Beach Cottage Quick Real Girl Tips to Brand Your Blog
Fri 9th, Mar, 2012
G’day Beach Cottage ladies, did you watch the vlog here of the wild dark seas, pounding waves and brisk air from yesterday? Amazing!
Anyway, as promised to those of you who get the Beach Cottage Newsletter, and due to popular demand ;-) a few blogging blog tips for you.
This one is about branding, for no other reason than everywhere I have been lately, not just in blogland but in the newspaper and on the tv ‘branding’ has been rammed down my throat…so it got me thinking about how that relates to Real Girls bloggers…blogging from the studies of old cottages on beaches…
Everyone knows about branding right? But how does that fit in with your little blog that you slot into your life between being a mum or having a job, or both and doing the laundry?
Well, you might not think it is important at all, and I have to admit I didn’t deliberately set out to do any of the things that I have now learnt I actually did correctly…for once (!) but I’ve learnt that branding is very important.
So below are some super quick tips for getting your ‘brand’ out there for your blog…I think that the most important brand you have is yours…you don’t have to worry about anything else, whether or not Coca-Cola is ready to brand align with you or not…you are more important than any of that in my opinion ….you are chief of your brand and there is much you can do to enhance it.
But, do I really need that if my goal in blogging is not to change the world? Do I really need it with my blog if I just want to make some friends from all around the world who also want to knit vintage style tea cosies & collect tea pots / paint things white and throw shells around?
Well yes I think you do…read on because branding, bottom line, helps one simple thing…connections and whether you are in this for the big bucks or not, unless the only person you want to blog for is yourself and your mum, you need, whatever your motives, to make connections…
1. Brand Yourself
It’s nowhere near as intimidating as it sounds…
Sit down and have a think about what you are, what you are saying and how to broadcast that…mine obviously is ‘abeachcottage’ and this was a total fluke in my ‘brand’ because it was actually a joke between Mr BC and myself that the real estate tagged this place as ‘a beach cottage’ …when indeed it wasn’t on the beach and it was more a ramshackle hellhole with free rodents
….however ‘abeachcottage’ has in actual fact given me a lot of scope in this blog…being a wide all-encompassing name it has meant that I can easily try my hand at different things like recipes / fashion all under the umbrella of what does actually go on in this old cottage…
What I am trying to say here, is don’t hem yourself in too tightly, I have said that before in my ecourse and I think it is really important…
So get a brand and get it working for you…or work out how you are going to better use the one you have
2. Brand It
So the above doesn’t apply to you because you already have a blog, it’s going pretty well and you have readers coming back for more everyday, plus you are really happy with it, you enjoy it and it’s fitting into your life quite nicely…well make sure that you are working that…
Check your ‘branding’ is all over your blog…use the same few fonts, colours and text…and use them across the blog…
…whatever you do, say or promote on your blog and within your pages ensure that it has the same look and feel…it will say loads about your brand…
3. Brand Across the Board
OK, you have the colours set up – people know you by those colours & fonts now…use the same ones all across the board
…this is a simple, quick and effective way to further and enhance your brand whatever media you are using on the net…and all the Big Girl Bloggers are doing it very well…add these same colours and the same few images in all the places you are active on the net…mine are the chair in the water, my DIY bus blind in the kitchen and a couple of others plus sea green text, clean fonts & grey…they are on my Facebook page, Twitter page etc…it all adds up to simple Real Girl branding and it doesn’t cost a dime!
Don’t forget your email and more traditional items either…I only just added a decent signature to my emails, it only took me 3 years to do that…it looks about a million times better…and all my details are there in one little signature at the bottom of the email…plus it ties in all the branding on my blog
4. Brand Your User Name
Another one where I didn’t think about it, but it’s worked out well for me….
Use the same name in all the different places you go on the web….an interesting point recently, there is this blog that I follow that is very popular, man I love that blog, it’s totally unrealistic and different to the day-to-day life that I am leading but I about suck it up every time there is a new blog post…what I didn’t realise (and I have been a regular reader for well over 18 months) is that the blogger is active on Twitter and Instagram…but on both those sites she is using a different name to her blog name…and I never could find her…not her best move
Ideally you want to have the same name across all platforms, whether you choose your name or the name of your blog is your decision but I would say always go for the blog..and add your name too if you like!
5. Streamline Your Profile Picture & Make it Your Brand
Add your picture to all your profiles – Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook…I use a couple of different ones, but mostly the same few…it gives your brand a face and a personal identity, I didn’t do this properly until quite recently…that was a big mistake – readers want to see who you are, they want to be friendly with a person…how many times have you clicked ‘About’ on a new company you have come across on the web only to be really disappointed and a little skeptical that this oh so wonderful company banging on about how good it is actually does not include a real person and worse no address…so include YOU in your brand…duh
I think this is very very effective in branding – have a look around and you will notice it on the big girl blogs…the really clever ones will also be dressed in something that says them or their brand or they will be doing something a bit kooky that makes you sit up, after a day of checking your blog reader in your pj’s and think, oh yeah, I remember her, the girl in the red dress, nice hair and good lipstick…I’ll read this one….
6. Brand Your Voice
I didn’t consciously do this but I have certain words on my blog and so do many other bloggers that I visit – so think about branding how you blog…different bloggers will use different ideas but their branding will run through their blog voice (which they will also use in social media) too
…for example I brande d my blog voice with things like ‘Too Easy’ recipes (Mr BC thought that up for me) and using Mr Beach Cottage the Beach Cottage Crew and Beach Cottagers…all just my little personal quirks but what I didn’t realise they were doing when I started the blog and just wrote them was that they were building my brand…
…and, keep your voice consistent on all the social networks…this is tricky sometimes with Twitter with the character limit and Facebook..but be yourself & add your branded voice wherever you go…don’t try and be too clever or different to what you are…just do it
That’s it from my Real Girl blogging tips…these tips are Too Easy ;-) …you can do them in less time than it takes to catch up with your latest blog fix…I hope you find them useful.
Cheers big ears
p.s. want more blogging tips from a girl who has been through it… Beach Cottage Sweet Blogging the E-Course here xo
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