Everyday Blogging Mistakes to Avoid
When it comes to blogging, mistakes happen. The best thing to remember is that there are many different common blogging mistakes, and while we all want to avoid doing anything wrong in our writing, the important thing to remember is that we all learn from our mistakes.
Let’s talk about different strategies on how to avoid blogging mistakes in the future.
Top Blogging Mistakes
1. Not understanding who you are writing for.
Your arget audience is the most important thing to know about your blog. If you don’t know your audience, you will not have a successful following. Without a successful following, any monetary gain you hope to earn from you blogging will not exist.
But how to do you figure out whom your target audience actually is?
The best way is to ask questions of those that are reading your blog. Use a survey system (there are several free online tools that you can utilize) and set up a few different questions asking your audience what they expect from your blog, and what they would like to see in terms of topics.
2. Not collecting reader’s information from the beginning of your blog.
One of the biggest mistakes people make with blogging is not collecting email addresses from readers from the start. With these email addresses, you have a way to consistently stay in contact with your readers and alert them to any changes in the blog, ask for opinions that can help improve website traffic, and much more.
The most important thing to keep in mind when maintaining an email list of site users is to not bombard them with useless information. Unwarranted emails that hold no pertinent information are another common blogging mistakes that people make regularly.
Email marketing is extremely important, but you must do it correctly to avoid losing subscribers, and subsequently, visitors to your blog. Here are a few different tips to keep visitors to your website happy and content.
- Offer freebies. Everyone, and I do mean EVERYONE, loves a free giveaway. The giveaways don’t have to be anything extravagant. In fact, they should be a product you are selling, or an offering that you can provide to your readers. Provide them a product that they will enjoy, and one that will keep them coming back for more.
- Provide a clear call to actions. When you explain to a reader why they should provide you with their email address, such as “don’t miss out on vital information” or “stay connected to all of our upcoming blog posts!”; readers are more likely to provide you with their contact information, and not be discouraged when they receive regular emails from you… simply because they signed up for the information!
3. Not providing content that includes media aside from simply just text.
One of the most common blogging mistakes is having a blog with posts that are strictly text based without any additional type of media.
Readers expect more than just text on a page. You want to break up your posts with images, videos, or even audio clips… something that gives readers a way to identify with you and what you represent. Using images or memes are a great way to provide insight into your personality, which gives readers a chance to feel connected, and thus, more likely to return and continue visiting your blog regularly.
4. You don’t promote your blog enough.
Another mistake for those just starting out in the blogosphere is the lack of self-promotion. While your content is the key to your blog, you have to tell your readers when and why they should read a specific post. Just because the content is there, doesn’t mean that readers will find you on their own. Here are a few ways to avoid this common mistake.
- Email your subscribers. Remember when we talked about keeping in touch with your readers regarding what was going on in the world of your blog? If you have an epic post that you want to gain followers, be sure to email your mailing list with teasers days, and maybe weeks, before the post is published.
- Ask for cross promotion. You may have authors of other blogs that regularly read your posts. If this is the case, contact these individuals and ask them if they would consider providing a link back to your specific blog post that you wish to promote. This linking will not only help you gain followers, but it will provide you with a potential SEO boost as well.
- Share on social media. Promote, promote, promote. We live in a social world, and this does not end with a blog. Ensure that you have a presence on Instagram, Google+, Pinterest, twitter, Facebook, etc. and use them! Promote your blog on all of these channels, and use the extra exposure to show people about you – the author – and why you are an expert in the field you have chosen to write about.
- Consider paid advertising. While paying for social media advertising can seem a little daunting and intimidating, it is actually pretty straight forward, and will provide, in some cases, fast results. Consider using Facebook Ads as a jumping point. Facebook allows you to set your budgeted dollar amount, and will not charge for overages. You can select who you want to target with your ad (which is where knowing the target demographic that reads your blog can come in extremely handy!), the location, and much more. And the best part is it only takes a few mouse clicks to complete a fully paid campaign.
5. Bombarding your readers with popup ads and banners.
As people that use the internet each and every day, I think we can all agree that the excessive use of banner ads and pop-ups are more annoying than they are helpful. With all of the ads that I see on a regular basis, I can probably count on my fingers the number of times I have actually clicked on one for more information.
While pop-ups can work under certain circumstances, you must decide how to strategically use them in order to gain followers.
- Use popups to gain email subscribers. A single pop-up that appears on your home page, or when a reader navigates to page two of your blog, is a great way to show readers that you want them to return. As we talked about above, make sure that you provide readers with a call to action to get them to sign up. Provide a download, an entry to a monthly give away, or even the promise that, if signed up, they will be exposed to subscriber-only content… anything to get that email address!
6. Not asking for help.
Another rookie mistake when it comes to blogging. As much as you want to do everything yourself, chances are that you can’t. You will not have the manpower to succeed at writing, promoting, educating, marketing, etc… all of the things that go into making a blog successful. You will need help, and there are resources out there that can provide you with the people (and tools) that you will require to run your blog. Remember, a blog isn’t just a website, it is a business that can generate a vast amount of income if you treat it as such.
- Use freelance resources. Check out different websites frequented by freelancers. This can include graphic designers, writers, social media experts, and more. There are several great sites that provide a platform for freelancers to showcase their talent and for blog runners to hire them for a nominal fee.
7. Keeping your blog stagnant after launch.
Your blog is a living, breathing thing, and needs to be treated as such. People tend to lose interest when a blog has not been updated since inception, and it’s obvious to readers when a blog runner doesn’t seem to care about keeping the blog maintained and modern. This can promote to readers that, since you don’t care about the exterior and design of your blog, you must not care about the content or readers that decide to visit it. This can also lead to the belief that your content is not relevant, which is the last thing a blog owner wants.
You must always remain relevant in the market, and keep up your “expert” level of knowledge. Without this, you become just another blog on the internet with no klout.
8. Not creating a plan to make money on your blog.
Most people get into blogging for the reason of making money. And there is a lot of money to be made in blogging, as long as you have a plan and stick to it! Before you even write your first blog post, decide how you want to make money off of your blog.
You must create goals for you to hit, milestones, and different achievements that are measurable to you from a monetary perspective. Here are a few different ways to drive income from your blog:
- Provide your expertise on a specific topic to your readers. Charge a fee for course books, public or private coaching sessions, and even group sessions if your product allows such a thing.
- Sell informational products. This includes how to guides, online courses, e-books… it’s basically taking what you are already writing on your blog and putting into a more concise format with a specific topic.
- Sell space on your blog. Just as you are trying to promote your blog to gain more followers, others are attempting to do the same thing. Your blog may be the prime real estate for someone, and they will be more than willing to pay for a banner ad on your site.
- Use an affiliate program. Provide links to other blogs and their products, and if a reader decides to click on, and purchase, a product from this link, you get a cut. This is one of the easiest ways to earn money with your blog.
- Ask for donations. If your readers utilize your expertise on a daily basis, providing a small donation won’t seem too far out of the question for them. If they truly see you as an expert, and want to continue seeing your content, they’ll be happy to shell out a few dollars to help you keep your blog running.
9. Setting a publishing schedule that you cannot meet.
Overextending yourself can lead to a lull in posts. When you first start blogging, inspiration is at a peak. You have a billion ideas, and can post a blog post three to four times a day if you’d want to – however, this is NOT a realistic expectation to consider for the future.
Set a schedule for yourself, a realistic schedule, and follow it regularly. Your audience will love that you have a regular posting schedule and that they can come to depend on your content at a usual time and place… they will come to depend on new posts and even look forward to them.
10. Not actively engaging with your readers.
As a blogger, this is an IMPORTANT step. Be sure that you are answering each and every comment that is made on your blog and on ANY social media outlet. Yes, EACH AND EVERY SINGLE ONE.
The good, the bad, the ugly… it doesn’t matter, be present, and be ready to answer and speak for your product.
Responding to your users will encourage more and more comments. When readers see that you are engaging with your readers, they will want to give their opinion and know that it’s being heard.
Your responses show readers that you are an expert at what you’re writing about, and your blog should be considered an expert opinion.
These are just the start of common mistakes that people make when first starting a blog. With a solid plan in place, including marketing and social media, follow these strategies on how to avoid blogging mistakes, and you will be on your way to a successful online presence in no time!