Blogging started out as a hobby for many writers. In fact, the word “blog” comes from “weblog,” a sort of e-version of a Captain’s Log minus threats from alien critters. It wasn’t until businesses realized the value of professional blogging that writers found an opportunity to expand beyond themselves. Problem was, few writers understood how to attract an online audience wider than Mom and Dad. Luckily, professional bloggers stepped in and taught us what works and what doesn’t work for successful, professionally written blogs.
Here are five mistakes good writers need to avoid when they turn to professional blogging.
Don’t accept any and all blogging assignments.
Write what you know or are willing to research. It’s hard to turn down business, but your clients will appreciate this. If you are a freelance blogger and are asked to write about something you do not know or care about, take a pass on it. If a topic is something you know about or interests you, such as how to select a web host, go for it. Be willing to invest the time to research new topics. And, by the way: if you have your own blog or website, you should be willing to research something as important as web hosting. Visit the Web Hosting Bluebook or a similar service to educate yourself about this important web factor.
Don’t forget to insert sub-headings throughout the blog content.
When you really get into writing about a topic you care about, it’s easy to forget about inserting sub-headers. But when you review your copy, be sure to include them every time you approach a new topic. Refer back to the title, and create sub-heading content that tell the readers what follows.
Update your blog regularly.
Frequent posts give you and your blog credibility in the search engine world. There is no hard and fast rule about how often to update a blog, but like anything else you strive to improve, keeping a schedule is key to increasing readership and visibility in the online world. Some experts, such as those from Quick Sprout, say that inconsistent blogging can hurt your traffic.
Don’t shun white space in your blog.
Short paragraphs that create whites pace can be good in a blog post. Webpage designers, Crazy Egg reports, are trying to educate bloggers and site owners that white space can actually improve the user experience by making the content easier to see and read. Mobile usage, Techland reports, is making it even more important to avoid a crowded look on your page.
Don’t forget to promote your blog with social media.
Let everyone know you’re blogging, especially when you have a new post. Add sharing icons to every page of your blog or website. Don’t be afraid to be the first to share on Facebook, to Tweet, and add to Google+, LinkedIn, and other sites where your blog is a good fit.