Thursday, July 11, 2013

Build A Better Blog Day 29: Develop A Plan To Boost Your Blog's Profile And Readership

Review | Reflect
This was a significant subject in Darren's book. He had a lot to say about it, but I'm going to put in a few things you can work on to get you started. 

Questions to ask.

1. How much time do you have to spend on blogging?
2. What is it you wish to accomplish?
3. Where are your readers coming from?
4. Describe you ideal reader.
5. What is the strategy you want to use?

I feel the best thing to do is go over the past posts and develop a strategy. You might want to combine a few of the tips and that's all the time you have. You may want to take a few hours every week/month to go over your stats and see how your strategy is working. But no matter what, always take time to review. Review why and how you are blogging. That in itself will give you insight and help you develop your blog.  

Get the book that started it all

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Build A Better Blog Day 28: Write A Review Post

Reviews! Oh, let me count the ways!

First you need a product/service. Make sure the product is relevant to your blog. (Yeah, I know it's self-explanatory)

So let's go down the checklist of making a review post though, informative and entertaining.

1. Give an opinion. People want to know--did you like it? I say put it at the top making it easy because while you might have skimmers, most people will be curious as to why you like/don't like the item.

2. Give a rating. And make sure they know the scale. 1 out of 5 stars, cookies, ice-cream cones, puppy barks, whatever. Make you're own scale and measure.

3. Balance the positive & the negative aspects. You're doing a review piece where people want to know more about your experience.

4. Plan your keywords. When people search, they're going to search for how to...or may be the item model number, etc. Choose those keywords so SEO search will pick you out.

5. Make comparisons. If you've done product reviews of different models, link the posts together.

6. Use an affiliate link. If you write something good and you can get paid for it...why not put an affiliate link all convenient like for the reader and the seller to buy their product right there and then while reading your post.

7. Say who it's good for.

8. Be personal. Ad your flavor!

9. Pictures! Have a visual or many...they help. Wearing the product, using the product, standing on the product...whatever. But have a picture!

10. Give details and make it easy to buy the item. Like--affiliate links!

* If it's relevant, say how you cam across the item. That can pull someone in the read the post.

Here's a link to Darren's book!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy 4th!

Despite any political affiliations I'd like to say Happy Fourth of July! 
AND because it's a Holiday....

I'll be taking the day off and returning to our regularly scheduled posts on Tuesday. 

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Build A Better Blog Day 27: Hunt For Dead Links

The Hunt For The Red October
My first thought was me going through hundreds of posts clicking on links for verification would be like a movie I remembered...hence the picture.

Why do we want to do this?

1. Readability ~ If a reader is searching through your awesome content and your links are dead, that's rather disappointing. They see your blog as unreliable.

2. SEO rankings ~ If google crawls for good content, you know they're ranking for bad content too. Dead links have got to effect rank.

But doing it one by one? Yuk.  There HAS to be a better way...and there is!

Xenu's Link Sluth


Link Valet
W3C Free link checker
AnyBrowser's link cheker


So you found dead links on your have options! Depending on relevancy of the post you can:

  1. Update the link.
  2. Delete the link
  3. Delete the post.

 Also check for mistakes in:

  1. Spelling
  2. Grammar
  3. Punctuation

Monday, July 1, 2013

Build A Better Blog Day 26: Improve Another Blog

Darren asks...when did you help another person's blog get better?

Ummmm...just now! 

Okay, really, why should you improve another person's blog? Can you see the benefits of reaching out, helping another person, connecting, and gaining a potential reader?

I remember the first time I got to help another blogger and it was a wonderful feeling! We connected and it's been a wonderful experience. Can you imagine the impression it made on both of us? 

But I have to warn you that it's how you help others that creates the impression. It does need to be done with tact. Emailing bloggers advising them might be taken as "your wrong and only I can fix it." Here are some ideas on ways to go about making other's blogs better:

  1. Write a high quality post useful to bloggers.
  2. Link to a useful blog.
  3. Write an email with suggestions. 
If you think like I do, you might look at #3 and say No way! If you do decide to use that method, proceed with caution. If you have a great idea, can present it with style and grace in an email -- go for it! If a blogger says in their post "I love your thoughts" -- then open game! She want's your input. 

I'm hesitant to email a blogger, even one I know, unless my ideas are solicited. I won't even comment about it because of the risk of giving the better than thou impression. 

I'm not like that...It's about quality, caring and commitment to the community. My effort is...