So I stumbled across an article in my Twitter feed about blogging. WordPress shared it, I think. I can’t remember. Anyway, the point is that the article looked interesting, and useful even. Here’s a link to all the posts in Blogging 201.
So, I’ve taken a leaf out of Catherine Mede‘s book (which I seem to be doing a lot. That lady has fantastic ideas!) and I’m going to blog about some of the changes they suggest, and how I apply them (or why I choose not to apply them). They’re up to Day Fourteen already, so each blog post will cover a few days’ worth of tasks.
Day One: Set three goals
The first day asks us to set a vision for our blog, by asking ‘Why do you blog?‘ and ‘If your blog exceeded your wildest dreams, what would that look like?’
One reason I blog is for the same reason I write: to process information, ideas, and thoughts. It’s great to get your support and input on things I am dealing with, and to share my successes with you. Another reason is to gain an audience (or build a platform) for selling in the online environment, and, of course, to publish my ideas and share my thoughts with the world. I am, after all, a writer.
In terms of my ‘ideal blog’, I’m actually happy with what I have now. Some things would be nice to improve on – like perhaps a bit more traffic and engagement – but which blogger wouldn’t say that? I’d also like to have more ideas and discussion around creativity and learning, but overall, I’m happy with where my blog is, and the direction it is going.
We’re then to take our ideas and build 3 specific goals, like traffic, engagement, number of articles posted, a weekly feature, guest posts, or social followers. Here are my three goals:
- Write at least 5 posts next month about visual art and / or learning.
- Encourage comments on every post.
- Engage with others’ blogs every week, including non-writers.
Day Two: Audit your brand
I’m not doing a lot for this one, as I did it recently when I developed a logo and changed the visual design of my blog. I wrote about it after the change, in a post titled ‘A New Phase‘.
Essentially, it’s about making sure that our online presence, so our blog, social media accounts etc., are all aligned with each other, and with the image we want to put forth to the world.
My aim has become clearer in this sense – I’m just being me. I’m putting myself and my ideas out there, and so my blog needs to reflect a growing, learning human being, who’s just a little bit arty. I think it does that.
Day Three: You’ve got the look
Obviously, this is about the aesthetics of our blogs. It suggests we try new themes, play with font and colour, and see what fits our blog best. Again, this is something I do a lot, and I’m now happy with my visual design.
Day Four: Get read all over
Today is about making sure our blog is responsive to different devices. WordPress is great like this – there are so many responsive layout themes available (both free and paid). Having said that, I do personally check how well a theme’s responsiveness is by looking at my site on the computer, on my tablet and on my phone. Just to make sure!
This is especially important as more people are using their phones and tablets to read blogs. I personally tend to read blogs on my phone more than anything at the moment. It’s some light reading and reflection material when I have a small amount of time free, and my phone is usually with me.
If you’re a blogger, I do recommend having a look at Blogging 201 – even if you aren’t going to do all of them, there are some fantastic ideas.
And, just so I’m not on my lonesome – what’s 1 (or 3!) goals that you have for your blog? Have a think about it and leave a comment below x