Friday, October 29, 2010

How-to: Get your blog on!

Pigg - Lounge bar (500x350)

People are always asking us questions about blogging. How to get people to "Follow" or "Subscribe" to our blog is the most common.

Here are a few simple steps that can help in gaining a following for your blog and having people revisit your blog on a regular basis.

1. Let people know your blog exists
The single most valuable thing you can do to let people in Pico know that your blog is out there is to put it as your profile URL.

2. Be social
Really, just get out there and prop people. Why? Because they're likely to prop you back ... and to prop you back they must look at your profile. Chances are they will see you have an URL link and click it out of curiosity. Yeah. It's that simple.

3. Have good content that continues
This is the hardest part of getting people to continue visiting your blog. Having interesting, fun and engaging photos and stories on your blog is what will keep people coming back to read. Having a mixture of topics you love writing about in a fun(ny) way will help you in connecting to readers. If people like what you're doing with your blog they may bookmark your site or subscribe using tools on your blog (see #4).

Photos that are clean, crisp and big will catch people's eye and draw them into reading your posts.

To learn more about how to take good photos in Pico, read the 'How-to' on how to take good photos in Pico.

4. Use social media tools
Your blog should have a clear, simple and familiar way for people to be reminded of your blog and any new posts or updates.

For users, this is your "Followers" gadget. This is is connected to Google Accounts (and the Google Friend Connect tool in particular). If you're really passionate about your blog, Google Friend Connect has the tools that will allow you to create and send out a newsletter to your Followers.
  • To find out more about Google Friend Connect, view this helpful video on
  • Find the Followers gadget from your Dashboard: Design → Page Elements: 'Add a Gadget' link → Basics (menu): 'Followers' link → Save
For users, this is your "Blog Subscription" widget. Readers can choose to sign up with their email address. When you publish new posts, subscribers will be notified by email.
  • To find out more about the Blog Subscription widget, read the info page.
  • Find the Blog Subscriptions gadget from your Dashboard: Appearance → Widgets → Blog Subscriptions → drag and drop the widget onto your sidebar and customize your settings → Save
5. Add some extra oomph
Do something different and interesting. Get creative!

Start a Facebook group for your blog ... or for general interest in Pico • Create a photosharing group and add the slideshow to your blog sidebar • Make a video sharing (e.g. YouTube or Vimeo) film of your Pico adventures and post it on your blog • Have a theme week or month • Have a party so your followers can meet you • Put a message board on your sidebar • Let guests have their say - ask for their opinions or other submissions and post it for others to see.

6. Be practical
Here are a few simple things to think about and you create or develop your blog.
  1. Let people know who is behind the blog. Create a biography page for you and any other blog authors that includes your Pico user name, or add a sidebar widget that has info about you.
  2. Make things easy to find. People should be able locate information and posts as easily as possible on your blog. This could include:
    • Adding a search box. 
    • Using 'Labels' (for or 'Tags' (for to add keywords to your posts.
    • Making sure tags/categories or archives are on your sidebar so people can search for what interests them by topic or date.
  3. Think about readers who may not speak English. Can you add a translator gadget or widget to your blog? Then do it. Use the Design (for or Appearance (for menus to search and find a tool to let non-English speakers/readers read your site. It increases your potential readership!
  4. Check your statistics. Are you curious? From time to time, look at your blog's stats to see which of your posts have been read the most and how visitors are being directed to your site.
    • For Dashboard → Stats
    • For Dashboard → Site Stats
Happy blogging!

No comments:

Post a Comment