There’s no hard and fast rule when it comes to blogging. The blogging market is effectively saturated due to today’s high number of internet users and the proliferation of free, easy-to-use blogging software.
There is however a huge discrepancy between the number of bloggers and the number of bloggers who actually see a return on their time investment. However, some bloggers do manage to make a living from running a successful blog or blogs.
The secret to how they do this is that there is no big secret. Articles promising to show you how to gain a huge audience and earn income from blogging are largely useless; they promise quick fixes, as opposed to offering genuine advice on how to become an influential blogger.
The Importance of Influence for Gaining an Audience
Being online these days is about navigating complex channels of both organic and paid-for content. Experienced online consumers are becoming wise to the ways of digital marketing.
Studies have shown that, despite the proliferation of advertisements and savvy marketing, online consumers are still more likely to trust the influence of a friend when it comes to actually making a purchase. Many online consumers will actively seek out influential, personable advice, from which they can get new and advice.
This is where a good SEO bloggers come in. Influence both affects and can be measured by audience figures.
The more of an audience you have, the more influential you may consider yourself to be. And the more influential you are, the more your readership will grow via organic sharing between social media users.
How to Create a Blog and Grow in Influence
Creating a blog involves certain technical aspects, such as its design. It also means optimising your blog so it can be easily crawled by search engines.
SEO means making sure your blog is both visible and trustworthy. Pay close attention to the way in which your blog is structured, optimise meta tags, URLs and media descriptions to be keyword rich, and steer clear of flash, which will not be included in search data.
A strong social media presence will ensure that your blog, once it is built and search engine optimised, can be talked about by your audience. Conversations are the building blocks of influence; they both define and encourage it.
Promoting your blog in the online social sphere will not be quick, but it can be easy providing you have implemented the necessary functions – such as one-click sharing – to make sharing easy.
Twitter, Google+ and Facebook are the staples in the world of social media. They help spread the word, make you new contacts and gain readership. There are other sites where you can also engage your audience.
If your blog is visual then check out Pinterest or Flickr. If you have a tech or gaming blog then consider making review or “let’s play” videos on YouTube or live stream gameplay on twitch.tv Indeed, if your YouTube channel becomes popular then you may earn enough revenue to become a full-time video maker.
Many cross-platform promotional tools exist. Have you tweeted something? There is a tool to cross post your tweet to Facebook.
Uploaded a new YouTube video? Make sure you have enabled the auto tweet feature. Be careful not to overdo it though; nobody wants to see the same content on every social media site where you have a presence.
All social platforms can form the basis for reader engagement. Readers will feel valued if you respond to their comments. Opening up a dialogue and creating a forum for discussion will keep visitors coming back for more.
Responding to comments may be time-consuming, but at least initially, spending the time to drive discussion will pay off in the long-term. Just be sure to keep an eye out for spam and trolls; nobody wants to see a flame war.
The most important part of attracting attention to your blog is to produce great content. The most successful bloggers are those who have found a niche.
If you do your research well, and are able to define where best your blog might be able to carve out its own specialist nice, you will find your audience comes quickly.
Writing for an over-saturated market will result in lower audience figures unless you can find something really special to write about, which will entice your audience in.
Kira writes for Ingenuity Digital, an international SEO company based in the UK.