Once you start a blog and get it off the ground, the next step is to amass a loyal following. After all, followers are the most coveted thing to a blogger.
Building followers means you are building your readership and growing your blog. Without numbers, how are we to know if what we are doing is paying off?
Here are a few tips for building your readership to help translate those visitors into followers.
Create a unique blog
Many bloggers seem to overlook the most important thing when trying to gain followers: creating a unique blog.
Your blog should be a place where people want to gravitate to. Whenever you create a post, try to add your own spin on it either through your photos or the way you write.
What makes your blog you? Establishing your blog as an extension of yourself and who you are makes it more personable and easier for readers to relate to.
Tip: Make sure you have a killer About Me page on your blog. This is a great place to establish who you are, why your started your blog, and make a connection to your audience.
Mingle in the blogging community
You’re never going to attract any followers if you’re not out there mingling with other bloggers. If you don’t, you’re limiting your audience and making it difficult for others to find you.
Build relationships with other bloggers by chatting with them, sharing their posts with your own readers, or inviting them to guest post on your blog.
Tip: Network using offline events to meet other bloggers and influencers in your industry. More connections = more room for growth.
Comment on other blog posts
Getting involved in the blogging community means reading other blogs; and reading a lot of them. Build up your personal blogroll and get out there!
Commenting on other blog posts is your way of leaving your mark online. Though it might not be noticeable, there are blog hoppers out there who will click on your comment username to check out your own blog as well.
Reply to your own comments
This is important to keep visitors returning to your site. Especially in the beginning stages of your blog, replying to comments is a simple way of acknowledging the commenter and letting them know you appreciated them stopping by.
If you can start conversations with a commenter, even better! This not only helps build your readership but also helps to with expanding your circle of people you interact with.
Social network it up!
Social networks are the future of blog traffic. Make sure you are available on the major social networking sites and use them often.
Hop onto Twitter during some twitter chats and get to know some other people who are interested in the same things as you. When a topic is trending, this is the perfect opportunity.
Some blogger chats to look out for are #bbloggers (beauty bloggers), #fbloggers (fashion bloggers), #blogchat (for bloggers in general), and #fblchat (fashion, beauty, life). Check your own trends to see which ones appeal to you and jump right into the conversation!
Make sure to follow other bloggers who interest you and most of the time they will return your follow with their own.
Social networking is all about expanding your network. It’s not a place to post about giveaways and new blog posts all the time. It’s not meant to be a promotional tool.
Keep your self-promoting and links to a minimum and be sure to fill your feed with a bunch of other topics so that you look like you actually do converse with others.
There are social media tools that make engaging with others, following trends, and even creating and sharing posts easy. So there’s really no reason not to make the most of it.
Share, share, share!
Sharing your posts after you’ve published them is super important.
Unless a reader is subscribed to your RSS feed, social sharing could equal more than half of your traffic. Just remember to not overdo it as I explained above.
Some great sites for sharing your content are Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, but be sure to reach outside of your social circles for maximum impact.
The best way to share your content is to do so with a great photo. Sharing text links is alright, but you’ll make the most impact with a photo.
Don’t be afraid to create different versions of your photo to stand out on the different social network sites. For example, Pinterest tends to work best when you use a vertical/portrait style photo as it takes up the most real estate on the main screen. Creating a special image just for Pinterest can have a major impact.
Tip: There are very helpful Pinterest extensions for Chrome that make pinning and sharing images quick and easy.
By expanding your reach and putting yourself out there more, your site will attract more visitors which in turn will hopefully convert to regular followers.
Remember: content is key so you need to be creating posts that make the visitor want to come back. Because really, what good is a follower if they only visit your site once?
I would love to know some of your tips for gaining followers below!