In 2015, I joined the 28 million Americans blogging on the internet. This was just 21 years after the first blog appeared in 1994. In 1999, there were 23 blogs on the internet. In 2020, there are 512 million, according to TechJury, which documents its statistics with sources.
We are past the golden era where a person can throw random words on a screen and expect that people (other than their mother) will read them. According to Hosting Tribunal, the blogging field is becoming increasingly saturated. “Ever since the first success stories, everyone is lining up for a piece of the pie.”
These statistics do not have to be depressing. For one thing, the audience who read blogs is huge. Secondly, these statistics can help bloggers by reminding them to focus on their own unique slice of the pie.
Here are a few things I’ve learned from blogging colleagues and from my own experience along the way.
Focus on your slice of the pie
Maybe you don’t know your niche at first and that’s okay. But continue to fine tune until you find it. Inexperienced writers often try to appeal to everyone. I write about anything for anyone! Humor, advice, inspiration for grandparents, businessmen, politicians, and pets. This might work if you are Queen Elizabeth. For the rest of us, narrow is better. Don’t try to feed everyone. Offer your own unique perspective from your sheep farm or small town bakery or bullet-ridden city street. This may change as your life changes.
Post helpful content for your audience
This advice comes from veteran blogger Gina. People are bombarded with information and articles. Most people don’t have time for random thoughts about life, other than maybe from their immediate family members.
Value every person who reads your blog
Stay engaged even if your audience grows slowly. Instead, engage the people who are reading your work.
Give yourself a deadline and post consistently
This is the one thing that has helped me more than anything else.
Focus posts on a single topic
This advice comes from blogging colleague Luci, and it fits with the advice to have a niche audience. Many different thoughts create confusion. Offer a slice of pie. Avoid crowding brussels sprouts, feta cheese and chicken noodle soup onto the same plate.
Choose a great title using words that are key to your topic
I have always liked mysterious titles. But the problem with those is that if someone is searching, they will be less likely to find your post if the title lacks clarity.
Post your blog with a photo
“People click on pictures,” veteran blogger Emily says. “I don’t know why.” But we all do it!
The world of blogging is more complicated than it was in 1999. But we know more now, and we have more tools now. For those willing to blog smart and to work hard, the age of blogging can still be golden.
For weekly blog posts, visit katrinahooverlee.com.