Personality is still the name of the game. A recent survey report gives us the latest figures on what kind of blogs people read, and Personal Blogs ruled the chart with a 63.5% reach. Second to that is a 38.9% reach for Family or Friend Blogs. Both suggest that to gain a wider audience, your site must exude a tricky mix of familiarity and individuality. Pondering on these two traits, here are some of my suggestions to make you blog feel more cozy.
Blurb. Although it seems obvious, many blogs don’t have a mini-profile blurb visible on all pages to introduce the author/site to first-time visitors. Worse, not everyone has an About page that to tell everyone
Template. Most blogging platforms offer ready-made templates for plug-and-play use. It keeps everything simple, but it also makes your blog look ordinary and dull. Chances are, visitors have already seen the same template elsewhere, and when they try to remember your site, it gets lost in the murky waters called “generic design”. Part of personal branding should consist of an eye-pleasing and functional template that goes well with your personality and the blog’s overall theme.
Words. Try to keep away from highfalutin words. It might’ve worked in you college class, but in the blogosphere, it’s much better to use the K.I.S.S. principle. This doesn’t mean you need to dumb down your blog, but rather that you speak the language of your intended audience.
Tone. Your writing should be casual and conversational. Draw your visitors in with entries that speak to them directly. Ask questions when appropriate to solicit comments.
Engage. Every time you get non-spammy visitor comments, answer them as quickly as possible. Other people who see your conversation’s thread will be more likely to say their piece, knowing they’ll get a reply. If they leave a link to their own blog, head on there and leave a comment as well. This will increase their chances of becoming regular visitors.
Any other tips you’d like to share? I’m all ears.