In the time that I’ve been blogging I’ve done heaps of research and learnt lots about developing image, expanding content, using social media, building an audience and keeping track of it all.
This is part of a five-section ‘how-to’ for writer/bloggers. Each article will be published at the start of the week for the next five weeks. The aim is to help bloggers to conduct a self-review.
This series came about through my own experience in self-reviewing, and questions I have had about being a writer and blogger.
By now, you’ve considered your author brand, got a whole pile of content to write about, you’re a whizz on social media (remember, if you’re stuck on anything, don’t be afraid to ask me in a comment or email. I don’t bite) and you’ve got a bit of an audience going. What’s your next step?
Building your audience.
Firstly, target new audience. Think about the purpose of your blog, and your current audience. Now you just need to fill in the gaps – what audience might be interested in your work?
Write that target audience down (just one for now) in the middle of a page, and brainstorm things that this audience may want to read about. You may do a Google search for this audience to get started.
I’ve done an example for reaching a young adult audience (click the image for a larger view), brainstorming topics such as relationships, identity, bullying, self-esteem, trends, gaming etc. Once the brainstorm of ideas is complete, go through the topics and write down ways that you can explore these topics. For example, self-esteem articles could include pieces about my own journey, reasons for low self-esteem, strategies to protect yourself, and how to build confidence.
Secondly, comment on other blogs. Many resources I have read suggest this, and I totally agree. Even if you don’t get a reply from the blog author, it puts your name out there in the blogosphere, and automatically creates a link to your site. In addition, if you find yourself writing a long comment, expand on it to create new content for your blog (make sure you link back to the post that inspired you). I’ve got a goal to properly read and comment on at least two blogs per day, which in the last week I haven’t met due to internet issues, but I find it super beneficial.
Finally, build your connections. Use social media for its purpose – be SOCIAL. Chat with people, read their work, share their work or leave a positive comment (or constructive criticism if it’s asked for) and people will promote your work (more importantly, you’ll make some great online friends, which is important in the lonely world of writing).