Bloggers come in all shapes, sizes and flavors. Essentially there are three types

Personal Casual Blogger

Some will blog about their daily life and experiences – the casual personal blogger. Blogging platforms such as Tumblr.com or Blogger.com make it quick and easy for the personal blogger to get up and running.

Facebook or Google+ is also an option for this type of blogger. Creating a “page” on Google+ or Facebook (as opposed to just a personal profile) is maybe all they need.

“Serious” Professional Blogger

Others will blog to reach a global market and monetize their content and traffic, through speaking, strategic business partnerships and opportunities, selling eBooks and online webinars. Social Media Examiner is one great example of this type of blog that have a clear vision, focused and are marketing savvy. This really requires three core foundational elements

  1. Blogging software such as WordPress (that gives you ultimate control for full customization)
  2. Self hosted with an Internet service provider (ISP)
  3. Your own domain name (eg Jeffbullas.com)

These 3 elements provide the solid foundation to scale

Business Blogger

Business blogging is about spreading the brands influence, creating leads and increasing sales. Hubspot provides a fine example of what can be done in this segment.

The benefits here also include improving search engine optimisation, positioning the company as a thought leader and expert in its market place and industry.

So how do you get started?

The fear of your thoughts and writing being exposed on a global scale on the web is daunting for many but there is just one solution to the “getting started” problem.

Just “Do It”

For me just starting the journey without overcomplicating it was the most important step, when I had an inkling of what I was passionate about.

We all have different goals and expectations and whatever blogging journey you are on or want to commence, you need to remind yourself thay the more you put into it, the more you will get out of it.

If you are a bit unsure “just start” – the road will become clearer and the path brighter and you will discover more about yourself and others.

Some of us are afraid of revealing yourself to the world and an audience. Remember – “Fortune favours the brave”.

Once I started, I discovered what was important and what wasn’t.

14 Keys to Influential Global Blogging

1. Start with the Strong Foundation

You may think that not many people will show up once you start your blog and that no one will notice. It is better to be prepared for growth by having a platform that can scale and is easy to make changes to. A WordPress platform that is self hosted and has your own domain name that you “own” is a good place to start

2. Know “Who” You’re Talking To

You need to understand who your audience is. What are their problems, what words they use, what books and magazines do they read, what media do they prefer (videos, articles and images) so you can communicate.

3. Create Compelling Content

If you understand who you target market is for your blog then creating content that engages with your audience is that will bring your readers back and make them want to subscribe to your blog is easier to do

4. Create Content in a Variety of Media

We are all different and some people prefer to read an article.and others prefer to watch a video. To appeal to the widest possible audience be prepared to mix it up and create content in all the formats that your time and resources allow. It could be a YouTube video, a Slideshare presentation or a blog post, an ebook or a whitepaper. Infographics that present complex data are also attractive for your readers and viewers.

5. Learn the Art of the Headline

Some people say you have two seconds to capture someone’s attention with a catchy headline, others say half a second! Whatever the time, it is “short”, so learning to write headlines that tempt and tease readers to click to your blog article is vital in an increasingly time poor world is essential

6. Structure your Content for Skimming and Scanning

When your readers turn up to your post there is nothing more daunting than a huge unbroken block of text that hides the key points.

Provide

  • Readable size text (12-14 point),
  • Sub-titles,
  • Bullet points
  • Diagrams and screen shots that gets your message across fast in the simplest way possible.

Make it easy to consume and read.

7. Engage with other Bloggers and Influencers

Collaboration is vital in any endeavour and enlisting others is crucial. You can start by tweeting and sharing other peoples content and you will find in return they will share your posts to their networks. Ask experts to provide a guest post or ask to provide a guest post for them. Find experts who have a reader base that you want and offer to promote them. You need to give to receive!

8. Market your Blog

There is an ocean of content and a sea of blogs (over 150 million).

Just hitting “publish” on your blog post is just the start. It is absolutely vital to learn and implement effective email and social media marketing techniques. The 3 types of key marketing you need to learn are email, Facebook and Twitter marketing strategies and tactics

9. Optimise Your Blog and Social Networks

In all this mix we are still on a web that is driven not just by Facebook but by Google and other search engines. Optimize your blog so that Google can index your blog so that you rank higher in search engine results.

Social media channels that you own also need to have a title, description, categories and keyword tags.

10. Make it Easy to Subscribe

Don’t make it hard for people to subscribe to your blog either by email, RSS or any of your social media networks such as Facebook ,Twitter and Google+. Provide buttons or subscribe functions that make it easy for people to follow you in the format they prefer.

11. Make it Simple and Quick to Share

I see many blogs that do not have a retweet button or Facebook share or Like button. If that is the case on your blog then you are missing out on a lot of traffic and visibility. If you want your content and brand to spread make it easy for people to tweet to their networks and share to their Facebook friends.

12. Listen to your Audience

We live in a fast changing world and trends come and go. You will need to keep an eye on what is resonating with your readers and viewers. Try some different type of content and keep your ear to the ground. You will need to continue to modify your content to meet changing media and subject types in your industry and market.

13. Be Creative and Don’t be Afraid to Make Mistakes

Fail fast and often. In a world of print and high production costs it was expensive to fail and sometimes fatal to your bank account.

In a digital world with zero costs of distribution and low production costs, you can afford to experiment and fail fast and cheaply.

Try different ideas, features and functions so that you can see what works and doesn’t.

14. Persist and be Patient

As with any endeavour you will not build something of substance overnight. Social networks allow you to scale globally with speed, virality and reach that is unprecedented with traditional media.

Patience and persistence is still a trait that must be nourished. It may seem at times that nothing is happening but if you continue to learn and apply the basic principles you will be surprised by the results and opportunities that show up.

Blogging can be an adventure and opportunity to change your life and enhance your business.

It provides a forum and platform for you to build a global tribe that you can empower to share your ideas, personal brand and knowledge. It can position you as a thought leader and an expert in your niche.

The social web with its “many to many” networks has supercharged content production and its distribution and is the biggest change to magazines, books and publishing since the Gutenberg press over 500 years ago.

Are you ready to grab the opportunity and maybe change your life?

More Reading

  • Past Present and Future of Blogging: 3 Infographics
  • How To Write A Mind Blowing Headline For Twitter So People Will Read Your Blog
  • 50 Ways To Optimize Your Blog
  • 20 Simple Tips for Writing a Blog Post that Begs to Be Read
  • 50 Social Media marketing Tips and Tactics
  • Image by Jorge Quinteros

    Comments

    • http://twitter.com/KierWilkinson Kier Wilkinson

      Good article. 

      I think it is crucial that bloggers offer their content in a variety of different media in the future – video/audio/pictures etc.

      There is so much content on the internet that your audiences’ attention span is shorter than ever so you need to be able to capture their imagination visually rather than get bogged down in endless paragraphs of text, like you have suggested.

      Obviously nothing can beat fresh and current content though! That will always be central to popular blogs.

    • Rick Allen

      Great summary, Jeff. I plan to forward it to my network.

      I’ve also hear about the death of blogging, and Twitter, and print — all of which are quite alive. The print medium has certainly suffered the worst, and has the biggest need to evolve. I would not want to be a print publisher right now. But somewhere out there is an undiscovered innovation bubbling up in the mind of a budding entrepreneur that will amaze us all and extend, change or re-purpose the print world. A caterpillar does not crawl into his cocoon to die, but to be transformed.

      Equally interesting as that transformation, will be new media once we are able to released them from the paradigms established by 600 years of print. How we get, gather, sift, sort and assimilate information, how we educate our young, and the basis for our decisions are all on the table.

      “Fascinating.” –Mr. Spock

    • http://www.techretina.com/ Gaurang Joshi

      Awesome Article…And I also think a Blogger must enjoy Blogging, rather than thinking it as a daily routine : )

    • http://www.facebook.com/AnnieInfinite Annie Infinite

      Love this post Jeff and have shared on FB and Scoopit! Great strategies and I especially like the reminder to write scan-able content.

    • Vlasta

      Great post once again Jeff, I have been blogging for awhile now, you can call me the Business Blogger as you have described it. I got couple of ideas from your post how to improve my blog, such as mix the media and art of headlines which sometimes proves to be quite difficult. I struggle getting ppl to comment and get involved. I would appreciate you opinion on my blog and perhaps give me some suggestion how to improve. http://www.signaturestaff.com.au/blog

      • Pulin

        @8cb1a586bdf676986caaddbab6963661:disqus Good to see your comment.as per this article i fall in the category of personal casual blogger and wants to go far and want to showcase my skills on business level. I have same problem as yours:getting ppl to comment and and get involved! have you found any solution since?if yes can you please share your experience?thanks

      • Pulin

        @8cb1a586bdf676986caaddbab6963661:disqus Actually I gone through your business site and I must say it looks so professional and I am impressed with it! keep up the good work.By the way i wrote one article on my site if you want to go through it! Article title:Seven ways to ease your job hunting experience. http:pulindave.com/blog

    • http://www.thenetimpact.com/internet-marketing.aspx Jen

      You have offered some great advice here to new bloggers!  I agree with “Just Do It”  you can’t necessarily get all the details worked out before you start blogging, sometimes you’ve just got to dive in and get started and figure it out as you go.  Content can be difficult to come up with sometimes but engaging in the community of bloggers, as you’ve suggested, can really help to spark some writing ideas.  One other tips that I would suggest  once you get going is that you create a schedule, especially if you have a business blog.  A schedule will help to ensure that you get a fresh content out there on a regular basis.

    • http://andynathan.net Andy Nathan

      Jeff-What you describe in your 14 points is almost the exact opposite of what I did while starting. The only thing that I was doing when I first started blogging was persistent blogging, a self-hosted platform, and social marketing. It took a lot of bounces on the head to understand the value of what you just said. Which I had seen this post two years ago.

    • Maayotte

      Very useful. Thanks.

    • Sullivaj

      Love these ideas, along with the “just do it!” attitude. One minor deal, however…#2 – should your heading spell “you’re?” in “Know Who You’re Talking To.”

    • Jburrow

      Great Content Jeff, I have learned a lot from your posts.

    • Yasmin Anderson-Smith

      Love this article and will gladly share it with my network. It comes just as my spouse is gearing up to start a blog on track and field. Solid advice to help him get off to a good start.

    • Pulin

      An inspiring article, can learn lot many things out of these 14 points. I strongly agree with Jeff with regards to showcase our skills!I fall in the category of Personal Casual blogger and wants to go far! But my BIGGEST challenge is to create content for my site! trying to find the way!

    • pragati

      You have put things in a nutshell as usual, Jeff! This is encouraging advice for new bloggers like us.

      Persistence and patience are the hardest for someone who is new, because it takes time to build up a following.

      Here’s to blogging more and more..
      Thanks,
      pragati

      • http://jeffbullas.com Jeff Bullas

        Yes Pragati, there is no silver bulet it takes time and constant learning.

    • darinlhammond

      I would be lost without your easy to ready and deploy lists. Blogging becomes much easier when you tap into the community, one part of your message here. I’m glad that I have tapped into your work as a resource.

    • http://www.facebook.com/david.leonard.39794895 David Leonard

      As always, very informative Jeff. I too have been guilty of “overcomplicating” the process. You have to just jump out there and take chances. Thanks for sharing.

      https://twitter.com/dcapreeyo

      http://daveitfwd.com/

    • http://jeffbullas.com Jeff Bullas

      Thanks Sarah always trying to create evergreen content that ages well like good wine!

    • http://jeffbullas.com Jeff Bullas

      Thanks Sara for sharing your story. That is so good to hear. :)

    • Sabih Ahmed

      Great post @jeffbullas:disqus sir! This is one perfect post, as in reply to all those who think blogging scope is declining. Search engines, social networks and every other platform on the web requires content and these tips are the perfect match to get started with it. I remember the time I started my career in DM, i didn’t even had the idea what content can do but by the time, I learned and see that this is the soul of every business and you should have expertise and understanding of how it works. I really like the point that ‘publishing the content is not just enough’ you have to optimize your content to get something out of it. Cutting it short, a fine example of blogging is your this post, see the numbers of shares it has garnered :-)

    • Rajesh Deepak

      Definitely, you are write to have some creativity for every blogger to get the popularity. These steps will certainly help the new blogger to understand the blogging main concept. No body knows how much time will take to get more and more traffic on site, but a right strategy helps to build up more people.