Is there a blogging school somewhere in the world? I’m not sure. But if there is, I bet it teaches plenty of skills that equip you on how to inhabit the blogging universe.
I didn’t attend a blogging academy, but I’ve picked up a few tricks from the rough-and-tumble school of experience. So: here are 11 skills I believe you’ll need to learn and know to be a successful blogger.
To tell you the truth, I never enjoyed reading until I found the book that brought me to where I am right now. Trust me, reading is by far the most important life skill a person can have.
In blogging, you need to read to understand theories and fundamentals. It’s a skill you need in order to adapt and survive in the blogging world. Once you love reading, your vocabulary will improve over time.
Everyone can listen, but when you’re a blogger, you listen to your readers. Listen to what they have to say in comments, forums or social media. It’s one way to learn what your readers fear and desire, so you can help them in any way you can.
If you can read and listen, I’m sure you can write. And I guess everyone can write. But here’s the problem: most bloggers are bad at it. Their sentences are either difficult to understand or their sentences are boring.
To improve your writing, you have to practice. Start by reading and studying the content of top bloggers. See how they write their sentences. Then try to do it yourself. Over and over. If you’re not able to reach the level you want, hire a proofreader or editor to help you out. You can find them on Fiverr.
4. Basic CSS and HTML
You don’t have to be an expert or professional, but you must at least have a basic knowledge of how to format text and images on a web page. If you want a unique blog design, knowledge of CSS and HTML is essential.
For a good premium blog design, check out StudioPress By Genesis Framework. They provide the roots of the blog design, and all you have to do is tweak and change it. Equipped with basic CSS and HTML skills, you’ll be able to do more.
If you want to be a successful blogger in your niche, you need to be constantly motivated. Without motivation, you won’t be able to perform at your best, especially when writing content. Your content, and the way you reply to readers, will be dull.
Remember: you must be motivated yourself before you can motivate someone else.
I’m not particularly self-disciplined, although I always do my best to get things done. But, as you know, there’s a lazy part of everyone.
But sometimes you just have to force yourself to get things done. As the old Nike ad says, Just Do It.
All good content on the web is supported by research. If you want to write solid, unique content, you need to do a lot of research.
Not all information on Google is true, so you have to dig deep. This will involve hours of work. Without reasonable research skills, you won’t be able to crank out good content.
This is skill almost every blogger in blogging world doesn’t have. Don’t believe me? Well, what if I told you that you’ll become a millionaire 10 years from now, but you’ll have to endure a rough ride almost every day. Tell me: would you have the patience for it?
The answer is yes. But the truth is that, halfway through, almost everyone gives up. The reason has less to do with laziness, and more with patience. In life, there are things we just couldn’t wait.
9. Hard Work
Did you know that almost everything in life is hard work? You may not realise it, but think again. Isn’t getting up early in the morning really hard? Isn’t going to work in rush hour a pain? Isn’t coming home after work and blogging for hours on end hard work?
I can tell you from experience that almost every successful blogger out there has a story about how much hard work they put in before they saw a dollar in the bank. If you’re not up to hard work, you might as well forget about success.
10. Time management
If you want to manage your time, you need to learn self-discipline. Without it, you’ll never be able to manage your time.
Remember back in school, when every lesson for the week was set so you knew what books to bring to class each day? You had a timetable. And this is what you need to manage your blogging time. Plan so you know when you should be writing content, when you should be commenting, when you should be researching. And when you should relax. Don’t forget to relax.
11. Image Editing
As a blogger, if you don’t have basic image-editing skills, you won’t be able to resize your images. As a result, they’ll hog space on your server and making your blog take too long to load. And you’ll lose readers because of it.
Of course, you don’t have to own expensive software like Photoshop to resize images. Using Paint (in Windows) is enough to get the job done.