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The 10 Commandments of Blogging

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Whether you’re blogging for fun or profit, there are rules you want to abide by. This will make sure your blog has the best chance of getting discovered.

In this post, we’ll go over the ten commandments of blogging. Following these rules will give your site a shot at success.

Are you ready to start a blog? Let’s begin.

1. Thou Shall Follow Google’s Best Practices

As a blogger, you want your site to show up in the search results. And the best way of doing that is by sticking to Google’s best practices.

the ten commandments - webmaster guidelines

Google’s Webmaster Guidelines has all the information you need to start on the right track.

2.  Thou Shall Post Regularly and Frequently

You need to set up a posting schedule. And you need to stick to it once it’s established. That way, your audience will know when to expect fresh content to arrive. It’s also good for SEO.

Once a week would be a good starting point.

But as you go on, you would want to post more often than that. If you can, try to publish a new post everyday especially if your blog has other contributors.

3. Thou Shall Find Your Voice

It’s also important to find your voice. Do not copy how other successful bloggers write. You need to stay true to yourself.

How do you do that?

Start by setting rules that you have to adhere to. Then look at your audience and see what they’re looking for. More often than not, you’ll find that someone else has already written about the topic you want to write about. In that case, find a unique angle and give your own take.

4. Thou Shall Leverage Visual Content

Having images, videos, infographics, charts, graphs, and other forms of media on your post will help retain your reader’s attention. It also promotes user engagement and helps you tell your story more effectively.

the ten commandments - venngage

Venngage is a great tool for developing images and infographics for any type of post.

5. Thou Shall Engage With Your Audience

Find a way to interact with your audience through social media, forums, or the comments section. Answer their questions or simply say thanks. If they’re confused by something you wrote, use this chance to clarify what you meant.

If you have an analytics tool installed on your blog, you can refer to the data to find more about your audience.

You can invite loyal readers to contribute to your blog. Not only is it a good way of connecting with them, but you’re also able to publish new content.

Ask your followers to promote your posts on social media. It’s a fantastic way of getting new eyes on your blog site. If you have a mailing list, ask a reader for an email address where you could send newsletters.

6. Thou Shall Choose a Good Domain Name

A great domain name can make a great difference. For bloggers, their domain name is their brand. So you should choose your domain name wisely.

  • What makes a great domain name? Here are some pointers:
  • Use a .com domain extension as much as possible.
  • Do not add special characters like hyphens.
  • Avoid having numbers in your domain name.
  • Keep your domain name short and easy to remember.
  • Check if other brands or businesses are using a similar domain to avoid confusion.

Profit Blitz has a post on domain name ideas if you’re looking for inspiration.

7. Thou Shall Not Steal Content From Other Blogs

For obvious reasons, plagiarism is not cool with the blogging community. So only post original content. Search engines like Google punish sites that steal content once caught. It’s just not worth the risk.

8. Thou Shall Perform Keyword Research

Keyword research plays an important role in any type of site. You want to post content that people are actively searching for.

the ten commandments - ubersuggest

You can use free tools like Google’s Keyword Planner or Ubersuggest to see what search terms are being used in your niche. Then base your articles around those topics.

9. Thou Shall Check for Typos and Clarity

A post that has a crazy amount of typos can make your blog look unprofessional. Fortunately, there are online tools you can use to check your articles for misspellings and other grammatical errors.

the ten commandments - hemingway

You can use the Hemingway App or Grammarly to quickly scan your document. Both tools send alerts when they find problems and offer suggestions on how to fix them.

10. Thou Shall Make Your Posts Easy to Read

Your readers will most likely use a phone to read your posts. So having long paragraphs might be a turnoff for them. Try to keep your paragraphs two to three sentences long.

Don’t make it hard for readers to scan through your post.

Christopher Jan Benitez is a freelance writer for hire who provides actionable and useful web content to small businesses and startups. In his spare time, he religiously watches professional wrestling and finds solace in listening to '80s speed metal.

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Blogging

How Much Confidence Do You REALLY Have in Your Blog?

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Watch this video I recorded in Brooklyn Heights today:

Sweet view, eh? I made a powerful point too. Bloggers sometimes boast of their confidence and clarity. Puffing themselves up, they believe deeply in themselves and in their blog. Critics? Who cares? These dynamos seem unstoppable. Belief! Success is on the way, right? Awesome. Then, after mentioning their blog in front of a parent or sibling or cousin, their loved ones make fun of “blogging”, telling these idiots to “get a real job”. OUCH! Like a balloon being popped, your loved ones took a pin to your ego, deflating you. AND showing how you genuinely have little confidence in your blog. Turns out, you feel filled with doubt and pure uncertainty about your blog AND in yourself, blogging-wise. This is a good thing. Critics trigger and unearth deep fears you need to face, feel and release, to reach the next stage of your blogging career. So…how much confidence do you REALLY have in your blog? Talk about your blog to friends and family members, or to strangers. You will find out. Fast. Because these folks are non-targeted and often highly NOT interested in blogging.

I recall mentioning my blog to my fam about 10 years ago. Before doing this, I believed I felt super confident about my blog and self. I BELIEVED in myself! Wild-eyed, ignorant, deluded newbie blogging excitement covered up the fact I doubted myself and my blogging abilities, horribly. After that little chat – even though no family member seemed terribly critical – I felt like crap. Awkward, and lost, my family’s questions triggered deep fears in me. I doubted myself. I doubted my blog. In truth, I had no idea what I was doing because I refused to learn from pros. Bad idea. Naturally, I gained confidence after this session – eventually – because I faced and felt doubts eating into my blogging confidence.

The quickest way to gain blogging confidence is to discuss your blog and what you do with anybody on earth, from friends, to fam, to strangers. Never try to convince or influence or convert folks, because doing so shows your lack of confidence. Let people live their lives and make their choices. Your job is to see how shy or clear you feel discussing your blog. Shy bloggers feeling awkward chatting blogging with folks simply feel filled with fear. Blogging fears need to go for you to succeed. Speak about blogging in public. Broadcast live in a public spot. Record videos in busy spots with heavy foot traffic, as I did above, in Brooklyn. Face, feel and release self-conscious fears that need to go for you to reach the next stage of blogging growth.

One way to be a smarter and richer blogger is by facing your blogging fears routinely. Speaking to or in front of fam or strangers about your blog certainly unearths some of those deep fears. Do it. See where you are at, confidence-wise. Being straight with yourself is hands down one of the quickest ways to accelerate your blogging success. Relax, share your blogging exploits and honestly assess how you feel, to increase your blogging success.

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Blogging

Writing: Your Best Blogging Friend

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Writing helps you succeed with blogging. Because writing gives you credibility. Credible bloggers land clients, sell eBooks, place sponsored posts and drive steady traffic, too. Write your rear end off. Write 500-1000 words daily. Write to be confident. Write to be clear. Write to gain credibility in your blogging niche. Of course, most bloggers struggle because few bloggers practice writing offline, daily. Bloggers only write when they publish a blog post or guest post. BIG mistake. Most bloggers publish posts infrequently, meaning you get in little writing practice. Not good.

Why do you believe you can just show up, write and publish a post and become successful quickly? If blogger were this easy, guys like me could have gone pro within weeks of buying my domain and hosting. Alas, it took me thousands of hours and years to go full time because I had to practice writing, creating and connecting to be REALLY good at blogging. Skills, exposure and credibility flow to bloggers who tirelessly practice all aspects of blogging. Everybody else fails and quits.

All money you make through blogging flows to you because people trust you and your blog. Writing skillfully – with confidence and clarity – is the only way people trust you and your blog. The more you write, the more skilled a writer you become. The formula is genuinely simple. But quite uncomfortable to put into action, sometimes. Few bloggers want to practice writing with nobody watching. Some bloggers foolishly skip writing practice because they believe writing offline for practice wastes their time. This is like saying you waste your time practicing shooting hoops in a lonely, empty gym if you aspire to make it to the NBA. NBA stars practiced 10,000 hours or more, often times in quiet, lonely gyms, and always *in private, out of the public eye, with nobody watching*, to become skilled enough to go pro. Expect to take a similar journey in order to become a professional blogger.

Writing is your core skill. If you write well, you make money online. If you write poorly, you do not make money online.

Buy my eBook:

15 Ways to Make Money Blogging

Every way to profit – out of these 15 strategies – can work quite nicely if you practice writing offline daily. Practice to become confident. Practice to become clear on your writing. Confident, clear writers write with authority. Writing with authority inspires trust in your readers. Again; this is a simple process. But sometimes, this process feels uncomfortable. Nudge through discomfort. Write, write and write some more. People who trust you based on your writing skills tend to buy your eBooks, hire you to coach them, hire you to freelance write for them and buy sponsored posts on your blog. Be diligent in writing. The money flows to you based on how much you practice writing. Plus, practicing your writing makes you prolific. Being prolific increase your blog traffic and blogging profits, too. No downsides exist to writing offline daily. Only upsides. So….write!

Practice in private. Shine in public.

Any successful blogger you envy now practiced writing so diligently that you would never envy their writing practice. After having written millions of words both online and offline, nobody envies the work I put into going pro. But being free to circle the globe? Worth it!

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Blogging

Do You Assume too Much?

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One of the biggest problems in blogging; bloggers assume too much. Perfect example is someone emails looking for your best sponsored post price. Right away, most bloggers fear losing money to a cheapie because they ASSUMED someone looking for the best price is cheap. Based on past experience. NO! Do NOT do this. Because based on NOT assuming, but being open and in the moment, more than a handful of folks looking for the best price placed orders at my full price, when I shared it was my final price. I rarely if ever assume because assuming cuts you off from traffic and money, based on past experience and future expectations.

These days, I am more in the moment. I am open. Let’s say a blogger quotes their sponsored post price as being $100. A blogger outreach service pro asks for a lower, better price. In that moment, you can do one of two thing: make a foolish assumption that the individual cannot afford $100 or simply share how $100 is your flat, final price. Assuming they cannot afford $100 INSTANTLY robs you of $100. I mean, instantly. Labeling their email as spam or being nasty with them immediately robs you of $100, based on your ignorant assumption. Choosing not to assume anything opens you up to making a quick $100. Wealthy people with large budgets sometimes seek the best price. Rockefeller would be worth $280 billion today – by estimates – and he balanced his books to the penny. He sought the best price but had billions to invest and did invest billions to be the wealthiest person the world has ever known.

This is why I wrote Creating the Mindset of a Successful Blogger for you. How you choose to think and feel dictates how you act. How you act dictates your success. Failures cling to the past and wander into the future by assuming future scenarios based on past experience. But wise bloggers remain grounded in the present, never assuming. Of course, many cheap bloggers willing to pay only $5 for a $100 sponsored post emailed you with “the best price” reply, in the past. But never rob yourself of $100 by assuming these folks do not have $100 to invest in your guest post. I leave no stones unturned. The way I see it, spending 1 second to read a “Give me a sponsored post for $5” email here and there is worth the “OK, let’s place it for $100” email I see more often these days. Assuming cuts you off from abundance. Being open-minded tunes you in to abundance. Make more money. Be open-minded. Stop assuming.

A few moments ago, our Uber driver told us he originally hailed from Jordan. He has been in the USA for 20 years. My silly mind made a quick assumption; he must live in NYC, like many folks do who immigrated to the USA over the past few decades. He still had a heavy accent. But I refused to assume this and asked him where he lived in the USA. He said in the same New Jersey suburban development where we lived. Small world! Not assuming opens you up to fun, fascinating experiences. Stop assuming online. You’ll make more money, too, and will enjoy your blogging journey.

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