Every week, I’m asked at least once, “Do I really need to blog?” I’ve touched on this before, but the subject of writers needing to have current blogs is tomorrow evening’s topic in the platform-building class. And the answer, it still seems, is “yes.”
Writing Tip for Today: I’m hearing some buzz that blogging may be on its way out. Might be true, but for now, I’ll defend my opinion that blogs–for writers who want to be authors–are still vital:
- Readers Need a Destination. Whether you are more active on Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr, I think readers need a destination where they can interact with you the author. A place that feels warm, inviting and safe. You can provide these things with a blog or a website. Make it as unique as you possibly can, but keep the colors soft and the backgrounds not too busy.
- Interactive Is the New Book Signing. For decades authors mostly met readers across the table at book events. Today’s readers want more–and a blog is a good place to start. They want to feel as if they’re in some kind of club. They want new content regularly or they’ll grow tired of your blog. You can tweet all day and that’s great, but readers want to know you. They long to interact with you. Many authors give their direct contact info on their sites, host podcasts or Skype book club meetings, and even snail mail thank-you cards to new readers.
- Learn Blogging for the Next Big Thing. If you plunge ahead into blogging, you’ll be less intimidated by the next big techie thing that captures readers’ attentions. Write your own blog, sure, but also keep up with trends and do visit other successful blogs. Try this: Google up to 3 key words that describe your book and see which blogs pop up at the top of the list. Visit those sites and note what seems good/not so good about each.