For many entrepreneurs and their businesses, a blog is the single most valuable tool for maintaining their brand’s online presence. If you’re just getting started with your own blog, though, recognize that it usually takes time to achieve success.
Furthermore, if there’s one thing you need to focus on, it’s how to stand out from the thousands of other blogs that will vie for the attention of your audience.
Content overload is a real thing.
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The internet is a noisy place. There’s a lot going on, so it’s not the easiest place to win visibility. Consider the fact that every single minute, Google processes four million searches; bloggers post 1,400 new blog posts; and Facebook users share 2.46 million pieces of content.
For any individual blogger, it’s nearly impossible to stand out amid this kind of noise . . . but it is possible. You’ll just need to make a long-term commitment to achieve visibility. And that's as easy as 1-2-3. It might take you years to cultivate a profitable blog, but the following three tips should speed up the process for you, and help your blog become as visible as possible.
1. Start with the domain name.
Believe it or not, the initial key to creating a memorable blog has nothing to do with the design or content, but everything to do with its URL label. Pick the right domain name and you’ll build a successful brand that connects with your target market. Choose the wrong one and you could end up fighting against obscurity.
Here are a few tips for how to select a memorable domain name that will add punch to your blog:
- Use.com. Marketing expert (and Entrepreneur contributor) Neil Patel is one of the world's top entrepreneurs, and he’s adamant that bloggers should stick to recognizable domain extensions. “There are plenty of domain extensions, known as top-level-domains or TLDs,” Patel says. “The most common is .com. Other popular TLDs are .org, .net, and .biz. I recommend that you use.com.” If your domain name ends in .com, your blog is less likely to be confused with others.
- Short is best. Which URL are you more likely to remember? MyWebsite.com or MyFirstCompanyWebsiteEver.com? The first one, obviously. Shorter domain names are much easier to remember, so they’ll result in a higher level of organic search traffic.
- Easy to pronounce. It’s amazing how many bloggers don’t think about how their domain name looks in print before they choose it. Remember that there will be no spaces in between the words of a domain name, so you have to be aware that people might confuse the grammatical structure. Check out a few of these examples to see what I'm talking about.
There are obviously other things to keep in mind, but if you remember the three rules above, you’ll do just fine.
2. Develop 'sticky' blog posts.
A good domain name may get people to visit, but it’s not going to encourage them to come back unless valuable content appears on your blog. You should focus less on posting a certain volume of words per week and more on producing high-quality posts that are sticky and shareable.
“Sticky” posts require the right topic and a killer headline. The topic should be something that is unique, but won’t be irrelevant a few months hence.
The headline needs to reflect the ingenuity of the article, while still being clear and concise. As successful blogger Darren Rowse says, “Make sure your headline is relevant. Don’t make it obscure, in an attempt to be clever (or keyword-rich). An obscure headline is just one more obstacle to a busy reader.”
Finally, sticky posts are scannable and digestible. Don’t use massive chunks of text. Instead, use short paragraphs and break things up with bullet points, images, bolded text and subheadings.
3. Place an emphasis on visuals.
If you study successful blogs in 2016, you’ll quickly notice that they all prioritize visuals. The reason is, visuals make content highly shareable and memorable.
“Text and oral presentations are not just less efficient than pictures for retaining certain types of information; they are way less efficient,” says John Medina, a developmental molecular biologist who specializes in the human brain. “If information is presented orally, people remember about 10 percent, tested 72 hours after exposure. That figure goes up to 65 percent if you add a picture.”
To spice up your posts and make them more memorable, be sure to include diagrams, charts, videos, memes and pictures. Not only will you enjoy positive long-term results, you’ll also see a direct boost in on-page analytics.
4. Make your blog stand out.
If you can do these three things well, your blog stands a much better chance of being memorable. It’s not going to be an effortless task to make a name for your blog, but these tips will give you a fighting chance in a crowded marketplace where thousands of blog posts are published each and every day.