Best Bloggers Practices: 3 Things They Do That You Don’t
You probably have a blog or two bookmarked that you visit all the time. You can’t wait to see what they’re going to blog about next. If you’re smart, you’re doing more than just reading and enjoying yourself when you visit these blogs, you’re analyzing them to see what makes them tick. Why do these blogs keep pulling you back, day after day after day? And why don’t you have that same kind of loyal following? Here are three things those bloggers do that you don’t.
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They connect on a personal level
Over the years I’ve had thousands of comments on my blogs but the one that stands out in my mind the most is this: “I always forget I’m reading an article and I feel like you’re talking directly to me.” Look at the blogs you visit every day and see if they make you feel that same way.
I always tell bloggers to speak to their readers as if they were best friends, talking over a cup of coffee and some cookies. Instead of using words like “we” say “I”. Instead of using “You all” or “You guys” or “All bloggers”, use the word “YOU”.
Write like you’re having a one-on-one conversation with your best friend and use the words you’d use in every day conversation. When I’m blogging you’ll notice I use lots of contractions – because that’s how we speak. And I only use niche-specific jargon when it’s necessary, and when I do I try to include a definition.
They understand how to communicate
I’ve been disappointed more times than I can count when it comes to “How To” blog posts. Being able to do something and being able to effectively communicate the process are two different things. Again, imagine you’re trying to teach your friend. Imagine they’re sitting right there with you and they’re asking you questions. And imagine they’re starting from scratch, with no previous knowledge whatsoever.
Don’t assume your readers understand something. This may be the first time they’ve ever visited your blog. What may seem like an over-used industry term to you might be completely new to them and if you don’t explain it, they’re going to be lost, they won’t understand what you’re talking about, and they’ll never come back.
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They engage their audience
Engaging your reader has different definitions for different bloggers. I know some very well-known bloggers who never answer a single comment, they don’t respond to Tweets and they don’t even know how to get to their Facebook pages. Yet they have some of the most engaged audiences on the Internet. How do they do it?
First, they’ve learned how to connect on a personal level and they know how to communicate with their target audience. From there, it’s just a matter of using your imagination.
Some write a series of blog posts on a particular topic, which encourages readers to come back on a regular basis to get the full volume of knowledge. Some use polls or surveys. Some use Pinterest, believe it or not, because images make such an impact on readers. Some offer their content in a video format or in downloads or newsletters. And some use surprise guest bloggers, or blogging contests or blog carnivals to draw their community closer together.
Once you’ve learned how to connect on a personal level with your readers and communicate effectively so you can provide value, then more than half your battle is won. These people already like you, now all you have to do to keep them engaged is let them know you like them back.
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