The web space is filled with millions of blogs and sometimes it’s hard to keep up with your favourite ones. If you’re like me, you’re probably signed up to loads of fashion, beauty, entrepreneurship, lifestyle and personal blogs by online coaches. Sometimes, the information overload can be too much for the brain to process.
However, there are certain blogs that most of us can’t do without checking every day. Those are the blogs I call- High impact blogs because they directly answer some of your questions and feed your mood with the right ingredients.
For most creative bloggers (I assume you’re one) who blog about fashion, beauty, lifestyle and other design related fields, by now you should’ve noticed that some smart bloggers have changed their strategies and approach. They understand that blogging isn’t just about posting those nice outfits, but more about creating value for their readers and engaging with them.
If you’re wondering how to grow your blog or take your blog to the next level, then you’ll need to also upgrade your mind and inspiration. If you’ve been blogging since 2008 and you’re still relying on the strategies you used then without upgrading your knowledge to fit new technologies and techniques, then you’re selling yourself short.
In order to thrive in this new age of blogging, you must be able to add value and also become entrepreneurial even in the slightest way possible.
Here are 7 things your blog needs to succeed in 2016
- Add Value to Your Readers
I’m not just talking about taking nice pictures or writing. In order to thrive you must truly create value for your readers. What do your readers really need? What questions do they have? How can you solve their problems? Some of your readers are probably struggling to find their personal styles. Some might be struggling with low self-esteem. Some might be newbies in the blogging world and need your expertise.
Start by following these steps:
- First get to know your target audience, find out where they are hanging out, then figure out the type of questions they constantly ask.
- Make a list of the common questions your audience normally ask
- Create a profile of different personas of readers on your blog or target readers. Are they bloggers, entrepreneurs, fashionistas? Sometimes you might have a combination of various kinds of people reading your blog. It’s important to figure this out, so that you can create content or products for those different people.
- Create a list of your different skills, talents, gifts and experiences. This will help you figure out how your skills can help solve some of the problems your audience might have. For example, If you’re a certified personal finance coach who also has a fashion blog, you might need to start offering services that help fashion lovers to organize their finances and invest wisely.
- Create Valuable Content
Once you’re able to figure out your target audience and some of their frequently asked questions, then you’ll be able to provide helpful and valuable content to your readers. Create content with your readers in mind. It’s all about being of service and making someone’s life easier.
Take a step further, use an excel spreadsheet to write and monitor some of the questions asked by your readers. Sometimes, it pays to also listen to the readers of other bloggers in your niche. Once you have all these valuable information from your ideal readers, you’ll be able to create a pool of content topics and resources that directly solve some of their problems.
Once you have all this concrete information in your arsenal, you’re ready to position yourself as a solution provider. Your solutions can come in different forms of content including blog post, services, products and even live events.
Put yourself in the shoes of your readers and start thinking more about solving their problems instead of just making your blog a journal about yourself alone.
- Offer an Opt-In Freebie or Lead Magnet
What’s the first welcome message people get when they visit your blog? Wait! I’m not talking about just your regular mailchimp newsletter that says- Sign up to get daily news from XYZ blog; that’s so old school.
Opt-in freebies or lead magnets are gifts you offer your readers for visiting your blog. It shows your readers that you care about them and also tells them more about what your blog offers.
Your lead magnet can be anything from an e-book, a short email course, a checklist or a free library resource like what we have here at STYLVO.
Think about it. Even some of your favourite online shopping websites offer discounts. We see messages like- Get 30% on your first order when you sign up to our newsletter. Boom!
With this lead magnet, they are giving you a concrete reason to signup to their newsletter and also solving your problem in the process. That’s a bait in some way. Don’t ignore this! It’s time to create a freebie for your readers.
- Engage with Your Audience on Periscope
Periscope is the new crack! With video platforms like periscope, your readers are able to connect with you in real time. Bloggers like Mattie James of Mattieologie can testify of the impact periscope has had on her blog over the past months. She’s able to engage with her audience, provide some helpful tips and also get to know some of them beyond just the blog comments.
I encourage you to hop on periscope and start connecting with your audience. Plan out a good strategy to attract them. Send out emails and tell your readers the exact time you’ll be going live on Periscope and also ask them some of the questions they’ll like you to answer. Prepare some helpful tips and have a topic for your periscope hangouts.
- Offer Valuable Products & Services
You know those feedbacks, questions and comments where your readers pour out their worries? Now is your opportunity to create solutions that solve their problems. If you’re good at social media marketing, gather those skills, tips and resources you’ve had over the years and package them into a sellable product.
Don’t shy away from this. Some of your skills can be packaged into services- web design, blogging consultation, PR expert, business strategy and more. Think deep about some of the ways you can provide valuable mouth watery service and products. Start with an idea and then do extensive research on how to create products and market them to your readers.
- Have a Call-To-Action
You’ve spend an average of two hours (or more) to write a valuable top-notch article for your blog, you still receive low traffic. But what happens after this?
What else will your readers go away with? What’s the next actionable step(s) they should take to help solve their problems better? Or what exactly do you want your readers to do next?
Think about the next step that comes after writing your blog posts and create a call-to-action that prompts your readers to take some kind of action.
How can you get your audience to leave comments on your blog, share your post or download a freebie attached to the post? If you need them to do any of these, it’s important to communicate this point in your post. Don’t just leave it bare and assume they’ll know what to do.
Sometimes, you might offer them something that will make them buy a product or service for a deeper understanding of
If it’s a blog post: Do you want them to leave a comment, share your post, or download a piece of content? If so, tell them!
If it’s a newsletter: What do you want them to do next? Head over to your blog to read and comment? Reply?
If it’s your freebie: Do you want them to purchase your ebook? Book a strategy call with you? Share it with their fans?
You have to make it super duper clear what you want the next step to be. Provide a Call-To-Action in the form of a button, bolded sentence, or other format so that it’s clear!
- Collaborate with High Impact Bloggers
Blogging is not a solo affair. In fact, most successful people in different industries understand that they cannot thrive solely by themselves. As a blogger or creative entrepreneur, you need to step out of your comfort zone and network with other bloggers.
If you’re creating valuable content with consistency, you’ll attract the right readers and other creatives in your niche will notice.
Partnerships and collaborations help you network with more people in your niche, learn from them and also connect with their audience. Think about how you can add value to their audience and plan a concrete strategy that will benefit both parties.
- Be of service in Facebook groups and programs
Tell me you’re part of a facebook group or other mastermind platforms? If not, you should join one.
There are so many facebook groups with bloggers and fellow entrepreneurs where they support each other towards their various goals. People are always looking for information. In fact, so many online entrepreneurs have struggles and frustrations that you might just be able to help with.
Join some valuable facebook groups and think about how you can add value. Provide helpful tips and resources that could help someone else breathe easier. Such groups are also great platforms to know the latest in your industry, while also promoting some of your blog posts and services.
- Engage with your audience through other platforms (Webinars, Twitter Chats, Etc)
Instagram is amazing, however it doesn’t end there. In order to create a sustainable blog or platform where people trust you enough to buy from you, you need to engage with them. When you create constant communication with your audience, you remove barriers and create a welcoming atmosphere for them to trust you with their problems.
From webinars, twitter chats, podcasts, teleseminars and live events, you can diversify your communication avenues and engage with your audience better.
There you go! I hope you consider doing these on your blog if you haven’t started already.
Do any of these tips resonate with you? What ways have you upgraded your blog lately?
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