Last week the extraordinary Misha Magdalene had a totally beneficial submit titled So, You Want to Start a Pagan Blog: A Handful of Hard-Won Lessons. They hyped up my writing output, however, aside from that, it’s splendid. If you’re considering beginning your personal weblog – Pagan or otherwise – I inspire you to examine the entirety.
As it turns out, I’ve were given my very own list of blogging suggestions, accrued from numerous responses to “how do I get started out blogging?” electronic mail requests. Some of them overlap with Misha’s but there’s not a great deal repetition, so I suppose both posts might be beneficial to new bloggers.
1. Find the right platform for you
The maximum frequent blog query I get is “how do I get a blog on Patheos?” My response is commonly something alongside the strains of “how long have you ever been blogging in which you’re now?” If the solution is that the character doesn’t have a blog however thinks Patheos might be an awesome area to begin, I factor them in the direction of some of the unfastened running a blog platform currently available.
Patheos Pagan Channel Manager Jason Mankey (who has his personal running a blog guideline, whole with greater snark) will submit new bloggers in case you show him you can write nicely, however best on one of the organization blogs like Agora. Show you could deal with that and he’ll take a look at getting a man or woman weblog set up for you.
If you need your very own weblog now – or if you’d alternatively be to your very own besides – you have got numerous options. You can create your personal internet site, but that’s steeply-priced and time-ingesting. If you simply need to blog you’ll be higher off with one of the unfastened blogging offerings, which includes Blogger, WordPress.Com, Medium, and others. Do some simple studies, see what platforms human beings you follow use and parent out which one is nice for you.
2. Post weekly
There isn’t any manner around this. If you aren’t going to submit at least as soon as a week you haven’t any commercial enterprise blogging. Oh, you could do it, but you’ll be doing it strictly for your self. Building a target audience calls for posting frequently. People expect new content on a normal basis and in case you don’t supply they’ll lose persistence and stop checking your weblog.
A hit weblog has a center audience of ordinary readers. Use social media to add to that core, in preference to looking to generate a new audience for each publishes.
Three. Post regularly
It’s not enough to publish as soon as every week. Post at the same days and at the same times. Teach your target audience while to anticipate new posts and that they’ll come looking for them.
All the running blog services I’m acquainted with permit you to load a put up beforehand of time and time table it to publish whenever you want. Use that functionality.
And that’s some other tip – don’t write on the internet site. Write in Word, then reproduction and paste into the blogging web page. That way you’ve were given a saved replica in case something is going incorrect… and something continually goes incorrect subsequently.
And even as you without a doubt must publish regularly, write while you’re capable. This is the one vicinity I disagree with Misha Magdalene. If I attempted to write each day I’d pressure myself insane. There are days whilst the Awen isn’t flowing, or once I’ve were given an excessive amount of to do and writing one paragraph simply to say I wrote that day could be meaningless.
4. Promote your blog on social media
The internet is huge and your weblog is small – do the whole thing you can to assist humans to find it. Share your posts on all your social media bills. Facebook will let you know to create a web page on your blog. Jason Mankey and Mat Auryn have had achievement with that – I’ve discovered it to be a waste of time.
Facebook doesn’t need to proportion weblog posts – they need to keep you on their site. My Facebook posts linking to weblog posts get best about 1/3 as many likes as ones without links. But getting a few visitors from Facebook is higher than getting nothing. Twitter is commonly better if you have a huge Twitter following.
Facebook businesses can be a good vicinity to proportion posts, but first, make sure that’s a suitable use of that institution. Some explicitly forbid self-merchandising, even as others recognize occasional posts but don’t want to peer everything you write. But you can usually publish for your own page, and also you ought to.
5. Build your personal subscribers listing
Every time Facebook modifications its algorithm, my pageviews move down. Those who paintings from writer pages or enterprise pages say they’re fortunate if Facebook will show their post to 5% in their audience. They’ll be glad to show it to greater – if you’ll pay them to do it.
Relying on a third-celebration whose intention is to extract wealth from you to build your blog is a losing approach. Most running blog services have subscription options – inspire your readers to join up. That way they’ll get an e-mail on every occasion you put up something new.
6. Find the post length you’re secure with
For me, that is around 1500 words, plus or minus 300. Never post much less than 500 phrases. Google – any other essential evil – penalizes websites with brief content material. Plus you may’t actually say a good deal in less than 500 phrases.
On the alternative hand, in case you get a good deal above 2500 words humans just received’t examine it. If your writing fashion is long-shape essays, that’s first-class, however, understand which you’re proscribing your target market. The worst factor you may do is write 1500 phrases this week, 600 next week, and 3000 the week after. Long-form, short-shape, and medium shape appeal to exclusive readers. Pick one range and stick with it.
If you need a target when you’re beginning out, a purpose for a thousand words. Over time you’ll find your candy spot.
7. Every submits receives at least one image
Facebook posts with photographs get substantially more click-throughs than the ones without. Pictures add range to a publish, they assist illustrate what you’re writing approximately, and they make the page appearance exciting.
I accept as true with you already know you couldn’t simply clutch any photo you find on the internet. Use your own images, locate one of the royalty-unfastened websites, or look for matters that may be posted beneath an innovative commons license. If it’s no longer your image, credit the source – but credit by myself isn’t enough. Using other people’s pictures without permission is a great manner to get sued.
Eight. Make your posts clean to examine
Nothing will make me hit the “lower back” button faster than a Wall Of Text. If it’s a creator I genuinely appreciate writing on a subject I truly care approximately I’ll try and make myself wade through it, however that takes paintings. Most human beings will surrender.
Use segment headings. No long paragraphs – four sentences at most, and no matter what your freshman English instructor told you, one-sentence paragraphs are great. Think “USA Today.”
Not certain what I’m speaking approximately? Click via some blog posts right here. My blog isn’t perfect, however, it’s better than maximum.
Nine. Write approximately what you already know and what you’re obsessed on
The clichéd instructions to new writers are “write what, not what you suspect .” I don’t have Jason Mankey’s knowledge of cutting-edge Pagan records or Morgan Daimler’s understanding of fairy lore. I’m not a professional on Paganism. I’m someone who does Paganism and then writes about what I do. And once in a while approximately what I suppose.
What do you already know? What do you do this you may write approximately? What are you passionate about gaining knowledge of? Some blogs aren’t meant to train others – they’re a way to proportion the blogger’s religious adventure, something many readers discover beneficial and provoking.
Write about what you already know and what matters to you. If you need to pressure it, it’s in all likelihood going to suck.
10. Speak your thoughts but test your facts
A weblog is via the definition of your opinion. There is not any need to add disclaimers of “in my view” for the whole thing you write – I find that annoying. If you’re seeking to lead human beings to a conclusion, state your assumptions, present your proof, and give an explanation for your reasoning.
On the opposite hand, in case you nation something as fact, ensure it without a doubt is a reality. In this era of Google and Snopes, there’s really no excuse for posting fake records. And if you do, a person will name you on it. Check your records earlier than you hit “submit.”
11. Continue on-going conversations
A blog for terribly long and also you’ll find your self scratching your head looking for matters to jot down approximately. One of the high-quality approaches to provide you with something is to hold a conversation someone else has begun.
That’s what I did right here. Misha had a very good put up and I had something to say at the same topic. Don’t plagiarize and don’t be repetitious, however, distinctive perspectives on a topic can be very helpful to readers.
Make positive you link to the blog posts that stimulated you. That credits your resources and also shall we your readers move returned and read it for themselves.
12. Use in-line hyperlinks to reference source material
Which brings us to the concern of in-line links. Use them judiciously. Add too many and you seem like some scam page looking to trick readers into clicking on commercials (or worse, malware). But wherein you use a term that maximum however no longer all of your target audience will apprehend, hyperlink to a definition in place of spending time defining it yourself. Link for your very own posts, both as context and to encourage new readers to discover your blog. Always hyperlink to the source material, as I did with Misha’s publish.
Be cautious what sites you hyperlink to. Link to high fine websites (mainstream media, instructional sources) and Google will enhance you of their rankings. Link to low first-rate web sites (clickbait news web sites) and that they’ll decrease you.
Thirteen. Look at feedback – pay attention to people who make sense.
We’re all warned, “in no way read the comments.” I assume you have to examine the feedback.
If somebody posts garbage or hate speech for your web site (or in your Facebook web page) delete it. If they do it again and again, block them (most blogging platforms have that functionality). This isn’t the public square – it’s your weblog. You don’t owe anybody a platform.
If any person posts fake data, either delete it or rebut it. If they hold, block them. Don’t permit “faux news” take a seat on your blog, even inside the feedback segment.
If they truly disagree with you, respond or now not at your sole discretion. You don’t owe everybody a debate. I have a tendency to be generous right here – I like debating if it’s carried out in excellent religion. I received’t put up with sealing, and even with an awesome debate occasionally I actually have to mention “I’m out of time for this.”
On the alternative hand, if a person points out blunders, accurate it. Your goal is to be proper, not to fake you’re ideal.
14. Be affected person with building a target audience
Don’t anticipate heaps of page views overnight. It took me 18 months to get out of the double digits, and approximately 3 years to get to the point wherein I had what I taken into consideration a respectable-sized target market. If you need to be an overnight success, blogging isn’t for you.
Blog because you’ve got something you want to say. Do it properly and the audience will come, ultimately.
15. Come on in, the water’s nice
I hold reading articles that say running a blog is old. Perhaps that’s genuine if you’re seeking to promote an enterprise or construct a logo. But if you want to begin a conversation on Paganism or a few other topics, or if there are things you need to mention, there’s no higher way to do it.