So you want to start a blog. Great! It’s as simple as joining Blogger or WordPress and starting to type, right?
The internet moves at a breakneck pace. Your blog will become one in a sea of millions of average blogs before you know it. It takes more than just being a good writer to have a good blog. So what makes a blog go from average to excellent? Here are three ways to get you started.
1. Make your blog visually appealing and easy to navigate.
The first thing people see when they visit your blog is its design. Hot pink and lime green might be your favorite colors, but hot pink text on a lime green background won’t make a good first impression for your readers. Some things to keep in mind when designing your blog: make sure to use a cohesive color scheme, don’t make the main page too cluttered, and pick fonts that are simple and large enough to read. Here are some more pointers for how to make your blog more visually appealing.
Navigation is equally important; if a potential reader can’t navigate through your blog you’ll lose their interest in a heartbeat.
Lance Hosey puts it best in his piece “Why We Love Digital Things”: “Good design, often in very subtle ways, can have such dramatic effects”.
2. Incorporate images and links into your posts.
Images enhance writing. They provide a break in what otherwise would have been a wall of text and they allow readers to make a more emotional connection; a picture is worth a thousand words, after all!
Links provide readers with the opportunity to follow up on ideas they find interesting. They also give you a quick and easy way to show the readers where you’re getting your information. As Brian Caroll says in “Blogito, Ergo Sum”: “Online readers ‘deserve, as much as possible, access to all of the facts’”.
3. Be yourself!
I know this one sounds cheesy, but it’s the most important. There are millions of people with blogs out there, but there is only one you. You have your own ideas, opinions, and voice. Let your personality shine through in your posts. Don’t blog about something you feel pressured to; blog about something you want to. If you don’t want to write a piece, your readers certainly won’t want to read it. Your enthusiasm and unique perspective on the world will draw in a community of readers that you’ll be proud to call your own.
And that’s it! Three simple steps, and you’re already on your way to being a better blogger. That wasn’t that hard, right? Now go out and blog and I promise; the first post is always the hardest.