Monday, January 4, 2010

ASK *ELLA* - Blogging tips and tricks

A while back I was contacted by a reader who was starting her own blog and wanted some tips. So while I still feel like a novice 99.9% of the time, even though I have been blogging just shy of a year, I sent her the following tips:

DEDICATION – is very important. Blogging is going to take a lot of your time and you have to be dedicated and willing to work hard.

THEME – choosing the right "theme" for your blog is also important. What are you passionate about what do you want to writing about? What do you want to learn about. Blogging is as much about writing about what you know as it is writing about what you learn, and at times even more so. Tweak your appearance till you have created the blog you want and look at other blogs for resources on creating your ideal appearance.

NETWORKING – is an integral part of blogging. Your followers, readers and fellow bloggers are your network and are for the most part a great source of support. Interact with readers who leave comments, follow other bloggers on twitter and leave them messages. Create friendships. Take part in blogs and any series that fellow bloggers run such as the Glamourous Grad Student's City Chic. Leave comments on other blogs as well which can often be a great source of traffic to your blog. Ask your favourite blogs to do link swaps, you add their blog to your links list and they add yours.

INSPIRATION – is something you need a constant source of. Always look for it no matter where you are. I keep a note book and am always writing down topics words and ideas. Also use your favourite blogs as sources for ideas. DO NOT COPY THEM, but be inspired by them.

RESEARCH & READING – is the backbone of a good article, especially if it is something that you are not too knowledgeable about yourself. Take time to research topics you love and again you will find inspiration for new articles. Set aside time to search the web for elements for your blog. Use sites like we heart it and flickr for pictures to add colour.

ORGANISATION – is important. You need to organise your ideas decide when you are going to post your articles. What you are going to post about and how often. This is especially necessary when you get particularly busy with classes or work. Make use of the scheduling feature and pre-type a week's worth of posts that will automatically be published on specific dates.

RESOURCES – Make use of social networking like twitter and facebook. Some interesting twitter applications to try out are tweetmeme (allows readers to retweet your articles) and twitterfeed (automatically tweets your latest article for you). Use polyvore or Looklet for outfit compilations. Widgetbox is also a handy tool for creating headers and buttons. For advertising look into Affiliate Programmes or something like Project Wonderful. Problogger is also an amazingly helpful site as is the series that Megan did over on Charade about starting your own blog. Her resources post is incredibly helpful. Lastly for a bit of free advertising try out the Indie Style Media Ad Exchange where your ad is shown on other sites who are signed up and their ad shows on yours.

What do you consider important aspects for blogging? What are your blogging tips and tricks?


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