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50 Ways to Leave an Impression on Your Blog Readers

Christina Gleason.

There are literally millions of blogs in the world. According to Pingdom, there were 70 million blogs on WordPress and 39 million blogs on Tumblr at the end of 2011. That's not even counting self-hosted blogs and blogs on other platforms. With so many blogs out there competing for the attention of your readers, how do you make your blog stand out in their minds? If you don't want them to slip out the back, Jack, you may need to make a new plan, Stan. Because yes, there must be [at least] 50 ways to leave an impression on your blog readers. (My apologies to Paul Simon.)

someecards.com - She left me because she said my blog looked just like everyone else's. I told her, it's not my fault I like Twenty Ten.

50 Ways to Make Your Blog Different

  1. Have a designer create a memorable logo for your header graphic.
  2. Declutter your blog. Visual overload can drive readers away.
  3. Choose a vibrant color scheme - just make sure it doesn't hurt the eyes.
  4. Embrace an identity that is NSFW.
  5. Answer the questions everyone else is asking.
  6. Customize your social media buttons to fit your theme.
  7. Create a tagline no one will forget.
  8. Write memorable blog post headlines that are more than just keyword optimized titles.
  9. Don't be afraid to try new formats for your posts, like audio and video. See what sticks.
  10. Maintain a discussion forum for your blog community.
  11. Let your personality shine! No one else can write just like you.
  12. Find spectacular images to go with each post, not just "safe" stock photos.
  13. Humor is a great tool. Make your readers laugh!
  14. Respond to your commenters and let them know you value their thoughts.
  15. Put something personal into your posts - anecdotes can drive a point home.
  16. Create interactive content, like polls that will get your readers talking.
  17. Find an angle to approach your topic that you haven't seen before in your niche.
  18. Link out to other blogs and resources. Those you link to may pay it forward!
  19. Ask your readers what they would like to see you write about.
  20. Make it easy for readers to close those layer ads that load first.
  21. Go with a fluid theme with rounded corners instead of the standard boxy straight lines everywhere.
  22. Take a controversial topic and write up both sides of the debate.
  23. Take your own photos - so you're not using the same stock images as everyone else.
  24. Re-purpose your old how-to posts by turning them into videos.
  25. Use a visually stunning background image.
  26. Score the Big Interview with an industry superstar.
  27. Make it easy for your readers to subscribe to your content - so they'll come back for more!
  28. Include a lot of negative space in your design.
  29. Create the content that makes you the go-to resource in your niche.
  30. Incorporate subtle shadow effects into your design.
  31. Rotate your header images.
  32. Use unique (but legible) fonts throughout your site design.
  33. Change up the standard blog layout with something unexpected.
  34. Spotlight guest posts from other bloggers in your niche.
  35. Replace your stuffy about page with a sexier bio.
  36. Highlight up-and-coming blogs that your readers may not know about yet.
  37. Customize the design elements in your premium blog theme.
  38. Don't neglect your favicon.
  39. Avoid using CAPTCHA for your commenters; this puts people off of commenting.
  40. Adjust the number of characters per line in your posts for greater readability.
  41. Make your navigation tabs pop.
  42. Stay away from fonts like Arial, that everyone uses, or Times New Roman and Comic Sans, which no one likes.
  43. Don't have pop-up ads or subscription boxes.
  44. Make sure your URL structure tells people what they're in for before they click.
  45. Provide different options for following your blog: newsletter, RSS feed, Facebook, etc.
  46. Skip the Top 10 lists. Pick a different number. (Like 50?)
  47. Make light text on a dark background work for you.
  48. Shake things up with a caption contest or another way to have fun with your readers.
  49. Check for broken links on a regular basis to ensure value for your readers.
  50. Always remain authentic and true to yourself.

So what do you think? Can you still be different in this sea of blogs? You don't need to be coy, Roy. Let me know.


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Comments
  • http://www.mcgrawmarketing.com/ patmcgraw

    Interesting.  Cute.  Funny.  But I don't see anyway anyone can make light text work on a dark background.  ;)

  • http://www.mcgrawmarketing.com/ patmcgraw

    Interesting.  Cute.  Funny.  But I don't see anyway anyone can make light text work on a dark background.  ;)

  • http://www.brickmarketing.com/ Nick Stamoulis

    This is a great list.  Depending on your niche you may be competing with hundreds of other bloggers discussing a similar topic.  What can really help your blog stand out is if you post on a daily basis.  If readers know that you will have something new each day, it gives them reason to come back.  

  • http://www.brickmarketing.com/ Nick Stamoulis

    This is a great list.  Depending on your niche you may be competing with hundreds of other bloggers discussing a similar topic.  What can really help your blog stand out is if you post on a daily basis.  If readers know that you will have something new each day, it gives them reason to come back.  

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=683153360 Christina Gleason

    I've seen a number of blog make the dark background work. My eyes don't mind it, and it actually conserves energy. :-D

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=683153360 Christina Gleason

    I've seen a number of blog make the dark background work. My eyes don't mind it, and it actually conserves energy. :-D

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=683153360 Christina Gleason

    This works as long as you can post quality stuff on a daily basis. I've seen bloggers posting drivel on "off days" who may as well just stick to the better posts a few times a week.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=683153360 Christina Gleason

    This works as long as you can post quality stuff on a daily basis. I've seen bloggers posting drivel on "off days" who may as well just stick to the better posts a few times a week.

  • http://www.thejackb.com/ The JackB

     Quality is subjective. If you feel good about the content you are producing then you should keep doing so. It is too easy to suffer from analysis of paralysis.

    Too many people succumb to the fear of "my work isn't good enough" and don't produce any content because of it. Sometimes you have to just write. You don't need to hit a home run every time.

  • http://www.thejackb.com/ The JackB

     Quality is subjective. If you feel good about the content you are producing then you should keep doing so. It is too easy to suffer from analysis of paralysis.

    Too many people succumb to the fear of "my work isn't good enough" and don't produce any content because of it. Sometimes you have to just write. You don't need to hit a home run every time.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=683153360 Christina Gleason

     Fair enough!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=683153360 Christina Gleason

     Fair enough!

  • Anonymous

    Will have a look through the list and see where I can improve. Cheers for sharing.

  • http://radelaidecoffee.com/ radelaidecoffee

    Will have a look through the list and see where I can improve. Cheers for sharing.

  • http://www.ribbun.com/ Vikas Singal

    I have been blogging from 4 years now.  Christina , You have made an excellent list...I can work on it even after spending 4 years and I can make my blog work better ...and have more readers.

  • http://www.ribbun.com/ Vikas Singal

    I have been blogging from 4 years now.  Christina , You have made an excellent list...I can work on it even after spending 4 years and I can make my blog work better ...and have more readers.

  • Cinty

    Thank you for the great advice. I am just starting to create a blog and will follow your advice.

  • http://www.affilorama.com/blog Rod Tolentino

    Wow awesome blog! Hilarious and funny! The infographic is really cool! Thanks for the tips here, this will be very useful! 

  • http://www.momdot.com/ Trisha

    thank you so much for the link! I love my blog community they are fantastic women. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jing-Hu/100003120366663 Jing Hu

    To each their own. Personally, I believe users should be free to blog how ever they want. If people on the blogshere focus their energy on how to "improve" their blog it diminishes their indivisual creativity. This society put too much pressure on acceptance or being popular. Who gives a crap. Just be yourself and let your own creativity shine through your blog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jing-Hu/100003120366663 Jing Hu

    To each their own. Personally, I believe users should be free to blog how ever they want. If people on the blogshere focus their energy on how to "improve" their blog it diminishes their indivisual creativity. This society put too much pressure on acceptance or being popular. Who gives a crap. Just be yourself and let your own creativity shine through your blog.

  • http://pawelwoj.pl/ Paweł Wojnicz

    These 50 points are very important. Honestly I knew + - 40 :) So Thanks 

  • http://pawelwoj.pl/ Paweł Wojnicz

    These 50 points are very important. Honestly I knew + - 40 :) So Thanks 

  • http://www.familyfocusblog.com/ Scarlet

    That is a great list and a blog's look does a lot to attract me as a first time looker so I do appreciate the design of a blog. I also appreciate the functionality of a good design. Utmost though, will always be content.