Blogging involves free time, strong will and determination. A strong organizational sense is also required. There are 3 phases of successful blogging required for the growth and wealth of a blog in a medium to extended time span.
For this example we will assume the blog is fairly established.
Phase one: Blogging
This phase, not necessarily the first, as they succeed in order, is the most important one. Creating content for your blog is the key aspect for growth. Regular posting of 2 or 3 articles a day is required for having a loyal readership, either direct (organic) or by RSS.
Another aspect is writing in advance if free time is not at hand. For example, a 10 articles posting session during the weekend will get you covered for the next week. This is 2 posts/day. The third one could be an occasional news you didn’t know during the weekend. It’s great to see a blog alternating long articles with news posting. Or at least having a news section, frequently updated.
Phase two: Promoting
This phase involves surfing the blogosphere or browsing the RSS reader for the newest articles. You should comment as often as possible on several blogs, and occasionaly on several other blogs. Short and witty answers or long comments will make you a trusted commenter, earning you the respect of the blogger and a place in his top commentators list (provided that he/she has one).
Apart from your favourite blogs where you like to be the first commenter (the best case) and share your honest opinion, you should have a number of big blogs with top commentators feature and nofollow politics removed. Just to get some quality backlinks.
Another way of promoting is using forums. I’m sure there are at least 3 forums any blogger is regularly landing on, so why not take advantage? Help other forum users, write articles, become a trusted community member, and you will later be allowed to post links in your posts. On the other side, you are allowed to post links in your signature after the first 3, 5 or 10 posts.
Other ways of promoting? Social networking (Digg, StumbleUpon, Twitter, Facebook, etc.), e-mail marketing (careful not to cross the line and become a spammer), offline marketing (posters, visit’s cards, friends, etc.) and many more.
Phase three: Analyzing
Using either a third party traffic analytics system, blog statistics plugins or Google Analytics, you should analyze your most visited articles, your best referrals, your best performing keywords and the overall performance of your blog. Google Analytics can be your best friend in cases like this.
Repeat these steps (phases) in your own style, either every week or every month. Depending on your time and number of blogs, you could also do it in 3 months, 6 months, but no longer than that.
More about monetizing phases in a future article.