My audience has grown a lot in the past two or so years. I attribute the growth at The Feisty House to a couple things: consistent branding and posting, staying true to my unique voice, and doing a better job of sharing my posts on social media. But hands-down, what’s made the biggest difference in the size of my readership has been my ability to create better blog content.
As my content has improved, I’ve seen a huge increase in the number of individual people who are visiting the blog each month (in your statistics, these are your monthly unique visitors) and my page views have gone up a lot too. This increase in readership has led to some great opportunities in the past two years, including working with brands like Ford, Maybelline, Keurig, Simple Skincare, Jawbone and HP (and yesterday’s post with Barilla).
A lot of you may be wanting to take your blogs “to the next level” and work with brands, or turn your blog into a business of your own. Or maybe you’re a newbie and not sure how to start creating strong content. So I reviewed what I’ve done over the past two years and today I’m sharing ten ways that you can create better blog content and have a more successful blog.
10 Ways to Create Better Blog Content and
Have a More Successful Blog
Write from your passion place //
Writing about things I’m both passionate and knowledgeable about has made all the difference in my content over the past couple years. Those of you who have been reading The Feisty House since the beginning remember that this space started as a natural hair and personal style blog. That was it! I tried not to stray away from that model even though I was passionate about other things, like business and beauty and learning how to live a fulfilling life. When I incorporated these topics into the blog in 2012, my content became more meaningful because I was writing about things I was really interested in. That passion started attracting new readers, and those readers (you!) have kept coming back to the blog. If you want better content that draws people in, find your passions and write about them!
Write something you’d be interested in reading //
If you’re not interested in your content, you can’t expect other people to spend any time reading your blog either. Better blog content is content that both you and your readers find interesting. If you’re interested in the topic you’re writing about, you’re going to write better posts, which is going to lead to more people reading your blog.
Carefully outline each post //
Strong blog content is well-developed, intentional and easy to understand. In a perfect world, all of our content would be like this, but I know sometimes we rush our posts when we’re trying to meet our internal deadlines (more on that later). Or as we write from our passion place, we end up with a stream of consciousness that doesn’t have a real beginning, middle and end. But if you spend some time outlining your post, working out its purpose and what you hope your readers will gain from reading it, you can be sure that your post will get your point across without leaving out anything important (or leaving your readers confused). The posts I outline are consistently the ones that get the most comments and are shared most often on social media (which leads to more readers!) Think about the tone of your blog post (stronger content is usually written in a friendly, conversational tone). Think about the benefits of your post: what problem are you trying to solve for your readers? What should they take away from your post? Figure all of that out before you start writing.
Write longer posts //
You want your blog content to be clear and concise, so don’t say in four words what you could say in one. However, longer posts can be more engaging and provide more value for your audience. You can be more introspective and dig deeper into a subject when you give yourself more words to work with. If you’re not sure how long your post should be, test a few posts of different lengths and see how they perform. Then write posts of the length that your audience preferred.
Proofread, proofread, proofread //
Once you’ve written your blog post and you’re ready to hit “publish,” step back from it for a while. Then read it again with fresh eyes. This will make it easier to spot any misspellings or incorrect punctuation. These mistakes are distracting to your readers and can make your blog feel less than polished. Proofreading is especially important if you want to work with larger brands. Brands want to work with bloggers who are professional and take their blogs seriously, and you won’t give off that impression if your blog posts are full of typos. If you’re not particularly good at grammar, here’s my suggestion: copy and paste the text from your blog post into Microsoft Word and run a spelling/grammar check before you publish your posts.
Don’t rush it //
We all have an internal deadline for when we want to get a post out into the world, but don’t rush the process of creating a blog post. If you’re coming up on your posting deadline, but your content isn’t as strong as it could be, work on it a bit more before you share it with your readers. It’s better to have really strong blog content than it is to post mediocre content every day at a specific time. I waited months before publishing my post on copying in blogging, and the positive response from all of you was worth it. It’s now one of the most popular posts on The Feisty House! Take your time to create quality content and I promise you’ll reap the benefits.
Don’t be afraid to think outside the box //
We know that it’s hard to do something totally new in blogging, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get your creative juices flowing and try. Talk about something you haven’t spoken about before, or address an old topic with a new point of view. To get your mind working, take one of your old blog posts and update it with new information or address the topic from a different angle than you did originally. Updating an old story in a fresh new way will bring new life to your post and that new perspective will help your content stand out in a sea of “sameness.”
Get creative with your images //
I’ve seen my blog traffic really take off twice over the past two or so years. The first time was when I started using high-quality photos (taken with my DSLR). The second time was after I learned Photoshop and started creating unique design elements for my photos. This isn’t surprising because after all, we’re visual creatures! People like beautiful photos (what do you think makes Pinterest and Instagram so addictive?) Taking the time to invest in things like your blog photography and a sleek, appealing blog design will attract new readers and new sponsors. In addition to having their products put in front of an engaged audience, brands partner with me because they know that my high-quality photos and creative staging will feature their products in a beautiful way.
Maintain a consistent brand and voice //
Consistency is key. You have to remain true to your brand and your unique voice if you want to have a successful blog. Maintaining a consistent brand and voice keeps your ideal reader coming back; she knows when she comes to your blog, you’ll always be speaking directly to her!
Write for your readers, not for page views //
If you want to create better blog content, you should create something that’s helpful to your readers and connects with them in a meaningful way. You should aim to improve their lives! This should be your focus when you write, not on gaining page views. The meaningful your content, the stronger it will be.
I hope this post gave you a few ideas of how to create better blog content and have a more successful blog. Over the next few weeks, I want to take a deeper dive into what it means to be a “successful” blogger. To begin with, in my opinion, your blog should always be your happy place. You should “blog happy” and feel a sense of purpose and pride and joy when you create content for your blog.
Photo source: Gary Pepper Girl