Four Tips From Seasoned Bloggers

Bits of blogging wisdom from recently featured writers on Discover.

Some of the best blogging advice we hear is from you. On Discover, we publish interviews and profiles of bloggers around the world, who also impart their own tips on how they’ve gotten the most out of WordPress.com. If you’ve missed these interviews, not to worry — we’ve compiled some of the best bits of blogging wisdom here.

Join communities that sustain your interests.

When you start to click around, follow blogs, and fill your Reader with posts to read, you’ll discover that WordPress.com is full of many smaller communities. For example, some participate in black and white photo challenges led by blogger Cee, while others join our multimedia Discover Challenges, hosted every Tuesday.

discover challenges

Novelist Claire Fuller credits two communities on WordPress.com for supporting and influencing her: Friday Fictioneers, a group of bloggers that writes a weekly 100-word story inspired by a photograph (hosted on the blog of Rochelle Wisoff-Fields), and The Prime Writers, a community of writers who published their first book after age 40.

But it’s the community that I love the most — so inspiring and supportive. They’ll give constructive criticism when I need it and encouragement when something hasn’t gone right. And these are people from all around the world, most of whom I have never met.

— Claire Fuller on Friday Fictioneers

Get started: Looking for a community like these, but not sure where to start? Learn about supportive blogging groups, or browse the events and challenges on The Daily Post, which are hosted by fellow bloggers and listed by topics — like books, gardening, and music. Or tap into communities through tags, like #weekendcoffeeshare, in your Reader. (You can search for any tag in the Reader — results will appear if someone, somewhere, has added that exact tag to one of their posts.)

weekendcoffeeshare

Automatically share your posts with the world.

Many of you share your posts far and wide, like Depression Comix artist Clay Jonathan, who casts a wide social net. With Publicize, let us do the sharing for you and push your new posts to Facebook, Twitter, and other services.

“If you build it, they won’t necessarily come,” says parenting blogger Emily Austin, who writes about motherhood and life at The Waiting. In her Discover interview, she gives solid tips on growing your blog and making meaningful connections, from guest posting to cross-posting to getting the word out on social media.

While WordPress.com has a thriving community of bloggers who are engaged and encouraging, I wanted to write the one blog that people who don’t read blogs would read. And to do that, I had to put myself out there via social media. It took me a ridiculously long time to get my act together and set up a Facebook page for The Waiting, but once I did, I realized I was doing myself a disservice not to connect with my community outside the walls of the blog. I now focus on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. When it came time to interview for my job, I was able to show my organization that I know how to drive engagement and connect with both established and potential readers and customers.

Get started: To set up Publicize, go to My Site → Sharing. You’ll see a list of services we currently support: FacebookTwitterGoogle+LinkedInTumblrPath, and Eventbrite. (If you like videos, follow along on this tutorial for connecting specifically to Facebook.) Click Connect next to a service and follow the steps to enable Publicize.

sharing

Organize your feeds with Reader lists.

In your Reader, you can keep up with the blogs you’ve followed in Followed Sites, our editors’ picks and features in Discover, and any tags you’ve followed under Tags.

You can also create Lists to organize your feed by topic or group, or create a blogroll of multiple lists, which is handy for people who read a lot, have varied interests, and love to share their recommendations. Ra, the writer and reader at Rarasaurhas built a following of loyal, engaged readers, as well as forged dear friendships offline, compiled in her Reader list, Blokin (short for “blog kin”).

blokin reader list

In a recent interview, Ra describes what moves her when browsing and reading new posts.

I am a reader of many things — fictional novels, nonfiction documentations, graphic novels, magazines, poetry, everything — but blogs have the ability to offer perspectives not found anywhere else. I seek that sparkle. . . .

I’ll read something I don’t understand, or something I don’t agree with, or something I would never want in my own life — but I will move on, quickly, if it’s something I can’t feel.

As Ra suggests, there’s so much to read out there, so take control of your Reader to ensure you see the stuff that matters to you. For example, you can follow popular tags like photography (or follow tags on specialized photography topics), but why not curate your own list of favorite photographers? Or, if you’re really into photography, build a blogroll of photography lists across topics and groups, from film and analog enthusiasts to portrait and landscape photographers around the world.

Get started: In your Reader, scroll down to the Lists section. Click on the down-arrow next to Lists and then click on Add, which will prompt you to name your list and take you to the edit page where you can can build your list.

lists

Find a theme that allows your work to shine.

Your site is your online home: a place where you welcome visitors, old and new. Visually, your site should represent you and present your work in the best possible way.

For photographers, this is especially important. At food blog Infinite Belly, husband-and-wife team André and Adélaïde Zollinger use the free and minimal Libre theme, which keeps the focus on their images of culinary creations and picturesque French landscapes.

Strong visual storytellers, André and Adélaïde offer photoblogging advice:

See what formats work best for your blog depending on your design and theme. We used to take a lot of pictures in landscape format but discovered that single portrait formats work really well for us to display large photographs and show details.

Get started: Explore hundreds of themes to find a design that’s right for you. Go to My Site → Themes to browse the Theme Showcase, and filter by “free” or “premium” or click More to narrow your search with filters (type of site, feature, layout, etc.). As André and Adélaïde advise, experimentation is key: consider everything from the orientation of your featured images to the number of columns (one, two, multiple) in a theme.

theme showcase

At Discover, we profile writers, artists, and photographers doing great things on WordPress.com. Read the latest interviews and stories in our Features section.

 


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82 Comments

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  1. thesmilingpilgrim

    I really do need to find a better theme. I think it could make a big difference in the content🙂

    Liked by 13 people

  2. Ranting Crow

    Step out of your comfort zone and earn something new. expand your knowledge instead of being cooped up inside a community with restriction to only what applies.

    The auto share isn’t all that. Ever since the new photo rules used. You will upload them on all platforms and store them for what purpose again?

    Organize the reader only if you want to ignore or make a certain selection to leave others out. At least take the time to scroll past and miss nothing.

    And the latter is true.

    But come on you guys why stay so strict on selections and generalisation. Be free expand your horizons dare to go where you have not set foot before. Isn’t that the beauty of blogging and internet to learn new things.

    Just a thought from another user. As I do get where you are coming from.

    Liked by 15 people

    • Cheri Lucas Rowlands

      Thanks for your comment. I agree that not all of these bits of advice are relevant or helpful to everyone. We’re all different and approach blogging in different ways, and I suppose a good piece of overall advice is picking and choosing the tips that are right for you.

      Liked by 8 people

  3. Mary

    I have found the wordpress blogging community to be interesting in so many ways. They’ve taught me a lot. Some have become virtual friends. Some have offered lots of support and words of wisdom. And what wonderful writers!

    Liked by 14 people

  4. daddysco.com

    As a newbie this kind of post is both informative and inspiring. It’s so good to know that we are not all alone in the universe!

    Liked by 8 people

  5. Perspicacious

    Nice it was a helpful post, helped me to connect with other bloggers.

    Liked by 10 people

  6. Lisa

    I love little blogging communities like these! I participate in #weekendcoffeeshare already and I was just looking at the Discover Challenges. I hadn’t heard of Friday Fictioneers before but hell that sounds like fun too🙂

    Liked by 9 people

  7. Born To Organize

    Thanks for the tips.

    Liked by 7 people

  8. thesentimentalguy

    Exactly.

    Liked by 8 people

  9. Travel Nurse April

    Wonderful tips and post. Thank you!

    Liked by 9 people

  10. theworldaccording2ellah

    I am an Elder and am really really struggling to understand the new Techno world. Even very clear communications, as on this site, are too much for me to assimilate. It really is another language a lot of the time – a mass of unknown vocabulary that was not around all the time I was learning and growing when young. This comment is just to let you know there are intelligent ones out here, lost in this new world.

    Liked by 11 people

  11. tominalbion

    Thanks for the tips, I’ve been thinking about a new theme and this post reminded me.🙂

    Liked by 7 people

  12. Paul Bowler

    Some great hints and tips there, really helpful. I was going to change my theme, but I stuck with it as I really like its clean simplicity, but I did tidy things up a bit and give everything a spring clean so to speak🙂

    Liked by 6 people

  13. Cricket Fox

    I do change my theme every so often, to freshen things up. I have my blogs linked out everywhere and love that I can do that here

    Liked by 6 people

  14. Gastradamus

    Wow Cheri, thank you so much for the tips about blogging. We are wanting all the help possible at Gastradamus. If you have the chance, then please check out a few of our stories, and comment. That way we can know what you think. Our latest story is called, “The Bald and the Brestless”.

    Liked by 6 people

  15. homelife4ever

    As a novice at this I am so glad to soak up all this good info. Thank you for pointing out things I haven’t thought of yet to get my writing feet solidly under me.

    Liked by 7 people

  16. rarasaur

    I didn’t know how to reply directly to a comment but I did want to say that, for me, making lists is not about leaving people out or shutting myself off. I constantly look for new bloggers, new topics, new expressions.

    Lists are about finding a way to prioritize in this big world, and about being the sort of blogger that doesn’t just scroll past– about being able to match my mindset with my reading lists– and about introducing others who share my interest to others. I’m a Virgo, pretty much everything in my universe gets sorted if I have the capability to do so. It allows me to explore in depth, and has never once stopped me from reaching wide.

    And, thanks, Cheri, for the shout out.🙂

    Liked by 8 people

  17. hoppernomad

    Very timely and informative post! We’re relatively new here, and while we’re thrilled with WordPress, we have not mastered using the Reader to engage with the WordPress community. We’re getting there, though. That function for enabling WordPress to do the online sharing of posts also seems intriguing. Thanks for writing this.

    Liked by 6 people

  18. Chanel Bailey

    Great article! Found some tips I can use right away!

    Liked by 5 people

  19. dreamelysium

    Great tips! Can’t wait to incorporate them into my blog!

    Liked by 6 people

  20. Jean

    Sometimes when I read wordpress.com staff newest tips advice, I suddenly realize via their links, I’ve missed their past tips. Thank you.

    Liked by 6 people

  21. PrincessLG

    I really need this. Thank you! This is cool. I’m gonna try to join the weekly challenge!🙂

    Liked by 6 people

  22. beeorganizedwithpam

    I am such a newbie and your tips are greatly appreciated.

    Liked by 10 people

  23. whitec1971

    I have been blogging for less than a year. I have enjoyed every minute of it. It has not spread far and wide as I expected. I do use publicize to take full advantage of social media. However, I believe there is no magic bullet to attract followers but the advice given here is sound and I plan to follow some of it. That is the advantage of being part of a community that consists of such talented and seasoned bloggers. I love this format and it gives me a platform to share my writings with the world and to read about varied topics I may never come across anywhere.. I hope as time moves on to reach a larger audience and become a better writer.

    Liked by 8 people

    • Cheri Lucas Rowlands

      I believe there is no magic bullet to attract followers but the advice given here is sound and I plan to follow some of it.

      Totally agree — there’s no set formula for blogging, and there’s no “right” or “wrong” way to blog. We simply like to share things we’ve learned — and what your fellow bloggers have learned — and then leave it to you to incorporate the ideas that make the most sense for you.

      Liked by 4 people

  24. rambling kori

    These tips were great🙂 I cannot wait to take part in challenges!

    Liked by 7 people

  25. inspirationforgood

    Thanks so much for these tips! Very much appreciated as I just started blogging this month!

    Liked by 6 people

  26. abelbedu

    I have been modestly blogging for over a year. I have a bit of a following but I really love writing something up and having people read it. Attracting followers is the hardest part but it’s really one step at a time

    Liked by 9 people

  27. wehelpngos77

    Very useful tips. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 7 people

  28. mzrosie

    Thank you so much for the tips. I’m starting to get lazy.
    I need a plan… you gave me a start.
    Regards, Rosie

    Liked by 7 people

  29. The Oryx Land Blogger-Sahar

    Great post! Thank you for all the tips.

    Liked by 4 people

  30. mamandanslezef

    Waouh! Thanks. It’s a very complete post which give the energy to blog inside a strong community. But I have still in that I need to find a job which pay me with time to do all these things. I like too much sleeping🙂

    Liked by 5 people

  31. exquisiteemmalisa

    Absolutely LOVE this!!!!!! I started blogging in October 2015, and started out very fresh, not sure what I was doing, and now I have 1000 followers!!!! I think because I am so passionate about general wellbeing, people and I can talk about topics such as beauty and fashion so much!!!! I hope to keep this as a reference, as I continuously want to work to be a better writer…. It is ONLY the BEGINNING!!!! I want to do things with my life, and blogging has changed me so much for the better! It has opened up a whole new world for me, and I would like to do my own blog on tips for bloggers – you have inspired me! Thank you very much for this post.

    Warmest regards…..

    Liked by 6 people

  32. thirtynwordy

    Thank you for this insightful post

    Liked by 5 people

  33. brandonfitnesslifestyle.com

    Awesome tips!

    Liked by 6 people

  34. atrangizindagi,eksafar

    Can someone please explain how to join a community? I write short stories/articles and poems but don’t know how to find out communities matching my interest … and also how to join them… can someone please help????

    Liked by 5 people

  35. Tina, The Bo Bina

    My time at WordPress has been very sporadic the last couple of years due to long working hours, and keeping the family happy and the house clean, but I do stop by now and again to do some overdue visiting and reading… I’m afraid I may not have the opportunity to blog on a regular basis until I retire in about 10 years, so beware – y’all may wish I would go back to work! 😉

    But on a serious note, I really enjoy the few moments I do have to read up on the happenings of the blogs I follow, and to learn new blogging techniques to help my own style become more engaging. Thank you!

    Liked by 5 people

  36. Brent Wiggins

    It’s been two years since I started blogging and it’s the wait that got me going again. Preparation went into it sure, but having a easy-going attitude and consideration for what my blog would become helped me find what I wanted to talk about and share. Now it’s just a matter of finding an audience.

    Liked by 4 people

  37. leannjames

    Hey! Great advice. Though I want to build an audience here I agree with the fact of disservice. If they have ears let them hear, if they have eyes, no need to hide!

    Liked by 6 people

  38. dimphokay

    These are awesome tips — I hope to use them in my blog. I am a begginer in this blogging business and I hope my blog will reach out to many. Thank you.

    Liked by 5 people

  39. Ezra

    Thank you for this! I’ve just started blogging not too long ago and even until now I’m still quite unsure of of writing style and how I should improve. Would really appreciate some feedback🙂

    Also, as my interests lie in theology and faith, perhaps I can get acquainted with people of the same interests?

    Liked by 4 people

  40. tlbarnet

    Definitely going to try a few of these, perhaps they will help boost my blog.

    Thanks from a new blogger!

    Liked by 3 people

  41. atwmcom

    Thank you Cheri for this article and the tips. I am new to blogging, like 1 week I to it new, and your suggestions are helpful. I have the Publicize set up on my site and have been reading up on how to contribute to writings in other ways. I am committed to sticking with writing and helping my blog gain momentum.

    Liked by 4 people

  42. fl2native

    Great tips to put into action Cheri! I’m new at blogging, and can use any expert advice that will make things easier.

    Liked by 3 people

  43. kenrey

    Really good read. I’d like to join in Parenting community. Any suggestions?

    Liked by 3 people

    • Cheri Lucas Rowlands

      I’m not personally familiar with parenting blogging communities, although Emily Austin, mentioned above, has a solid blogroll of sites that might offer a peek into the parenting blogging community: https://notthehardestpart.com/blogroll-2-0/

      You can also browse our Parenting topic archive — these aren’t listings of communities, although again, the content is relevant and from your searching of sites might find new bloggers whose work you’d like to read and comment on. (I find that sometimes it’s best to connect individually with people with similar interests, rather than jumping into a big group.)

      I did a very quick search online, and you’ll also probably find communities (outside of WordPress.com), like http://www.circleofmoms.com.

      Liked by 2 people

  44. karlkaytaylor

    I’m 77 years old and not very tech savvy. My 45 year old daughter started a blog for me to widen my audience — I write non fiction short stories about growing up in a small town in Illinois. I’ve been amazed how fast my audience has grown organically through friends and family on social media. What amazes me the most is how many international visitors I’ve had. It’s been fun to watch.

    Liked by 6 people

  45. judithb2263

    Finding a theme and sticking to it is solid advice for anyone that is beginning

    Liked by 3 people

  46. rochellewisoff

    Now I know why there was a sudden jump in new followers this week.😉 Thanks for Claire Fuller for the nod to Friday Fictioneers. It’s a great community of bloggers and an honor to facilitate.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 4 people

  47. Admin

    I based my blog on missing people and was on blogger for years until I finally leaped over to word press. It took a bit to get used to and now I am so glad I moved. The look is sleeker and after a month my stats increased. I have also noticed that readers are staying longer, which in turns increases my stats. Something I was struggling with at blogger. I think it is because of the layout and the top news columns I have.

    Liked by 4 people

  48. thewoundedhealer17

    I am a new blogger here. Just made my first post. Hoping to have an amazing experience. WordPress is wonderful!

    Liked by 5 people

  49. roxiehope

    Thank you for this helpful post! I just started using word press this week to promote my writing. Now I can look at the communities you suggested and really get my writing noticed.

    Liked by 5 people

  50. gemsbooknook

    thank you so much. I only Started on WordPress a few weeks ago and i wasnt sure how to reach people and join groups. your article has really helped me feel a little bit more at ease as i move forward.

    Liked by 4 people

  51. missbhardwaj

    I’m a beginner in the world of blogging.. These tips are helpful.. Thanks a bunch

    Liked by 6 people

  52. avinamdar

    Thank you for sharing this. Very precise and very helpful for new bloggers like myself. Cheers!!!

    Liked by 5 people

  53. allyxstuart

    I am so interested in joining communities and doing challenges. I love the suggestions here!

    Liked by 5 people

  54. shubs2494

    Hi there! I have just started today with my FIRST BLOG POST. Its Truly a Motivational One to Overcome “Your Fear” and I Hope you guys like it… (do share your feedback)

    Liked by 5 people

  55. goldenbrodie

    I’m blogging now for three weeks. Sometimes I really question my focus. I guess this is stay true to yourself and breathe. Were are you people?

    Liked by 4 people

  56. Bradd Von

    It is very helpful for a beginner like me, trying to figure out what will be trademark of blogs.

    Liked by 4 people

  57. hoppernomad

    Have made some changes to our blog based on these tips. Very helpful. Just changed to the Rowling format, but am already considering another, one that allows for a short text intro to the post. Also, learned the hardware when switching themes – save all of your text first! I lost the text in my About widget. There may have been a way to recover it, but I couldn’t figure it out.

    Liked by 4 people

  58. nicoleobrien28

    This was so helpful oh my! I have been blogging for almost a year and this is great to know!

    Liked by 4 people

  59. sionchepack

    good views🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  60. subhadiphaldar

    Thanks for the great post . Joining a community really dose help to brand ones blog .

    Liked by 6 people

  61. মাঈনউদ্দিন মইনুল

    I’m trying to interact with my Bengali speaking community through my ‘day-to-day’ life blogging.
    Thanks from Bangladesh!

    Liked by 4 people

  62. Mr. Sharz

    I’ve been blogging since 2004 but I never read such an inspiring article like this. Thank you for sharing and greeting from Indonesia !

    Liked by 4 people

  63. geetanjali

    Thank you for this article. Certainly gave me new ideas!

    Liked by 4 people

  64. wifey19

    Thanks for the helpful post! I will definitely take some of these suggestions to improve my writing and promote an increase in traffic on my blog.

    Liked by 3 people

  65. lizmargaret

    Great tips!

    Liked by 3 people

  66. bellevous0

    Just started my first blog, excited for this new adventure! Thank you for the helpful post.

    Liked by 3 people

  67. Christiaan

    Thank you for these, will work on this thanks!

    Liked by 3 people

  68. J. Tidwell

    They’re excellent tips. And, although I’m not a seasoned blogger, these are all beneficial points for me to get started as a roadmap to becoming a seasoned blogger. It’s fun writing, but without the proper roadmap it’s difficult to some degree.

    Anyway…. thank you very much.

    Liked by 6 people

  69. aubreeg05

    Thank you for the awesome tips. definitely helpful. Started blogging for the first time today! I’ll keep these in mind!

    Liked by 3 people

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