As we know, the world of technology is changing and that has been led by the transforming needs of the end consumer. The proliferation of affordable smart devices, and the inexorable rise of social media, means that individuals are now used to consuming content that is concise, quick and easily digested with the minimum of fuss.
However, suggestions that the written word is dead are wide of the mark. In specific industries and niches, there is still a demand to read long- and short-form content, be that the latest news, reviews, features, opinion pieces, how to guides and so on. That’s why blogging remains a popular and, in some cases, profitable pastime and career choice for many.
This is particularly true in gaming, where there remains a genuine demand for high quality written content – The Verge, for example, receives more than thirteen million website hits every month. So can you become a gaming blogger?
Absolutely, although the key here is to find your own angle. If you simply look to publish the latest news then you will be beaten to the punch by major sites and blogs, who can react to industry changes quicker than you and secure exclusive interviews with key players in gaming. If you plan on doing reviews or gaming walk-throughs, make sure that the content you are creating adds value. That way, you can build a following and ensure plenty of ‘repeat’ readers.
If you are serious about starting your own gaming blog, here are four steps to follow.
#1 – Choose Your Niche
Which aspect of gaming are you planning on blogging about? There is always a huge demand for content about the latest console game releases, and competitive eSports is also a fast-growing area to explore. Online casino gaming has also enjoyed an explosion in popularity in the past decade or so, and sites like Casino Wings have emerged which review web gaming sites based upon their selection of games, bonuses, VIP programs and so on.
Once you have decided which sector of gaming you want to concentrate on, it’s a great idea to come up with a domain that reflects that. Develop a niche in this area, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach, as people prefer to click on something unique. For example, do you specialize in one genre of game, e.g. RPG or first-person shooter?
Are all the good gaming names already taken? This is where you need to use your imagination to give your blog a foothold. But utilizing existing brand names in some way, i.e. CallofDutyTips.com, PS5LiveStream.com etc, would be a smart place to start.
#2 – Build Your Blog Using the Software That’s Right for You
If you can’t afford to hire a web developer to build your blog, there are still plenty of web builder tools out there designed for newcomers and the technophobic. But it’s important to choose the one most appropriate for your blog’s key goals.
WordPress is ideal for gaming blogs that are going to be heavy on the written word – it comes with a raft of SEO features to help you rank for certain keywords, be it game reviews, gaming walkthroughs, GTA cheats and so on.
Squarespace can typically handle larger file types well, so has to be considered if, say, you want to deliver your game reviews in video format, or you want to publish live walkthroughs on your site or even highlight reels from your latest COD or FIFA sessions. In this case, Squarespace is perfect for you.
Wix doesn’t really have the functionality of the two platforms already mentioned, but if you want to start up a gaming blog that delivers simple content in a basic format then Wix could be ideal. It uses a straightforward ‘drag and drop’ system, with ready-made templates allowing you to set-up your blog quickly and with minimum fuss. For all their simplicity, Wix blogs are HTML 5 compatible too, so your gaming blog will look good on all mobile devices too.
#3 – Create Unique Content
As the old saying goes, content is king. This takes your niche to the next level: the success of your blog will largely be determined by the quality of its writing and the originality of its ideas, so ensure your new gaming blog is bringing something new to the table within your niche. Put yourself in your readers’ shoes: what would you want to learn more about?
Live streams and highlight reels are some of the most popular gaming videos out there, whereas for word-based blogs you have to consider how you’ll add value for the reader. Can you secure exclusive interviews with leading game developers or eSports champions?
#4 – Monetize?
Here’s the million-dollar question: do you intend on your blog being just a hobby, or do you want to try and earn a secondary income from it? There are ways in which you can monetize your publishing, from affiliate marketing and advertising (links to Amazon gaming categories) to eBooks about specific games (think ‘how to’ guides etc), sponsored posts and more. You will find stacks of content about blog monetization online – it’s worthy of a blog post in its own right!
As you can see, it’s easier than you might think to start your own gaming blog, so why not take the plunge? You may regret it one day if you don’t.