Starting a personal blog is one of those things many people have thought of doing. And because it’s so easy to get started, most of those people have actually created one. Some have even managed to create pretty successful personal blogs out of something that started out as just a hobby. But what’s the key to running a successful and popular personal blog? What separates that rare few from the masses who begin this journey? In this post, we’ll be sharing some key principles that successful personal blogs have in common.
Let’s get into it!
- 1 1. They Are Both Personal & Niche-Orientated
- 2 2. Many of Them Use WordPress as Their Blogging Platform
- 3 3. Minimalistic Design & One Main Color to Accentuate
- 4 4. Custom High-Quality Photography
- 5 5. They Maintain a Regular Post Frequency
- 6 6. They Keep Everything Simple (KISS Principle)
- 7 7. Web & Social Media are Strongly Connected
- 8 8. They Keep Growing a Mailing List
- 9 Final Thoughts
1. They Are Both Personal & Niche-Orientated
The first thing that’ll open the road towards success for a personal blog is finding the right balance between personal and niche focus. The personal side of a personal blog is important because it’s obviously one of the primary reasons why people want to stay in touch and visit your website on a regular basis. Your opinion, interpretation and point of view are central to that.
However, it’s also very hard to build a loyal audience if the content you share isn’t specific enough. By trying to please different audiences, you’ll end up having no long-term relationships with people in these audiences because none of them will feel like your blog is just for them. However, if you focus on one niche, you’ll be able to think in the long run and connect with your audience on a deeper level.
2. Many of Them Use WordPress as Their Blogging Platform
Another thing we often see with popular personal blogs is the use of WordPress as their content management system. Not such a surprise if you account for all the advantages WordPress offers. Some of the main benefits that convince bloggers to use WordPress are:
- There are thousands of themes for this and thousands of plugins for that
- Search engine friendliness
- Fully customizable
- Automated, one-click installations offered by web hosts
3. Minimalistic Design & One Main Color to Accentuate
The next returning factor that we want to mention is the minimalistic design most personal blogs have. The reason behind this choice is the large amount of content that gets shared on a personal blog. To make sure the attention goes to the content, the design must be easy to process but definitely user-friendly as well.
Most personal blogs out there, however, try to add a personal touch to the design as well. That’s also necessary because these details make it easy for your target audience to visually remember what your website looks like. Choosing one additional notable color throughout your entire website usually does the job (along with your highly personal content).
4. Custom High-Quality Photography
We’re in 2017, of course people are going to expect high-quality images everywhere. But when you are running a personal blog, it’s that more important to be the owner and creator of that photography. It’s the thing that makes your blog really personal. Visitors know that the content they run into on your website is unique and that they won’t find it anywhere else; just like they won’t find another you out there either.
The combination of offering your visitors high-quality images that are personal at the same time is what’ll keep them engaged in the long run. If you’re testing out products, for example, the quality of your images will have a big impact on their capability to form an opinion based on yours.
5. They Maintain a Regular Post Frequency
The success of a personal blog quite often depends on the post frequency as well. That’s because it’s not just about posting good content once and letting it slide afterwards. That kind of popularity will get a personal blog nowhere. If anything, it’ll only make it look like its best time has passed.
The art of creating a well-functioning and popular blog is finding the right post frequency that matches both the blogger’s and the target audience’s schedule. There is no use in posting too often if the content that’s being provided doesn’t live up to the expectations visitors have. Likewise, posting too rarely will not keep your visitors engaged.
6. They Keep Everything Simple (KISS Principle)
Personal blogs are also known to keep everything as simple as possible. However, that doesn’t mean the value of the content that’s being shared has to suffer. There needs to be a nice balance between readability, understandability and the value of a post.
This way of creating content matches the KISS principle (keep it simple, stupid) which believes that content should be as easy to read and follow as possible so it doesn’t take the readers all too much time and effort to understand something or do it themselves.
Many popular personal bloggers are also pretty active on social media channels. These social media channels are usually the main destination to do content promotion. That’s why you’ll notice that most personal blogs also have elaborated social media channels they want to link within their website as frequently as possible.
Usually, that includes putting social sharing possibilities within each post and placing social icons within the header or menu of the website along with other places on the website.
8. They Keep Growing a Mailing List
The last thing worth mentioning is growing a mailing list. This is one of the things most popular and successful personal blogs do. It’s just one of the easiest ways to keep a connection with your audience that comes from your side. You won’t only have to wait for your visitors to come to you, by building and growing a mailing list, you’ll be able to remind them of you and your recently posted content.
Launching a personal blog and trying to make it successful is definitely a fantastic journey. To help you with it, we’ve shared some of the things popular personal blogs have in common in this post. If you any questions or suggestions; make sure you leave a comment in the comment section below!
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Featured Image by tynyuk / shutterstock.com
Thanks for your post! Through your pen I came across the issue up interesting! I believe there are many those who are considering them just like me.
Great insights into Blogging, It’s not one of my forte, but try an write good blog posts when I can. I had a lot of insight recently building a new look for a clients Magazine / Blog website and picked up a lot of knowledge on the way.
Fascinating article. I thoroughly concur that the vast majority running an individual blog are utilizing WordPress. I myself following couple of individual websites and every one of them are utilizing WordPress.
Am I missing it or you did not mention who are the “Most Popular Personal Blogs”? I was expecting to visit their blogs to learn how they work
Great article, Donjete. I especially agree with points 3 and 5. Finding the right post frequency can be tough and it mostly depends upon your niche and the type of content you’re going to publish.
It would have been nice if you had provided some visuals, though. Or at least linked to some example sites that demonstrate the key principles you’re sharing. 🙂
they are use a Great personal theme.
Interesting article. I totally agree that most people running a personal blog are using WordPress. I myself following few personal blogs and all of them are using WordPress.
I really wish Elegant Themes put more attention to the blog module in Divi.
My blog is under construction and going in many directions. This post has helped me focus on important aspects. Thank you once again Donjete.
Great content as always.
I always wanted to ask ET how they manage to write such beautiful content every day. I have employed a ‘kid’ to write for me, and uh, hmm. Can you guys tell me how can I get him trained to write well for my websites? Is there an online course or something that he can learn?