Building a loyal blog community takes time, energy and focus. Establishing relationships that transition casual readers into loyal blog fans will not happen overnight.While maintaining a consistent flow of engaging content is vital, there are other key aspects that build credibility, trust and loyalty between you and your readers.Newbie bloggers can find it frustrating to pour both heart and soul into a post only to receive zero feedback. But don’t be discouraged. There are sure-fire ways to take your blog from top-secret to daily destination.
1. Post Consistently
Posting consistently lends credibility to your blog. However, finding inspiration on a daily basis can be a challenge. In order to stick with your posting schedule, take the time to put a system in a place.
- Create a monthly schedule or blog calendar and decide how many posts per week you can commit to.
- Pick the day(s) and time you will post so your readers become accustom to looking for you.
- Use a content or editorial calendar to plan your strategy in advance. Choose your topics based on the needs of your audience and be willing to adjust if needed. There are multiple ways to create your calendar including Excel, Google Docs or Google Calendar.
2. Be an Active Part of Your Community
Many elements affect how your readers view and interact with your blog. If you have a habit of posting and disappearing, your readers will take notice. Become an active part of your blog community and respond promptly to any and all comments.Treat your readers with the same respect you would any client. They are the lifeblood of your online world. A loyal community will evolve if you consistently interact, engage and reply in a timely manner and with an authentic voice.
3. Be a Valuable Resource
Answer questions, provide tips and offer items of value that are relevant to your readership. Listen to your readers and find ways to solve their problems. Doing this will establish you as the go-to authority within your field or market.Remember, this is a commitment to your community. Giving freely of your insight, wisdom and knowledge will allow readers to see that you are building a relationship and not simply chasing a paycheck.
4. Content Counts
There is no getting around it: You can't just throw a post up on your blog and expect it to resonate with your readers. You need quality, targeted content. Without it, even the best of techniques will fail to result in new subscribers.If you have an existing blog, your answer to what content is relevant to your readers can be found in your analytics. Scroll through your posts and see which topics generated the most comments. Are these topics in line with what you want to promote or are they tangents to your main direction that you can develop further?Ask questions, listen to the answers and study your analytics. It is very easy to see through analytics where your readers came from, what keywords they used to end up on your page and how long they are staying on your site. This is precisely why it is vital to speak directly to the needs of your readers and adjust that message to encourage readership growth.
5. Let Your Passion Shine Through
If you love what you do then it should reflect in everything you say and write. Be excited about what you have to offer and why your product or service will not only meet, but exceed their expectations.Consumer’s sense desperation so make sure to keep your posts upbeat, positive and informative without getting bogged down by dreary details. This is a business, your business and not some idle chatter with friends. Take ownership of the information you post and the resources you provide.
6. Stop Sitting on the Sidelines
The single most effective way to build loyalty and trust is through conversation. A blog allows readers to get to know you on a very intimate level. If you let comments sit without responding or even acknowledging them, you are giving away a valuable opportunity. You not only have the chance to answer their question in a public forum, but you allow your readers to see that you care about their needs and are there to assist when they are ready.Building trust with your blog readers takes courage, confidence in your product or service and a willingness to "go deep" with the very people that can and will elevate your blog to new heights. How are you creating a loyal blog community?
About Rebekah Radice
Rebekah Radice, co-founder of BRIL.LA, has traded narcissism for purpose. When not driving growth, you'll find her tricking family into thinking she's Emeril Lagasse - likely covered in marinara. The spotlight was fun, but impact is better. These days she's using 20+ years of brand brilliance for good.