Welcome to the blog of author Tricia Goyer!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Blogging Series...What do I need to know?

What? What are important things to know about blogging?

  1. Blogging is about being true to yourself and your writing. Believe me, if you blog daily, or even weekly, you won’t be able to “fake it.” Besides, people read your blog because they want to know the real you.
  2. Blogging is about connecting with others. It’s about meeting new people WHILE you share your information, ideas, comments.

TIPS for a successful blog.

  1. Make the blog page pretty to look at. Use a design that appeals to the eye. There are plenty of free ones, or you can hire someone to create one for you.

Girls, God and the Good Life

http://girlsgodgoodlife.blogspot.com/

  1. When it comes to the content: Get to the point. Bloggers are more likely to read short posts than long ones.
  2. Get to the point. Keep the post simple. If you have more than one point, make them into different blogs.
  3. Show lots of white space—which means only a few sentences per line.
  4. Make it scannable. Bold your main points. Bloggers might only visit once a week, then scan down to see what you’ve written about.
  5. Think of catchy titles. Why would someone want to read your post in comparison to the other 60 million out there?
  6. Allow comments. Blog readers LOVE reading comments—sometimes even more than the blogs themselves. Yes, it’s true some people post bad things, but in all my time of blogging I’ve only had one or two that were SPAM. Instead I’ve made it so the comments come to my Inbox. This allows me to read what’s being posted. And if there is anything I don’t want, I delete it right away. You can also use word verification … which keeps spammers away. And you can moderate your comments, which means that you have to approve them before they are posted. (But personally, I don’t like that. I like instead feedback.)

More ideas for successful blogging:

  1. Reply to comments that people make on your page. And comment on other’s pages. (Also understand people place a value on your blog by the number of comments. If someone sees a blog that never has comments, then they figure it must not be that interesting.)
  2. End your blog with a question for readers that will encourage them to respond, such as “How do you like my new cover?”
  3. Post regularly. For some, this means daily or a even few times a day. For others it means weekly. Just be consistent. If you only can commit to weekly, let your readers know that up front.

Roxanne Henke’s Weekly Diary

http://www.roxannehenke.com/diary/

  1. Consider your boundaries—think about how much you like to share, how your family feels about your posts, how much you like people to know about you. Blogs can be personal or information … you draw the line. Don’t talk about other people unless you have their permission.
  2. Consider your brand. How are you known? How do you want to be known? What draws readers to your books? Example: Chit lit bloggers have fun, light blogs.

Excellent examples:

Angela Hunt

http://alifeinpages.blogspot.com/

Brandilyn Collins

http://forensicsandfaith.blogspot.com/

Girls Write Out

http://girlswriteout.blogspot.com/

Robin Lee Hatcher

http://robinlee.typepad.com/

  1. Remember they are real people out there who just want to connect. How can you reach through their computer screen and influence them?
  2. Read other people blogs and see what they are doing.
  3. Comment on other people’s blogs (this builds readership for your blog too!) Again, sometimes comments are the best part. Through comments you meet new people, banter, share thoughts, add insight, challenge comments, and build community.
  4. Post photos. People love a visual to connect with the words.
  5. Join communities through blog rings or blog alliances. You can also ask other bloggers to share links. There are even awards given out now for the best blogs.

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

http://christianfictionblogalliance.com/

Christian Women Online Blog Awards

http://www.christianwomenonline.net/blog_awards.html

  1. Humor works. People love to be entertained. You can write about the simplest things and yet interest people if you do it in a humorous way.

Fallible

http://www.fallible.com/

  1. Offer free stuff. Draw names from the people who comment.

What doesn’t work:

  1. People get tired to too much self-promotion or the same old stuff.
  2. They don’t like it when there are no updates.
  3. Long-winded.
  4. Unorganized.
  5. Boring.
  6. No point.
  7. Too spiritually sounding.

Where? Where do go for blogging resources?

Who is visiting? From where? For how long?

http://www.statcounter.com/

Who is talking about you and your blog? What are the most common searches?

http://technorati.com/

Help people stay connected by allowing them to sign up for your blog:

http://www.feedblitz.com/

An easy way to add links to your blog:

http://www.blogrolling.com/

4 comments:

E Bussey said...

Tricia, I love this post and am learning alot. The one thing that made me cringe a bit was the "too spiritual sounding," ouch!

One thing my CWG mentor stresses is not to be preachy and I know I have that tendency, but what if spiritual is your heart and you just don't feel pulled in any other direction?

Have you read my blog? I'd love some feedback from your perspective and anyone else who is willing to comment.

Jen said...

interesting post
well done

Tricia Goyer said...

I think it's wonderful to share out heart ... we just want to make sure we don't use "Christian" terms that not everyone will understand. Does that make sense?

E Bussey said...

Rereading this today and I have another question. I've read through the information at FeedBlitz, but don't feel I understand what it is or how it works. Any insight in future posts would be great.