Whether your blog is about to hit its one-year anniversary or its tenth, your “blogiversary” is a moment to celebrate. It’s an ideal time to revisit the posts your readers liked best during the past year, recognize the people who’ve helped your blog succeed, and maybe try something new. Make the most of your blogiversary with these tips and ideas.
Your blog’s year in review
The anniversary of your blog is a good point for taking stock of what’s worked well over the past year. Some of this review can be private, to help you provide better content in the year ahead. On the other hand, you’ll certainly want to promote other aspects directly on your blog.
1. Share a mini-history of your blog, company, or products.
If you started your business or hobby long before you had a blog for it, write a post or a series of posts on your blog’s “prehistory” and include any photos, videos, or other media you have to share. You can also link this information to your “About” page.
2. Round up the best of your blog.
Compile the previous year’s most popular posts into an ebook to give away as a list-member gift or opt-in item for new subscribers. You can also create a gallery of the most popular images you posted or a list of the best comment threads from the past year.
Put your readers and partners in the spotlight
The most successful (and effective) blogs are the ones that create a real community of readers, guest writers, and other partners. These people help your blog stay active and relevant, so take some time to thank them for their time and attention.
3. Share customer/reader success stories.
You can do a round-up post featuring several people or a series of individual posts over the course of a week. Spotlight their projects and be sure to include some good quotes, a clear photo, and a short video if you can get one.
4. Show peer-to-peer gratitude.
You can also shine your blog’s spotlight on professional partners and fellow bloggers who’ve helped you along the way. You can feature their products or posts that you’ve found especially helpful during the past year.
Treat your readers to prizes, freebies, and more
Go beyond thanking your audience by giving them some free swag. It’s a surefire way to get them in the celebratory spirit!
5. Run a contest for your customers and readers.
You can offer your products or service as prizes, and your readers and business partners may be willing to contribute prizes, too.
6. Host a blogiversary party.
This can be an in-person event for readers and clients in your area, or an online chat for readers and customers everywhere. Have a list of topics or let it be a freewheeling cocktail-party style event.
7. Debut a new product, service, or feature.
Your blog’s anniversary is an ideal time to do something new. If your blog is part of your business, the blogiversary is a great time to offer a new product, expand your service options, or run a special deal on your existing options. For business and hobby blogs, the anniversary mark is a good time to try new media like a weekly podcast, monthly how-to video, or regular resource lists on topics your readers want to know how more about.
Give your blog an anniversary makeover
Along the same lines as introducing a vlog or podcast, you can use your blogiversary to conduct an “annual review” of your blog to see what’s working well and what you can update for better results.
8. Spruce up your blog.
If your blog design is outdated or cluttered, you can hire a designer to revamp your blog’s appearance, user experience, and online checkout process. If your blog isn’t already optimized for mobile users, your anniversary is a good time to make that upgrade. Look over the images you’ve used in the last year. Are they fresh and original or are they stock art? Now’s the time to start using more engaging, creative images.
9. Make social sharing easier.
Help your readers share your content with new people. Social share button tools, Click to Tweet, and email plugins make it easy for readers to promote your content (scroll down to the Social Media Integration section of this post).
10. Give your readers what they want.
As part of your online chat or other blogiversary festivities, ask your readers what they’d like more of in the year ahead. The best blogs are responsive to reader requests for help and insight, and this is your chance to find out exactly how you can help them. Make sure you follow through on their suggestions, and track the results for your next blogiversary.
To everyone who started their blog with HostGator, we wish you an Happy Blogiversary!
Have you celebrated a blogiversary recently? What did you do to mark the big day?
Casey Kelly-Barton is an Austin-based freelancer who enjoys writing about business development and marketing, e-commerce payments and fraud prevention, and travel.