Your blog is made up of much more than the words which appear on each post. It’s made up of colors, logos, themes and the interaction you have with your readers. Once you’ve committed to launching your blog, don’t stop short of building continuing to build it into a brand. A brand has the power to communicate across posts and resonate within seconds with your readers. It is a critical differentiation between what turns a good blog into a great blog. Here are four essential starting points for turning your blog into a full blown brand – and it begins with some of the most basic details:
Choose a Signature Image & Color Scheme
One of the most essential ways to help brand your blog with your audience is to establish a signature image and color scheme. A signature image could be a logo, but it doesn’t have to be. It could also be a photo of something that represents the theme of your blog, maybe a pen and paper for example or it could be the initials of the blog’s name. If you’re choosing to brand the blog by your own name, consider using a head shot of yourself as the signature image to which readers can relate. As for the colors, this alone can define a blog. Think about your writing style, the topics you’ll be covering and the audience you’ll most likely be reaching. All of these factors will impact whether you choose a color scheme that is bright, upbeat and cheery or a color scheme that is dark, more professional and serious. Overall, your signature image and color scheme should become an extension of your brand and provide an accurate preview as to what readers can expect to find if they choose to read on.
Develop Specific Themes
When building a readership for your blog, you should narrow your topics enough to maintain the interest of your core audience. Ideally a blog should have 1-3 core topics with no more than five. An example might include a blog which themes are Business & Success, Entrepreneurship and Social Media. All three of these topics easily intertwine but are also broad enough to allow for wide range of writing for years to come. What should be avoided is blog posts that jump around from reviews of television shows to talking about household chores and tips for job searching. These are too broad and unrelated to pull in a loyal audience that will be interested in what you write week after week. This also greatly hinders your ability to build a well-defined brand.
Name Your Blog – And Use It
Once you define your themes, what you should name your blog will become much clearer. A name should be short and creative above all else. If it is too long or unmemorable, it will be difficult to brand your blog with your audience by its name. You simply won’t use it – it won’t stick. Why is a name so important? Just as after so long our names begin to define a part of our personality and how others refer to us, the same is true for your blog. And just as knowing a name has the ability to turn a stranger into a familiar friend, as your readers connect with your blog and remember it by its name it too will become a familiar friend. Spend some time (but not too much) in this area and really give thought to your blog’s name. Choose something that’s meaningful to you and allows you to take ownership of it and then be sure to always refer to your blog by its chosen name!
Create Blog-Specific Social Media Accounts
Your personal social media accounts are a great starting point for marketing your blog, but after a while your blog will be ready for its own social media accounts and ability to recruit its own network. Facebook and Twitter are great for blogs because you can promote every single post to people who might not yet be subscribers and reach a massive audience. This also allows you a platform for which you can start a discussion, ask for input or seek guest bloggers. The importance in separating your personal social media from your blog’s social media is that this allows your blog’s social media accounts to be solely dedicated to promoting its content and nothing else. You can and should still continue to promote your blog on your personal pages, but ultimately drive this traffic to your blog’s Facebook or Twitter accounts. A final benefit to doing this is that it allows you to design your blog-specific pages with the signature image, color scheme and name and provides additional ways to be found in search engines.
These core steps provide a great start toward branding your blog. With an easily identifiable brand, you will be better equipped to draw in new visitors and build a loyal reader base. The bottom-line of any effective branding is to remain clear and consistent so that your readers can form a relationship. With this relationship, you and your blog will become like a good friend they look forward to hearing from week after week.