If we asked seven people for their definition of a “successful blogger,” we’d likely get seven different responses. Because every blogger is unique. Our reasons for blogging are different too.
A successful blogger is oftentimes categorized by virtue of certain statistics. This data reflects the way a post is resonating with readers, and we can appreciate the information these numbers provide. But there’s more to blogging than statistics. Much more.
We blog because we want to share a part of ourselves with others. Blogging has become an amazing way to build bridges with folks we might not have ever met otherwise.
Blogging connects us in ways we couldn’t have ever imagined. <Tweet this!>
This is why we enjoy gathering once a year. The Allume Conference is a place where all of our online bridges connect for one special weekend of real togetherness. My favorite part of the conference has always been the people — people who share a love of words and a love for God and a love for reaching others with the Light of Christ.
Blogging is one way we get to share our soul’s message of hope and freedom. And we want to blog with excellence. So what does that look like? What does a successful blogger look like?
While statistics have become a basic measuring stick for bloggers, there are key qualities in a successful blogger that can’t be easily quantified. Here are seven signs of a successful blogger that you won’t find on a bar graph anywhere:
1. Successful bloggers can look back at their earliest blog posts and see considerable improvement in their writing.
Blogging provides a wonderful venue for practicing the craft of writing. We improve with time and practice. When you read your first posts, do you notice a difference in the way you write today? How has your voice developed and changed?
2. Successful bloggers continue to refine their purpose for writing online.
The more we write, the more we grow. And as we grow, our purpose for writing continues to come into focus. Sometimes we begin writing about one topic, but we end up writing about another. That’s part of the process. We gain greater clarity as we write through the years.
3. Successful bloggers persevere through the inevitable ups and downs that accompany the blogging life, and they find their own rhythm.
Every blogger, at some point, entertains the idea of quitting. Blogging takes effort. Sustained effort. Yes, bloggers will take a break every now and then. Maybe even a really long break. But eventually, successful bloggers settle on a pace that works for them, and they stick with it.
4. Successful bloggers build relationships with other bloggers.
The beauty of blogging comes from the people we meet. At first, we might distinguish our “real life friends” from our “online friends.” With time, however, we discover that our online friends have become our real life friends too. There’s no longer a distinction. These online relationships span continents and oceans, and they become the truest testimony of our “success” as a blogger.
5. Successful bloggers create a body of perennial work they can point new readers to.
A perennial flower is like an evergreen tree. It’s flush with life, all year round. In the same way, successful bloggers can direct new readers toward a ready collection of posts that represent the best of their years as a blogger. This isn’t just a list of archives either. These posts are their penultimate work. They enable new readers to get to know them and what their blog is about relatively quickly.
6. Successful bloggers connect with readers and make a positive impact on their lives.
This is the most important part of blogging — making a difference. A truly successful blogger is someone whose life and writing have changed someone else for the better. Maybe it’s a comment on a thread. Or maybe it’s a private message sent. When readers reach out to tell you that your words have touched them in some way, that is the best thing about blogging.
7. Successful bloggers begin to mentor newer bloggers.
Successful leaders never hoard information. Part of what lends to their success is their ability to share what they’ve learned with others. Success always multiplies itself. Successful bloggers are generous with the tips and tricks and tools of the trade. They’ll come alongside newer bloggers and share what has worked for them and what hasn’t. One person, of course, can’t possibly be available to everyone on the internet, but one person can establish mentor relationships with at least a few other bloggers who would love to learn and grow.
So if we extracted the key verbs from each of these seven signs, it would look something like this:
A successful blogger will . . .
That’s the definition of success.
What would you add to this definition of a successful blogger?