Blogging is a fantastic thing. It can give you an outlet for your thoughts and feelings, which many people find cathartic. It can be a chance to catalog your life and your journey, like an online photo journal. It’s a chance to learn new skills like web design and social media management as well as an opportunity to brush up on your old skills like writing and photography. It can be a way to meet new people and even build new friendships. It can give you a platform to teach and to educate. You might make lifelong friends through your blog, as well as gain excellent opportunities. Your blog can be anything from a hobby to a full-time career which earns a full-time income.
But, it’s hard work. The market is very over saturated, and new blogs start every day. If you want yours to stand out and get noticed you can’t stand still. The blogging world changes as it develops and it can be all too easy, even for established and well-known blogs to get left behind and lost in the crowd. Fortunately, this is the perfect time of year to look back at how you’ve been doing so far and to set yourself goals and resolutions for the coming year.
If you made a list of aims and goals at the start of 2018, this is the time to look back over them. Did you meet them? Did you stick to them? Did any of them get forgotten at the start of the year? Were there any complete failures?
Take a look at where you are now, and ask yourself if you’d have been happy with this outcome at the beginning of the year. Then, take a more in-depth look at what went well and what went poorly. Be honest with yourself and ask what you’d have done differently. Assessing the previous year is the best way to start looking forward to the next.
Now, let’s set some goals for the coming year. Having a big target for the whole year, or even longer, is fantastic. It gives you something to aim for, and something to keep you going as the year goes on. It also gives you something to pull you back later on if you feel yourself going off the rails slightly. Your big goals could be anything from a total number of followers or subscribers, a financial target, or getting to the point where you can quit your job and blog full-time.
But, these big goals can be overwhelming. Smaller goals that will help you to hit the big ones can be easier to manage, and they give you a sense of achievement when you complete them. Look at three months at a time. What do you want to focus on in the next three months and how will this push you towards that big goal? This could be things like filming videos to embed in old posts, building a social media profile up or making more of your Pinterest account.
Do More with Your Emails
If you’ve been blogging for a while, you probably have subscribers, and you may use an email provider to send them a weekly or monthly newsletter. But, that’s often it. Not many of us make the most out of our email campaigns.
If people have subscribed to your site, they want more than a notification when you post. They want more of you and what you’ve got to offer. Start sending proper newsletters with real updates, instead of just an RSS feed. Send them exclusive content, freebies and regular communications. Reward their loyalty, and you’ll keep it.
Brush Up Your SEO
SEO is essential if you want to grow without having to chase new readers on social media continually. Good SEO means that readers will keep coming to a post even if you haven’t touched it for a long time. But, many of us are guilty of writing a post and forgetting it. SEO changes and evolves and our old posts don’t match up.
Read up on optimization tactics to avoid and new SEO strategies. Go back over your old posts and make sure they are still good enough. Make changes if you need to.
Be More Consistent
Consistency is key to growth if you want your blog to be taken seriously. You can’t just post now and then and then update your social media accounts when you remember. Getting into a routine of posting on social media at least once a day, and try to blog at least once a week.