blogging

What should I include in my blog’s media kit?

media kits
Show your blog some love with a top-notch media kit. (Image by Kris Krüg via Flickr/Creative Commons)

A media kit is like a visual resume for your blog. Typically, bloggers use media kits to showcase their number of followers to brands and other potential partners.

Using a tool like Google Analytics as your source, you want to include important statistics such as average number of page views per month, unique visitors per month,average time on site (the higher the better), bounce rate (the lower the better), and number of new visits. You might also want to include your number of subscribers and social media followers.

If your numbers aren’t very high, don’t be discouraged. Focus on and highlight the strengths of your blog. Share how much your blog has grown recently, for example, by highligting your increase in subscribers. If you have a very niche topic use this to your advantage. Convey to brands that you could be the gateway to a unique, untapped market. This is why it’s important to collect and include demographics of your readership as well.

If your readers are extremely engaged (as evidenced by a great number of comments and great interaction on social media) brag about that, too.

And a media kit isn’t just about numbers. The values of your blog should be conveyed by your media kit as well. So share your blog’s purpose or mission. Perhaps even include the top keyword terms that lead people to your site. Include information about yourself, too. If you’ve ever been featured in a major publication, be sure to mention that.

Include images such as a headshot, a screenshot of your blog, your logo, and great pictures from some of your best posts.

Remember a media kit should make brands excited about your blog and excited about working with you.

 

Each day in November for #bloglikecrazy I’ll be publishing a blog post that answers your questions about blogging, social media, writing, wellness or women’s empowerment. Send your questions to javacia@seejanewritebham.com.

 

 

Do I Need Business Cards?

business cards
Image by Jodi Womack via Flickr/Creative Commons

I believe the most successful bloggers and writers are those who also consider themselves entrepreneurs. And this means that, like any good entrepreneur, you need a business card.

To be clear, you need a business card specifically for your book or blog. Don’t take your business card for day job and scribble your blog URL in the margin because, girl, that just looks raggedy.

A business card shows that you take your blogging and your writing seriously and thus encourages others to take you seriously, too.

On your business card be sure to include your name (Duh!), your email address, and your website URL. If you’d like you can also include your telephone number and social media channels.

These cards will come in handy at conferences and local networking events. And if you host giveaways on your blog, you’ll want to include them in the packages you send to your contest winners.

Be sure your card makes people excited to go check out your blog. And remember to employ good business card etiquette. This means do not go to a networking event and make it rain with your business cards. Only give people your business card after they ask for it.

 

Each day in November for #bloglikecrazy I’ll be publishing a blog post that answers your questions about blogging, social media, writing, wellness or women’s empowerment. Send your questions to javacia@seejanewritebham.com.

 

How can I improve my blog?

javacia with jennifer
chatting with Jennifer King of StellarFashionAndFitness.com at the #bloglikecrazy workshop

On Nov. 1 I led a 4-hour blogging workshop at Church Street Coffee and Books to kick off #bloglikecrazy.

Here are 10 blogging tips I shared with the ladies who attended:

  1. Write a mission statement for your blog. Never lose sight of why you’re blogging. Know the people you’re trying to help and the message you’re trying to convey.
  1. Create a strong “About” page. If people like what they see when they visit your blog, they will check out your “About” page to learn more. Be sure your “About” page clearly explains what kinds of posts people can expect from your blog and offers some background on you as well. Include pictures and links to some of your favorite posts, too.
  1. Write for your ideal reader. Identify your ideal reader and get to know her. What are her passions, problems, hobbies, and dreams? After you determine your ideal reader and what she wants, only blog for her. This sounds scary. This sounds as if you’ll alienate other readers, but you won’t. An ideal reader is someone who not only reads your posts but also shares them with others. Writing for this reader will simply attract more like her.
  1. Be sure your blog is answering questions and solving problems. Find out what questions or problems your ideal reader has and write posts that address those concerns.
  1. Tell a story in your blog posts. Whether you write a fashion blog or a business blog, you need to tell stories in your posts. Use a narrative to convey your information. Be sure to add images, too.
  1. Develop a blogging schedule and stick to it. You don’t have to blog every day, but decide how often you can blog and be consistent.
  1. Create three features for your blog. When developing features don’t simply follow trends. Choose features that are right for your blog and that you can maintain.
  1. Start an email newsletter. This is a great way to remind people to read your blog and an excellent way to build a tribe.
  1. Network. Promote your blog on social media. Interact in Facebook and LinkedIn groups. Participate in Twitter chats. Comment on other blogs.
  2. Guest blog for sites your ideal reader frequents. This is a great way to increase your readership and build partnerships with other bloggers.

Want to make sure you don’t miss announcements about events like the #bloglikecrazy workshop?  Sign up for the See Jane Write newsletter. Click here to join the list!

Each day in November for #bloglikecrazy I’ll be publishing a blog post that answers your questions about blogging, social media, writing, wellness or women’s empowerment. Send your questions to javacia@seejanewritebham.com.

Blogging — What’s the Point?

Keep Up and Blog On
Image by Alexander Baxevanis via Flickr/Creative Commons

What’s the point? There comes a time when every blogger will ask herself this question.

Creating good content on a consistent basis is hard work and most of us aren’t pulling a paycheck from our posts. So why bother blogging in the first place?

Well, some folks do get lucky. Some bloggers build a massive following and grab the attention of big-name brands. Some bloggers generate enough revenue from ads, sponsored posts, and affiliate links to quit their day jobs.

But most of us do not. But here’s why you should keep blogging anyway.

Blogging can make you a better writer. Writing is a practice. Just as athletes must train to get better at their sport, writers must practice to get better at our craft. Blogs make for a great training field. Blogging has taught me how to be more concise in my writing and taught me how to write faster, even faster than I did as a reporter with the Associated Press! If you set a posting schedule for yourself, blogging can train you to meet deadlines, too.

Blogging can help your writing career. Blogging will only help you as a writer if you’re striving to post quality work. And it’s important that you don’t put out crap just to say you’ve updated your blog for the week. People are paying attention. Your blog could land you a book deal or at least opportunities to write for some of your favorite publications. Case in point, I have a journalism degree from UC Berkeley, but the editors I work with couldn’t care less. Nearly all of the regular freelance gigs I have right now I snagged because I blog. So while I don’t make money directly from my blog, I do get paid for my freelance work and so blogging like crazy is worth it.

Blogging can help you establish an online platform. And you can use this online platform to promote your book or business or to spread ideas.

Blogging can help you find community. Blogging can help you find like-minded people with whom you can wax poetic about your passions or just hang out with and have fun. You thought you were the only 35-year-old black woman in the South who loved comic books, graphic novels, and video games. But then you started a blog about this obsession of yours and now you have a gaggle of geeky gal pals to take with you to Dragon Con.

Blogging can help you position yourself as an expert. As I mentioned, most people don’t make much money directly from their blogs. But your blog is a great way for you to promote your expertise. So use your fitness blog to promote yourself as a personal trainer. Use your fashion blog to promote yourself as a stylist. Take for example, Megan LaRussa Chenoweth, who owns the style coaching service Southern Femme. Chenoweth a top-notch, in-demand image consultant and personal shopper and is also a stylist for several magazines and fashion shows. But Southern Femme actually began as a fashion blog. Chenoweth used SouthernFemme.com to show off her style expertise and soon she went from bloganista to businesswoman.

Why do you blog? 

Are you interested in blogging more but having trouble finding the time to do so? Then don’t miss the launch of my time management e-course. To be notified of the launch date, simply click here and sign up for my personal blog’s newsletter.

Each day in November for #bloglikecrazy I’ll be publishing a blog post that answers your questions about blogging, social media, writing, wellness or women’s empowerment. Send your questions to javacia@seejanewritebham.com.

What Blogs Do You Read?

the 25

A blogging buddy of mine once advised me to make a list of 25 sites to regularly visit for information and inspiration and I did just that. Over time my list has changed, as expected, but I believe it’s imperative that writers read.

So today I’m updating my list and sharing it in hopes that it will inspire you to create a list of your own. Obviously, I don’t have time to read 25 different blogs a day. But if I skim through 5 a day, 5 days a week and do more close reading on the weekend, I stay on top of things and I have plenty to jot down in my journal of blog post ideas.

My list includes websites on the topics that interest me most — writing, blogging, feminism, and business — as well as some of my favorite lifestyle blogs. Many of the sites are also online publications I hope to write for someday. It’s important to be familiar with a website before you send in your a pitch.

Here’s my top 25:

  1. Feminist Wednesday
  2. Gabi Fresh
  3. Erika Napoletano
  4. Goins Writer
  5. Independent Fashion Bloggers
  6. Fit and Feminist
  7. Sarah Bessey
  8. Project Eve
  9. Writability
  10. The Blog Maven
  11. Bust.com
  12. Hello Giggles
  13. Kim Garst
  14. BritniDanielle.com
  15. All the Many Layers
  16. Ms. Magazine Blog
  17. HuffPost Women
  18. Write to Done
  19. Feministing
  20. For Harriet
  21. Feministe
  22. Clutch
  23. xoJane.com
  24. The Hairpin
  25. A Place to Dwell

What websites and blogs to do you love?

Are you interested in learning how I find time to read all the blogs I love? Then don’t miss the launch of my time management e-course. To be notified of the launch date, simply click here and sign up for my personal blog’s newsletter.

Each day in November for #bloglikecrazy I’ll be publishing a blog post that answers your questions about blogging, social media, writing, wellness or women’s empowerment. Send your questions to javacia@seejanewritebham.com.