Blogging 101Whether you’re new to the scene, or a seasoned pro, a refresher is never a bad idea, especially when it comes to blogging.

Write What You Know… Or Don’t Know

We’ve heard our co-workers and friends tell us a million times, “I’m going to be a blogger,” without a clear picture of what they’re actually going to write.  The obvious choice would be to blog what you know, but a more challenging and satisfying endeavor would be to blog what you don’t know.  Is the goal of your blog to feature or teach?  If not, starting a blog can often be an exciting and motivating incentive to learn a new skill or hobby.

One of our longtime web developers wanted to learn how to be a better baker (seriously, this is a true story).  Instead of disappearing home every night and bringing in his treats the next morning, he decided to document his experience and post updates and accompanying photos to a blog.  Not only did everyone love following along, but he gained confidence in himself with every post.

Continuity is Crucial

If you stay consistent with your blogging, your readers will come to expect a certain schedule from you.  The good news is – you get to control this.  When you begin cultivating your blog, keep in mind your time availability.  Will other commitments keep you from posting more than once or twice a week?  Set a calendar.  Tell yourself,  “I’m going to have my topic picked out on Monday, I’m going to write on Tuesday, edit Thursday, and publish Saturday morning.”

PostSecret has reliably published fresh content on every Sunday (or Saturday night) since practically the beginning of time.  Once a week may seem like too little (or too much depending on the type of blogger you are), but they have established themselves as a Sunday morning must-read.  And while they rarely post more frequently than that, they supplement with daily tweets and Facebook updates.

Timing is Everything

The time of day that you should be publishing your posts for maximum exposure is not an exact science.  KISSmetrics has a great infographic to help determine best timing for you.  Timing will affect your readership so the more serious you are about audience size and traction, the more you need to factor it in.

We expect highly popular blogs like BuzzFeed to post almost around the clock, to the point where we wonder what’s going on when there’s no fresh content for an hour.  But realistically, at least when beginning, you need to gear your timing toward your expected, targeted readers.  Own a U.S.-based sari shopped with a large clientele in India?  Post your content during daytime and early evening hours in India, not in the states.  You’ll see more traffic and hopefully more sales.

Bottom line – whether blogging is your business or more just your hobby, following a few simple tips can help anyone be more successful online.