Tuesday, May 18, 2010
So, here we are, got ourselves a nice Niche topic, we have chosen the best Blogging site, and we are ready to get started. We are ready to start writing our first Blog post.
Depending on what your goals are with this Blog you are starting, will truly be the deciding factor when writing your first post. Do you want to talk about yourself, or do you want to dive right in and start talking about your topic of choice?
Whatever the case may be. There are some things I would like to cover with you, in regards to writing your fist Blog post. Being that this Bog is dedicated to Blogging for beginners, I think it is very important to understand a few basic settings and concepts within your posts, that will help bring your readers and help keep them interested long enough to read the entire post.
In many ways this is my first real Blogging lesson for beginners, and there will be some things I cover in this post that may not apply to you entirely the same. If you are using Wordpress or LiveJournal, you may have some different settings. But this is what we do with Blogger.
The first thing I would like you to do is to go into your settings, before you start writing your first Blog post I think it is important to understand some of the settings and options to consider, regarding your posts. So, follow me and click on your settings icon, and then continue over to the formatting tab.
Show at most- This is how many posts you want to show on your main page. There are limits; I suggest one or two max. I set mine at one.
Date Header Format – Just that, it is the way you want your post date to show up on the Blog
Archive index format – This to is just the way that your archive will show up on the side of your Blog, it is just another date format.
Time stamp format – same again, this is for your post dates
Time Zone- Self-explanatory
Language- Also self explanatory
Convert line breaks – This is something that is more for the HTML side of things. If you are not familiar with HTML I would suggest you leave it on yes and forget about it. It will not effect you.
Show Title Field – Turn this on to show your title for your post. I always have mine turned on
Show link Fields – This allows your to place a hyper link in your title. I always have mine on and I always put the root address for my Blog in that spot (easy backlinks 101)
Enable float alignment – Another HTML thing, I would leave it turned on, unless you are having problems with JPG files not showing up correctly within your blogs.
Post Template – Not important unless you know HTML, then you may use this!
That is it for that Tab, Click save at the bottom and move to comments
Comments are not something that can be nice, but can also cause problems, sometimes if you do not put some control and restrictions upon them, you will get all kinds of spam comments, looking for easy backlinks from your blog. If you are ok with this then by all means, that is your call. I like to have some basic restrictions, but I do not try to go over board with them, I like comments, good or bad, if it is spammy, I will remove it.
Comments – Hide or show, very basic
Who can Comment – Here you decide if anyone can comment or only certain people. I like to let anyone
Comment form placement – Decide where the comment form is, I change from blog to blog on this, Pop-up windows are nice or at the bottom of the post.
Comments default for post – This gives you control over how soon people comment on your posts
Backlinks – This is interesting to me. This allows your posts to show a small snippet of text from anyone who may link to your article in something they write. It is a way to create backlinks and recipricole linking, I turn mine on.
Backlinks for default posts – This allows your newest post to not have the backlinks option show, until it is replaced with a newer post.
Comments Time stamp Format – Another format options
Comment form Message – Just another generic template you can set up for your comment form, it is up to you to set that up.
There are other tabs and options that you can control. But for now, those are the important ones. You can play with the others a little just to see what they do.
But on with writing your first blog post!
When writing your first blog post, there are things to consider, but they are no different between your first blog post or your 100th blog post. And that is finding something that people want to find and want to read. And something that keeps the reader interested long enough to make it through the whole post, and maybe even good enough for the reader to read some of your other posts. So how do we to all that.
First thing is first, this is blogging for beginners you know!
Write a good title, one that pulls readers, one that carries your keyword phrase, or your blog topic, whatever you may want to call it. Before you go much further, you may want to read about understanding Keywords and phrases (Topic is coming soon).
Once you have your title and you are ready to write, do not forget to add your http to the title, remember backlinks 101. (I will come back to that).
Next start your writing. For most bloggers, the goal will be to write blog posts somewhere between 200 and 800 words. You can go more or less, but less and your not really giving your reader any information and much more and readers will wander, get bored and just leave. We don’t want that.
After you have written your post. Find a couple pictures to Jazz it up. People love pictures, we love to be visually stimulated and a thousand words sitting in front of us just is not so interesting. Make the pictures relevant, or just fun, doesn’t really matter so much.
After you have written your blog, go back through it, re-read it, check for spelling errors, punctuations and all that sort of thing. We are not perfect, I know I am not, and most readers will understand occasional errors, but if it is not readable, people will not come back.
And finally, at least for this post. Add a couple links if you can. If you can link to something that may be relevant to your topic, that people may not know about, do it, they will appreciate that, and even though it takes them away from your content, there is a chance they will come back if they feel you have something to offer.
Well, there you have it, a basic idea of what it will take to write your first blog post, I hope that it helps And I hope that you all come back for more “blogging lessons for beginners”!