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The 10 Best Ways To Blog in 2015

10 Best Ways to Blog in 2015

Today I want to give you a checklist of the 10 best ways to blog in 2015.

While this is not a complete list of the things you need to do, I hope it will get you asking yourself some questions about how you are going to blog in 2015.

Many of you bloggers have been around for a while and have prepared your updated goals for the new year.

I’m sure you know that blogging alone is not likely to bring in the online profits you want, though, unless you properly root your blog in a sound monetization strategy.

For those of you who don’t really understand what it means to have “a sound monetization strategy,” think of it this way. All of your online activities… blogging, social media, videos and all the rest… form a circle.

Your blog is in the center of that circle.

All of your online activities lead to capturing leads on your opt-in forms, or selling your products and/or services.

This is best done by leading people from your social media and other sites, onto to your blog. That’s where you get to build a deeper relationship with them, and make them part of your business.

So, what are the 10 best ways to blog in 2015?

Last week, I wrote a post about Blogging in 2015.

I talked generally about setting your goals for blogging in 2015, and I even gave you a link to view my webinar on the subject.

As of the time of this posting, it’s not too late to catch the replay of that webinar, even though the expires soon. Here it is again:

“Turn Your Blog Into A Business”

Today, I want to talk not so much about WHAT you want to accomplish with your blog in 2015, but HOW you’re going to do it.

So here, from my point of view, are the 10 best ways to blog in 20151. Make your blog personal.

1. Treat your blog like your home.

Make it about you and your brand, and let people know why they want to be there.

Your blog is your “home,” your private real estate that no one can take away from you. Make your home inviting to all your guests.

2. Throw out the welcoming mat.

When people visit your home, treat them like folks you’re happy to see.

Always greet them at the door with a friendly welcome.

Most of all, serve them up some high-value content that is congruent to the niche you are in.

Make them see they made a good choice to visit you.

3. Build your list.

Have you made that opt in on your side bar, yet?

Even if your “free offer” is an affiliate product or service, you must have something to serve up as an appetizer… something they’ll want to pick on before the full course meal arrives.

I find it best to do a one minute video of YOU introducing the free offer. This is how you will brand yourself, even if you’re an affiliate. That, my dear friends, is so important.

4. Embed your “Calls To Action”

At the end of each blog post, always encourage reader engagement by giving a clear Call To Action (CTA). The idea is to make it easy, and also enticing for people to comment. It is like giving them a “hint” of what to say.

You can make your CTA something like this: “If you enjoyed this post, please let me know how you could apply this to your own situation…”

Remember, people love to talk about themselves, so give them permission and encouragement to. This makes your blog personal, so people will remember you.

5. Give your readers an “Author Box”.

Have you installed your “author box” so new people coming to your blog can see what you are all about?

If not, do it now, and make it easy for people to read.

Even more, though, give them a Call To Action in the author box, too. 

Something like this… “I’ve been doing a lot of Facebook Ads, lately. In fact, I’ve done a video showing you to avoid the mistakes I made early on… watch it here [link to your video].”

6. Work your blogging process.

Now, get out there and work your blogging “process.”

This process involves replying to comments left on our blog, and then reciprocating by going to their blogs and leaving comments of your own. This is of utmost importance, but many bloggers get lazy with the process.

Every time someone comments on one of your blog posts, make sure to leave a good reply. Do this promptly. Don’t wait a week before replying. The sooner your replies are published, the more “real time” and conversational your blog will feel to your readers.

Then, you need to reciprocate.

Go to each of their blogs and leave a really great comment. People do read comments, and you bet your bottom dollar that when they see that you have left a good one, they get interest in you.

When I say to leave a “good” comment, I mean one that shows you actually read the blog post.

When you give intelligent feedback on it, others will see it and will be prompted to visit your blog and see what you are all about.

To understand this process in more detail, I refer you to Don Purdum’s article whereby he shows the importance of doing this.

7. Enhance your Social Media presence.

Be active on social media!

Whatever you have done last year, pump it up in 2015 with the many white hat marketing strategies you can apply. (Later, for that post lol).

Yes my dear friends.

Whatever social media platform you favor, resolve to increase your activity level there in 2015. Stick to it consistently, keep posting daily and never stop engaging with others.

8. Use your blog for marketing.

Make sure you either hire a coach or do some intense course training to get up to date on the marketing strategies that will work in 2015… not the ones that worked last year, the ones that will work from this day forward.

This is the most important thing of all.

If you do not know how to market correctly, your blog is just going to be flapping in the wind. I don’t care how many people love your blog, it won’t bring you the results you want.

You really need to get your game on and learn how to market.

You may think you have already learned the “secret sauce”, and that is fine.

But here’s the big questions you need to ask yourself.

  • Are you dissatisfied with the results you’ve been getting?
  • Would you like to improve on them in 2015?

If so, you absolutely must explore different avenues of marketing, otherwise you simply are not going to gain any traction.

I can tell you from my own experience that David and I have always used coaches. That’s what professionals do.

They consult with people who can help them get to the next level in their business. It’s an ongoing learning process.

Doctors and lawyers call it “continuing education.”

Entrepreneurs call it surviving and thriving.

Whatever you call it, it means keeping abreast of the best online marketing strategies on a continuing and ongoing basis.

There is so much to learn, and to apply when it comes to cutting edge marketing with your blog. I can write another blog post about that one, for sure.

For now, keep your eye on the ball… attend webinars, get coaching, do anything…but never stop learning how to market. The minute you stop, your business will, too.

9. Implement!

Implement your marketing strategies consistently and wisely on your blog in 2015.

This will lift you to heights that most bloggers never even dream of.

10. For “extra credit” – create a product.

Now, here’s your “extra credit” assignment. If you’ve never created a digital product, try creating your first one in 2015.

It could be a paid product, but it could even be the free “lead magnet” that you use to build your list.

Did you ever think of creating your own product, bloggers?

If you have done so… that is great and you know that feeling going from blogger to product creator. You’ve seen how it really pumps up your authority status and personal brand.

If you’ve never tried creating your own product, you can do it in 2015!

It can be an e-book, a video, a service, an ongoing training product. Whatever you choose.

If you have never made your own product, please make 2015 the year you do, even if you are a newbie blogger.

In my upcoming posts, I will address this issue and elaborate on it.

Luck Is Not The Same As Success

Now… I would love to know your strategies and how you are going to rock your blog in 2015.

Would you like to add something to my list of the 10 best ways to blog in 2015?

I look forward to reading your comments below.

-Donna

 

 

 

…..

Donna Merrill
Donna is a well known blogger and creator of "Blogging Magic" - an intensive guide to blogging. "Blogging Magic" is for beginners who are trying to figure out how to bring their blogs to life with tons of visits, comments and social media interaction. It's even for advanced bloggers looking to reach new levels of authority and engagement with their audience.

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96 Responses to The 10 Best Ways To Blog in 2015

  1. Harleena Singh
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 4:05 am #

    Hi Donna,

    This is wonderful indeed! 🙂

    It’s like the forecast telling us what to expect and be prepared for in the coming times, and how so true!

    I’d first of all want to add that 2015 might be the years of mobiles and tablets. My blog traffic is already 50% from mobile and tablet, and I guess this is only going to increase.

    So, probably you can add having a responsive theme as a necessity too in 2015. And it things are going mobile, they will need to be concise and to the point, more visual, and audio as well.

    Apart from that, I completely agree with your list. All the points are important, more so #9 – implement! 🙂 I guess this is where most bloggers fail. And having a product is the best thing to do if you want to turn your blog into a business.

    I’m going to implement some of the points you mentioned and thanks for writing them all out. Have a wonderful week ahead, and Happy Holidays to you and yours 🙂
    Harleena Singh recently posted..How To Build A Community Like Aha!NOWMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 22, 2014 at 2:06 pm #

      Hi Harleena,

      Oh yes, most people I know are using their mobiles and tables already. We do have to make sure our blogs are mobile ready! You are correct that we need to have that responsive theme for that.

      I cannot wait until you implement some of these points…especially your own product. AHA Now has grown so big and you do have lots to take care of there, but I can see how you can be a great leader in your field of expertise!

      Happy Holidays!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  2. Rohan Chaubey
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 4:22 am #

    Hi Donna ma’am,

    Loved this post. 🙂

    I agree to Harleena ma’am’s comment. My blog too gets 37% traffic from Tablets, Phones, etc.

    I am taking note of all the points stated by you.

    I need to work on call to Action boxes and building a list.

    Thanks for this post. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. 🙂

    – Rohan.
    Rohan Chaubey recently posted..A Common Man’s Guide to Public Speaking: Strategies, Tools and HacksMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 22, 2014 at 2:15 pm #

      Hi Rohan,

      It is so true, more and more people are reading our blogs from mobiles and tables. If we are not compatible, we are sunk!

      So glad this helped out. Yes, use that call to action every time you write a post this way you make it easier for a visitor to comment.

      Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  3. Doreen Pendgracs
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 9:00 am #

    This is a fabulous post, Donna. I’ve got three active sites that I work and a book that I am promoting. It’s endless work to have a strong presence on social media, but I’m slowly getting there thru hard work and perseverance.

    My resolution for 2015 is to establish my mailing list and finally publish my first newsletter. I’ve been putting off FOREVER, but your tips have got me thinking on how I can work it and makes some sales at the same time by offering a discounted price on my book to those who subscribe to the newsletter.

    Cheers and Happy Holidays!
    Doreen Pendgracs recently posted..Chocolatour at chocolate eventsMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 22, 2014 at 2:21 pm #

      Hi Doreen,

      I just seen your latest post and oh boy…are You the busy bee! our work is fantastic!

      What a great idea you have come up with…giving discounts on your book for those who subscribe to your newsletter. A very good marketing technique! Works like a charm.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  4. Don Purdum
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 10:01 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Are you trying to inspire me to work through the holidays? If so, you’ve created the desire in spite of my need to take the time off. Well, I’m still going to take the time off and keep your words of wisdom in my head!!!!

    I couldn’t agree more! Blogging is a serious number one strategy for my growth. From June 2014 to today I’ve seen the best growth in my ten years of my entrepreneurial journey!

    I changed my emphasis from web design, seo and social media for clients to coaching and consulting. My years of experience have taught me that building something for someone is worthless if they don’t know who they are or what business they are really in.

    My program is really unique and exciting and my blog has exploded as a result of helping so many for free and giving my clients a reason to buy from me.

    Fortune 1000 companies, medium sized businesses and small businesses alike became my clients because of my BLOG!

    Not my social media!

    I really think that social media has a strong diminishing return without the strong presence of blog to allow your thoughts, ideas and personality to shine in long format. Plus, the new video series seems to be a hit and have three new prospects just because of it.

    Therein lies the reality I’ve learned… it’s not the numbers that are important it’s the right readers and followers that are important.

    The community my blog has allowed me to build has been second to none and for that I’m so grateful. In fact, that will be closing blog for 2014 today with a bit of inspiration on how people can capitalize on this great tool!!!!

    Your 9 step process – BRILLIANT!

    Thank you Donna for becoming a special part of my journey over the last five months! I can’t wait to see what 2015 is going to look like!

    Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year’s!!!!

    ~ Don Purdum
    Don Purdum recently posted..A Real Reason You’re Marketing is Not Generating BusinessMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 22, 2014 at 2:47 pm #

      Hi Don,

      So I dragged you away from some free time? HE HE HE! It has been such a pleasure knowing you for this short time in 2014. I watch you grow in leaps and bounds and had that AHA moment to change up your business. I am so glad you changed your structure from web design, seo and social media for clients to coaching and consulting. Indeed, why do all that building if the client doesn’t even know what business they are in. Your coaching is more valuable than that!

      So now that you have commented on my blog, you can go back and spend time with your family he he he.

      Wishing you a blessed Christmas and New Year.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  5. Mustafa Gaziani
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 12:53 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Once again amazing stuff. Yes! Email list will remain an important element of success in 2015 as well. You’ve written such a marvelous post. giving readers an “author box” is a great idea to manage your blog in a right way. I always find one interesting and new idea in your post. Moreover, hope the year 2015 will be good as for blogging aspect.

    Happy blogging!

    -Mustafa
    Mustafa Gaziani recently posted..Definitive Guide to Figure out WordPress Search ProblemsMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 23, 2014 at 1:27 pm #

      Hi Mustafa,

      Oh that author box…I didn’t realize how important it was to have until last year. Now when I do a guest post, it is so easy for someone to duplicate it on their site. It also tells people a little bit about us.

      Thanks for stopping by and wishing you a prosperous new year!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  6. Chery Schmidt
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

    Hello Donna, What a great list, I love the first two Make your blog your home and then put ut the welcome mat! WOWSY GF!! Now that is some sound advice!

    I also really like the idea of putting together my first product, I did get my opt-in on my blog but NO I do not have anything juicy to give them, This is going to be a main focus of mine in the coming year!

    Thanks for sharing! Wishing you and yours a Very Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year!
    XOXO
    Chery :))
    Chery Schmidt recently posted..Developing A Success Mindset Exercise ! Part 2My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 23, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

      Hi Chery,

      Yep, our blog is our home and we need to put that welcome mat in front of it!

      Oh la la I love your focus in the coming year. I know you will do well.

      Wish you a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  7. William Earl Amis Jr III
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

    Donna,

    I had to return and add more comments. I gave it more thought upon my return to this article. To many of us may be so busy and felt overwhelmed. That is based on not focusing on just a few social sites vs. trying to join each and everyone. More groups and such. That is when people feel they are stretched thin. Nothing productive getting done. Lack of execution on growth activities.

    You make great points on focus with one primary locations, Blog. Then, one social or two may do with gathering the right people for becoming readers, or registered readers. Which you would grow with.

    I love LinkedIn. Which, is where those who I support the most are from. Then, there are thousands of registered readers on my WordPress. Yet, it took years to reach those numbers. It doesn’t happen overnight. So, just remembering we have to grow with each person for the rest of our lives. That is why you want to be transparent 100%.
    William Earl Amis Jr III recently posted..Taking Time To HealMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 23, 2014 at 1:51 pm #

      Hi William,

      Thanks for adding to this post. Yes, things never happen overnight, I’m always on the pulpit telling folks that. It does take time and if anyone thinks it doesn’t they are dead wrong.

      I used to be so active on LinkedIn a while ago. Lately, everyone seems to be on Facebook for me, so that’s where I hang out the most.

      We have to shave down where we want to be on social sites and concentrate on said site. We cannot spread ourselves too thin otherwise we can be overwhelmed and that stops us in our tracks.

      Oh yes, one must be 100% transparent. It is the only way to go! If not, people are pretty smart and they can see right through those who aren’t.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  8. Enstine Muki
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 5:39 pm #

    Hey Donna,
    I think every blogger should read this before 2015 kicks in. These are very helpful points to help us in the next year.

    I love the 10th point. I think that’s the best way to make money online. If you create your own product that solves a problem, nothing can stop you from making money except you fail to market it.

    I’m unable to comment point after point here because these are all hot points 😉

    However, to rock blogging in 2015, I plan to strengthen relationships I have already and of course network with more bloggers. I think that’s where success lies.

    It’s been a wonderful year working with you in my community. That’s why I intend to make it stronger in 2015 Donna. I keep saying there are better days ahead so let’s keep giving 😉

    Merry Christmas dear friend
    Enstine Muki recently posted..Excellent copyright-Free Images Finder with Editor for your blog!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:24 pm #

      Hi Enstine,

      I do agree, making your own product is the best way to go. BUT….having the knowledge to market it is a whole different story.

      I would say that no matter what we are selling, marketing properly is key. It is something one must invest time and/or money in order to make things work. Like having a good marketing funnel! One that really works.

      It has been a great year working with you and I know there are better days ahead as long as we keep on giving!

      Merry Christmas

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  9. Kumar Gauraw December 22, 2014 at 9:52 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Thank you for this awesome reminder especially when I have been in a kind of on-and-off relationship with blogging in this second half of the year.

    Some important and time consuming projects demanded more of my time I am planning to get back to my blogging schedule in the new year and stick to it again. That is my new year’s resolution 🙂

    Thank you for these awesome reminders and some great tips.

    Regards,
    Kumar
    Kumar Gauraw recently posted..How To Add Google Calendar In WordPress And Make It ResponsiveMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:25 pm #

      Hi Kumar,

      I know how busy you have been, especially during the second half of this year but that is a good thing!

      I like your new year’s resolution because I do enjoy engaging with you on your blog.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  10. Mitch Mitchell
    Twitter:
    December 22, 2014 at 11:51 pm #

    Hey Donna,

    What’s an author box? I have an about page, and I have the brief description of who I am on the blog; is that it?

    Otherwise I’m with you in many ways. I don’t use all my blogs for marketing, but for two of them that’s definitely what they’re all about, though in different directions. Still, I’m more about the conversation if I can generate it; I figure the rest will always come when it’s time.
    Mitch Mitchell recently posted..Keeping Up With Blogging & Social Media MarketingMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:28 pm #

      Hi Mitch

      The “author box” is that little box at the end of my blog that says “bio” and it works so well especially when we do a guest post.

      Conversation is pretty easy once you give your readers a call to action like “I would love to have your opinion …. ” or something like that to help them jump in and comment.

      I know things do come in time and wishing you all the best for the coming year.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  11. James McAllister
    Twitter:
    December 23, 2014 at 4:21 am #

    Hi Donna!

    So glad to see that I’m already doing a lot of these. I suppose it makes sense because after all, I have been learning from the best.

    I think a lot of these really bring out the importance of engaging and getting really personal with your audience. Get to know your audience, and let them get to know you beyond your blog posts.

    I know I have a bad habit of going off into long stories, but I love analyzing my own habits and seeing how I can tie them into my current marketing plan. This one is pretty relevant and proves just how valuable engagement can be. So I’m going to take a quick trip down memory lane…

    My journey with blogging started quite a few years ago, when I ran into a gal named Lisa Irby on YouTube. I previously had no idea it was possible to make money online, and the idea interested me. I was a huge computer nerd at the time and the prospect of making money from home was an exciting one. To be honest, I was just too young at the time to legally get a job and needed to find a way to pay for a video game subscription. I never could have imagined this website stuff would become such a huge part of my life!

    Anyway, I binge-watched all of her videos and took in as much information as I could. There was no stopping me now – I was hooked. Before long I was looking over every page on her website and the next day I bought web hosting and launched my first site. It failed miserably, but it was a great learning experience. I’m not the type of guy that gives up easily so I kept going and well, still am.

    The thing that really stood out for me was her engagement with her audience. I felt totally comfortable asking questions, knowing I’d receive friendly helpful answers. It eased my doubts and she helped me become a better blogger.

    Those few minutes she spent helping me out from time is the exact reason she’s made hundreds of dollars off of me. The info she provided on her site was great, sure, but it was the engagement and the connection that led to money landing in her bank account.

    Looking over my experience, it’s clear to me that this sort of engagement works. I try to present myself in a way that encourages my audience to get to know me – not just because I love helping them, but because it’ll ultimately make me more money as well.

    So every time I see bloggers who shut themselves off from their audience (disabling comments, ignoring emails) I can’t help but wonder what the heck is going through their heads. Just last week I ran into a blogger encouraging other bloggers to do the same thing, and it was painful. I wanted to send him an email showing him the benefits of engagement, but I suppose he was too good to receive my emails. 🙂

    Aside from that, I’m really looking to rack up the product creation this upcoming year. I wrote my first two books this last quarter and I’m absolutely loving it. I originally planned to write 1 book a month but right now I’m unsure – I’d really like to expand beyond just books. Perhaps this next year I’ll create a full course as you suggested to me before.

    Plus, my workload has doubled this past month as I’m preparing to begin reselling on Amazon.. but that’s a completely different story. I’m feeling like the busiest college student in the country at the moment, lol.

    I could talk about that for hours, but I’ll cut myself off before I ramble on further. Thanks Donna for the great article – I’m really looking forward to 2015!

    – James
    James McAllister recently posted..Are You Updating Your Old Blog Posts?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:35 pm #

      Hi James,

      Thank you for adding so much flavor to this post. I know that when you got hooked on blogging you were very young! But you still are and what I love the most about you is that you are giving “hope” to young people by your blog and marketing.

      I know many college students in other countries that are as eager as you. But in this one, well, not too many.

      I can see you branded as “how to get through college by blogging” or something like that as a book and also a consultant.

      I think you know Ryan Biddulph. Now look what he is doing ….”blogging from paradise” He is even lectured at NYU. So can you my friend. You have a lot of knowledge and if you make a plan of ebooks and some e-tours, I’m sure you will Rock the world.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  12. Ryan Biddulph
    Twitter:
    December 23, 2014 at 9:14 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Wonderful points all around.

    I must admit; I caved and built a list lol 😉 Just yesterday I started list building.

    I resisted it a bit but more than that, I was so busy creating my eBooks and eBook-sized blog posts that naturally, my list building efforts had to be backburnered. I am cool with that.

    I think from a convenience factor alone list-building just plain helps our readers.

    People live in their email inboxes.It’s a compulsive habit.

    So send your content and special offers to where people live and they’ll see it so much more frequently, and they’ll build a stronger bond with you.

    Amazingly simple strategy here that is so prospering for all involved.

    I am committing to publishing more eBook length posts, publishing more eBooks and more than anything, detaching from business outcomes so I can let my true genius shine through.

    All is going well so far, and I’ll just continue to get the word out there, to inspire folks, and to build my blogging community quickly, to benefit all involved.

    Merry Christmas Donna to you and David!

    Tweeting now!

    Ryan
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted..Review of the Blogging from Paradise 2 Book Deluxe ComboMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:41 pm #

      Hi Ryan,

      Your email list is gold my friend! Especially when it is from your blog and/or social media friends. I know I spend more time and energy on my list than I do on my blog.

      I just finished building my new sales funnel email list…or should I say David has lol. Once you get that one right, there is no stopping you!

      Our blogging community is one thing, but the money is in the list. And usually it is from people who have never even commented on our blogs.

      Take it from me, I’m getting more and more people joining my products and services because they have been reading my blog but never commented. Plus, social media has been fab.

      I’m using Facebook right now and there has been such an increase in sales it’s crazy. People I don’t know tell others and that word of mouth never fails.

      Here is to your success and Merry Christmas!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  13. Marquita Herald
    Twitter:
    December 23, 2014 at 11:41 am #

    Excellent advice as always Donna! Your first point about making your blog a home especially resonates with me because I truly value my blog. I’ve put a LOT into it, but I will always consider it a work in progress because I am. There’s a Carrie Fisher quote I just love about success, “There is no point at which you can say, ‘Well, I’m successful now. I might as well take a nap.” To me this says it all, no matter where we are on the success scale – newbie to expert – there will always be something to learn.

    Ha! Of course this can be a blessing and a curse for those of us afflicted with the tendency toward perfectionism – I am forever going back and rewriting things I’ve published as my writing skills improve over time. 🙂
    Marquita Herald recently posted..Why It’s So Hard To Be CompassionateMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:43 pm #

      Hi Marquita,

      I love that quote: There is no point at which you can say, ‘Well, I’m successful now. I might as well take a nap.”

      That says it all about the word success! Our blogs and business are a work in progress which does reflect us. Because we are a work in progress. As we learn and do more things out here, we can never take a nap.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  14. Neamat Tawadrous
    Twitter:
    December 23, 2014 at 11:55 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Great Post Donna and sound advice.

    Honestly, no, I am not happy with my marketing or with the return of my blog and I want to take it to the next level and learn better marketing strategies.

    Your 10 ways are all valid. I am taking sometime off for the holidays but I will be working on improving my opt-in form and the offer and have a better strategy of building my list.

    I so much like the idea of creating my own product in 2015 but to be honest, don’t know where to start and I am so glad you will be elaborating on this point in your future posts.

    Thanks Donna for sharing your experience and for being generous and helpful with your ideas.

    I wish you a Merry Christmas and A Happy & Prosperous New Year.

    Be Blessed,

    Neamat
    Neamat Tawadrous recently posted..Let’s Together Make This Christmas About Giving And Forgiving!!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:47 pm #

      Hi Neamat,

      I find that my opt-in on my blog doesn’t do as well as my marketing skills I have learned. We cannot depend on those that visit our blog to purchase, as much as getting out there and marketing.

      Believe me…I’m an avid learner of marketing. Just when I took those expensive courses, applied them and had a good ROI, there is ALWAYS more to learn.

      Marketing is stepping out of the box of blogging. Sure, there will be some that will purchase from us, but we cannot depend on those small numbers.

      There are two ways of marketing: Paid and free and we need them both. But I digress..I’ll be talking more about this during the coming year.

      Merry Christmas to you and yours and a very prosperous new year!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  15. Annie
    Twitter:
    December 23, 2014 at 2:32 pm #

    Thanks so much for the great tips! I plan to create my first ebook and revamp my design in 2015. I like how you recommended getting professional help too. There are so many options to choose from, it can be dizzying trying to decide where to start. Great post!
    Annie recently posted..Meditation Mondays: How To Change How You Feel in Any MomentMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:49 pm #

      Hi Annie,

      That is wonderful news to create your first ebook. Just do it and then edit it later! You are such a good writer from your heart and I know it would be helpful to others.

      I would never recommend getting help unless I had done so myself. I have invested in marketing and still do.

      Yes, there are many options to choose from, but if you need a little guidance, give me a shout out on Facebook.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  16. ikechi
    Twitter:
    December 24, 2014 at 1:34 am #

    Hi Donna

    Thanks for this wonderful post and this is a preparatory course for 2015. I am definitely going to work more on marketing and building lists . I also would want to create my 2nd Digital product next year. I am glad this blog is there to help my achieve my goals. Thank you Donna. Merry Christmas and a Happy new year.
    ikechi recently posted..Ask Yourself…Am I Where I Want To Be?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:51 pm #

      Hi Ikechi,

      A very wise decision to be focusing more on marketing and building lists. Just make sure you know what a sales funnel is..that’s the main marketing key.

      Woo hooo…creating your second digital product..good for you and I wish you the best.

      Merry Christmas to you and a prosperous new year,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  17. Atish Ranjan December 24, 2014 at 5:46 am #

    These 10 ways are indeed the cool ones as usual Donna. I loved the very first point which is about treating your blog like home! For me my blog is just like my second home where I spend most of the times!

    Building good social media presence is the need of the year! Lovely post it is!

    Enjoyed reading!

    Merry Christmas Donna!
    Atish Ranjan recently posted..5 SEO Myths you should avoid in 2015My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:53 pm #

      Hi Atish,

      Yes, our blog is our home and we have full control of it. I do think that building a good social media presence goes hand in hand with your blog.

      Merry Christmas!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  18. Erika Mohssen-Beyk
    Twitter:
    December 24, 2014 at 11:23 pm #

    Hi Donna ,
    As always lots to learn for me here .
    I am thinking of building a list and
    will look one by one at your ways .
    to blog .
    Thank you
    Erika

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:54 pm #

      Hi Erika,

      As the old saying goes: The money is in the list! But it is a bit tricky. Just make sure that you have a good plan and give your list good information most of the time and pitch them products 20% of the time.

      Thanks for visiting!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  19. Irish Carter
    Twitter:
    December 25, 2014 at 10:15 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    You always have the best stuff. Your tips always give me something new and fresh to stick in this head of mine so I can look at how to do better. I really do need to work on my call to action. One thing that jumped out at me that you shared is to take one social media site and engage strongly. I need to do that better. I tend to jump randomly around to many different ones and then take a break and head to another one.

    I have lots of plans in 2015; I’m cleaning up my website, creating some great products and engaging more. Thanks to you, I have decided to also add in more continued education and training. You are amazing. Thanks Donna.

    Irish
    Irish Carter recently posted..From My Home to Yours!  An Inspirational Message to You for the Holidays!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

      Hi Irish,

      I am so happy to know that you enjoyed this post. When it comes to social media, remember you don’t have to be everywhere. Find where most of your peeps hang out and be there.

      If it is Facebook, make sure you have a Facebook Page where you can do business. Even all the other social sites have business pages. Go for it girl!

      Your plans for 2015 sound great….just take it one step at a time so you won’t get overwhelmed.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  20. Miriam Slozberg
    Twitter:
    December 25, 2014 at 10:41 pm #

    Wow with consistency and these great steps, you could make 6 figures + with your blog but it will take time, consistency and a lot of work. I just created a new mom blog in October and my plan for that one in 2015 is to get a new podcast specifically for that one going as well as some digital products that are in the parenting niche. Great post!
    Miriam Slozberg recently posted..The One Thing to Never do on Social Media During the HolidaysMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 7:59 pm #

      Hi Miriam,

      It does take time Miriam, nothing happens over night, but your new blog sounds like a great niche. Once you get that into motion, share it on a social site…build a community of moms and answer questions….

      Digital products are awesome and the parenting niche is fantastic. Oh boy are my wheels turning for you!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  21. Siphosith
    Twitter:
    December 26, 2014 at 3:20 pm #

    Your post is packed with great information for bloggers. I got great value from it. Right now I need to work on my Author box, and I will come back for more. Thanks Donna.
    Siphosith recently posted..4 Ways Motivation Can Make You SuccessfulMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

      Hi Siphosith,

      Even if you do one action from something you read, you have done well. Create that author box so when someone asks you to do an interview, all they have to do is copy and paste it for further information on you!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  22. Joan Harrington
    Twitter:
    December 26, 2014 at 7:09 pm #

    Hi Donna!

    These 10 ways to blog in 2015 are the best I have seen ever written down, thank you 🙂 I know that I am going to be doing all of the above in the new year and just stay consistent and focused throughout the year and beyond!

    My absolute favorite way is Implement! These ways are great, but if you DO NOT IMPLEMENT and take action, nothing will change on your blog ever 🙂

    I am totally ready for 2015 and will make it my best year yet in my business!

    Fantastic post!

    Happy Holidays!

    Hugs,
    Joan
    Joan Harrington recently posted..5 Mistakes That May Cost You LeadsMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 26, 2014 at 8:03 pm #

      Hi Joan,

      Indeed, if you don’t implement and take action, you just wallow in the waters. These are only a few things I’ve jotted down to make life easy for my readers.

      But if anyone can have one take away and implement it…I’ve done my job!

      I’m sure 2015 will be awesome for you!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  23. Mi Muba
    Twitter:
    December 26, 2014 at 10:56 pm #

    Hi Donna

    This is a complete package for effective blogging in 2015. A few of them look not much important but once a person follows them he easily gets to know their benefits.

    No one takes seriously to welcome a blog visitor. It puts good impression especially on unique visitors. It is just like a business where a well-dressed good-looking receptionist welcomes each visitor.

    Implement is another wonderful way to blog successfully in 2015 and beyond. People do have several ideas but they remain in their mind or in action plan but hardly implement a few of them for the whole year.

    Building an email list is the smartest marketing strategy to have a sound grip on your sales funnel instead of just relying on unique visitors to sell your products.

    Thanks a lot for sharing a wonderful post to make the new year more useful.

    Season’s greetings to you and your blog’s wonderful community.
    Mi Muba recently posted..7 lustful needs of your blog visitors and how to serve themMy Profile

    • donna merrill
      Twitter:
      December 27, 2014 at 10:05 pm #

      Hi Mi Muba,

      I like the analogy you have given here about a first impression of a unique visitor to our blog when you mention it is like a business where a well-dressed good looking receptionist welcomes each visitor!

      We must always implement! We can have many post-its in our head and never take action on them. We have to as bloggers and marketers create a strategy and stick to it. A sales funnel is a must if we want to sell anything!

      Thanks so much,

      -Donna
      donna merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  24. Zach
    Twitter:
    December 27, 2014 at 1:33 pm #

    What WordPress plugins do you recommend for the “opt in” on the sidebar?

    What about for the author box? I just append a blurb and a link to the bottom of every post, but if it were automatic, that would make my life easier.

    (Found a typo: you typed “20151” instead of “2015”)
    Zach recently posted..Uber Legal in Las Vegas?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 27, 2014 at 9:57 pm #

      Hi Zach,

      I don’t use any plugins for sidebar opt in, but there are some. I just do it myself with Widgets. As for the Author Box, I use Fanciest Author Box. It’s pretty nice, I like it.

      I can certainly understand you wanting to make your “life easier” and plugins certainly help along those lines. That’s one of the great features of WordPress.
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  25. Monna Ellithorpe
    Twitter:
    December 27, 2014 at 2:29 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Great reading this post. I am taking all of the information in and making plans for the new year. Thank you again for the information that you share. I need to try the author box plugin again. It didn’t seem to work for me with the other theme I had but it might now. Until then I use the one I created myself.

    Have a great New Year.
    Monna Ellithorpe recently posted..Personal Branding With Your About Me PageMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 27, 2014 at 10:00 pm #

      Hi Monna,

      I’m sure you will find a way to create that author box Monna! You are so great at these things!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  26. David Merrill 101
    Twitter:
    December 27, 2014 at 3:08 pm #

    Great advice, as always, Donna.

    I’ve got a lot of catching up to do with my blog, and this is a good checklist to use. I’m certainly weak on calls to action and, really, that’s a key to using your blog as your business center.

    I’m not terribly active on my blog, as I spend a lot of time coaching and creating digital products. I promote mostly through paid media and just knowing many people in the industry, and working through those channels.

    Email marketing is critical to any blogging business and so I agree that it’s just so important for us to be building our lists. I think that if there’s any one activity we have to focus more and more on, it’s list building. I think, going into 2015, we can all find new and better ways to do our list building.

    Thanks for getting us off on the right foot, blogging in 2015.
    David Merrill 101 recently posted..Membership Site CommunitiesMy Profile

    • donna merrill
      Twitter:
      December 27, 2014 at 10:14 pm #

      Hey David!

      I do know how much time you spend on email marketing, coaching and creating those digital products. Working by your side and having a schedule to meet, I see how you cannot devote much on your blog.

      By the way, your blog has amazing information. I know that in 2015 we are going to focus more on building lists.

      No worries…I’ll be taking care of this end of blogging and social media lol

      -Donna
      donna merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  27. Adrienne
    Twitter:
    December 27, 2014 at 4:00 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    I’m so sorry I’m just now getting by here, let’s just say it’s been a busy month. With this past week being Christmas and not a lot of people online I got lazy girl. I enjoyed some time to myself and with Mom of course just enjoying the holiday spirit. I helped her rearrange her closet this morning, I’ve been busy with projects already. Anyway!

    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas, you and the whole family. So this is why your advice here is so important. I know that 2014 will be behind us soon enough and not everyone is where they would like to be with their business or their blog. Maybe they haven’t set those goals you spoke of in your last post. Maybe they need that direction so they can make things happen in the coming year.

    I think all of these 10 tips that you’ve shared are spot on. They are so important for our overall success. I love how you explained that everything we’re out there doing is the circle we’re forming and we are leading them back to our blogs. Our main goal no matter what we’re out there doing is to get them back to our place, our home and then get them to take action.

    I wish everyone the very best in the coming year and with your advice I believe they have no more excuses. Yep, you’re just laid out a great plan for everyone and of course if they still need some assistance all they have to do is hire you to help them. Perfect.

    Great share as always Donna and I’ll be sure to share this post as well. You have a wonderful weekend and a Very Happy New Year. As you know I’ll be taking some time off but I won’t be able to totally stay away! LOL!!! 😉

    Happy Holidays my wonderful friend.

    ~Adrienne
    Adrienne recently posted..Saying Goodbye to 2014 EarlyMy Profile

    • donna merrill
      Twitter:
      December 27, 2014 at 10:21 pm #

      Hey Adrienne,

      I thought you were taking a break already lol. Good to know you had a great Christmas and send my best wishes to your mom. Ours was easy…Me, David, Mom and my Daughter. No fuss no muss…We created a great dinner and sat and talked for hours. I enjoyed a quiet Christmas.

      We did see David’s kids and grand kids via Facetime and watched the kids open their gifts. It took almost two hours and we felt like we were right there three thousand miles away! The best part is I didn’t have to cook for a crowd nor clean up he he he.

      Glad you enjoyed this post. I tried to keep things simple during the holiday season. Everything we do out there is like a circle. This is what I just love about it all.

      I look back at 2014 and see all the stuff we both did. Now there’s no stopping us now girl when 2015 comes in a few days.

      Wishing you a blessed New Year,

      -donna
      donna merrill recently posted..Blogging In 2015My Profile

  28. Dr. Erica Goodstone
    Twitter:
    December 27, 2014 at 9:44 pm #

    Donna,

    Another wonderful post. You make it all seem simple and so clear. The key to success is for someone to just do it – to create the blog, write the posts consistently, share them on social media, build relationships, create an opt in offer and share who they are with their readers.

    But you put the two most important points, at least for those of us who have been blogging for years, at the end – implement and create a product.

    Some of us enjoy writing and sharing our thoughts and ideas with others so that we may forget that this is and can be a lucrative business. But to earn income from blogging, we need to have something we are sellling – products, services. And we need to invite people in our Call to Action. Once we understand how the process works, it becomes fun and exciting rather than an overwhelming and frustrating chore.

    Thanks again for another informative and inspiring post to help us start the new year off right.

    Warmly,

    Dr., Erica

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:21 pm #

      Hi Erica,

      I do try to simplify things as much as possible. Truth is we need to implement things as bloggers. That’s where some people get stuck.

      Yes, creating a product or even affiliating one we need to invite people to that CTA.

      It is complicate, but as long as we enjoy it…it’s not “work” at all!

      Happy New Year,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  29. Mark
    Twitter:
    December 27, 2014 at 11:34 pm #

    Excellent post Donna!

    And some really sound advice to boot!

    I have to echo Chery’s comment, making your blog your
    home and putting out the welcome mat.

    That is some excellent advice, that I’ll definitely put to
    good use going forward!

    Also tips 5-7 really strike a chord for me! Especially tip # five!

    That’s a really good suggestion that I’ve previously overlooked! But
    not anymore thanks to you!

    Excellent advice and thanks again for allowing us to your excellent
    webinar until 1-05 2015!

    I’ve definitely enjoyed studying it!
    Mark recently posted..So How Does An Insecure Seventh Grader Help You Define Successful?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 29, 2014 at 3:24 pm #

      Hi Mark,

      I’m glad you liked my tips and also knowing that we need to treat our blog as our “home.”

      #5 – the Author Box sure comes in handy for folks to quickly see what you are all about and also great when doing a guest post.

      Have a terrific New Year!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  30. Willena Flewelling
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 3:01 am #

    Wow! I love the first two, about making my blog my home and putting out the welcome mat. Just reading about it makes me feel warm and friendly. 🙂 This is great info for any blogger, and particularly timely for me.
    Willena Flewelling recently posted..Week 13 – NARC and Fink and The Gal in the GlassMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:22 pm #

      Hi Willena,

      Good to know it is timely for you. Yes, our blog is our home and we need to put that “welcome mat” on it to encourage others to come on over for a visit!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  31. Andy Lockhart
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 9:21 am #

    Donna

    Great advice and very timely.

    There are a few things I need to improve on in 2015.

    These tips are spot on and for anybody who is blogging they should be reading this.

    Thanks for all your great advice

    Andy
    Andy Lockhart recently posted..How to Get What You Want in LifeMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:23 pm #

      Hi Andy,

      I too have a long list of things to improve in 2015. I think most of us do. The trick is to just do it!

      Have a wonderful New Year!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  32. Sue Bride
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 12:17 pm #

    My plan for 2015 is to end up with as many comments on my posts as this one:-) I’m working on a blog and social media calendar. Having an arsenal of posts ready means I ‘ll blog more regularly and have more time to connect with others.

    The ebooks I intended to publish last year are now a priority for me and I’m going to carry on producing images to give away.
    Sue Bride recently posted..Planning Ahead For SuccessMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:25 pm #

      Hi Sue,

      Ahhh comments! The trick to do that one is to get out there and comment on at least 3 blogs a day of people you don’t know well. Who knows….they just may reciprocate lol.

      The Ebooks sound wonderful and I’ve been to your blogs and those images you are creating for us are fantastic.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  33. Rachel Lavern
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 12:59 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    You provide great direction for bloggers here. Although I have big goals for my offline business in 2015, my blogging goals are very modest this go round. I am going to focus more on engagement–I have not had time to respond to reader comments in quite a while.

    All the best to you in 2015!
    Rachel Lavern recently posted..12 Days to Get Your Online Biz Booming: Day 12My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:27 pm #

      Hi Rachel,

      As the saying goes “Content is King, but Engagement is Queen, and She Rules The House” -Mary Smith

      Focusing on engagement via blogs and social media can get you more mileage than you ever thought of!

      Blessings to you in 2015

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  34. Nathaniel Kidd
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 1:09 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Absolutely awesome post my friend! I definitely agree that leading people from all of the other social media platforms onto our blogs is where the real relationship building begins. I think sometimes people spend too much time on social media and use that is if the platform belongs to them. It is definitely a great marketing strategy but ultimately you should want your potential prospects to play on your playground, which is your blog.

    This list I am definitely bookmarking because it is actionable steps we all can take to build relationships, which is the ultimate goal. Thank you for sharing.
    Nathaniel Kidd recently posted..Frugal Tips on What Not to Buy Until After the New YearMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:33 pm #

      Hi Nathaniel,

      When it comes to folks using social media as a platform they do need to realize it is “rented space” and it can disappear in a whim.

      Having our blogs is our own real estate. There we can give all the social proof anyone needs to know about us by the content we give and the comments we receive.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  35. Lillian De Jesus
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 3:41 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    LOVE this post! So many great tips here for beginners & seasoned bloggers. Implementing what you learn is definitely the most crucial and hardest thing to do. I agree that everyone will need to step up their game on social media – it’s essential for bloggers.

    I do have a few things up my sleeve for 2015 and I’m very excited about them which would include a Canva video series, webinars, guest posts, and interviews.

    Looking forward to 2015!

    Take care,
    Lillian
    Lillian De Jesus recently posted..3 Clever Steps To Use Multiple Graphic or Pattern Sheets in Canva [VIDEO]My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:35 pm #

      Hi Lillian,

      Looks like you do have many things up your sleeve for 2015! It sounds like a great plan. Just give yourself a good time management way of doing it and persist!

      To the best of your new year,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  36. Lesly Federici
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 5:43 pm #

    Love the check list Donna,
    I especially like the one – make your blog like home because if you do, you’ll be reflecting the real you. You’ll have more respect for your blog too …. Your blog IS your home and using to market what you have to offer is smart. Your blog is your hub, the place where you brand you .. and will really make a difference in what you are trying to achieve online..
    Lesly Federici recently posted..Getting Launch ReadyMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:38 pm #

      Hey Lesly,

      You are on point! Our blog is our home and does reflect who we are and what we do. It is a place where we give out good content and then 20% of the time we can talk about our products and/or services.

      We can have our own opt ins on the side bar and give some CTA to it. At the end of the day, our blog is a place where people who we do not know that are on the fence of joining us can see who we are and what we do!

      Happy New Year!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  37. NT Izuchi
    Twitter:
    December 28, 2014 at 8:39 pm #

    Was just thinking to release an affiliate product sometime in 2015. This post reassured that what I was thinking should become a reality. Awesome share!
    NT Izuchi recently posted..How To Add A Play Button Image Onto A Photo Without SoftwareMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      December 28, 2014 at 10:39 pm #

      Hi NT,

      That sounds awesome! As long as you know how to market correctly (which I believe you do) I say go for it!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Taking Time OutMy Profile

  38. Barbara Charles
    Twitter:
    January 3, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    I’ve been taking a break so now it’s time to get back to work. I love your suggestions on how to blog in 2015. I think it’s important that we all take stock and decide just how we’re going to do this thing for the new year to be successful.

    I particularly like 3, 5 and 7. Definitely will be working with you to build my list. Number one priority for 2015. I love the Author Box. I’ve seen them on others but didn’t know how they were implemented or what they were called. I’ll be looking for that plugin for the upcoming redesign of my blog. All a part of my new year resolution and my business plan for 2015.

    Finally, 7 and 8 are critical for my success and I’ll be working with you with that as well too.
    Hope you had a great Christmas and a Happy New Year. Looking forward to resuming our training in January.

    Talk soon and God Bless,
    Barbara
    Barbara Charles recently posted..A Letter To God For 2014.My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 5, 2015 at 11:42 am #

      Hi Barbara,

      Welcome back! I’ve taken a break myself and it sure has done a world of good for me. I’m so glad you liked this post.

      The author box is great. Each time I do a guest post, the blogger just copies and pastes it on to the blog. There are many plug ins for it and I’m sure you will get to it.

      Making your own product is key! I wouldn’t ever say that if I didn’t do it myself. It sure does change things up.

      Looking forward to resume working with you

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Look Back To Move FowardMy Profile

  39. Joy Healey
    Twitter:
    January 4, 2015 at 10:42 am #

    Hi Donna

    Oh my goodness, how did I miss this post? Too busy fighting hardware problems and making my blog responsive – both of which took longer than expected.

    Thanks for those great tips which I will work towards using in 2015.

    The one which I implemented TODAY was adding an author box to my blog. (I went for “fancier”.)

    It took me a while to prune it down from the original “War and Peace” length to something more manageable LOL, Still not sure I’m totally happy with the wording, but I agree it’s been a useful step, and thanks for the advice.

    Have a Happy and Prosperous New Year, Joy
    Joy Healey recently posted..Work Life BalanceMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 5, 2015 at 11:44 am #

      Hi Joy,

      Great to know that you implemented your author box…and a fancier one at that!

      I know how that is, I had a novella on mine and had to prune it down myself. It is difficult, and it has to be updated as we grow.

      Wishing you a blessed new year,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Look Back To Move FowardMy Profile

  40. Dexter Roona
    Twitter:
    January 4, 2015 at 11:43 am #

    Donna do you ever make cut down blogs or micro blogs an example would be a 300 word piece to warm up someone on google plus to come to the main event?
    Dexter Roona recently posted..Tsu Guide Tutorial And Review – Make Money OnlineMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 5, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

      Hey Dexter,

      No I have not done that one. I might in the future, but right now, I’m sticking to my marketing funnel and doing business that way.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Look Back To Move FowardMy Profile

  41. Dev
    Twitter:
    January 4, 2015 at 11:54 am #

    Great points, Donna. List building is essential regardless of what type of website or blog you run, I think if you want to be a successful blogger, building an engaging email list should be a top priority.

    I will be focusing more on growing my email list, this year, by using content upgrades and free products. Providing content upgrades at the end of the post is a great way to quickly grow your email list.

    I am also working on creating my own product this year :).
    Dev recently posted..10 of the Best List Building Plugins for WordPress In 2015My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 6, 2015 at 12:53 pm #

      Hi Dev,

      What great news! Working on your own product! That’s the way to go because it does wonders for branding and once you create your own product, it does become easier to create more.

      I just read your last post about list building plugins and I felt like a kid in a candy store! What a great round up you have given.

      List building has to be our number one priority because our engagement there is where we can not only give good information to our subscribers, but also 20% of the time sell our product and/or services.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Look Back To Move ForwardMy Profile

  42. Andrew
    Twitter:
    January 6, 2015 at 9:58 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Great post here.

    There are a few points I want to touch on.

    A blog is a working process. Anyone who thinks differently is probably not having as much success as they anticipate. You have to do ALL of the things you said. Comment, reply to comments, engage, share, etc.

    All those things are mandatory in blogging in order for you to evolve. I, for one, am a person who made the mistake of being lazy and waiting a week before replying. I understand that the sooner the reply the better, but sometimes things happen.

    But you’re right.

    The more you reply sooner, the more conversational your blog will feel.

    The next point I want to touch on is regarding marketing. You have to continuously keep up to date with marketing. This is something I need to work on better because although I manage to get a bit of shares and comments on my posts, I know I’m not nearly doing enough and could do better.

    Like you said, continuing education is a great thing.

    Great points here, Donna.

    Hope you have a great week and an awesome New Year.

    – Andrew

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 6, 2015 at 10:56 am #

      Hi Andrew,

      Yes, a blog is a work in progress! It is something we need to be on top of every day. Reciprocity is key!

      Marketing is another story. I work with my husband to produce products. He has been studying marketing for about three years now. From sales funnels to copy writing and more.

      I take at least two hours a day to keep up with the marketing trends because they change all the time. It is a continuous education and I am loving it. Especially testing the market with my products….

      Thanks for visiting,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Look Back To Move ForwardMy Profile

  43. Nisha Pandey
    Twitter:
    January 13, 2015 at 2:39 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    It’s an awesome one. I just missed it due to my busy schedules.

    All the 10 ways you have shared are very true. We should walk in this way to get success in blogosphere.

    Me too enjoy my blogging like my home. Thanks to you and other few bloggers who has taught me to go on a right track with blogging. Hope, I will get more success in this New Year 2015.

    Happy New Year to you and your loved ones. Enjoy your day!
    Nisha Pandey recently posted..Contagious Content Marketing Will Forever Change Your BusinessMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 16, 2015 at 2:44 pm #

      Hi Nisha,

      I’m glad you enjoyed these 10 tips!

      Yes, our blogs are our home and as long as we have the love and passion for it, we cannot loose!

      Thank you so much for visiting.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Sales Funnels In 2015My Profile

  44. Leslie Denning
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2015 at 9:11 pm #

    Hi Donna. Great list here. I’m doing some blogging posts this month, and I plan to link this post to my final post in the series. My goal for 2015 is to turn my blog into my home and marketing machine. When I talked with my coach on Friday, we set that as one of the goals. I love blogging and the opportunity to connect up with other bloggers like you, too.

    All the best,
    Leslie
    Leslie Denning recently posted..5 Reasons Why Blogging is a Great Internet Marketing ToolMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 19, 2015 at 12:34 pm #

      Hi Leslie,

      I love your goal for 2015…turning your blog into your home and marketing machine!

      Glad you have a coach that is setting you up with goals. It’s the only way to go to take the necessary steps to achieve that goal.

      I too love blogging and am so grateful we have connected.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Sales Funnels In 2015My Profile

  45. Rosemary
    Twitter:
    January 31, 2015 at 2:27 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    Well done this is a really helpful article .

    So true one needs a plan with a blog like any part of your online business. Without a plan people give up and do not get the results for writing content etc on a blog.

    Your tips are just right for blogging in 2015.

    All the best

    Rosemary
    Rosemary recently posted..Empathy & Social Media in Healthcare in Ireland ?My Profile

  46. Atif Rahman February 28, 2015 at 11:39 am #

    Hello Donna!

    Well this one is the best plan one could have in 2015 for blogging and i can see how well you are implementing these points on your blog, which is the very reason i am here today.

    The best thing i like is how you welcome your readers and greet them in such a way that they want to make a visit every other day to your blog.

    Its just the beginning and i hope to learn much this year ahead.

    Thanks for such a great post! Have a nice weekend!

  47. Donna Merrill
    Twitter:
    March 8, 2015 at 9:42 pm #

    Hi Atif,

    Glad you enjoyed this post. One always has to greet their commenters with respect and ethics.

    Glad you stopped over. There is always so much to learn….it never ends lol.

    -Donna
    Donna Merrill recently posted..3 Ways To Pump Up Your BlogMy Profile

  48. Jacs Henderson
    Twitter:
    June 14, 2015 at 6:18 pm #

    Half way through 2015, and I decided to visit this post of your Donna, curious to know how I was measuring up!

    One point definitely resonated with me for improvement…
    4. embed your CTA… people love to talk about themselves, so give them permission to!

    I really think of my blog as my online home, and really appreciate your pointers in this post. I am working hard to pull my business together and get all the dots joined up this year, and see myself working with your suggestions, and as you say… this will be the year I create my own 1st free product snd onto more…

    I love how you have positioned yourself, your brand and your business and you are a marvellous role model…

    Thank you for this still encouraging post, 6 months on!!!

    ~Jacs
    Jacs Henderson recently posted..Are You Missing This Surprisingly Useful Branding Option On Your Facebook Page?My Profile

  49. Donna Merrill
    Twitter:
    June 19, 2015 at 1:42 pm #

    Hi Jacs,

    Since I’ve been doing my embeded CTAs I find more opt ins than my sidebar for the product I create.

    Yes our blogs are our home and we need to position ourselves to brand our business.

    It is great news to me that you are working on your first product. It is something that when you are done, it builds your brand. From there…create a sales funnel and whoopie! If you ever need anything please let me now and we can skype.

    -Donna
    Donna Merrill recently posted..5 Wise BloggersMy Profile

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