Whether you are a beginning blogger or consider yourself a seasoned pro, there are still a number of faux pas you want to avoid. This faux pas guide to blogging will help you learn what not to do so you can establish a successful blog.
1. Don’t Blog Regularly
If you commit to starting a blog, one of the most grievous mistakes you can make is not posting regularly. You need to come up with a schedule and stick to it. Whether you post several times a day or once a week, you need to find the schedule that works for you and commit to blogging on those dates.
You can get ahead of the curve by scheduling posts to post on a specific date, giving you more free time during the week if you can’t or don’t want to post on a given day. As long as you make an effort to post on a regular schedule, readers will feel like they can trust that your blog will stick around, and they are likely to keep returning to see what new information you have available.
2. Steal Content
This shouldn’t even have to be said, but unfortunately many bloggers often use images, whole articles and other copyrighted information without proper attribution to the original source. If you are planning on taking any images or text from another person, it’s important you ask for permission and link back to the original source.
If your blog is populated with stolen content, not only are you liable to upset a lot of people, but you won’t gain any popularity with readers, either. Readers want to see original content; ripping someone else off without properly crediting your source is a surefire way to make sure your blog never goes anywhere.
3. Ignore your Readers
If your blog is successful enough to have built up a readership, the last thing you want to do is ignore them. A large part of a blog’s success is your readership, and if you consistently ignore them you will find your blog plummeting to the bottom of the barrel.
With that being said, take the time to respond to reader comments. Encourage active participation by asking thought provoking questions of your readers, if you can. By actively engaging with your community, you are ensuring that they stick around for as long as you are able to continue to blog. Ignoring them is a huge faux pas, so avoid this at all costs.
4. Fail to Proofread
You may not be writing for The New York Times, but that doesn’t mean you can publish a post without proofreading it. While one typo here and there may not matter in the long run, if you consistently publish sloppy posts with no editing whatsoever, your readers will notice – and go elsewhere.
Once you’ve written a post, reread it before you hit the publish button. Read it once to yourself, and once out loud so you can see how well the post flows and catch any mistakes you may have missed on the first read-through.
5. Write Long Posts
No one wants to be inundated with a 5,000 word blog entry. If you have something to say that can’t be said briefly and succinctly, break up your post into several smaller posts to create a series of posts you can spread throughout the week, or on a schedule of your choosing.
Internet users have short attention spans, and they want their information now, as in, this instant. While one long post may not make or break your blog, you should aim to write short, succinct blogs and break up longer pieces into separate posts to keep readers coming back for more.
6. Start Flame Wars
While starting a flame war against another blogger may increase your traffic in the short term, it’s also a surefire way to create enemies in the blogging community, as well as ruin your credibility and ensure your blog’s downfall. Attacking another blogger, however justified you may feel in doing so, is never the right thing to do.
There are constructive ways to voice your opinions without resorting to insults and trashy behavior. Avoid starting a flame war on your blog (or on someone else’s, for that matter!)
This article merely touches on some of the most common faux pas of blogging. If you already do some of these things, now is the time to stop and begin working on making your blog a success.