In a recent post on Smart Boy Designs entitled The 7 Deadly Sins of Blogging, Christian Hollingsworth outlines the most common lethal peccadillos committed by bloggers who end up eviscerating their own blogs through their failure to grasp the severity of their errors. His primary pointers should serve as a guide for any enterprising blogger who is committed to achieving the greatest possible effectiveness while attracting an ever-burgeoning audience.
Be the U in Unique
When competing with literally millions of other bloggers for your readership’s eyeballs, it is imperative to establish and maintain a sense of idiomatic distinctiveness. You must realize that there are countless other places where your audience can read up on the latest advancements in quantum computing decoherence so in order to keep them loyal you have to continually display a thorough dedication to making your blog be the most outstanding one of them all. Note that outstanding in this context does not necessarily translate into having the most detailed or even the most up to the second information, but to present the facts in a manner that stands out from the crowd in a characteristic approach which both educates and entertains the reader.
Reply to both congratulators & crackbrains
Whether your comments run the gamut from “you are my favorite blogger and I religiously re-tweet every word you write” to the lunatically nihilist such as “I have photographic proof that you are single-handedly responsible for the extinction of the Pyrenean Ibex” each individual piece of feedback requires a full and direct proportionally relevant reply. The necessity to corroborate your personal connection to your reader is of the utmost importance, and failure to do so will alienate your reader and create a perception that you are an aloof elitist.
Q B4 Q
Quality Before Quantity is a tenet which many bloggers ignore at their peril. Unless you’re writing on a piecemeal per word compensation structure, you must resist the bloggers’ innate drive to bury your readership under an avalanche of verbosity when you could have captured their minds, loyalty, and attention through short, punchy, direct blogs. The typical reader of the 500 page tome on Single-Photon Emission Computed Tomography is not your average blog reader and vice versa. If you’re writing an encyclopedia on neuroengineering then you are encouraged to get into the finer details of Sestamibi parathyroid scans, but if you’re a blogger you need to master the art of explaining the entire process in a couple of sentences and get to your point!
Abandon the hermitage
Bloggers by nature are fundamentally antisocial beasts, otherwise they would not have chosen a career where they spend the majority of their working hours staring at a thin film transistor liquid crystal display. However, the perhaps-preferred social isolation has to be disregarded when it comes to online socialization which is the lifeblood of supporting your blog and expanding its reach. When you become an active participant in relevant online communities, you become an integral sharer of content (both yours and others’) as well as sowing ample search engine bot seeds which will bear fruit in an ever-growing collection of high quality inbound linkage to your blog.
Start writing, stop selling
As a blogger you have to make a firm determination and stick to it: Are you writing a blog that is intended for the altruistic edification of the reader or are you a huckster pitching your snake oil to the assembled multitudes in order to score a quick buck? If you are a blogger rather than a hustler, then you need to analyze each and every blog post to ensure that you’re not falling into the overly intrusive hawking of your wares. Is that sentence truly improved by encouraging the reader to download your eBook for $24.95 or subscribing to your insider’s podcast at $9.95 per month? If not then lose the costermongering and get back to the essential blogging prerequisite of vividly and lucidly connecting with your audience.
Blogging is not just a casual chore you take on when you don’t have anything better to do, but a true career vocation. Strive to be a great blogger!