Blogging feels completely pointless if you don’t have a substantial audience reading your posts, and this is one of the most common complaints from new bloggers. Attracting an audience seems pretty much impossible, and after hounding friends on social media for a while many simply give up. In reality, there are several simple steps you can take to build an audience for your blog, and it generally revolves around getting involved with your niche and becoming a prominent member of the online community. The best thing is that you don’t need to spend anything to build your audience, it just takes time.
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Other People Are Reading
Produce good content that you would want to read. This is the most important tip for anybody starting blogging. You need to actually have something to say which is of value to readers. Whether it’s an expert take on your industry, news updates or informative content, there has to be a definitive reason someone interested in your niche would want to read. If you do this enough, you will build an audience.
Post consistently. It isn’t a case of posting three times every week – or even once a week – you just have to post regularly. Even if it’s only once a month you should make sure you do it every month. Aim to write one blog post a week, but if you can’t manage that you should post as regularly as possible. Keep the previous step in mind, because you need to ensure that the content you post makes people want to keep coming back.
Get involved with your niche. If you’re writing a music blog, you need to be an active member of communities in your chosen genre. Find a Facebook group for your niche and join in with the conversation and answer any questions that crop up. Don’t self-promote shamelessly, just talk to other people who share you interests and expand your social circle. This doesn’t always lead to new readers, but you set yourself up as an authority on the topic. If people follow you or become your friend, they’ll hear about your blog when you share new posts.
Comment on blogs relevant to your niche. Find some good blogs in your industry and make comments on interesting posts. Say something insightful, not just anything for the sake of commenting. You can even schedule time in for it, because if it’s done right you network with important people, who may then start reading your blog or even post a link to your page for their readers.
Use search engine optimisation (SEO) to draw people from search engines. Keywords are the core of SEO, which are basically the words you’d use to search for your post online. If the article is about things to look for in a motorcycle, for example, including the phrase “motorcycle buyer’s guide” a few times will make it more likely you’ll attract traffic from sites like Google or Bing. You still have to write good content to encourage people to come back, but keywords are useful for snaring new readers.
Post links to your blog through social media. Sign up to Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and any others that might be useful to you (for instance, if pictures are important you can use something like Instagram, Pinterest or Flickr). Post to share other people’s content or link to useful, relevant sites most of the time. Make sure self-promoting posts are in the minority.
Choose a good blog in your niche and come up with a topic for a guest post. Many bloggers take guest posts, and if you have a good idea you can even land a post on a blog that ordinarily wouldn’t. Ask to see if you can do a guest post every month if the first one goes well. This is arguably one of the best ways to drive traffic to your blog, and most blog owners will be interested in taking posts because it’s ultimately free content for them.
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