John Wesley from “Pick the Brain” published an interesting article titled “27 Lessons Learned on the Way to 3000 Visits a Day and 2200 RSS Subscribers.” Basically he is sharing what he learned on the first six months of his successful blog. My favorite lesson from the article is:
If you aren’t sure a post is good, sit on it for a day. If you still aren’t convinced, delete it. A bad post is worse than no post. Bad posts make people question if your blog is worth reading. When you make a bad post (and you will) learn from it and move on.
Below you will find a summary of all the points, the full description is on his blog:
- Help people solve a problem and differentiate yourself
- Be prepared to invest 2-3 years before seeing any serious returns
- Make it as easy as possible for people to subscribe to your RSS feed
- Offer a full feed
- A bad post is worse than no post
- Be prepared to completely run out of ideas after the first 3-4 months
- It’s not always what you know, who you know is important too
- Write catchy headlines and list posts
- Make the opening paragraph as compelling as possible
- Courteously encourage friends, family, and casual acquaintances to vote up and link to your posts
- Don’t write every post for the social sites
- Listen carefully to every piece of feedback but don’t be a slave to it
- Experiment. Take chances. Piss a few people off
- Always look for a different angle
- Don’t participate in every meme or trade links with everyone who asks
- Write about your life in a way that’s relevant to your topic
- Make people think
- Don’t be anxious to plaster Google Ads all over the place
- Design matters
- Posting comments on other blogs is overrated
- Respond to your commenters
- Obsessively reading other blogs and checking traffic stats are not productive activities
- Once you have a bit of success don’t flaunt it
- Make use of blog carnivals
- Display your best posts on every page
- Read blogs about blogging
- Do what works for you
Bang Kritikus says
Wow great tips thanks for your information
SEO Genius says
Some great tips again 🙂
* Be prepared to invest 2-3 years before seeing any serious returns
I’d agree that that is too long. Maybe the way is to say “1000 online hours after you have learnt the ropes.”
* Be prepared to completely run out of ideas after the first 3-4 months
This needs an article series about it!
* Posting comments on other blogs is overrated.
Disagree there – but you do need to always make sure to add to the conversation, rather than just link-fishing. If people add value to the information for my visitors, then I am very happy to post links to relevant articles – like the one I published this afternoon, 21 Tips to Starting a Succesful Blog:
Melt du Plooy says
That makes sense Daniel. Thanks.
Melt, regarding #2, I guess it depends. If you consider the average blogger with no prior blogging experience, and his wish to make a full-time income from blogging, then yes I think 2-3 years is a reasonable time horizon for that goal.
If you already have some good internet-background then you could shorten that period to 1 year.
Jake, yeah it was linked to the comment section :), just fixed that, thanks.
Melt du Plooy says
This is a great list.
#2 – I am stunned. Does it really take that long to build a credible resource or are you talking about making money (seeing financial returns)?
#6 – Oh yes, perseverance is the key
#20 – If you’re just posting comments to get links, absolutely, but if you’re really commenting to connect to other communities, then I do not see it as overrated.
I got a thing properly in my head now, don’t place ads everywhere, place it where clicking is more. We can check it by heatmaps like of CrazyEggs.
You seemed to have linked to the comments part of the article and not the article itself. You may want to fix that. 😉