Writers Write is a writing resource and we have created this series for blogging beginners: Social Media 101. In today’s post, we answer the question: What is a blog?
Sometimes the world of social media seems overwhelming. Over the next few weeks, I will post a series called Social Media 101. I will include the basics of what you need to know about blogs and social media platforms. I am going to start with blogging.
What is a blog?
A blog is a website in the form of a diary. Originally known as a weblog, a blog allows individuals or companies to write regularly about topics that are important to them and that offer value to their followers. A blog has up-to-date written content and includes photos, cartoons, videos, Infographics, and links. It also allows readers to comment on posts.
Why is it important?
In social media marketing, your blog is your base. Without it, you will have nothing new to offer your followers and they will lose interest in your static website. New, frequently updated content will bring your followers back again and again. You will have fresh ideas and expertise to share on your social media outlets and you will be visible.
How to set it up
There are many sites that offer free blogging. Tumblr or WordPress are good platforms for beginners. Both sites offer free templates and tutorials and you do not need any special skills. WPBeginner is a free WordPress resource site for beginners.
How to use your blog
- Find a group of talented content creators who will help you write for your website. Use people who work for you or who consult for your company. They understand your brand and they know what your followers want.
- You can decide on how many articles you want to feature daily or weekly. The more types of content you have, the more material you will have to share across your social media platforms.
- If you post regularly, you will increase your visibility in Google searches and you will promote your writers as experts in their fields.
- Keep an eye on the calendar for events that are important to your brand. At Writers Write, we take advantage of literary events such as National Novel Writing Month, Banned Books Week, International Literacy Day, the anniversaries of book releases, literary prizes, and famous authors’ birthdays. We also use celebrations as themes for posts, for example, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. We try to plan posts around these dates.
- Create a set of blogging guidelines for your contributors.
To succeed in blogging
- Blog about something that drives, motivates, inspires, and interests you. Do not do it if you are not passionate about your subject. Readers will see through the pretence. It is even better if you choose a topic where you can show your expertise.
- Be prepared to make a long-term commitment. If you do, you will be rewarded. Your creativity and passion will have an outlet and you will build a following in a community that supports your interests.
- Narrow your focus. ‘People follow a blog because they are interested in the subject matter. There are few people who can get away with blogging about everything and anything and still retain a following.’ Do not change your subject matter and still think you will keep the same followers.
Three blogging tips
- Your posts should be easy-to-read. Use a simple font. Do not have more than two or three colours on your page. Make sure you have lots of white space. Use bullet points. Avoid flashing images.
- Include images in every post. Create your own templates or use free photographs from a site such as Pixabay. You can also include media, such as videos and podcasts.
- Take it seriously. Treat blogging as a job, or a dedicated hobby, with deadlines and rules, and people will follow you.
Top Tip: If you want to learn how to blog, join us for The Complete Blogging Course online.
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