10 steps to blogging heaven
1. Do one thing well
Here's my blog post which expands further on the hedgehog concept.
2.Know your audience
Here's my blog post which shows you how to research your audience.
3. Get popular
Look at the most popular posts on digg.com or Reddit. Try to work out why they are popular. Do they have any of the following qualities:
- Lists eg 7 weird ways to show your true love on Valentine's Day
- Cool facts
- How to guides
- Asking your readers questions
- New ways to see things eg infographics
Content curation ie posting about other people's posts (or even using other people's content) is perfectly valid. But beware of copyright. Basically, the rule is - if you are unsure if you have permission, you probably don't.
But public domain and creative commons content is often free to use on your blog. For example, see Flickr's creative commons pool of images.
4. Make money from many sources
If you are looking to make money from your blogging, then unless you work on an organisation's blog, you will likely need to diversify the ways you can make money from it. This is because each is likely to only contribute a small amount to your overall income. Also by using a variety of sources, you are more likely to discover what works for you.
3 main ways:
- Sell your own product eg T-shirts, CDs, books, even subscriptions to your blog.
- Sell advertising space
- Be an affiliate
Sources of affiliate and advertising income include:
- Amazon (and Amazon.com - don't forget your visitors might come from other countries)
- Google Adsense (easy way to integrate advertising on your site)
- Create a facebook page for your blog (or topic your blog is about), a twitter account, squidoo page, tumblr andother social media profiles. Tools like Hootsuite, Feedburner and ping.fm mean you can post once and have them all update.
- Bookmark your blog posts (to help them be found in search engines) using socialmonkee.com.
- Take part in relevant forums - but be careful not to spam.
6. Build your email list
Feedburner has a facility to let people subscribe to your blog by email but it's a bit limited. You might also check out Aweber.com. Remember - provide a reason for people to subscribe to your list (it could be the possibility of winning a competition prize or to get a free guide).
7. Guest post
Guest posting on other people's blogs is a great way to increase exposure to you and your blog.
Do a search for your topic and "guest post" to find blogs that may take your content.
If your blog becomes popular - you may even find that others want to guest post on yours. This is a great way of giving yourself a break from posting as well as building your blog as being influential in the area.
8. Create an ebook
Once you have a few hundred blog posts, it's time to consider if you could turn them into an ebook. This has several advantages:
- A new source of income
- Being an author builds your credibility as an expert in the area.
- You can mention your blog within it
Apple, Amazon and other stores will let you list ebooks you create:
Smartpassiveincome.com has a good free guide to creating an ebook (not that the blog owner uses the gift of the guide as a means to get you on his email list).
Bloggers who became authors include The Simple Dollar, Random Acts of Reality...
J.A. Konrath is an author who regularly posts on how to make a success of publishing your own books.
9. Market it (the ebook)
Remember that email list of people interested in what you do? Your twitter, facebook and other social media presences? These are all excellent places to tell people about your ebook and other products.
Be kind to one person a day and in 3 years you'll have 1000 true fans.
10. Speak out.
Examples of bloggers who now do speaking gigs.