Your first ten thousand followers on Instagram are a special occasion to be celebrated. This important milestone, for us as team running a drone blog, is a result of dedication and hard work. We have spent countless hours on planning and delivering content, building partnerships, and meeting new people from across the world.
This is a special occasion for reflection on the beginnings of The Drones World and the key lessons we’ve learned.
Drones and unmanned aerial vehicles, in general, should be used for good and fun. This is the vision that guides The Drones World as a blog. As such, it represents a platform that brings together buzz-worthy drone news and analyses from the global drone industry. Also, it promotes using drones for good through insightful interviews with drone ambassadors – drone pilots and businesses making an impact. We are excited to see drones used in industries like agriculture, search and rescue, entertainment, delivery and logistics, and more. That’s why in the spirit of elevating the drone industry and driving it forward, The Drones World was born.
The drone blog has been up and running since 2018 with 3 ‘drone citizens’ – authors of the blog and many partners and contributors. The person responsible for the start of the blog is Stefan Angelovski – a drone enthusiast, architect, and designer. He was inspired to start The Drones World after an uncomfortable event, where he crashed his drone into a tree.
After crashing my first drone into a tree I was injured. It wasn’t the pine cone that fell and hit my head, but rather the fact that the drone was still on the tree.
Stefan Angelovski, founder of The Drones World
After this fun moment, Stefan decided to start The Drones World and share his experience on drones’ potential as tools for doing good and having fun. After a short time, Damjan and Bojan joined the dynamic team.
So, here are the top lessons we have learned about running a blog for drones (and some tips for running any type of blog).
#1: Researching, Researching, Researching
The long-prophesied ‘Age of Drones’ is here. Drones are everywhere. Stories and articles mentioning them pop up all the time. But are all of them worthy of your time? Are all of them true?
That’s why running a news-related platform related to drones requires extensive research of the stories that attract people’s attention. This sometimes means scanning what big media outlets write and closely following the websites and social media profiles of the stakeholders in the global drone industry daily.
For instance, take the Australian drone ecosystem. Undoubtedly, it’s one of the largest ones in the world with hundreds of pilots joining the drone community there constantly.
More importantly than that, your research should also focus on securing credibility and finding the truth in the story. Everything that you publish must be thoroughly researched and backed up with credible sources. You are responsible for delivering truthful and comprehensive information.
Sticking with the example of the Australian drone community, to illustrate, take a look at this post in a Facebook group for drone pilots.
One can easily share this photo as a ‘drone shot of a salt lake in Western Australia’ without checking twice and write a piece on your drone blog about the natural beauty of this part of the country. But, is it really a drone photo and not a painting depicting abstract art? Or strawberry cream mashed together with yogurt? You’ll never know unless you do your research.
Yes, it can be noisy sometimes. But, this is why we like the drone industry, don’t we?
#2: Using Tools to Run Any Type of Blog
To successfully run any type of blog, it is important to have the right tools and infrastructure. Over time, we tested different tools and managed to create a successful toolkit that can be helpful for most bloggers. We are particularly proud to say that we are using GreenGeeks, one of the world’s leading eco-friendly web hosting providers. For us, it is very important that we have a positive impact on the environment and reliable and user-friendly infrastructure.
Furthermore, SEO is a large component of running a successful blog. We optimize our content by using RankIQ. It represents an SEO toolset for bloggers and businesses that have blogs. Among other features, this tool is helpful in the way that it lists popular topics for certain keywords. Additionally, it ranks popular keywords that you should include in your content, and even suggests powerful blog post titles.
Last, we follow specific branding guidelines that help us stay recognizable among our audience and the industry at large. To create graphically appealing content, we use Canva and Adobe Suite. By using the templates and many features offered by Canva, we can create graphical content in no time. On the other hand, all of the Adobe Suite software solutions are great for post-production and fine-tuning of both photos and videos. Also, lots of drone pilots trust Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop for their drone shots and Adobe Premiere for their footage.
With so many providers of information about the world of tech, it can be a challenge to stand out. This is why we heavily invest our time, energy, and skills in building a community of drone pilots, drone businesses, and fans of drone technology. You may notice we didn’t mention money when we talked about investing in the community. Yes, it’s true – so far, our base of friends and supporters has been growing 100% organically. Primarily, we use our social media channels for this purpose.
Now, with more than 10,000 users following The Drones World on Instagram, it’s clear that the power of social media lies in interacting and engaging with people who belong in the same industry. So far, we have expanded our social channels to include Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn, too.
Our advice for bloggers (not just drone bloggers) is to reach out to people and organizations who have something to say and have a great reputation in the industry.
Also, don’t forget to constantly interact with users through commenting, liking, sharing, and generally, supporting each other.
John Donne, in one of his famous poems, says, “No man is an island.” And to succeed we truly need to work together. Through a community, which you can build around your blog, you can significantly increase the reach of what you post. That way you’ll make sure that your work gets read by more people. And not just any people – it’s experts in the particular field and acquaintances who mean you well.
#4: Nurturing Collaborations and Partnerships with Drone Pilots and Businesses
Connected to the previous lesson, we found out that one of the keys to growth lies in collaborations and partnerships with drone pilots and businesses that actively apply drones in their operations.
First of all, it’s important to identify potential prospects for partners and collaborators. These people and entities can help you in terms of building and creating content with them. Also, they can help you promote your work.
A helpful practice that works for us is to engage with at least 5 new people/organizations and at least 5 existing partners daily.
We, for instance, introduced a category on our drone blog dedicated to interviews to collaborate with drone photographers and videographers. We feature the work of drone pilots on our social media platforms, too. To illustrate, this has enabled us to see a 289% growth in reach, a 186% increase in engagement, and a 31.1% increase in total followers in just the first two months of 2022.
Make sure to collaborate with someone who belongs in the same niche or industry as yourself. Of course, the relevancy to your work is imperative. When it comes to drones, that can be farmers who use drones for their crops, businesses that sell drones, drone influencers, and similar.
#5: Droning the World: the Power of Cyber Tourism
Strive for differentiation and uniqueness. We believe this to be a hard-boiled truth and not an overestimated cliche.
When we researched what the competition has already been doing for a while, we saw an opportunity that not many of them have written about drone (cyber) tourism.
Drone tourism enables people to experience a destination from a bird’s-eye view all from the comfort of their favorite armchair or sofa. Through captivating drone photos and videos, you are taken on a breathtaking tour of some of the planet’s most magical places. That way you can familiarize yourself with the landmarks, the architecture, and the natural wonders of your favorite country or city. Еven if you visit some of these landmarks, you still won’t be able to see the details as you can while experiencing them by drone.
With the start of the global pandemic, the lockdowns and measures that restrict people’s movements were common. This increased the need for cyber tourism. Naturally, people felt like they were experiencing something new even though they stayed in their homes.
The takeaway here is to look for emerging niches and be open to exploring new things that can freshen up your online presence.
Summing Up the Key Lessons
In the three years, we have actively worked on this drone blog, The Drones World team has learned:
You have to do thorough research on topics, themes, and information before you publish a blog post. Whether the goal is to verify information or look for information to write about, you have to consider multiple credible sources to get the full picture.
In a swift and dynamic world, you need to deliver content fast and look professional at the same time. Amazing tools like Canva (for captivating visuals), Adobe Suite programs (for photo and video editing), RankIQ (for optimizing our SEO), and, of course, GreenGeeks with whom we partner for hosting the blog.
Harness the power of the community and connect with fellow drone pilots and drone businesses to maximize your impact.
Grow your drone blog (and any other type of blog, really) with partners and collaborators who will help you with delivering quality content and drivе the industry forward. This is an opportunity to support each other and grow organically.
Be innovative and look for gaps in the market and the blog sphere like we did with drone (cyber) tourism, which proves to be one of the categories that bring us the most traffic.
If you want to get in touch with us, you can find us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. In the meantime, stay up to date with the most captivating current drone stories at The Drones World!
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