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This post is part 2 in a series that is based on questions about blogging that I received from a follower on Twitter. If you missed the first post, you can read it here.
For my existing readers, I want to share some practical tips that you can implement as you aim to grow your digital presence.
As you read, bear in mind that there are some assumptions I am making based on the first post: one, I am assuming that you’ve arranged your schedule to pursue blogging; two, you are ready to commit to your goal(s); and three, that you are in a space where you’re ready emotionally to embark on this adventure.
There are two aspects of blogging:
Micro blogging and blogging.
This post will cover how you can start or enhance your micro blogging experience, and part three will cover the blogging section.
Microblogging is something that most of us who are active on social media do and may not be aware of what it’s called. For instance, whenever you’re commenting, updating, tweeting, liking and asking questions on any of the social media channels, you are micro blogging.
To enhance your micro blogging experience, there are a couple of musts that you need to do to gain credibility on social media:
Your public image – what I mean by your public image is doing your best to ensure that your profile looks professional. A professional headshot may not be necessary in the beginning, but the picture or logo of your business must be clear and visually appealing. For one thing, you’ll want to include a current picture. People want to know who they are dealing with as much as possible online. Therefore, not including a picture of yourself gives the impression that you either don’t care or you have something to hide.
Your profile summary – which industry experts often refer to as your ‘real estate’. You want to make sure you tell potential viewers what you’re all about. Whether it’s using Twitter’s 140 characters, Facebook’s backdrop, Google Plus or LinkedIn, you should include a brief bio of your background or tell potential followers what you stand for. You want potential readers to be able to answer the question, “what’s your story?” This will help you find other like-minded followers to grow your network faster.
Invest your time where you are likely to succeed – Put the time and energy into the right social media channel(s) – It is nearly impossible when you’re first starting out on social media to manage 3 to 6 channels simultaneously and grow. You need to focus on one or two and master them before attempting to branch out to three to five.
The graph below provides a snapshot of frequency of usage for the top 5 social media channels. The goal here is to build your efforts on the platforms where your audiences spend most of their time.
As you can see, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are the top three places where people are daily. You can also read a full detailed report on the stats of usage and demographics link for the five major social media sites: The Demographics of Social Media Users. Then, select the ones that make sense for you. Once you’ve decided which social media platform(s) to focus on (I recommend 1 or 2 for efficiency), you then want to think about finding and eventually writing content that will resonate with your audience based on your passion. For example, if you want to build a social media platform on food, parenting and blogging like my fellow blogger, Kimberly Coleman from Mom in the City, then Facebook and Twitter are the places you want to spend your time.
But let’s say your passion is photography. In addition to Facebook, you’ll want to include Instagram as a place to spend your energy.
Build your platform daily
In the beginning, while you are learning the industry, you’ll need to spend 20 minutes daily to find quality content to share, respond to questions and have interesting conversations with your audience. You need to be social on social media.
There is no magic bullet as to which platform will work best. You have to test out the different platforms and see where your audience is. The most important thing is for you to be dependable by showing up daily to provide great value and connect with your audience. The reason you want to be consistent is because it builds credibility, and you are creating the building blocks that communicate to others that you’re serious. If you put the 20 minutes into practice for one month, you’ll start seeing your audience grow.
In summary, for this week, make it a point to spend 20 minutes daily putting some of the ideas you learned here into practice. Next week, we’ll talk about the technical elements and more ideas of what you’ll need to actually create your own blog with your domain name.
Over to you.
If you’re just starting out with micro blogging and you have found some useful tips, I’d love to hear from you. Please share them in the comments section below.