Guest Post by Blogger, Hugh Roberts – How to Become a Successful Blogger!

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Please welcome blogger extraordinaire, Hugh Roberts, to Jemsbooks Guest Post. Thank you, Hugh, for coming today! It is a pleasure to see you. If anyone wants to learn about how to be successful at blogging, Hugh Roberts is the one to listen to and learn from.

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Hugh Roberts

How To Become A Successful Blogger – Part 1. The ‘About Me’ page

Success comes in many forms and in the blogging world we all look at what makes a blog successful differently.

I can’t pretend to give you all the answers into making you a successful blogger, but what I can tell you is why I think my own blog is successful. Over the coming year I’ll be writing and publishing articles about what I have learned during my time here on WordPress and how it has made me into a successful blogger. Many of the things I will talk about are what many of you already do and practice, whereas some may also disagree with me.

I get really excited when I’m informed that my blog has a new follower, I mean don’t we all? However, that feeling can sometimes come crashing down when I visit the blog of the blogger who has just followed me and I cannot find an ‘About Me’ page. It doesn’t stop there either because sometimes when I have found an “About Me’ page and find a one line statement on it like “Does it matter?” or “coming soon”, it’s just as bad as not having an ‘About Me’ page at all.

Yes, having an “About Me’ page does matter and so does giving it the love and attention it deserves. For starters it’s going to be the one, if not the first page on your blog that a new follower will go to. Start off by introducing yourself and, most importantly, give at least your first name. If you don’t want to use your real first name then give a name you’d like to be known by. People like to know who you are and one of the most important things we all do when we introduce ourselves to new people is to give our name.

Not only does giving a first name help in letting people know who you are, but it also promotes you as a friendly person. That in itself promotes your blog as being friendly and all of us want to visit and become part of blogging communities where the host is a friendly person.

That leads me on to what you should include on your ‘About Me’ page. People are usually very interested in the person behind the blog they follow and I for one have built up some wonderful new friendships through it. Tell your visitors at the very least where in the world you live. I go as far as to also give the name of the city I live in. That way I’ve got to know some local bloggers who I can sometimes meet up with for a coffee so we chat about the wonderful world of blogging. Tell people what they can expect to find on your blog, what interests you, what ambitions you have (e.g publishing a book) and most importantly of all try and include a photo of yourself. Okay, some of us may be camera shy, but I think it’s always a wonderful thing to be able to put a face to a name, more so when we become part of all the blogging communities out there.

Once you’ve published your ‘About Me’ page you’ll soon start to get comments left on it. Whatever you do, always, always respond to those comments. I’ve come across quite a few blogs in my time that have an excellent ‘About Me’ page, but the author has not responded to any of the comments left on it. For me, that’s like inviting somebody for a coffee and choosing to ignore them. When you reply to those comments (and any other comments on your blog) try and use the person’s first name somewhere in your comment. That promotes you as being friendly. I also always sign off the comments on my ‘About Me’ page by leaving my first name.

The other important thing about your “About Me’ page is not to ignore it. Once it’s published ensure you revisit it every once in a while and update it. If, like me, you also include links to other blogs or posts then ensure they are working. If you come across a broken link on any blog inform the owner of the problem. Bloggers are usually very thankful when you do this and it can sometimes lead to a new follower and maybe even them reblogging one of your posts as a thank you. I’m not saying to go out and spend all your time looking for these broken links just so you get a reblog, but to just inform the owner of the problem should you ever find a problem with a link on their blog.

Your “About Me’ page should always look attractive. Try and keep it brief yet also remember to ensure it is broken up into neat paragraphs. As with any post, try and steer clear of huge blocks of words. Spilt them up with some images or photos and always preview it before you push that publish button. I’ve often been so surprised how some of my posts seem to have large gaps in them when I preview what I have just written.

Last but by no means least, always ensure your ‘About Me’ page is easy to find. Don’t go and play hide and seek by placing it somewhere where visitors will have to hunt it down. Believe me when I say that if somebody cannot find your ‘About Me’ page within 30 seconds of arriving on your blog then they will probably close the page, move on, and probably never come back to visit. On my own blog you’ll find the link to my ‘About Me’ page on my menu bar. That way, it’s easy to see and, therefore, easy to find.

What about you? Do you have an ‘About Me’ page? Is there anything you would like to add about the ‘About Me’ page? Perhaps I missed something or maybe you’ve a question about what to put on your ‘About Me’ page. Let me know by leaving a comment below and I’ll get back to you.

Check out Hugh’s blog at http://www.hughsviewsandnews.wordpress.com

Hugh Roberts
http://about.me/hugh_roberts

Thank you, Hugh, for these insightful points of blogging! I agree with you on the importance of using your name or a nickname to identify yourself. This makes you more human and approachable. Also, having an About Page is essential to pique interest in one’s blog and encourage more followers. I will have to visit mine again to make sure it is updated.

Thank you, readers, for stopping by!

Remember: Reading Gives You Wings to Fly!

Blessings!

-Janice-

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About jjspina

Janice is an award-winning author with eight children's books for PS-Gr 4, four middle-grade/preteen/young adult books, written under Janice Spina, and two novels, and a short story collection written under J.E. Spina. She is also a writer of poetry, blogger avid reader, reviewer and a copy editor. Janice has always loved writing and started very young writing poetry, then stories. Her children's book, Lamby the Lonely Lamby, won a Silver Medal in the Mom's Choice Awards. Book 1, Davey & Derek Junior Detectives, The Case of the Missing Cell Phone, won the Pinnacle Book Achievement Award and Honorable Mention from Readers' Favorite Book Awards. Book 2, Davey & Derek Junior Detectives Series, The Case of the Mysterious Black Cat, won the Pinnacle Book Achievement Award and so did Book 3, The Case of the Magical Ivory Elephant, Davey & Derek Junior Detectives Series. All her books are available on Amazon.com, Create Space, Kindle, B&N and other online book sites. One of her sports' poems was published in The Lawrence Eagle Tribune in October of 2008. She is currently working toward publishing one children's book, middle-grade/preteen book 5 of Davey & Derek Junior Detectives Series. A mystery series for girls and a YA fantasy series will be coming next year. Janice loves to hear from readers and appreciates reviews.
This entry was posted in blogging, Writing, book reviews and publishing, poetry, children's books, YA and novels and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

105 Responses to Guest Post by Blogger, Hugh Roberts – How to Become a Successful Blogger!

  1. dgkaye says:

    Excellent post! It’s all true! I know I’ve often had to search for someone’s about page, even a ‘follow this blog’ has been scarce. If I left, how many others did too? 🙂

  2. Reblogged this on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog and commented:
    Looks like a great series, by Hugh Roberts, starting over on Janice’s blog – don’t forget to follow it by subscribing to Janice’s blog 😀

  3. Great post, Janice and Hugh. The About Me page is so important, like you said, if I can’t find one, I leave.
    You made me check mine out again, and I’m pleased with it. I went with a different take on my About Me, but made sure all the relevant info is there if people don’t want to read my intro…an easy scroll, or a lovely piece of introductory prose…
    Looking forward to further posts here x

    • I’m glad to hear that this post was a reminder to check your ‘About Me’ page, Lisa. I recommend we do so at least once every six months. I’ve even surprised myself of the out of date information on mine, or where I’ve mentioned something and then given no update. Every six months seems to be the good divide between nothing needing changing to having to make some amendments.

      This was a guest post Janice kindly invited me to write, so the rest of the series will be published over on my blog.

      Best wishes,
      Hugh

  4. Norah says:

    Great post and good advice from Hugh. Great to meet up with him here on your blog, Janice.

  5. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Janice Spina is hosting the ever supportive Hugh Roberts with his new series on how to make your blog attractive and successful.. Like Hugh I do find it frustrating when I build up a relationship with a blogger and don’t know what to call them.. If you wish to remain anonymous then please give yourself any name that you prefer so that we don’t have to keep calling you Iaminvisible.wordpress.com – worth a read and check out your About Me… or create one.. lovely job Hugh

  6. adeleulnais says:

    What a wonderful post. I`m off to check out my about me page. oh and have reblogged this.

  7. Sarina says:

    The “about me” page is super important. I agree with all the points Hugh has made here. As for me, I like to see some originality on this page.

    I’m not quite happy with my own yet. I feel I’m allowed to let it be a work in progress updating it until it fits just right.

    Great post.

  8. amreade says:

    The first thing I did after reading this post was pull up my own blog and make sure there’s an About Me page on it. That in itself told me something very important (I do have an About Me page, by the way): I obviously haven’t visited the page in a long time, and I certainly haven’t updated it. And sure enough, the About Me paragraphs were about two years old. A lot has happened since then! I’m heading over there now to update the information. Thanks for the very important reminder!

    • You’re very welcome. Sometimes these posts act as a great reminder to lots of people about updating information on our blogs. I’ll be covering lots of other blog related stuff that needs to be checked over the coming months in my continuation of the series.

  9. When I visit a blog with a blank About Me page, I usually leave a comment suggesting that the blogger write up a bio so readers can get to know him or her. The only item I would add to the “how to” list, and this applies to posts as well, is to use a color of text and font size that is readable. I have left many blogs because the print is so small I cannot read it without straining my eyes and/or the color of text blends into the background and makes it unreadable. I have also left posts unread that go on and on without paragraph breaks. I am surprised at the number of blogs I stumble across that use this style. One simple rule to follow: make sure posts are readable without causing eye strain. Great post Hugh!

    • A very good point, Beverly. That is something I am touching on in another post in the series. As users of WordPress we all have the ability to preview what our blogs and posts look like before we publish them, yet many seem to ignore the feature and post unreadable posts. Some then wonder why the post does not do well. We also all have the ability to chose font sizes and colours. Sometimes it may come down to ‘not knowing how to’ so I’ll be giving some tutorials as well.

  10. Pingback: Guest Post by Hugh Roberts – How to Become a Successful Blogger! | kyrosmagica

  11. Great post Hugh, so good in fact that as you know I’ve shared on my blog… 🙂

  12. Great advice from a very good blogger!

  13. Ali Isaac says:

    I have some lovely followers who I still don’t what to call them in comments. Some give different names for different media, and that confuses me. I dont know about anyone else, but I feel terrible if I get someone’s name wrong! And I now think it would be a good time to update my about me page, it must be ages since I did. Thanks Hugh for all the tips, looking forward to the rest of the series now.😊

  14. Gosh I just noticed I’ve deleted my About Me page somehow on my blog, I’ll have to take a look later and put it back,it must have been when I was updating it.

  15. Erika Kind says:

    That is a fantastic post and I can only confirm each and every observation and assessment!

  16. This is a great post by Hugh – jam packed with important tips about the “About Me” page. A good reminder to me to ensure my “About Me” section hasn’t become outdated! And an excellent tip to not only respond to every comment (I do!) but to use the commenter’s name in the response if possible.

  17. Reblogged this on Hugh's Views & News and commented:
    This is the first in my series of articles on my take on what being a successful blogger is all about.

    Originally published on Jemsbooks, the post looks closely at the ‘About Me’ page of blogs. Do you have one? Is it easy to find? What should it include? Take a look at the post and tell me what your thoughts are about the ‘About Me’ page by leaving a comment on the post at Janice’s blog. Many people have already left comments and I’d love to hear your thoughts.

    Part 2 in the series will be published very soon.

  18. OK. All sound advice. But, while there is a link to an aboutme (or rather you) on here as part of the post, I couldn’t find it on your blog, so where did I miss it? I found ‘welcome’ which was awards, interviews and disclaimer, but not the basic ‘aboutme’.

    I read another post on the about page this week, and that was very much focused on a commercial ‘about me’ which was an interesting take, again sound advice, but nothing new.

    • Hello, if you click on the ‘Welcome – Meet Hugh’ button on my blog, you will be taken to my ‘about me’ page. I decided to change ‘About Me’ to ‘Welcome’ because I thought it had a more friendlier approach.

      Many bloggers write blogging advice posts and I remember when I first started to blog how finding them was like finding a hidden treasure. They contained so much great advice which, for a novice (like me), was so very helpful in understanding how to blog. I think these posts also act as a great reminder. Just from the other comments left on this post many have said how the post has reminded them to update their ‘About Me’ page. I’m no expert in the field of blogging but I do love to pass on what I have learned in the hope that it will help others. Even if it only helps one other person I get a lot of gratification out of knowing that.

      • Thanks Hugh. I agree Welcome does sound friendly. I got there in the end. I think that’s a problem when you have a ‘home’ page and drop downs, it can be confusing. Well, to people like me, yet I have a similar set-up on my blog for some pages …

    • Oh you’re welcome. I agree with you and it can also depend on the blog theme chosen. Some themes hide the menu and widget bars and you have to click on a small icon (usually in the top right-hand corner of the blog) to open them up. It’s when there is no ‘About me’ or Welcome’ page that I will leave without looking at the blog any further.
      Thank you so much for your comments.

  19. My tip on this point is write the about page in the first not the third person. It is so much more personal and inviting.
    Good tip about using a name, I get suspicious of bloggers who don’t!

  20. Almost Iowa says:

    Creating an attractive About Me page is great advice. However, as a true Midwesterner, I am torn by recognition. After years of frantically waving my arms and yelling, “Look at me! Look at me!”, I am utterly devastated when someone does.

  21. Solveig says:

    I am never satisfied with my about me page for long. I try to update it and link it to some interesting posts here and there. I might have to add a photo on it. Thank you Hugh and Janice for starting this series. 🙂

  22. Steve says:

    Fab advice and I totally agree. The “about” page is our shop window!

  23. And…going to go check my About Me page in about two minutes.

  24. As always a great advise. I must check my about page probably due for an update.

    • Good to hear, Eric. Out of date “about me’ pages are as bad as not having one at all. I recommend reviewing it at least twice a year.

      • You don’t fancy taking a quick peek at mine and let me know if it’s missing anything, or not hitting the right tone?

      • I’ve just had a quick look and I’d suggest the following.

        Add more about what can be found on your blog.

        Add some more information about what interests you (not just Harry Potter).

        I know you’re blog is called ‘Eric’s Blog’ but introduce yourself as Eric on your about me page. Sometimes people don’t take much notice of the name of the blog.

        Add a few more photos if you have any, especially of you or the area where you live.

        Add something about how people can contact you, but obviously don’t leave your email address or mobile number!

        Add some links to some favourite posts of yours or to any other blogs where you are an author. Tell people why you’ve added them

        Remove the bit about asking people to reblog posts. Many bloggers do not like seeing comments like that. I know there’s a saying “if you don’t ask you don’t get”, but leave it up to your readers to decide whether they want to reblog any of your posts.

        Try and keep it brief. An ‘About Me’ page that is over 500 words can be off putting as can one that is not spilt up into nice neat paragraphs.

        I hope that helps 🙂

      • Thats a lot of help, thanks. I’ll get on to it.

  25. joanfrankham says:

    Thanks for the great advice, I am off now to update mine, I think its long overdue!

  26. Janice says:

    Some very helpful tips on the About page! Been thinking about reviewing mine so the timing is great. Thank you! 🙂

  27. olganm says:

    Thanks for the reminder. It’s difficult to keep track of everywhere we are…:)

  28. Elissaveta says:

    Fantastic tips from Hugh, as usual I might say! I’ve tried to make my ‘About me’ page a little more interesting but must admit haven’t updated it in a while. Maybe I should revisit it.

  29. Sherri says:

    Hi Janice and Hugh! Thank you Janice for featuring Hugh’s excellent blog series, I am very much looking forward to reading all. Hugh, this is wonderful advice. I feel just the same, I don’t understand why some bloggers don’t bother with their ‘About Page’, it really is the first stopping point. I struggled with mine when I first started as I felt I had too much to say and tried to find a way to narrow it down, but then I wanted to give any potential readers an idea of what they were going to get if they decided to follow my blog. It’s so important to let everyone who and what you are about. And thank you for the reminder to update, that is something I tend to forget! Very helpful post to many, thank you Hugh!

  30. Pingback: How To Become A Successful Blogger: Part 2 – How To Create A Pingback | Hugh's Views & News

  31. jazzfeathers says:

    Excellent post. I do have an About Me page and indeed that is one of the most visited pages on my blog. But after having read this, I think it need some twicking 😉

  32. Pingback: How To Become A Successful Blogger: Part 4 – Why Republishing, Reblogging and Rescheduling Your Posts Always Work | Hugh's Views & News

  33. CJ Andrews says:

    Great post!…and it reminds me that my About Me page is probably due for a little refreshing.

  34. mihrank says:

    this is very impressive, informative, detailed and a powerful post of interview…

  35. kcg1974 says:

    I loved reading Hugh’s insights. The “About Me” page is one of the first things I wrote when I started my blog nearly three years ago. I remember taking such joy in writing it. Old and memories coming together with the present to create this new part of my life. Having said that, I’m taking Hugh’s advice to get over to my blog ASAP. No doubt “About Me” needs some spring cleaning, and a little redecorating! Thanks so much Janice for this terrific and insightful interview with Hugh. 😊

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