I’ve started Full-Bodied Bella in 2018 but I had been occasionally blogging since years before that, although I didn’t invest in my own domain or a professional-looking website then. Prior to all of this, I was writing more personal pieces and treated my blog almost as a diary of my high school/college life. It didn’t have any structure, and my content were random at most.
After some time, I launched this website as a more adult and clean version of the old blog. I started to have clarity on what I’d like to put out and what I want people to get out of reading my blog, and possibly out of following me as well. Although the premise is still about sharing personal slices of my life, it was also clear to me that I wanted to cater to young women who are navigating their own lives being on the meatier side of the scale.
Before anything else, I want to place a disclaimer that I do not claim to be a professional blogger of any sort or have a massive following. Everything I will share with you are based on my experience and observation. If you are looking to read tips on how to make money off of your blog or a magical way to grow your readers, this post may not be for you. There are already a lot of available material online catered to these topics; my post today tackles more of the strategic side of creating content.
Write from your reader’s point-of-view. This tip is especially helpful if you’ve made your blog for professional reasons such as to provide information or to sell a product. Your blog should be readable; people need to be able to understand the key message right away without having to do a double-take. As much as possible, try to avoid using high-falutin words especially if the purpose is only to sound smart. I think there’s still a lot of intelligence in reading a well-thought out concise message without having to confuse the reader with so much blabber.
It is also advisable that you understand who you are actually writing for, because then it follows the language and tone of your blog. Putting on the shoes of your reader, what keyword would you have used in your search so that you’ll get the exact information you need?
Personalize your content. Taking from Sophia Lee’s video on How To Start a Blog and in connection as well to the above tip, conceptualize your content around your readers. It should be about them, and not you. People are wired to find interest in content that they can actually relate with and where the content is applicable to them, than it is more about you. Of course, there isn’t anything wrong about providing an example or an anecdote but people tend to skip overtly nitty-gritty details about you.
Optimize the analytics available. Since I am using a WordPress.com service, I am lucky enough that I wouldn’t have to worry about generating analytics on my site’s performance. Optimizing your analytics simply means taking a closer look on what works and what doesn’t. It could be anything from the most optimal time to post your content, what topics get the most attention, where you are getting the most traffic or even search terms where your content pops up. If you want to find success in blogging, I think it is essential to tailor your content based on these data. It is not bad to test the waters from time to time with something fresh but try as much to hone in on what people want to see more from you.
Streamline your process. One thing I’m constantly working on is finding the right balance on churning out new content without burning myself out and trust me, it’s still in progress till now. My working energy is more sporadic — I could write 5 articles in one night that good for two weeks, then go silent for a month’s time. It is key that you try to be as consistent as you can and that sometimes means that you should not spread yourself too thin. Pick a realistic working schedule — say 4 exhaustive posts in a month or 2 medium read posts in a month, whichever works for you. Always ideate topics whenever you can. My rule of thumb is to always draw topics from my 5 main categories. You can, of course, keep this category list more concise to what is ideal to you.
Take advantage of your network. When I was building my follower count in the beginning, I advertised my blog firstly to my friends. My blog was catered mostly to young women my age, so I believed my topics would be relevant to them and they would find some useful information here and there. There is nothing bad about asking for support from your friends or followers from your social media connections especially when you’re starting out, it’s just a way for you to be more visible.
Look into other people’s blogs. There is always something to learn from others — may it be the way they write, engage with their readers, their process, etc. Not all strategies may be applicable to you personally and you’d still have to apply your own signature to your website but it doesn’t hurt to try and understand what makes others successful in this endeavor. Everybody starts somewhere, at the end of the day.