Mistakes Art Bloggers Make: Here Are The Three Biggies I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Earlier
By Thea Fiore-Bloom, Ph.D.
How do I know the three biggest mistakes art bloggers make?
Ummm….because I’ve made every one of them.
I don’t want you getting tripped up by the same three snares.
If you hop over these traps as opposed to diving into them as I did, you’ll skyrocket your chances of having a successful art blog.
To get your art blog to bloom in the beginning stages, you don’t need to be a great writer or a great artist. You just need to know someone is listening.
Because if you press publish on your first few posts- and all you hear are crickets- you’ll stop writing.
However, if you get even the tiniest bit of affirmation (which I’ll show you how to do in a minute) you’ll keep posting.
And fairly regular posting for at least two years is the Willy Wonka golden ticket to blogging success.
Because it’s right around the two-year mark that many art blogs gel and start selling your art for you.
So do you want to hear three ways not to be like me and mess this future heaven up?
Let’s do it, ladies.
The 3 Biggest Mistakes Art Bloggers Make
Giant Mistakes Art Bloggers Make #1
Pick Your Post Title Out of Thin Air
Want to ensure you don’t get many readers for your art blog?
Just whip off a title and don’t edit it.
Pick a cute or clever headline that means something to you but will be inscrutable to your reader. That’s what I used to do.
If you want to attract new readers, friends, and buyers to your blog just take the time to compose and tweak your titles.
Before you title a post ask yourself two questions.
First, who is this post written for?
Second, what will this post do for that specific group of people?
The answers make a clickable title.
The Before Title
For example, if you want to write about how to do gold leaf don’t do what I used to do.
Don’t title the post something poetic and obscure like “Squares of Light; My Journey.”
(Some of my early editors must have wanted to staple their thumb to the wall when I handed in titles like that for magazine articles.)
“Squares of Light: My Journey” doesn’t tell you what the post is about, or who it’s for, so why click on it, right?
Remember- poetic, unclear titles are the fast train to the Google graveyard.
The After Title
Instead, why not title your gold leaf post something like: “Six Secrets of Gold Leaf for Beginning Acrylic Painters”? This title clearly tells you if this post is for you and what you’ll get out of reading it.
You spend hours writing your lovely posts. Spend at least thirty minutes improving your title, okay?
For a helping hand get Jon Morrow’s free 52 Headline Hacks PDF. (The PDF is an opt-in, meaning you sign up to his mailing list to get it, well worth it.)
Okay, now it’s time to unveil the big kahuna mistake.
# 2 Biggest Mistakes Art Bloggers Make
Write as if You Are On Trial in a Star Chamber
Do you ever feel scared when you write?
Are you seeing a film in your head of you trying to communicate to a faceless crowd of critics who are laughing at you?
This is a universal feeling among writers.
We all occasionally write in “star chamber mode,” especially when we begin something new.
But the problem is the writing we produce in star chamber/fear mode comes off stiff, it sounds defensive and uninviting.
Want your readers to relax and stay awhile? Want to feel less nauseous and more inspired next time you open your laptop to write a post?
How To Avoid This Art Blogging Mistake
Here’s what to do instead. Take the focus off of what people will think of you and put the focus onto the needs of your reader.
Write the first draft of each post as a warm, funny letter to a specific friend of yours. Pick a friend who thinks you are the cat’s pajamas.
Imagine she’s asked you a question that your letter/post will gladly answer.
As you type your answer imagine a big white lightbulb above your head that reads, “What’s in this for my reader?”
If you practice reader-centered writing three little miracles will occur for you:
- The pressure will fall away. You’ll struggle way less with what to say and how to say it.
- You’ll stop using that painful “business” voice. Soon your sparkly, unique, real, writing voice will peak out through your brain foliage.
- And you’ll have way more readers.
For a humorous example of a reader-centered article pop over to my piece, Letting Go of Approval: A Story for Artists (That Involves Underwear.)
I’d also advise buying a copy of the reader favorite: Bird By Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott.
And speaking of readers and what they like or don’t like, let’s go to our final mistake.
Giant Mistakes Art Bloggers Make #3
Blow it Big Time in the Comments Department
Want to ensure you get NO comments? Do one of four things.
1. Don’t ask for comments.
Here’s a great article from ProBlogger on the importance of asking readers for comments. In it, you’ll discover nine creative ways to get more comments on your blog or your Facebook page.
2. Don’t answer the comments you’ve already received.
If a sweet, introverted artist has drummed up the courage to leave you a comment, acknowledge the gift and answer them back.
When readers see you answer your comments it shows them you care and they’ll be more likely to honor you with a comment in future.
3. Don’t leave comments on your readers’ blogs.
It feels amazing to receive a comment right? You feel as if someone is listening.
I’ll let you in on a secret. I receive subscriber comments on my posts because I leave comments on my subscribers’ posts.
Leaving one another comments creates camaraderie and a mutual network of support among art bloggers.
We need each other’s support to keep being vulnerable on the page.
So stretch your wings; leave comments, answer comments.
As Ram Dass said, “We’re all just walking each other home.”
Over to you. What do you think?
Got any other mistakes art bloggers make to add?
I’d love to know in the comments below.
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