Monday, February 1, 2016

Is Blogging Still Relevant for Writers & Authors

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Recently, I’ve fielded a flurry of questions asking if blogging is still worthwhile for writers and authors. 

If anything, I believe it’s more important. 

There have been so many changes on social media—with new algorithms, rules, and changes—it has never been more critical for us to have a stable place for our audience to always be able to find us.

That said, there are also more viable options for writers when it comes to blogging choices. Being part of a focused group blog can be one excellent solution for authors who don’t want the responsibility of managing a solo site.

Here are some other things you may not have thought about when it comes to blogging:
1. An unfocused blog is an unread blog. Many writers have the mistaken idea that narrowing the focus of a blog will narrow the audience. Although it seems counterintuitive, the exact opposite is true. By focusing our blogs—with a clear purpose and relevant posts—a larger section of our audience will be able to find us.

People will follow our blogs FIRST because we have
something interesting to say.
2. People will follow our blogs FIRST because we have something interesting to say—not because we’re authors. If you can make writing about writing interesting to your readers, then that’s great. If not, pick another subject matter. Make sure it’s something you enjoy learning/talking about. Otherwise it will quickly become drudgery.

3. Titles and key words MATTER. Gone are the days when we use phone books to find people and businesses. Now everyone uses search engines. And search engines rely on keywords.

Keyword Refresher
A keyword is like a label. It's a short way—although almost always more than one word in length—to state the purpose of your article. Articles can have several keyword groups or only one. I only have one main keyword group for this article BLOGGING FOR WRITERS. You'll see this keyword in the labels following this post. You'll also see some related keywords, SOCIAL MEDIA FOR WRITERS, BUILDING AN ONLINE PLATFORM THROUGH BLOGGING

I use groups of words because the point of the keywords is to direct the searcher to your website. We want our keywords to match—as closely as possible—what someone types or speaks into a search engine search box. People rarely type just one word because it gives too many options.

Our blogs are our online homes.
4. Our blogs are our online homes. Because of that, we’re the ones primarily responsible for making those visiting feel welcome, safe, and comfortable.
  • It’s up to us facility conversation by asking open-ended questions at the end of our posts.
  • If we ask for our readers to be vulnerable with us and each other, we need to demonstrate that level of vulnerability within our posts.
  • Finally, we need to answer the comments left for us. In person, we’d never ask someone a question, then ignore them after they answered. But we frequently do that online.

5. We must make sure it’s easy for our readers to return. This means we need to have a prominent place for them to either sign up for email updates or RSS feed when a new blog is posted. It’s also important for them to be able to connect with us further through social media, so we need to have those buttons in our sidebar as well.

Bottom Line
Blogging is important because we need a way for our audience to find us that doesn’t rely on the whims of social media network. But it doesn’t have to make us miserable. Play around with some options and find one that works best for you.

I’d love to know what is working for you now. Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Don’t forget to join the conversation!


With the whims of social media, blogging is more important than ever to writers - @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)


  1. Hi Edie. My resolution for this year was to get serious about blogging. My problem is still the same... narrowing the focus. Working on it though. :) Thanks for sharing!

    1. Tom, that's a great resolution and I know you'll get there. It truly is a process. This site has seen a great deal of tweaking and narrowing of focus through the years! Blessings, E

    2. Tom, I'm working on focusing my personal blog and SPG's more and more this year. Edie gives the best tips :)

  2. Edie, You are always so helpful. My blog has been a source of healing for me. I share how God's word impacts my life. I don't know if that is too broad. I will pray about this. Thank you again for all your help.

    1. Cherrilynn, also look at the interaction with your audience that your individual posts are receiving. That will give you some insight as to what your readers are looking for from you. Blessings, E

  3. So very true! Thanks for sharing, Edie. As a friend of mine once said, people don't care how much we know until they know how much we care. (Bruce said this so well in his post on loving our audience a few weeks back.) We need to always write with our audience and their needs in mind.

    1. Kristen, that is so true! Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts! Blessings, E

  4. Edie, taking your blog workshop at our retreat a few months ago has been life changing for my blog so that is what's working. Thanks so much for all you do!!

    1. Erika, thank you for letting me know. It's always so encouraging to know I've been able to help. I'm so glad things are working. Blessings, E

  5. following *your* blog i've learned much and am working to keep consistent. interviews (wink wink) have become a sweet spot for me, and now i'm adding regular guest posts. alas, i haven't written a regular post in months, sigh. tags and labels are what have confused me the most, but i always leave several at the bottom and copy into the tag box on my blog.
    thanks for all your most excellent teaching! you've helped me more thn you know!

    1. Robin, you're doing great! Don't get discouraged, taking things one step at a time is the BEST way to tackle it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Blessings, E

  6. Edie, your posts never fail to tug me over the line of my comfort zone. I still have a lot to learn when it comes to blogging/writing but it's an exciting journey, especially with you leading the way! Thanks!