This is a guest-post by Skellie. She shares more practical blogging tips at Skelliewag.org. You will find more about Skellie at the end of this post.
Personal bloggers often face a tall hurdle when looking for advice about building a better blog. Many of the tips and tricks advocated by those who blog about blogging simply don't apply to the kind of content so-called 'cat bloggers' create.
In this post, I want to change this trend by offering my top 5 traffic building strategies personal bloggers can and should use.
1. Rethink the way you approach guest-posts. I know a lot of personal bloggers think guest posts aren't relevant to them. After all, you're supposed to target sites in your 'niche', but how does that work if you're the only person in your niche?
Guest posts can still be very useful for personal bloggers. There are probably no other blogs about you out there, but there are likely to be many based around your interests, hobbies and skills.
If you find yourself writing regularly on a topic then consider guest-posting in that niche. It can be a great way to raise your profile as a blogger and drive some traffic back to your blog.
2. Focus on forums. Forums are all about the cult of personality -- for that reason, they're the perfect place to develop relationships with potential readers. Pick a big, thriving forum on a topic you're passionate about and get involved. Post regularly, be insightful and be an upstanding forum citizen. Make sure to link back to your blog in your forum signature.
I've seen many thriving personal blogs built on the back of an equally thriving forum profile.
3. Comments are key. With other types of blogging the person behind the blog doesn't always matter, as long as the information there is useful. Personal blogs, on the other hand, bring you to the fore.
Readers will read or leave your blog depending on how they feel about you. Leave a positive impression on other bloggers and their readers by leaving thoughtful comments on their posts.
The key to growing as a personal blogger is to build a grassroots network of fans. Commenting on other blogs regularly is an essential part of this process.
4. Get into your local blogging scene. More so than other niches personal blogging tends to be locally focused. You'll find that certain groups emerge within the personal blogging scene, generally clustered around a specific area (usually a country or city). Attending (or organizing) meet-ups for bloggers in your area can be an effective way to join your local network.
5. Don't ignore social media. Personal bloggers can write posts with mass appeal. Never think that because you're a personal blogger you can't aim for social media success. This simply isn't the case. Just because your writing is focused on you doesn't mean you can't create content that will benefit others -- regardless of whether they're familiar with you or not.
Some suggestions for social media targeted articles:
- A list of your favorite things (movies, software, photos, whatever).
- A post passionately arguing a point of view.
- Lessons you've learned that will be useful to others.
- Your favorite links on a topic.
While these should help you get started, there are plenty more on this list of 37 viral post ideas.
I hope these five strategies help you kick-start the growth of your blog.
Who is Skellie?
Besides working on Skelliewag.org I'm studying Political Science and Communications in Melbourne, Australia. I've been creating web content on a wide variety of topics for more than seven years.
I write on this topic because it's a passion of mine. I'm also interested in web design, music, politics, gaming, creative writing, journalism and a little too crazy about football (of the soccer variety). In future I'm hoping to work in international politics with a focus on women's issues. Being a woman myself, I know a bit about that stuff ;).