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Under 30 Blogging Lesson

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  • 1. Under30 Rock Star Business Series Part 1 - Blogging Having a blog is essential to building a personal brand and it is also easy! A blog can act however you want it to. That's the great part is can be as serious or as informal as you want. It can talk about anything and shape into anything you desire. It's all about YOU and what YOU want it to relay. It's about showing off what you know and your passion for a topic. There are 100's of millions of blogs out there talking about just about anything you can think of. How are you going to standout from all of these people? That's the big question here and the great part is it is not as hard as it looks. Most bloggers don't know what it takes to get to the top. They don't take their blog or brand seriously and wonder why it doesn't go anywhere. This is not a problem you will have after going through this course. The first step is getting in the right mind set. Your blog is a business. Treat it like one. This means getting serious about it and taking pride in everything it does. Everything that goes into your blog is a reflection of you and your brand. How will people see you when they visit your blog? 1. WordPress setup • Setup a hosting account with GoDaddy.com • Go to "Manage Account" then "Your Applications" • On left side click on blogs and then Wordpress then install! (as seen below) • Leave the directory names as the default "wordpress" • Once Installed you can start blogging right away!
  • 2. Wordpress can be customized in a million ways. There are almost no limits and they make it very simple for you to do things yourself. At first its not important to have the best looking blog in the world. Keeping things simple is best and it can be fine tuned over time. Plugins and themes can be easily installed and managed from the left side of your wordpress dashboard under the tabs "appearance" and "plugins". Below are a few resources to help shape things up a bit. Resources Wordpress Forums 10 Essential Plugins Every Modern Wordpress Site Should Have 2. Quality Content Write what you love!!! Don't start writing about something just because you think it will do well or other people will like it. Write what you like and love everyday! A blog requires not only quality but quantity. You need to be making multiple posts each week. This will be easy if your talking about something you love. • Write how you speak. This is not a college term paper. • Revise and proof posts. Most bloggers FAIL on this one! • Structure still matters. Define your beginning, middle and end. Resource Chrisbrogan.com - Watch how he writes about many different things yet makes it all flow. Types of Content: -Solve problems -Ask questions -Start debates -Provide news -Provide Entertainment Treat your readers like customers. What do they want? How can you serve and help them better? With every post ask yourself what the purpose of it is. What do you want to come from it? ie. do you want it to solve a problem? Start a debate? Its important to understand the purpose you want in order to create a focus in your post. Be Unique: This does not necessarily mean be original The best way to achieve this is to read and research the other blogs in your niche. Carve out sub-niches or simply create a new angle. The same information can be used but attacking it at a new angle or putting a new edgy opinion to it can distinguish it from the crowd. Understanding your competitors is key. If all the blogs in your niche provide news on the topic maybe you want to start solving problems. Look back to the types of content and see
  • 3. whats lacking in your niche. Key: Make yourself uncomfortable. Try new things and push your limits. This is the only way you will generate reactions (good and bad). You have to learn what works and doesn't by trying things and that's how you will continue to grow. Resource Problogger.org - everything about blogging 3. Viral Content Its all in the Title! • Spend time on titles. Think of what you see when browsing the web...I bet its titles ◦ Twitter ◦ RSS Feeds ◦ Search engine results • Make them short yet descriptive • Attract attention - Could be making a big claim, a buzzword, controversy, or even confusion. (use caution as your content needs to then deliver) • Use keywords - If your blog is about fishing use related terms in as many titles as you can. Example What Megan Fox Can Teach Us About Writing Compelling Blog Content - Megan Fox = Sex sells = Great title for a post about blogging Lists Rule: Top 10 lists simply work It's no accident that most posts on Mashable.com are in some kind of list format. Or that Mashable has an entire section dedicated to just lists. Look at the the tops articles on these sites to get an idea for what content and formats rock. • digg.com • mashable.com • tweetmeme.com • stumbleupon.com Example 10 People you Won't See on Twitter Anymore - A list about breaking news on the buzz worthy topic of twitter - The perfect storm of blogging Formatting: The attention a post gets directly relates to its format. Posts should be scannable. Even if its not a list have strong headers as intros to paragraphs so people can see what they are reading about. Format types: • Lists • Paragraphs • Combination - best method
  • 4. Always use in moderation - Just like anything else. Lists should not be every post nor should in depth and complicated research articles. Lists will generally attract more attention in the social media world and should be used to drive traffic. Supplement lists with in depth articles that involve more time and research. Example Communication Tools and Levels of Interruption - There is a sharp/funny/intriguing picture. 2 strong bolded headers but also more bolded list formatted titles. Makes for very easy scanning and also provides a lot of possible words that will catch your attention when scanning. There is then more detail and developed paragraphs if your scan convinced you to read the post. Pictures and Video: Pictures should be inserted into EVERY post. Think of your audience and what they are attracted to...Women, Fast cars, Huge Fish, Flowers etc. Whatever it is find pictures that will stir that attraction or desire. Pictures add flavor to posts. Many themes and aggregators of your posts will also grab thumbnails if they can from your post. Making this a picture that hits hard with your audience is key! Video is another great way to spice up posts. Grab videos from youtube or if your brave make your own. Before making your own videos remember: • Are you made for video? • Get a decent quality camera • 2-4min max • Be direct - Its not "scannable" Example Video - Garyvaynerchuk.com Pictures - Perezhilton.com Both - ChrisBrogan.com 5. Create and Grow Community The best bloggers out there did not simply do everything above and bam they got huge. They did not do it alone! They built community. The built a following that always tweets out their posts or diggs everything they write. You can too! • Respond to EVERY comment on your blog. It doesn't matter how big or small. Say something back, let readers know you are listening. • Comment on related blogs. Start forming relationships with other bloggers in your niche. • Engage these bloggers on twitter. Tweet their posts out. In time they will return the favor. • Let people contact you. Give out your email or phone number and let everyone know you would love to hear from them. • Give anywhere you can. Put everyone else first.
  • 5. CARE: Nothing can replace simply caring about your community and the people around it. Everything above will happen automatically if you really do care. Resources Mashable Wordpress - articles on everything wordpress Problogger.org - everything about blogging Remember this is a marathon not a sprint Homework If you don't have a blog yet 1. Get your blog up and running! 2. Create your 1st post that describes you and what you hope to achieve with your blog For Everyone 1. Make a list of the top 10 blogs in your niche and what their purpose is ie. deliver news, solve problems 1. Define the purpose of your blog 2. Engage all of the authors using any method 3. Subscribe to all the blogs with RSS or Email and learn everything about them 2. Make a list of 5 things you have NOT talked about on your blog. ie. sex, made a video, yourself. The idea of doing these 5 things should make you a little uncomfortable. So now do them! And analyze the reactions.