This is a guest post by Rich Gorman.
One of the most fascinating facets of the blogging community is how there are so many different bloggers, blogging for such different reasons. Some folks sign up for a free WordPress or Blogger account and start firing away, simply for purposes of creativity or self-expression. And then there are others who become bloggers of authority, esteemed within the industry, wildly successful on the back of their blogging efforts.
Of course, there are also folks stuck in the middleâ€”those amateur bloggers who would like to be something more, who would like to see their blog transformed into a vehicle for real success. In the scheme of things, not many bloggers reach that tipping point, where they become really respectable and esteemed within their industry. I wonder, though, if that’s not because more bloggers simply don’t know how to become bloggers of authority.
It’s true enough that there is no magic spell, no secret formula to turn yourself into an overnight blogging pro. There are, however, a few success-generating tips that can make any blogger into an authoritative blogger. These battle-tested techniques have worked wonders for me, and I am convinced that they will work well for you, too.
Your Content is Key
The most obvious and important part of the blog, of course, is contentâ€”so what do you blog about? What kind of information can you use to turn yourself into a blogger of true authority?
If you are seeking to become an authoritative blogger within a given industry, then what you have to do is establish yourself as someone who clearly knows the industry well, and who can add value to it and its members. The way you do that, I have found, is by sharing trade secrets and insider information.
That doesn’t mean you have to betray all the proprietary information that makes your own operation a success. But it does mean you should share some details of the techniques and strategies that you have usedâ€”stuff your blog readers won’t find in any books or other blogs.
Share specifics, if you canâ€”like revealing the names and e-mail addresses of preferred vendors, and telling your readers how they can get a discount on the desired services. What you want is to provide readers with a real, tangible way to make money nowâ€”and if you do, you can bet that they’ll keep coming back to your blog for more of the same!
Another important point is that the design of your blog mattersâ€”in a big way. Content is king, but content can only shine when it’s enhanced by a quality blog design that tells your story.
My own blog, Direct Response, recently underwent a facelift, wherein I imposed a new banner image showing a series of smoldering craters. The purpose of my blog is to give members of the direct response industry the tips they need for competitive edgeâ€”for leaving their competitors in the dust. Or, for leaving them as smoldering craters, if you prefer. My blog design tells my story, and it lends power to every post that I write.
Beyond Your Blog
Content and design are the two key components of your blogâ€”but an authoritative blogger is always on the lookout for something else, something beyond. I’m talking about guest posting, of course. There is simply no better way to establish yourself as an active, expert member of your industry.
Seeking out as many reputable guest posting opportunities as you can will go a long way. It will show members of the industry that you’re passionate about your industryâ€”and that you play a prevalent role within it. And seeing your name on the blog of another reputable, industry blogger will let readers know that you, too, are someone with authority.
Stir Up Some Controversy
There is one final tip that I’ve found to be utterly essentialâ€¦ and it’s one that every blogger should approach with discernment. You need to generate some controversy in your posts. Because, of course, there are plenty of other bloggers out there, and you’ve got to stand apart from them.
What I advise is that you avoid being a bully or a jerk. Avoid racism, sexism, or outright meanness. But don’t be afraid to do other things to help you stand outâ€”like taking an unorthodox political stance. Even using heroic acts of hyperbole can go a long way!
I’ve used all of these tips to astonishing effect, both within the Direct Response industry and the reputation management industry, and I’m convinced that they’ll work wonders within any field. Try these tips, and watch your own blogging authority â€” and success â€” grow.