Digital Writing

Why Beginner Digital Writers Should Start With A Social Blog.

Natasha Musa 3 min read
Why Beginner Digital Writers Should Start With A Social Blog.
Photo by Prateek Katyal / Unsplash

A few years ago, I discovered Nicolas Cole's article "Why You Shouldn't Start a Blog."

Many beginner writers, myself included, assume the first path to writing online is publishing on a standalone blog. For years, I have been trying to build up my blog and hoping to gain an audience, only to realise I have been writing into the void. Digital writers publish online to connect with others, and starting a blog can be a slow and solitary journey (at least for me, it was) in trying to achieve that.

If you're new to digital writing and want to write to build an audience, heed Cole's advice: Don't start a blog. Start a Social Blog instead.

What Is Social Blogging?

Social blogging is the practice of publishing content directly on social media platforms. Unlike traditional blogging, where content lives on a separate website, social blogging is writing on platforms with a ready audience such as LinkedIn, Medium, X, Thread or Quora.

Each of these platforms already has a large community looking to consume content relevant to them.

Why Start Social Blogging?

Cole's unique journey as a digital writer started on a community gaming website with a strong built-in audience. After that, he continued to build his online presence through Medium and Quora, platforms with millions of active users already looking for content.

According to Cole, if he had started writing on his own site, nobody would likely find his work, or he would have had to work harder to be discovered.

Social blogging is a more strategic approach to creating an online presence for beginner digital writers. Here's why:

The Benefits of Social Blogging

  1. Instant Audience Access: Unlike traditional blogs, social blogging on platforms such as LinkedIn or Medium connects you with an existing audience already looking to consume content. This means your content has the potential to be seen by thousands from day one.
  2. Engagement: Social blogging allows for immediate feedback and interaction. Readers can like, comment, and share your work, creating a dialogue and fostering community.
  3. Visibility: If done right, algorithms on social platforms can amplify your content beyond your immediate network, increasing your chances of being discovered by new readers.
  4. Networking: Being active on social platforms makes you more likely to connect with other writers and industry professionals, opening doors to opportunities.
  5. Learning Curve: Managing a standalone blog requires technical know-how, from SEO to hosting issues. Social blogging platforms handle these, letting you focus on writing.
  6. Networking Opportunities: Social blogs put you in the middle of a community of writers and readers, offering invaluable networking opportunities that standalone blogs don’t.
  7. Authenticity and Growth: Social blogs encourage authentic connections with readers, fostering a growth mindset as you receive immediate feedback and adapt and refine your writing accordingly.

For beginner digital writers looking to build their audience and improve their craft, a social blog is a smart starting point that offers community support, engagement, and growth opportunities. It provides digital writers with a more accessible and engaging way to share ideas and knowledge. Leveraging the power of social media allows you to bypass many of the challenges of traditional blogging and start connecting with an audience immediately.

The goal is to get your writing in front of people who will read it, engage with it, and share it. Social blogging is a powerful tool to do just that.

Further Reading.

I highly recommend The Art and Business of Online Writing by Nicolas Cole. This book further expands his article on why one should wait to start a blog. You can also take a look at my summary of the book here.

Ps. Why am I writing this piece on a solitary blog? I still think blogging on a personalised website is important. However, I intend to distribute my blog posts on Medium at some point.

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