Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Top Tips for Building a Successful Blog from a Blogger of Two... By Dioni Zhong of Wandering Mee and Meexia.com...



I've been blogging for years, and before that I was working on a number of personal websites for more years. Today I have a mature book blog (5+ years) and a travel blog (1 year), both of which have given me many perks, from getting tons of free books, invited to stage plays/shows/exhibition, to generating revenue, so I like to think that I know a thing or two about building a successful blog and here are my top tips:

1. Pick a topic you can talk about foreverMany people are not too sure what blog they should be writing about. Though you can have personal blog for just family and friends, to have a specific topic that you have most interest in, the one you can talk about all day long, all year long and more, would bring your blog to another level and a much wider audience - readers with common interest. Also that way you will never run out of ideas!

2. Be consistent. Another pitfall that new bloggers often fall into is getting really excited at the beginning but declining very rapidly in the few weeks or months that follow. I assure you there would be a period of time when you feel like nobody is reading and what is the point of it all, but if you push through you will finally start to build your audience. Consistency is key.

3. Join the CommunityNo man is an island, and it also applies to blogging. It is important to build relationship with fellow bloggers in your area. Start by visiting other websites and dropping by comments. Respond to comments on your own blog. Use social media channels to help you advertise yourself/your blog/your brand (twitter is probably the most useful at the beginning, but there's no harm at having a Facebook page too).

4 Concentrate on providing quality content that you loveThere are many things that can distract you from doing your own blog, from the hustle and bustle of social media to the pressure of building stats to thinking too much about what other people want you to write. Having your readers in mind is good to a point, but thinking too much about it could be too tiring. Instead of always following what the other people are writing/doing, it pays to be original and different. There's often strong tendency to follow what the more successful bloggers are doing, which could be useful at times as you know they do something right, but if you do something that nobody else does it stands you out from the pack, and there's always reason for readers to go back.

5. Be reasonable on how much you can commit to the blogThis would always be my main struggle. How much time can I commit to my blogs and what would be the impact of that? There are many more bloggers out there that have more time to work on their blogs and it is impossible for me to compete in that aspect. Back to the consistency point, how much can you churn out a post? Once a day, three times a week, once a week? Whatever you decide, set reasonable goals for yourself and don't stress out. Your blog could grow to be something more in the future, but you can never get there if you run out of steam. Treat it as a marathon not a sprint. You have to do it for you - to love and to enjoy first and foremost.

So those are my top tips for building if not a successful, a satisfying blog. There are of course tons of other things to learn, like which blogging platform to use, whether to have your own domain/host or not, how to structure your posts, etc. (Short answer to the first two: use wordpress, and own domain if you intend to go far). There are also specific styles for different type of blog, which you have to learn as you go. For example for my book blog I almost use no social media channels, but use them more for my travel blog. I almost never got advertisement offer for my book blog, but I do quite a bit for my travel blog. All these take time to navigate, but the good thing about blogging is that you can set your own pace and do what suits you best. When you genuinely love what you do it shows and naturally attracts people, so keep at it and good things will come!

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Find Dioni's incredible blogs (meexia is one of the best literary blogs we've found) at:

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