Is your blog lost in an overcrowded room? Do you feel like you're shouting for attention and not getting anywhere. You know there are tactics you should be trying to drive traffic but it’s a bit overwhelming, so much information and you’re going round in circles.
The world of blogging has EXPLODED over the last decade. More people are starting blogs than ever before as a way to drive traffic to their business and create an additional income. I’ve been working with bloggers for over 6 years and I’ve seen & analysed literally THOUSANDS of blogs during that time as an SEO.
This gives me a unique perspective and insight into what works and what doesn’t work to get your blog noticed & build an audience. And today I’d like to share that with you.
But before we begin let’s just cover one thing first. Yes, there is more competition than ever before but that doesn’t mean it’s harder than ever before to grow an audience. In actual fact, it’s easier than ever before to get your blog noticed.
You can start a professional looking blog in minutes. Whether you decide to use a free website builder like Weebly*, or if you decide to get your blog designed by a Web Designer Agency.
More people read blogs, there are more online communities and the concept of online networking and collaboration is much more advanced than it used to be. There are also now some fantastic social networks and people who have tried and proven step by step methods, for you to get results from them.
So, all in all it is much easier now to grow an audience than it ever was previously. If yours isn’t getting noticed then there is likely only some slight tweaks you need to make to get it going which is great news!
Check through the points below and see if you can improve in one of these core areas.
Choose A Simple, Memorable Blog Name
Your blog name is super, super, super important! I cannot stress that enough. More often than not I can already tell if a website I am about to analyse has any traffic just from it’s name. It’s easy to get over excited, to put too much thought and to over develop your blog name. My advice is not to do that. You audience has a very short attention span and they don’t have time to spend 10 minutes retyping your blog name into Google to get your website.
I also recommend you have some indication of your niche in the name, assuming you aren’t using your name. For example, Ginger Marketing - I write about Marketing. City Calm, my other website (which is currently down), is about meditation in the city. Both names are short & memorable with a strong link to the topics they cover.
If you are concerned that your blog name is too complicated you might be wondering, should I change it. My recommendation is this; if you don’t have a big audience, you are finding it hard to gain traction, and you think it could be due to your name, changing it is something to consider.
Your blog name is such an important aspect to get right and by continuing on with a name that no-one can remember, spell or understand, you are limiting your chance of success.
If you need help coming up with a name a wrote an article about How To Choose A Blog Name You Won’t Hate In 2 years. So check that out for an entirely different approach to naming than you have read before!
Stick To One Blog Niche
Being someone who gets bored very easily (I can’t even stay in the same city for more than 2 years!), I realise this can be a challenge. Who wants to write about one thing over and over again right?! Wouldn’t it be more fun to change it up and explore multiple topics.
Well, if you want a following then I’m sorry but you have to stick to one niche.
Preferably, at the beginning stick to only three topics within that niche as well. Focusing is WINNING in the blogging world.
The reason is the quality of content you can offer increases the more focused your blog content is.
If someone wants to find out about Breakfast Recipes for example then they come to a blog which is FOCUSED on this one topic. They want to read recipes, history, techniques, ingredients, differences between countries & regions. There is a lot to cover in just this one area. Other niches could be French Breakfast, Vegan Breakfast, Eggs For Breakfast. Each blog would become the go-to place about that one single topic and a very useful resource for readers interesting in learning about the topic.
On the other hand, if you set up a blog about recipes in general, with topics covering Vegan / Vegetarian / Regions / Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner etc, then you are going to need to create a TON of content. You're going to be competing with large websites that have many hundreds of authors, or celebrity chefs. It is not possible for you to offer a resource as varied as those websites, or compete with a celebrities exposure, unless you work very hard for a good number of years.
As a small blogger you have an advantage over larger sites - and that advantage is niching so USE IT!
Another top tip is to make sure that your niche is reflected on your site. Make sure it is obvious, in your name, on your navigation in your blog title content & in your categories.
Research Your Blog Content Before Writing
Treat your blog like a business not a hobby. You are putting time and energy into it because you want results right. You want to GET NOTICED, which means you have to make sure you are writing content other people actually want to read.
There are a couple of tools you should always be using before typing a single word. If you use these then you can be absolutely sure that other people are looking for your content before it’s even written. Magic right!!
Those tools are:
This is Google’s keyword tool which will tell you how many people search for different terms through Google. They have recently bucketed the search volumes which means this tool is no longer as accurate if you don’t spend money on paid ads.
However, it is still useful to get a broad idea about which topics are the most popular and to give you some ideas for further research.
Moz Keyword Tool
Moz’s tool is more accurate. However if you don’t get a monthly membership you are limited to 5 searches per day. So, once you have a good idea about the terms you want to explore from Keyword Planner, go to the Moz tool and insert your keyword.
From there you will get more terms and accurate search volumes.
Using this method provides you with long tail keywords which are the best keywords to focus your blog content around. If you haven’t heard this term before it’s a term used to categorise keywords into different group.
This table shows you Short Tail > Long Tail and how you would use the different levels to set up your blog.
Short Tail | Breakfast | Your Blog Niche
Mid Tail | Healthy Breakfast | Your Blog Niche / Blog Category
Long Tail | Healthy Breakfast With Eggs | Your Blog Title
These three areas are THE MOST important areas to get write on your blog if you want to get noticed. These three areas form the framework which you fit your content into and without the correct frame you will find it hard to build an audience.
Start Guest Blogging Now!
One of the most effective ways to get your blog noticed is to start guest blogging. You can reach hundreds of thousands of readers with your message and introduce them to your website!
In my opinion, every business which represents itself online (which is pretty much everyone), should be Guest Blogging. It should be a core marketing strategy just like your own blog is.
I think it is absolutely fantastic the amount of effort and attention that goes into the content being produced in some of the niches I follow. It is actually pretty outstanding. The attention to detail, research, and quality of work that goes into so many blogs is amazing.
But, when it comes to promoting the content, that's when I see people coming into issues. You can have the most outstanding beautiful blog in the world, but if no one reads it then you're not going to get very many clients!
Guest Blogging is a relatively simple way for you to get your message out to a totally new audience and have them find out about your blog and business.
And download our Free Guest Blogging Tracker
So, if you are finding it hard to get noticed. Check these three areas - could one of more of them be improved?
I’d love it if you would share your top tips for getting your blog noticed in the comments below! What has worked for you or the blogs you read?
* This symbol indicates an affiliate link, we only recommend products & services that we personally use ourselves & deem to be of high value.
(Last Updated 26/11/2017)
Are you finding it hard to choose a name for your blog? Do you spend weeks coming up with new names and then questioning yourself, editing the name, and changing it
- A G A I N ?
Do you find that even when you find a name you love, the question arises, how will I ever know if
THIS. IS. THE. NAME.
Yup, this is a common problem. I’d like to formally welcome you to the, I can’t settle on a name club.
Fear, worry and hair pulling early on in the naming process is absolutely normal (though not preferred). Everyone in the, I can’t settle on a name club, has been there.
It’s a lot of pressure to deal with, this is a project which you could be working on for the next 5 - 10 years or more. Some writers work on their blog for several decades of their lives.
Right here, right now, we are going to help you find that name.
We are going to move you out of the
I can’t settle on a name club
and into the
Eureka moment 24/7 club
It's much more exciting over here!
You could do without the stress right, this is supposed to be fun.
Can you remember that moment when you decided you would start a blog, that rush of excitement!!
Well, getting your notepads in a twist isn’t doing anything for your creativity & is just leaving you feeling stuck before you’ve even started.
So, let’s stop the freaking out right now.
And remember that excitement you felt at the beginning of this project.
I can promise you, once you understand one simple fact, some of that stress is going to faaadeeee awwwaaaay.
That simple fact is…
Naming is a process !!!
The top Creative Directors in the world go through a process to get their final ad concepts. QUOTE
The top CEO’s in the world went through a process to get their company names.
And you will need to go through a process before you settle on the final name for your blog.
So, if you find yourself with a million notes and ideas then don’t worry. You are following the path of countless other creatives before you & you are on the right track.
Koepke, Creative Officer for SapientNitro an Ad Agency in the USA explains,
“There's a lot of fear involved, because you feel a lot of pressure to come up with a brand new idea. In reality you're just putting pieces together of a puzzle that many people have put together in the past."
As Koepke says, release the need to create something totally new.
I’ve been in the same position you are in, many, many times. It is so common to feel a sense of uncertainty and fear at the naming stage & pile up the pressure.
However, the more fear and overthinking you do, the less creative you become. So, before we move on, take a deep breath. If you already have a ton of notes and ideas you are doing a great job.
If you haven’t got to the note-taking stage no problem. I’m going to outline in just a minute a step by step process you can follow for naming your blog from start to finish.
But first, let’s get on the same page with something.
The Creation Process Myth
Just after University I was very blessed to have the opportunity to shadow a Creative Director at Ogilvy Advertising Agency in London. Ogilvy are responsibly for some of the most iconic ads of all time.
I remember sitting in the office with a brief in front of us, both staring and thinking. And then occasionally one of us would pipe up with a suggestion.
At one point the Creative Director said,
“everyone else in the office thinks we never get any work done, we just stare into space for half the day, but that’s how we work."
It’s a complete myth that the greatest ideas come from a loud, chaotic space. If you’ve ever attended a corporate brainstorming event you might know what I mean.
Studies on brainstorming back this up as well. This study from 1953 found,
“it must be concluded that group participation when using brainstorming inhibits creative thinking.”
The Two Part Creation Process
Whiteboards, marker pens, post it notes & shouting is just the first stage of the creative process. The Eureka moment usually happens on the toilet.
Brainstorming sessions do have their place. They stimulate concepts, ideas & creativity. But, usually the big idea comes after the event. Someone ties everything together and out plops (okay enough with the toilet humour now) the BIG IDEA somewhere quiet.
So, enough of the explanation, I hope we are on the same page now. Let's get into the process of HOW you come up with your blog name!
There are two parts to the creation process. Within each of those parts it can be further broken down into a process which you can copy and use for your very own EUREKA MOMENT!
Part 1: Creative blog brief & brainstorm
Creating a blog brief:
It is important to capture the core of what you want to create with your blog in a brief. This should happen before your brainstorming session & needs to be given to everyone coming to the session.
Please don’t switch off here. (image)
Don’t worry, it doesn’t need to be a huge long, boring document. The purpose of it is to help you to define what your blog will cover, who it will help & how it will help them.
Include as a minimum:
Description of your ideal reader
Description of the types of topics you want to cover
Description of the problem you are solving for your reader
The name’s of the top 5 blogs in your space (your competitors)
For extra creative process points:
Tone of voice
Initial thoughts on branding & styling
DOWNLOAD PDF PRINTABLE BRIEF
DOWNLOAD PDF PRINTABLE BRIEF
Brainstorming with your tribe:
You might be wondering why I dispelled the myth on brainstorming in a group and now I’m asking you to brainstorm in a group. If you are feeling hashtag confused let me clear it up first.
We are not expecting you to have your Big EUREKA moment during this brainstorming session. The session is about collating research and ideas from different people. And, for helping you to feel supported and excited about this process.
The Eureka 24/7 club is all about fun remember!!
And brainstorming is so much more fun with other people. When it comes to the first stage of the creative process more heads are definitely better than one.
Here is a step by step process you can follow to set up your session.
6 Step Naming Brainstorming Session
The Naming Fireball Game
The naming fireball game is the last stage of the brainstorming session. In the fireball you go round the group and each person calls out a name. It’s about quick fire answers, write all of the names down on a whiteboard or a piece of paper.
Move from one person to the next and keep going for several minutes without stopping or questioning anything that comes up.
The goal is to get as many names as possible in the set time.
If you are leading the fireball round and jotting down notes, make sure you include yourself in it as well, you will want a turn calling out a name.
For extra points print out the sheet below and use it as a real life fireball, ask members to throw it around the circle.
Part 2: The Eureka moment
Go sit on the toilet. The End.
JOKE! (though it couldn’t hurt ;))
Now it’s time to step into your awesomeness as a creative genius. What we’ve done up to this point is primed your subconscious mind with lots of material and ideas for the name of your blog.
The next bit is actually not about doing much at all.
All you need to do is practice listening. The ideas are already there. Your big Eureka moment already exists.
It’s just a question of listening and believing when it comes through.
Something I like to do is read through my brief & my brainstorm notes before bed. Make sure you have a notepad close to your bedside table to capture your Eureka moment(s) when they come.
If more than one name comes keep writing them down. Eventually, you will find a name that feels right.
When you find it, you find it, there is no questioning.
There is a feeling in the pit of your stomach that this is it and it could not be any other name.
I hope this has encouraged you that your Eureka moment is close! Follow this process and believe in your own creative wisdom.
Let’s end with a couple an example from one of the top entrepreneurs in the world just to show you…
NAMING IS A PROCESS
The Eureka moment 24/7 clubbers are in great company!
http://eepurl.com/cs41o1The Story Of How Twitter Got It’s Name
Twitter was almost called “jitter” or “twitch”. Thats right! Co-founder Jack Dorset explained in an interview, “We wanted a name that evoked what we did. We wanted something that was tangible. And we looked at what we were doing and when you received a tweet over SMS, your phone would buzz. It would jitter. It would twitch. And those were the early names, Jitter and Twitch.
And neither one of them really inspired the best sort of imagery. One of the guys who was helping us build and create the system, Noah Glass, took the word Twitch, and he went down the dictionary.
And we all looked at the Oxford English dictionary at the T-W’s, and we found the word Twitter. And Twitter means a short inconsequential burst of information, chirps from birds. And we were like, that describes exactly what we’re doing here. So it was an easy choice, and we got twitter.com for some very low price, and we named the company Twitter.
You are in great company, the biggest companies in the world go through a process as well. If you are keen to try this 2 step process download the documents in this post. OR for an easier to manage version SIGN UP HERE and we will send you an email with just the practical steps for this process & the documents you will need.
It is a big time saver.
SEND ME THE TWO STEP PROCESS & DOCUMENTS
As usual, let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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Written by Cheryl A Clarke Chief Happiness Officer & Content Marketing Freelancer @ Ginger Marketing (unless stated otherwise)
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