It’s 15 minutes before 3:00 in the morning; that press coffee I had earlier is obviously doing its job well. Since I couldn’t sleep I figured I should make myself useful. If you see me tomorrow with raccoon eyes, please know that it’s the result of writing this list, of the ten things I learned in my four years of blogging.
1. Quality over quantity
One of the most common tips I read about blogging is that it’s important to blog everyday to maintain readership. I strongly disagree. I’d rather wait for a post from a blogger, provided that it’s of quality, than read a mediocre writing every single day. Also, you have to consider that not all of your readers can neither blog hop everyday nor have the patience to back read. If you post too often, you risk the chance of them missing your past articles. Of course we don’t want that to happen. To me, a missed post is a wasted post.
2. A picture paints a thousand words
So make an effort to take good photos. I’m not saying that you buy an SLR (though it would help) but even if you’re just using camera phone, it’s still possible to create good photos. Learn how to use natural lighting and how to spot and shoot the right angle. If all else fails, you can still enhance your pictures with photo-editing software or applications.
3. Get personal
If your blog is not personal (say you’re a food or a fashion blogger), I advise that you make a personal post once in a while. This makes you more human to your readers, and breaks that notion that you’re just another anonymous, unfeeling entity in the net. [Read: The Cake Epiphany]
4. Be courteous
Even if the commenter is being an asswipe, address his or her comment in a nice way. You earn nothing but stress when you engage in online debate. Just because somebody decides to be mean to you on the net, doesn’t mean you should stoop to his level. I’m not saying you should be a pushover, but if you really have to answer back, do it in a diplomatic way.
Everybody is entitled to his opinion but if someone goes beyond his boundary, do not hesitate to remove his comment. Own your blog. Do not tolerate Internet trolls.
6. Do not spam
There’s nothing more irritating than bloggers who are just out to promote their blogs and then make it too obvious by just leaving their link after writing a comment that doesn’t have anything to do with the post. Honestly, I find it rude and disrespectful.
Always answer queries, fan mail, and invites. Also, as much as possible, reply to the comments of your readers. It always pays to be polite and grateful.
If you find a post useful, entertaining, or informative, do not hesitate to share it with people you know. The heart of blogging after all is to express and share emotions, thoughts, and experiences.
9. Smile and win a friend
I used to be a snob until I learned to loosen up and try to meet and be friends with other bloggers, and boy was I glad that I did. Now I have more friends and it has also helped widen my network.
10. Share not impair
Unless the experience is a total nightmare, and it would help to warn other people about it, refrain from writing a negative review about a particular subject (e.g. food, establishments, service). What didn’t work for you may not be true with other people. It’s one thing to share your opinion, it’s another to completely discredit the subject in question. Never impose or shove your opinion down somebody else’s throat. Or at least make a disclaimer that you are just sharing your experience and readers are still free to check it for themselves.
So why did I share these things? Why it’s Coffeehan’s fourth anniversary! To all people who have, one way or another, become a part of Coffeehan, I send you my deepest gratitude. And to you my dear readers, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.