How do I start a blog and what are the best blogging platforms available? originally appeared on Quora: The best answer to any question.
A lot of "marketing gurus" have been preaching that "blogging is dead." The truth is that it's not: blogging has simply morphed and changed into a much broader category. Where and how you start your blog has become very different than what it used to be.
Challenges faced in blogging
The reason why internet marketers say blogging "is dead" is because people are still spending time and energy writing blog posts on their personal website but not getting the organic traffic that they're used to. There's nothing wrong with having a blog on a personal website--I have one. But the problem is that nobody knows how to drive traffic to their site to read their writing in the first place. Nobody is doing the work to master the art of SEO, or Facebook dark posts, or Pinterest, or answering questions on Quora or anything else that can drive to their personal blog or website.
Social networking as a blog
Think about it: Starting a blog has never been easier with Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook, and Medium.
Social media has become a new version of blogging. Take Twitter for example. Twitter was known flatout as a microblogging platform. Now people are using platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Medium to get them more exposure than a just posting on a personal website does. As a matter of fact, I'm even asking people to write book reviews on Instagram for the #AskGaryvee Book instead of on their personal blog. My advice would be to try putting out native content on the platforms that make most sense for you and your audience. Then, start engaging with those who you think should see it.
Driving Traffic to your Blog
What has happened over the last decade is that the attention graph, the visualization of where people's attention is right at this very moment and where can you meet them, is shifting. People's willingness to jump somewhere to consume content is certainly not down, but their willingness to leave the platform they are already engaging on (Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat) is. To get them to click out, you have to be smart. Really smart.
Jab,Jab,Jab, Right Hook - Being Smart about it
Something I'm really passionate about (and I'd like to think my book Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook helped with this) is that social shouldn't be used purely for awareness. It's true that that's part of what social media is there for, and that's great, and it's fun to create "viral content", but it's massively naive for companies to ignore social's DR and sales capabilities. I'm excited to see more and more brands throwing right hooks (which is to say going in for the ask) and treating social media as a way to funnel in viewers, and not just broad awareness platforms. It's not about putting out as much content out there as you can. It's about learning what drives your users. Find out what they care about and engage with them.
Remember: Just because you jab and jab and jab, doesn't mean you're automatically going to drive audience members to your blog. It just allows you to have the audacity to drive them there. Putting out great content and see what resonates with your audience.
To Sum it all up, while the term "blogging" has evolved to become more than just having a personal blog or website, don't feel like you need to abandon traditional blogging. Instead, learn how you can use these social media to drive traffic to your site. Try engaging your audience using social media to really understand what drives your users. Start by putting out great content nuggets on the platforms that make the most sense for you and your audience. Test headlines, test out different syndication platforms. The bottom line is that you can't just blog and expect people to come to you. The key is that you need to start engaging with those who you think should see it.