Five tips every blogger needs to consider

by Martin Reed on 7 March 2008 in Articles

Blogging tips and blogging advice

The explosion in the number of blogs doesn’t seem to be slowing down, and I doubt it will for quite some time. With so many blogs out there, many bloggers will find it a struggle to get their voice heard. In this article, I will offer five basic tips that every blogger should consider.

1 – Ask yourself why you are blogging?

Ideally, you should ask yourself this question before you even get started. However, there is still some relevance in the question for those that have already taken the plunge and are publishing their own blogs. If you are blogging because everyone else is, you will struggle to find success. If you are blogging to make money, you will soon realise that you have set yourself one hell of a challenge!

You should only start a blog based on a subject you are passionate about. You should only start a blog based on a subject that you could talk about all day long, for ever and ever. Remember – blogging is a long term commitment. The last thing you want to do is start a blog, publish great posts every day for two months then lose motivation and inspiration.

If you want to start a blog, ensure you are aware that you need to be in it for the long haul.

2 – Consider avoiding certain subjects

If I come across one more ‘make money online’ blog I think I will throttle myself! Whether or not John Chow is to blame for the proliferation of blogs about making money online, there is just no need to have millions of blogs catering to the same subject. Most talk about the same subjects and methods, and once you have read a few you will notice that most feed off each other and simply recycle the same old content.

Sure, every now and then you can come across a great blog in a saturated niche but this is often a rarity. Unless you are confident you have something truly valuable and unique to say on a certain subject, if the niche is saturated consider avoiding it.

3 – Use your blog to network, but do it properly

During my first six to eight months of blogging, I did a huge amount of networking with other bloggers to get my name and blog ‘out there’. Unfortunately, most of the blogs I used to do this networking weren’t really related to my niche. Sure, I got some exposure but the traffic I gained wasn’t particularly well targeted.

On reflection, my biggest issue was the fact that there weren’t many blogs out there dedicated to online community building, so I simply networked through the blogs I had found through other blogs. Unfortunately, because the first blog I read on a regular basis used to be John Chow dot com, almost all the blogs were in the ‘making money online’ or ‘blogging tips’ niches.

Blogs can be a fantastic networking tool, but you need to ensure that you are reaching the right audience and the right people!

4 – Understand that a blog is an online community

There are still some people out there that feel a blog is not an online community. They could not be more wrong. Sure, the majority of the content on a blog comes from one person – the author. However, a huge amount of value comes from the commenting system built into all blogs.

If you ignore the commenting system, you are doing yourself a major disservice. Invite and encourage feedback and comments, and respond to them. Establish a genuine two-way dialogue with your readers. Not only will you be showing them just how much you value their opinion, but they will be far more likely to return and continue to get involved.

Great content and an active community are the sign of a successful blog.

5 – What are your goals?

Nobody can tell you whether you are successful – they don’t know your goals. Only you can determine your success based on your own aims. Do you want to generate ten comments per article? If so, and you get ten comments per article then congratulations – you are successful. Do you want to make $500 per month from your blog? If so, and you reach that figure – then congratulations, you are successful.

Don’t worry about what other people consider ‘success’ to be. Success is simply the achievement of goals, and only you can decide what your goals are.

Your thoughts

Are you a blogger? What things did you consider before starting? Do you have any regrets as a blogger? Have I missed any tips or points that you think bloggers need to consider? Share your thoughts and opinions by leaving a comment below.

Share this community building advice


Similar Posts

Previous post:

Next post:


Internet Marketing Joy March 7, 2008 at 7:14 pm

I can’t argue more…especially with #1…all bloggers should answer this question first before starting doing their is very important that you know what your niche is..also make sure that you knew a lot in the niche that you chose so you won’t run out of ideas along the way.

Home Security Guru March 8, 2008 at 1:44 am

Great list of five things to consider when blogging. I think there are thousands of bloggers out there who need to see this list–it boils down to this: you need to know what you want to accomplish and what audience you want to see your blog. In order to have a successful community of like-minded people (which is essentially what a blog is)–you need to have some focus. Great post.

Chat March 8, 2008 at 4:58 am

Interesting article, at first I wasn’t going to read it because i don’t have time/ an interest in blogging but then i said screw it, if martins writing it its probably valuable and it was. I too am tired of seeing make money online blogs, its so taxing anyways thanks

Amish Made Furniture March 8, 2008 at 1:50 pm

The first two blogs that I wrote, I wrote for family and friends and after the initial euphoria, comments stopped and it was very disheartening. I now have a great idea, at least I think so(!), and hope to launch a blog essentially to build a community of like minded bloggers. Money making is far from my mind for the moment, but, if it happens, I shall not of course say no to it.

Under the circumstances, this blog comes as a great motivator at the right time. Thank you.

Tommi March 9, 2008 at 6:14 pm

Passion is indeed a must. Passion combined with friendliness is even better.

The point about networking; very true.

Odzyskiwanie Danych March 10, 2008 at 2:39 pm

Great tips! Too bad that back when I started blogging no one gave me info like this, would have made a lot of things easier. I had to learn on my mistakes and there were quite a few, unfortunately. I have sent a link to this page to my nephew, he just started his first blog and I am sure he will appreciate all the great advice you gave!

Non Slip Stair Treads March 10, 2008 at 10:20 pm

I agree, blog about something that you care and have some interest in so that you can create an honest opinion and actual useful information for your readers.

Nicole Price March 11, 2008 at 7:58 am

I started my blog out of a passion for shopping. I didn’t see too many out there on the topic. My aim would be a good number of regular readers, growing traffic and some extra cash for my shopping.

Social Networking March 11, 2008 at 10:00 am

Martin, good tips. I liked the most is this one “You should only start a blog based on a subject you are passionate about. You should only start a blog based on a subject that you could talk about all day long, for ever and ever. Remember – blogging is a long term commitment.”
I consent with you at this point.

Eva White March 12, 2008 at 8:51 am

Very nice post and relating to my field. Well as long as making money online blogs go, I think they suck. I guess every other blog is just teaching how to make money online.I would like to use my blog to make a network of people. It’s so nice to know that someone sitting in some corner of the world has visited my blog and left comment on it. We have not met or seen each other, but still we can connect on any particular subject. Isn’t it great!!

Phil the Plumbing Expert March 13, 2008 at 7:24 am

Good point for enumerating those tips for blogging. Each bloggers has their own reasons why they do blog. Whatever reason that maybe, a blogger should make sure to post quality articles useful to their readers.

Martin Reed - Blog Author March 15, 2008 at 8:05 pm

Internet – I agree with you. You should only blog about something that you could talk about until the cows come home!

Home – Every time I see someone recognise a blog as an online community I jump for joy (well, almost!).

“You need to know what you want to accomplish and what audience you want to see your blog” – I couldn’t agree more.

Cody – I think a lot of the points I made can also cross over to other online communities such as forums. At the end of the day you need to have passion, dedication, motivation and resilience to succeed.

Ramana – The initial honeymoon period of blogging is fantastic. However, as you say, this soon wears off. Good luck with your new blog, and keep us updated with your progress.

Tommi – I completely agree. Having passion without being personable, friendly and approachable will stifle the development of your community. Having passion and being friendly at the same time will help immensely.

Odzyskiwanie – Thanks for the comment and for sharing this article with your nephew. Learning by trial and error is great – you certainly remember what ‘not to do’ this way, however you are right that doing things right from the start is often far more advantageous!

Non – I am glad you agree; thanks for your comment.

Nicole – You have some good aims, there. Perhaps they would be even better if you gave yourself some firm targets. For example, instead of saying you want to have a “good number of regular readers, growing traffic and some extra cash for my shopping”, how about you say by the end of April you want to have x regular readers, x% more visitors than last month and $x to spend on shopping?

Social – Thanks for your comment, I am glad you agree! Passion is hugely important when it comes to blogging and I think only experienced bloggers recognise just how important it really is!

Eva – I agree with you; there are far too many ‘make money online’ blogs, and most of them are written by people pulling in a few bucks per month. Hardly inspiring!

Networking is a fantastic benefit of blogging. Like you, my favourite part of blogging is interacting with my readers.

Phil – You’re right; everyone has their own reasons for blogging and nobody should tell someone they are blogging for the ‘wrong’ reasons. However, if you are a blogger you do need to ensure you are posting articles of quality on a regular basis.

Baby Names March 22, 2008 at 9:06 am

Could not have agreed more. Awesome tips. Blogging is almost an individual work where it is up to him/her to decide what to blog and what his/her goals and aims are.

skip March 24, 2008 at 2:27 pm

these are great tips for all the bloggers out there. if a blog’s not used properly, it will just become dead after awhile.

Martin Reed - Blog Author March 24, 2008 at 6:04 pm

Baby – Blogging can be very individual, but blogs shouldn’t be. A successful blog will engage with its readers and encourage interaction.

Skip – Just with any online community, if interest wanes then the community will die.

Baby Quilts April 14, 2008 at 3:34 am

Yes, a blog is definitely an online community packed with user-generated feedback. If you’re flagship blogging, your readers should be important to you and you should show some respect by watching the things that you say. I’m not a big fan of political correctness, but it is definitely something you should think about learning if you plan on flagship blogging. Great tips!

Martin Reed - Blog Author April 15, 2008 at 11:03 am

Baby – I had never heard the term ‘flagship blogging’ before, but it’s definitely an interesting area. You’re right, though – you certainly don’t want to alienate your readers by generating too much controversy!

andy June 7, 2008 at 5:31 pm

As a blog owner myself these are good points. It was a good read. I do however like to add my own flavor and personality to our blog and think it is a good way to let clients know who you are and what you stand for.

Martin Reed - Blog Author June 27, 2008 at 12:00 am

Andy – Injecting your personality into your blog is very important and helps to differentiate your blog from others. This is especially important if you are using your blog as a business tool – by sharing your personality you are showing your human side and developing a relationship with your readers.

Paul Crowe January 4, 2010 at 1:50 am

It’s getting out of control all the rubbish make money blogs it could do the same to blogging as it has done to a lot of social networks.

I was helping a guy with some s.e.o. tips just general stuff to make his blog search engine friendly.After he had made the few changes he got back to me and asked why his blog wasnt showing in a google search, so i took a look at his blog.
The title was of course Make money online and he had adsense ads, bidvertiser ads and clickbank links yet only 1 post, the usual 10 tips …..
Still he couldnt understand how adding some meta content and title tags did not have him sitting on to of google results.
As i told him if i was that good i would be rolling around in my millions and having a few beers with Bill Gates.

To be honest i blame Googele adsense for making it too easy to put ads on your blog.On Blogger you dont have a post created before they are asking you if you want to make money…who doesnt…So you start a blog to write about somthing your interested in not even knowing you could place ads on the blog and within an hour you find yourself reading other blogs about making money from Adsense thinking your going to get rich.

They should have a minimum requirement, lets say your blog needs to average 50 hits a day for a month before you can show ads.

This would put off the ‘fly by night’ bloggers that are giving the entire platform a bad name.

Sorry for such a long comment like all bloggers i cant stop once i start :D