If you’d want to drive/walk/ to a destination right now, you’d probably use a navigation app on your phone.
And you’d need only two ingredients:
- The destination you want to reach.
- Your exact location.
Without one of them, you’re not going anywhere anytime soon.
That’s why today I’m going to share with you a detailed tool you can use to audit your blog, your current skill level, and your level of clarity regarding the most important aspects of blogging.
The Blog Evaluation Diagram
This diagram is used to rate clarity when it comes to certain elements/aspects of blogging, but it can just as well be used to track your progress towards a certain goal, with 10 meaning that you’ve reached your goal.
You simply can’t hit a target you do not see. Whether you’re not even aware of it, or you have your back turned against it, the truth is that most bloggers fail because they don’t take the time to develop a proper content strategy.
In order to rate your blog’s strategy, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you have clear and tangible goals?
- Do you have a specific timeframe for reaching those goals?
- Do you feel your strategy is clear, actionable, and easy to implement?
- Can you break down your main goal into several milestones?
Branding is by far the most underrated aspect, and the one that’s often misunderstood by novice bloggers.
It’s not just a nice logo and a tagline, branding allows you to define your blog’s mission and vision.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Are you clear on your blog’s mission? What about your vision?
- Do you have a logo for your blog?
- Do you feel you have a consistent approach to fonts, colors, and graphics?
The Ideal Reader
Figuring out your ideal reader is the next stage.
The following questions will ensure that you are clear on your target audience:
- What are the key demographic and psychographic qualities of your target audience?
- How do you plan to add value to your readers?
- What challenges/objections can you help overcome?
Deep dive: How To Figure Out Your Ideal Reader
The quality of our content matters. Whether we aim to write better content than or competition or just content that’s different (and takes advantage of a unique angle), we must also understand our content’s intention or direction, the way all articles are interconnected and flow towards the ultimate resource of one of our blog’s main topics.
Answer the following questions:
- How do you feel about the quality of your content? Does it add value? Does it stand out?
- Do you feel your content has intention and direction? Does it flow towards an “ultimate” resource of topics within your niche?
Networking and building relationships with other bloggers is an often-ignored part of blogging. Most bloggers aimlessly wander the web, go through a bunch of articles, and comment on them.
Of course, your success as a networker is not measured by how many comments you leave on other people’s blog posts, but rather how well you engage with others.
- How do you feel about networking and building relationships with other bloggers?
- Do you engage other bloggers?
- Have you worked with other bloggers on projects (blog posts, podcasts, interviews, etc.)?
Social media is one of the most powerful distribution channels that you can use to promote your blog, your content, and to attract potential readers.
Answer the following questions:
- How clear are you on using social media as a blogger?
- What is your approach towards using social media to promote your content?
- Do you create derivative content? Do you share and promote content on groups/communities?
- Do you promote and share your content in a clear and strategic way?
- Do you use a social media managing app?
Email marketing is still the go-to marketing channel if you want to be able to reach your audience directly. Besides, you own the list, allowing you to effortlessly switch platforms, create complex automation, offer lead magnets, and more.
- Do you have an email newsletter?
- Do you actively promote it?
- Do you have a lead magnet?
- Do you have pop-ups, landing pages, and tabs on social media promoting your newsletter?
- Do you have an automated series?
- Do you have a strategic approach to building your audience via e-mail marketing?
The unicorn is that mythological creature within your niche that seems to have it all. They have the numbers, the engagement, the respect and admiration of others within the niche.
Do a comparison between this blog and yours:
- Do you feel that your blog is comparable to the most popular blogs in your niche?
- In what regards? Content? Layout? Design?
A SWOT analysis is one of the best things you can do if you want to realistically assess your current strengths and weaknesses, but also your potential for growth.
- What are your overall strengths and weaknesses?
- What about external factors? Threats? Opportunities you can take advantage of in order to grow your audience?
Deep dive: How to Run a SWOT Analysis of Your Blog
Tools and Apps
There are thousands upon thousands of tools, apps, themes, and plugins you can use to improve your readers’ overall experience, to help you write better content, to create custom graphics, to attract more of your audience.
Be honest about your use of certain apps and platforms:
- How pleased are you with the tools and apps you use for your blog?
- How can you improve? Do you have a plan of action to that regard?
- Do you have a clear understanding of a tech stack that can/will improve your blog’s functionality, design, and the reader’s experience?
The Blog Evaluation Digram is part of our Novice Blogger’s Growth Kit, a set of free unconventional tools you can use on your journey to becoming a blogging superstar.