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Editor's note: TicketPrinting.com has provided the following article, one of a series of marketing articles written with unsigned bands in mind. The articles, which will be reprinted at MTC over a period of several weeks, cover topics such as social networking, email marketing, press releases, forum creation, blogging, and other step-by-step guides.
20 Steps To Creating A Successful Blog For Your Band (Part 1 of 2)
Blogs prove to be a tricky field to conquer, especially when it comes to gaining an initial reader-base. However, once you get that reader base, great potential for increasing your online reputation is created. Successful blogs keep their status by following these 20 rules from the start and throughout their blogís lifetime.
1. Focus the topic. Thousands of different blogs exist on the web. Only the well-established ones can post general news and see success. Instead, focus your blog around a niche. The more narrow the subject, the more likely you will get a steady reader base.
2. Search similar blogs and subscribe. Because there are so many blogs on the internet, chances are somebody somewhere will also be talking about your subject. Find these sites and subscribe to them so you get instant updates. The best action to take is to read up on these blogs and know what they talk about regularly.
3. Create business relationships. By helping out someone else and their blog in some way, they will in return help you and your blog out. One good example is devising a list of online radio stations you can submit your music to and give them the list so they can use it for their benefit as well. By becoming business friends, you can promote each other by talking about one anotherís webpage, music, blog, etc.
4. Make quality content. Just writing a blog is not enough. You have to make sure what you are writing is good content. No one will comment or read your blog if the content seems worthless and poorly written. Also, write grammatically. Misspellings are one of the most painful things to witness in blogs.
5. Work on the title. The title is a necessity. The first thing people look at and what makes them read your blog is the title. Titles that hint of content with lists and bullets also draw people in due to the pleasing layout and more white space of lists. If the title perks their interest, they will click on your blog to continue reading. Take the time to think about an interesting title and log which titles draw more readers.
6. Submit to directories. After creating a good content-and-keyword-rich blog, submit it to different directories. Top Blog Area and BlogFlux are two good sites to submit blogs to according to category of blog. Another option is to write just one blog for an established blogging site in the rock music industry and tell them why they should feature your blog on their site. If they choose to put the blog on their site, you will see greatly increased traffic.
7. Get a friend to submit your blog to Digg, StumbleUpon, Technorati, Netscape, and Reddit. These search sites generate a ton of traffic to your site if viewed frequently (or "digged," "thumbs up" "favored," etc). However, people view down on you if you constantly submit your own content to these sites, so instead, make a buddy submit your blogs, videos, or podcasts to these sites one or two times a week. Eventually, your good content will make it to the homepage of these content-search sites, generating an unimaginable amount of traffic to your blog.
8. Ping every site. Some submission sites allow you to 'ping' them, which means they get an automatic update when you post a new blog. This is good so they always have your latest posts in their records. These sites also allow you to put in key tag terms. By inputting a tag term, your blog will pop up if someone searches for the term you used. For instance, if you are writing about electric guitar comparisons (tag terms) and the searcher inserts "compare guitars," your blog will show as a result. You must utilize pings and tags to increase your blog popularity.
9. Write regularly and stand out. The only way to gain a steady reader base is if you write a blog regularly. The best blogs update their content daily or sometimes several times a day. As an upcoming artist, though, weekly will suffice if you write on a consistent day around the same time every week. In addition, you need to stand out from other bloggers. Write properly, but use your personality. Personality keeps the blog interesting and keeps readers coming back. In addition, the readers like to be treated as humans, so drop the business lingo. Blogs are for entertainment, so engage your audience. Write for them.
10. Host your blog on your website domain. Using a different host for your blog not only confuses your readers, but also reduces the amount of quality traffic to your site. The only smart way to host a blog is through your own website. If readers like what they read, or you mention something about your music in the blog, they can easily navigate to your website to find out more information. Creating a blog serves the purpose of promoting your music online, which you can only do if you reader can easily access your website from your blog.
This is the end of part one of the two part series to creating a successful blog. Part two goes into more detail on how to promote your blog and see additional success in the first weeks and months of your blog.
By Lance Trebesch
Copyright © 2007
Reprinted with permission.