7 tips to create a delectable food blog
Passionate about food / cooking? Thinking of starting a food blog or you already have one running but it is not yielding the desired results? Here are some tips to get started and also drive some engagement!
An important aspect to consider before you begin would be the theme or the genre of your blog. There are different types of food blogs you can start, a recipe collection, cooking experiences, restaurant or product reviews or a blog on a particular type of cooking such as healthy cooking and vegan cooking among others.
If you already have a food blog that is all over the genres, analyse which type of your blogs have worked best. If your cooking experiences are getting maximum engagement, write more such blogs. Build your profile around the genre. Be identified for it.
It’s all in the name!
Spend some time thinking about a name for your blog. The name should reflect the purpose of the blog. Calling it something generic like ‘My Adventures’ will not tell the reader what the blog is about. Get specific. The name should be direct and should compel the reader to visit the blog.
If your blog already has a name, add a tag line and make most of the description and the bio. Be precise yet elaborate on what the blog is about. If it is about restaurant reviews, mention it in your bio. If you are sharing secret recipes, make it very obvious. You can also mention whether you are open to collaboration with other bloggers.
Choose the most gracious host
One of the most important parts of creating a blog is deciding where you want to host your blog. If you have the budget to buy a domain and create a whole new website, great! But if you don’t, create your blog for free with the help of blogging platforms.. It’s quick and easy to create. Both these websites also offer paid services to customise your domain. It is more pocket-friendly than designing a whole new website. You can also choose from a range of themes to customise your blog.
It is commonly believed that you need a flair for writing to begin a blog. While it is true, it’s important to note that the reader engages with your content only when they can relate to it. Remember that your blog should reflect your personality. The content should be easy to read and to engage. Write the blog as you would talk to someone. If you are sharing a recipe, talk about why it’s special. If it’s your grandmother’s secret ingredient, leverage that emotion. If you are reviewing a restaurant, tell the reader why you loved it or were not impressed. Connect with the reader on a personal level.
A rule of thumb would be to keep the blog short with as many as 400-500 words. Use a headline, which will stand out and compel the reader to click on your link.
A picture is worth a thousand words, but a video is worth a million views
The world has long since moved away from plain text. Now it’s all visual be it a picture or a video. Embed pictures and videos within the body of your blog. Images make the blog more visually appealing and videos increase the time spent on your blog.
Give some thought into the appearance of your pictures, add some personality. Use props to enhance the frame. Wherever possible, use natural light to illuminate an image. Free online tools and filters are a useful resource when your images don’t turn out well. Use them to edit your pictures. Adjust the brightness and contrast and keep it almost constant in all your images to make them look like they are part of one blog. Check out elements food bloggers must know about food styling.
Experiment with videos wherever you can. It’s best to mount your camera on a tripod while shooting a video. It keeps the frame stable, and your hands are free to demonstrate. Keep your videos short and crisp. Edit out the excess and unnecessary footage. Props come in handy while a shooting a video too, use them.
Improve your SEO
Your content might be great but what if no one discovers it? That’s where Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and social media marketing come into play. SEO will improve your blog ranking on search engines.
To begin with, find a set of keywords relevant to your blog. Use free tools such as Soovle and Keyword Tool to identify the right keywords. For example, if one of your blogs is ‘How to make mango ice cream at home’, your keywords would be - mango, ice cream, recipe and homemade. Include keywords in your blog title, content, tags, meta-tags and alt-text for images. It increases the chances of your blog showing up in Google search results when a user searches for a homemade mango ice cream recipe.
Another important thing to consider is interlinking. Link one of your blogs to and from another relevant blog.
If content is fire, social media is gasoline!
A strong social media game is a fool-proof way of content discovery. Follow a strategy for your social media posts. Make most of the different social media tools such as Stories, live videos, slideshows, filters and Boomerang for Instagram. Post at a time when most of your audience is online. To see the best timing for your posts, study your Facebook insights. It will help you gauge the type of your audience, their location, their demographics, when they are online, which kind of posts they engage the most. Leverage all this data to design a social media strategy for your blog.
For Instagram, use appropriate hashtags. As they help users discover your content. Do a quick search for hashtags on Instagram before you post. Links are not clickable on Instagram post so don’t forget to give the link to your blog in the bio. It drives traffic to your blog and also increases your number of followers. If you need inspiration, here’s a story of an avid Instagrammer
Now that you know how it works, what’s stopping you? Go ahead, create your blog and don’t forget to tell us about it in the comments below.