Blogging is a fun world where you can get your creative ideas out there and tell the world all about your passion.
But what actually is a blogger?
A blogger is someone who creates blogs (online weblogs) for business or pleasure, that are then published online for the world to see. Blogs come from all topics of the world. I have been hard-pushed to find a topic that someone, somewhere is writing online (blogging!) about.
In order to create a blog, the blogger needs certain skills. And, to be a successful blogger, these skills need to be on point!
Skills That Are Required From A Blogger
Over the years that I have been working with blogs, there are skills that I have picked up that you will also naturally pick up as a blogger.
To become a successful blogger, when you first start learning how to blog, here are the skills that you will also need to immerse yourself in.
Photo editing Skills.
Either not having photo-editing skills OR outsourcing your blogging needs really isn’t an option. Of course, there is a place for graphic designers within your business as a blogger. But, just having the ability to add simple text, background images etc is a skill that you cannot rely on others for. Just from a practical point, sending and waiting for replies is frankly a waste of your time.
There are some great tools out there, all with varying complexities. I LOVE Photoshop and it is always running in the background, but photoshop comes with a price tag! GIMP is an alternative/open source software alternative to Photoshop.
My main recommendation – I am falling more and more in love with Canva for image creation and editing. The free version is hands down amazing. I have upgraded to pro and it is worth every penny. But create an account on canva.com and take a look at how it can help with your blog’s images. There are loads of pre-formatted size images to suit all social media requirements, and the team at Canva are building and adding more as time goes by.
SEO – Search Engine Optimisation
SEO is exactly that – optimising your blog content for the search engines – Search Engine Optimisation.
As a blogger and with technology evolving at a dramatic rate, we no longer have to guess what people are searching for online. So, dig a little deeper and we do not have to guess what users within your niche are searching for. SEO is a combination of researching for ‘keywords’ – words that are typed into online searches – then figuring out how to get seen in the search engines. So, if you had a blog related to kitchen accessories, when a user types in for the new bestest kettle on the market – they will see your blog and read your information. That, in a nutshell is SEO.
And for a blogger, SEO is a powerful tool. A popular approach is to review products related to your subject on your blog, get your blog ranking high up so users can find you – and often the blogger makes a commission. This is where blogging can get really interesting 🙂
SEO is a massive topic in itself, but by adhering to SEO ‘basics’ alone, you can have a great impact on your blog’s online presence. For a full indepth guide – look at this guide. A very reputable website with immediate, actionable plans to improve your blog’s SEO.
HTML and CSS.
HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) and CSS (Cascading style sheets) are programming languages of the internet. HTML provides the framework and CSS provides the styling.
As skills required to be a blogger is the focus here, I thought I would put this in. OK, you do not need to know HTML and CSS to set up or even run your blog…..BUT I recommend learning the basics of these languages. Learning them only enhance your productivity as a blogger. Often there are small changes that are needed within your blog. WordPress do a fantastic job of helping non-coders with plugins for every activity or need, but often there are options to tweak a little with HTML and CSS.
Read up on it, definitely a good tool to have in your blogging arsenal. I recommend W3Schools as a great free resource to learn the basics and more.
If you wish to delve more into coding (you might find a real liking for it!) there are lots to choose from. I will recommend Codeacademy.com as another FREE website to learn from
Self-discipline is an essential blogging skill.
If you want your blog to be successful, consistency is key. There are lots of clear bonuses to working as a blogger – working your own hours and locations – but with this comes temptation. The temptation to finish off the blog post another day, or have that lie in and start on your blog later on.
Being a blogger is not for everyone, and contrary to popular belief it is certainly not ‘easy’. Becoming a successful blogger takes time. And gathering the skills to become a blogger takes time and effort. Having that self-discipline is key to any blogger’s personality.
A passion for your subject.
Having a passion for your subject really shows through in your words. Yes, we can create a blog based on user searches, finding a niche and creating content around it. BUT, if the passion is not there then look for a topic that you are passionate about – for example, I am passionate about helping people create their own blog. Why? Because I worked in the industry for companies that charge phenomenal prices for aspects that customers could do for themselves. So, now I show people how to DIY many aspects of their blog.
To be a successful blogger then networking certainly is a skill that is required. Becoming active within social media circles, interacting with bloggers, helping and being helped is all part and parcel of becoming a blogger and learning or strengthening your skills.
Personally, I love the Facebook blogger groups – I will obviously recommend Get Blogging Online’s FB group (come over and say hi there!), but there are sooo many great groups that all I will say is take a look around and get involved!
Pinterest is also a great way to network, share pins and become part of a thriving community.
Blogging is a great hobby to get involved in, and there is a lot of help out there to get you started. Jump in with both feet, learn as you go along and you will be amazed at what you can achieve with your own world of blogging.