bloggingIf you’re a blogger, there are many issues to consider when creating content, promoting it, and designing the aesthetic of your blog. Whether you work for a marketing agency like Quick Sprout with a number of different online clients or are launching your own blog, ask yourself these six questions in order to get yourself on the fast track to success:

What is your niche? Don’t blog in a vacuum. Decide who your blog is for and actively write for that audience. If your blog is about graphic design, specify what medium of graphic design—online, advertising, manufacturing, etc. Any general category you think of can be drilled down into at least a half dozen other sub-categories. Honing in on the most lucrative sub-category and niche audience will allow you to focus your content, marketing, and publishing outreach.

Do you update multiple times a week? One of the best ways to make sure your blog rises to the top of search engine queries is to frequently update your content with media-rich posts. In fact, fresh content is one of the most important and fundamental elements in search engine optimization as well.

How familiar are you with your content management system? Most CMSs, from popular ones like WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla to smaller, simpler systems like PageLime, Konductor, Zimplit, and Perch, allow bloggers incredible tools for customizing their content and aesthetic.

Do you study your analytics? Most content management systems allow you to monitor your inbound links and see what search engine results are leading readers to your blogs. This affords you many useful ways to calibrate your keywords and tailor your marketing strategies. The further you dig into your blog’s stats the more you will learn about what kinds of people are reading your content, how long they are staying on your site, and whether or not they’re sharing your posts.

What is your approach to SEO? Hopefully you’re utilizing a combination of keywords, meta-tags, link building, social bookmarking, and a wide variety of other search engine optimization tactics. SEO isn’t just for online marketing agencies. Bloggers can employ on-page SEO strategies that can greatly improve their page views and value.

Do you use social media? You should integrate social media tools like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon, and YouTube as well as social news aggregators like Reddit and Digg. Notonly do these sites expand the reach of your blog across the Internet, it opens you up to new readers.

Answering these questions will not assure you of blogging success, but it’s hard imagine you won’t be headed in the right direction. The all-star blogger will be simultaneously considering how to improve his/her content, aesthetic, stats, and outreach strategies.

About the author
Guest post by Nick Jameson. He is a freelance writer specializing in business and marketing

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