Please feel free to share any additional tips or your personal experiences with writing/blogging in the comments, and stay tuned for more prompts every Thursday!
Ours is a visual society.
Our eyes are drawn to things that are graphic in nature—not necessarily graphic as in bloody or X-rated, just visually active. Photos, movies, artwork, and even geometric shapes can lend a helping hand to your posts. As mentioned in Part Three: What to Expect from Sharing Your Work, “you’re asking the world to read your work, which is among billions of other works. There’s so much noise and it can be tricky for readers to pick yours out of the crowd.” You may have the most insightful, thought-provoking post ever written, but unless you have a previously established audience, it’s likely that post will get lost in the noise and fail to provoke much of anything.
When you have a blog or other kind of website, what you’re essentially trying to do is advertise your product, whether it’s something for sale, sage advice, inspiration, or whatever, and to do that you need to make it attractive, so that it will stand out.
This is where images come into play.
For the past few months, I’ve been conducting a kind of experiment with my own posts (writing prompts, mostly) to see what does and does not work to attract members of the writing community and share my ideas. I created images for my prompts that included photos, solid backgrounds in varying colors, and playful and serious typography to see what draws in my intended audience. What—I wanted to know—invites writers to lock on, keep reading, and—if I’m lucky—come back for more?
As a result of my experiment, my site has grown from roughly 65 monthly views to around 215. Between 2015-2016, I nearly doubled my number of total visitors from 283 to 503. So far this month alone (January 2017), I have 220 visitors and about 335 views. That’s almost half of my entire 2016 traffic.
Though the numbers are still relatively low, this is a big deal to me.
Now, bear in mind my blog is a small one just like yours might be, but I’m making a point to keep up with it and keep it growing, and so should you. The point isn’t to do those numbers in a day—the point is to engage the members of your community, and as a result get those numbers every day. The most important thing is to create quality content that people want, but also make it accessible to them using every method at your disposal.
In case you need a launching pad, here are some of my preferred stock photo/image sites:
Have some writing tips & tricks you’d like to share or see discussed in future posts? Let me know in the comments! And be sure to check out our other Tips & Tricks articles: