The blogosphere is practically a world without limits. Despite the more than 133 million blogs indexed by blog search engine Technorati since 2002, more are still being created every day. The demand for blogs has been huge as well with 77% of internet users reading blogs, according to The West Program. If you will look at actual figures, The Future Buzz reported that there are 346 million people who read blogs globally. These numbers could mean two things for you and they are polar opposites:
- Unlimited Potential – There is a wide readership for blogs that has yet to be tapped. If your blog has a few thousand hits then you are still at the tip of the iceberg!
- Unlimited Competition – These millions of readers also have millions of blogs to choose from. This means that you can possibly become one of the nameless faces in the blogosphere.
With a blog buffet awaiting netizens, the need to establish your blogging reputation is more crucial than ever. Reputation is what makes you credible in the eyes of your readers. It is what gives you authority and reliability. Your blog reputation is how you are perceived by the online community. The more trustworthy you are, the more people will read your blog. However, you don’t achieve this overnight. It takes time, patience, and dedication to build a good one.
To help you with that, we have decided to create this three-part series on building your blog reputation. Today, we will zero in on your expertise. Then we will look at creating quality content before concluding the series with reader engagement. Let’s get started!
ESTABLISH YOUR EXPERTISE
Being an expert is about knowing what you’re good at and using it not only to profit yourself but also other people. It’s having the perfect combination of knowledge and experience to back up your specialization. When you know what it is that you do best then it becomes natural for you to share it with your readers. More importantly, it gives you confidence to talk about it because you know you’re good at it!
Are you a gadget guru who can blurt out specs in a snap? Are you a management ninja who can make people work harmoniously with no sweat? Or are you a serial bibliophile who can give unbiased and noteworthy recommendations? That niche skill that you have is your expertise. Know what it is and starting building your blogging reputation on that.
Since we are looking at “blog” reputation, you need to leverage your blog site as the platform for this. There are three key parts in your site where you can establish your expertise. Let’s go through it one by one:
1) Hog Your Header.
Think of your header as your personal billboard or a prime time placement on TV. Everything that you want your readers to know about your specialization should be there. This consists of the name of your blog site, a short punchy description, and a logo or image. The description and logo are optional if your name says it all.
Take for example Business Insider, one of the top 25 blogs named by Technorati. You already know that you will be getting something premium about the business world by simply reading its name. Same goes for Bleacher Report, although this one has a logo, it doesn’t need a short description because it has already established itself as one of the best blog sites for sports journalism. Your header is your spotlight so hog it with passion!
2) All About YOU.
By this, I mean we’re talking about your “About Us” or “About Me” page. This section of your blog is where you can lay down everything—portfolio, CV, testimonials—anything and everything that will reinforce your credibility as an expert. Choose a striking photo so that people can put a face to your name not some random image or symbol. Make sure you place all relevant information about you including links to your social media accounts. Remember that when readers like your content they get intrigued with the blogger and the first thing they’ll check out would be your About page.
One of the best About pages in the web is by Tim Ferriss, author of the bestselling book “The 4-Hour Workweek.” Praise for his books and accomplishments are the first lines that will greet you there. It also contains his educational background along with some funny anecdotes about him. Another great example is Andrew Reifman’s About page. Reifman is a graphic designer and you can evidently see that in the layout of his page. His fields of expertise are presented in a cool graph-like format. He also included an icon at the bottom right corner of the page where potential clients can download his CV. Be creative, compelling, and yes, conceited in your About page. It’s the place where you can market you without any objections!
3) Save the sidebars.
Sidebars are strategic parts of your blog site. You can use it to put your affiliations like if you belong to a blog network or an established online community. It is also a prime spot for promos and freebies you want to give away. Sidebars are also great for adding links that will bring more information to your readers. By offering more to your site followers, you are also adding value to your blog thus strengthening your reputation all the more.
Known as the most successful blog in the world, Huffington Post ranks number one in Technorati’s list of Top 100 blogs. Its sidebars contain featured blog posts and bloggers who provide more quality content for Huffington readers.
So are you ready to revamp your blog? Make sure you communicate clearly what your specialization is to gain optimal exposure in your site. Maximize these key areas to fully convey your expertise. Remember that your niche is the foundation of your blogging reputation. Everything else will take off from there.
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