A popular blog is definitely a good source of income if properly monetized. But it’s becoming tough to own a blog that’s read by thousands.
It’s super simple these days to create a blog. All you need is a few dollars in your wallet and you are done with buying a domain name, hosting and a couple of plugins and themes. Everyone can do this in a matter of minutes. However, blogging doesn’t end there.
If you are very good at writing or you have enough funds to hire writers who pour content daily or weekly to you, it still won’t make your blog popular if you end at that point.
If you really want to own and maintain a popular blog that’s talked about by everyone in your niche, there are two options:
- Buy a blog that’s popular: The last time I checked, popular blogs ain’t cheap unless you happen to find one run by a blogger who is in desperate need of funds for some reason.
- Build it to the top: This doesn’t come in a few months except if you are some popular figure. If Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook starts a new blog today, it will definitely take him weeks to drive it to the top.
How To Start A Blog And Make It Popular
We are not going to be looking at buying a popular blog. I’m going to be giving some tips to help you start a new blog and make it popular in no time. If you’re running a struggling blog, some of these tips are going to come in handy.
#1. Your Domain Name Counts
I have read a few documents on tips to make your blog popular but none have pointed out the fact that your domain name is a factor. Yes it is. Your domain name (Generally a business name) gives identity to your business. Whether it’s long and complex to pronounce or short and easy to read makes a big difference.
Your website address isn’t really the name we read like nopassiveincome.com but the Internet Protocol (IP) address attached to it, something like 126.96.36.199. How easy is it to remember this series of numbers? The human brain finds this a big challenge. To make this easier for you and I to remember, a domain naming system (DNS) was developed to attach readable text to this IP address. It’s easier to remember nopassiveincome.com than 188.8.131.52 (which is similar to its address)
Now, if you do not succeed in giving an easy-to-remember name to your blog, you make the job of memorizing it difficult. The more complex your domain name, the more it plays on your popularity. Sometimes you remember there is a website you found with interesting information. But you just can’t get back to it because you’ve forgotten the winding, complex and difficult name.
I know it’s hard to come up with short catchy domain names these days. Maybe you should think of using a business name generator or simply put your brain to serious thinking.
I remember some of my friends with domain names I find very difficult to forget. Ryan came up with a crazy name BloggingFromParadise where he blogs from paradise. How about Janice with MostlyBlogging? Alternatively, you may use your real name. I came up with EnstineMuki.com. Others like ZacJohnson.com, JohnChow.com, NeilPatel.com, etc. took the same line and it’s going pretty well.
Your domain name actually has an impact on your blog’s popularity so give it some serious thought before any further move to get it registered.
#2. Prioritize Your Email List
One of the errors I made when I started blogging back in 2012 was that I didn’t start building my list early. Your email list is actually the marketplace owned and controlled by you. Unlike your Social Media outlets, no one has the capacity to decide and freeze your list. If you mess up with your Email Service Provider (ESP), what they can do is freeze your account and give you access to your property, which is your list.
It’s good to build an active Social Media presence (I will talk about this later) but your list should be a priority. The point here is that you don’t have to start with paying for email marketing tools as there are many commendable free email marketing services out there.
Your list is a very sure source of gaining traffic and sales. Each time I create new content and send an alert to my list, there is always a spike in traffic. I nourish my list with useful content and my subscribers have come to know me almost personally. They buy from me, tweet, share and link back to my content, etc. A list of 20k active subscribers means you have access to a huge marketplace.
Now, you are not going to build a huge list in a matter of a few months. The traffic you drive to your blog and your list building strategy all have a big part to play.
#3. The Content You Publish
Your content quality definitely plays a big role in determining your popularity. People have often mistaken content length for quality. Long-form doesn’t mean value. It’s what the reader walks away with that determines the quality of your content.
If you want to fill the gaps so as to impress the search engines, your readers will have a way of telling those search scripts that you have just written nonsense. By pogo-sticking, clicking away without any engagement, etc., the search engines will receive negative signals and the consequence is easy to guess at that point.
Any popular blog has something that attracts and causes readers to sign up, stick around and tell others about it.
Here are some simple guidelines to create powerfully attractive content:
- Talk about something your readers won’t easily find elsewhere
- Be the first to let your readers know about something
- Take something your readers already know about and help them discover a new angle
- Make sure your content solves problems
- Add entertainment to your publications
- Make it easy to share
- Make it search engine friendly so Google and other search engines find and rank it
#4. It’s More Powerfully About You
What makes any blog powerful is the blogger behind the blog. The blog is just the script hosted on a remote server. But the success and popularity of your blog rely heavily on the value in you. If you want to increase productivity as a blogger, you must work on your inside.
I have been invited on several occasions to speak at blogging events not because of what my blog has but because of what I have to give to the audience. You must train and invest in yourself to fit in at all points.
Create products and help people in your society succeed in your niche or related businesses. My blog does not target my country. But I soon discovered it’s becoming popular among Cameroonians because of some of my products. Being a certified expert in cryptocurrency, my recent book Crypto-monnaise au Cameroun has done a great deal in selling out my blog.
#5. Promotion Strategy
If you’ve taken time to read this conclusion, I’m going to mention the last factor here: TIME! Yes, it will take time for your blog to become popular if you are consistent in doing what is right. I advise against anything black hat (Black hat SEO, Black Hat Social Media,etc). You may get quick results with black hat techniques but they are not long-lasting.