Blogs are all about communicating. Whether you have a passion you just love to share or you’re doing it for the sake of money. Communicating is all about community. If no-one’s there to listen to you, then you’re stuck talking to yourself. A community is what causes people to stick to your blog, instead of just bouncing off. There are a few ways of going getting a community growing around your blog. In this article, we’ll look at the easy three-strand model you need to start using.
Make it Captivating
Naturally, your blog needs to be just a notch above the rest. It needs to attract people, to have something that appeals to them. There are a lot of ways to captivate, so the more you use, the better. For one, great visual style is a must. From the page layout to the photography that populates your blog. Keep it classy and fitting your style. Amateur images make a blog look amateur. What you say is as important as how you look, too. Developing a voice is good, but what really matters is the value of the content itself. Does it inform and educate? Is it funny? Is it interesting? If your content isn’t worth reading, people won’t stick around to keep reading it.
Build Some Buzz
Not all community building for the blog is done on the blog. You need to manage a brand, which means maintaining it in more places. Blogs are online so obviously you need to get into social media. Twitter is one of the prominent places, enabling you to keep your finger right on the pulse of your followers. But Instagram is raising in popularity, making it more valuable to people who love photography (like me). A golden rule of building buzz is that demand leads to more popularity. So don’t be afraid to kickstart any online branding you have. You can do things like buy Instagram followers which improves your chances of attracting even more followers after that, but I always recommend building your following authentically. By using the right hashtags, and interacting – by commenting and liking photos – with accounts similar or in the same niche as yours, and cross-promote your accounts on your other social media and your blog as well.
It’s not enough to just set yourself up and expect people to come, either. You have to show that this isn’t a consumerist process. They’re becoming part of a community which means they have a voice. Thankfully, blogging is one of the easiest ways to interact with people. You should spend time every day checking for new comments and replying to them. You should reach out to other bloggers, sharing and collaborating on content. That means both of your reach audiences that you might not otherwise be able to reach. Give readers even more reason to get involved, too. Ask them a question at the end of your article. Build on that question by featuring it in another. Ask if they have any questions they’d like to ask you. If you can, rewards and giveaways can be a nice way to sweeten the pot, too.
What’re Your Thoughts?
So, let’s make it plain and simple. In building a community, your blog needs the appeal, visibility, and connectivity. That way, you attract readers, making sure that they have no trouble finding you and you keep them interested by talking to them. It’s as simple as that.
Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.