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Sunday, February 5, 2012

Five More Blogging Tips and Tricks and Win a Kirin's Hoard or an Animated Avatar!


Quite some time ago, I did a post on ten blogging tips and tricks, and that's HERE if you're curious, but don't worry, I'll re-post the first ten. I'm back, though, with ten more things you can do to make your blog yours, increase your visitors, and get feedback like never before.

1. Oh yeah, that's Swordroll's Blog... Have a symbol. I'm particularly lacking in this area, besides my banner. Have something recognizable that people can easily tell belongs to your blog. One way to add to this is to create a "favicon." This is a small icon that appears next to the website address in the URL box. It is a 16x16 image that is in ".ico" format.

2. Make your blog special. Give your blog something that stands out. For me, it's the background and banners and graphic elements that make my page more memorable than some. You see impressive Wizard101 content that is recognizable and distinct, which ties together with the first tip. Another good example is http://wizard101club.com/. Although not all of the elements are my favorite, the site is easily memorable. I've been to a lot of blogs, and I remember this one because of the artwork. One of my headers even has a piece of gear that gives a -6% damage bonus, so it works as a conversation starter as well.

3. Tweet, Tweet. No, It's not a bird. Get a Twitter account, at least. Facebook works, too. These allow for easy communication and mass messages. It can reel in more viewers, too. If you follow others, they might follow you, so follow many people.

4. Join the club! Find places with major traffic that have opportunities to advertise your blog. A couple of places I've used include http://diaryofawizard.com/, where you can place a small advertisement that is oftentimes free. Wizard101 Central has a link directory where you can place your blog, too. Being one of the latest links, most viewed links, or best rated links, allows your blog to be one of the one at the top. The Friendly Necromancer also has a blog club that you can join. I joined, and that is actually the second best referring website, second only to Google. A lot of my traffic comes from here, despite his list being so large. Ask other popular bloggers to add you to their blog list.

5. Post often and with purpose. Each post should contain valuable information; tips perhaps, or stories from your own adventures. Give updates directly from Kingsisle when they post them. This will place you at the top of "blogrolls" and keep your blog current and updates. With specials like unknown pet files and housing tips, people will want to read your blog and tell their friends about these amazing things that they learned.

6. A picture is worth a thousand words. This saying might not always be true, but other types of media such as pictures, videos, etc. are something different for people to see rather than just text. Be careful about how your text wraps around the object and always preview your post before publishing.

7. Let's there be comments! Did you know that, by default, anonymous users cannot post comments, even if they identify themselves? They'll have to register in one form or another. Perhaps this is how you want it, but I wanted anyone to be able to comment. Go to Settings and click Comments. Under "Who can comment?" choose anyone.

8. See the statistics. Ever wonder where everyone is coming from, if anyone is visiting at all? Go to Stats and change the overview to All time. You can now move between Posts, Traffic Sources, and Audience tabs to see some interesting and possibly surprising information. It's fun to look at and not only see what websites people are finding yours from, but also what keywords searched on Google have lead others to your website.

9. You want followers? Make the options obvious. If you want people to follow your blog, make your followers on your sidebar easy to find. Allow users to follow by email if they wish, and to share the post with their friends in various ways. You can even ask your readers to subscribe at the end of each blog post.

10. Always be thinking of your readers. How will they be interested or drawn to the site? Why will they want to read my post? Usually, in addition to my own adventures, I give some sort of tips or other information so that there is a variety.

11. Don't be a lone blogger. Just because you're getting more and more traffic doesn't mean you have to do it all yourself. Don't rely only on your blog to provide you with what you need, such as participants for contests. Run contests through Wizard101 Central if necessary, and don't be afraid to promote them through Twitter, Facebook, and your blog, even if it's only on Central. Welcome the help of others, too.

12. Do it quick. While you need to post quickly, do so with purpose, as always, and make it an extensive post covering the entire topic. If it's too large, such as wand selection, divide it into two or more posts. The point here is that it takes between 12 and 24 hours for your images and latest content to show up on Google. By the time the Kirin's Hoard is released, there will be many posts about it the next day. If you post that night, your images and information will show up first, and when those millions of wizards all go and Google Kirin's Hoard and Foo Dog, you'll have pictures ready for them. On what blog did you see your first pictures of the Kirin and Food Dog? I'm pretty sure that that's here! Consequently, that post, in about 24 hours, has gotten several hundred views and become one of the ten most popular posts!

13. No information? Add motivation. As you'll soon learn, I'm holding a contest on Central for a chance to win a Kirin's Hoard or an animated avatar. In reality, it cost me only 399 crowns, but so many people are after them that I assume it's going to go well. Instead of simply saying "Enter me," I'm preparing for future posts with an easy, five-question survey that will potentially fuel five more posts! That way, I'm getting information I need, and a few lucky participants are getting new avatars or an in-game pack! Most of the time, though, you can just post a thread or poll in the Fairgrounds, and you'll get enough responses.

14. Be the first, and be original. I can't stress this one enough. Don't run through a couple of random blogs on the Friendly Necromancer's list and get your ideas from there. If you're using an idea from someone else, give credit. You could even make it a new segment (*cough* Feature Posts). For example, ever since I started the "Read More" thing to save space on the main page, I've seen more and more blogs doing it. The same in true for some of the topic/interviews I've focused on. Take Professor Greyrose for example. She's the community manager for Wizard101 US and she isn't easy to get a hold of. Friendly did a great interview with her some time ago. Now, there isn't really much more we need to know. It would be senseless for me to interview her, because we know exactly how her job works, what she does on a day-to-day basis, and even some of her personal opinions. Be the first, and be original.

15. Remember why you blog. Remember, while you want the wizard community to read what you pour your heart into, you're blogging because you love it. It's fun to see your viewers increase, and get new followers, but make sure that when you're blogging, you blog for you. Do it because you love gathering the information and pictures, because you love everyone's reactions and comments, and because you can't live without the fun of blogging.

On that note, be sure to check out THIS THREAD for your chance to win a Kirin's Hoard or animated avatar! Thanks for reading and see you in the Spiral!

2 comments:

  1. Amazing post Jason :) Very insiprational. I hope those Wizards gain a lot from this :)

    It's always nice seeing someone in the community take certain matters into their own hands. Would you mind if I took snipets from this post and used it for my blog?

    Thanks and keep up the good work!
    -Blaze

    ReplyDelete

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