The blog is two years old today. I KNOW. This was just supposed to be a bit of fun that no one was ever going to read. If you told me it would still be going in 2013 I’d have been very impressed. And weirdly, this is also my 200th post – it’s as if I planned it.
I have learned a few things along the way. None of this is rocket science but it’s the kind of thing you don’t know when you start out blogging.
1. Have a topic. It doesn’t matter what the topic is, but if you don’t have one it’s very hard to develop any kind of readership. Although your daily life is interesting to you, it’s really not interesting to read about – so you’ve got to have some kind of focus.
2. It’s ok if the topic changes. Your readers will stay with you. And a few random posts about whatever else is going on in your life is ok too. You just can’t have a blog that’s nothing but random posts. Or at least if you do, it’s called a diary that no one wants to read.
3. Keep it going. So many blogs I have read just fizzled out. In fact most of them do. If you don’t post regularly when you start, it doesn’t become a habit, which means you don’t build a regular group of readers, which means it isn’t very interesting for you as a writer, which means you fizzle out. I made a point of posting 3 times a week for at least six months when I started – I don’t know how I did it now, but it was worth it.
4. Become high in a list of search results. Unknowingly, by following point 3, I managed to end up quite high in Google searches on Iceland. This led to more readers, which also ultimately made this become more of a travel website than I had intended originally.
5. Be kind to your fellow bloggers. They are the only ones that will bother to comment on your posts, which means a lot! Some of my most viewed posts are the least commented on, as they have been read by random people who don’t blog and don’t realise how much some input helps you as a writer.
Two years down the line the blog has a become a place for me where I can visit Iceland every day.
The online community means that I don’t just get to go to Iceland for a few days at a time. I can keep up with what’s going on, meet other Iceland obsessives and even feel like I’m there by looking at live webcams. I can do all this every day if I want to. If I stopped blogging now, I would lose part of this community.
Thanks to all of you who have stuck with me for a while and to the more casual readers for continually challenging me with your questions and helping me to learn more about Iceland in the process! Any suggestions for content are always welcome.
I’m curious about other bloggers – why do you blog, and can you sum it up in a sentence?