When a person bets in a game of poker, there are two things that they are normally saying. If they are a good player, they are either saying that they are willing to bet on having the best hand, or alternatively they are willing to say that you have the worst hand. Either way, successful poker betting requires thought to tactics and strategy, but it also requires iron resolve to allow you to follow through on your original plans. While the strategy and resolve can only be developed by yourself through experience, the tactics are relatively easy to explain and are done so below.
This is one of the first betting strategies that you are likely to ever learn in a poker game and it applies to games with changing dealer buttons such as the board games like Hold 'Em and Omaha. If you are in late position or even late-middle position and nobody has raised in front of you or even called in front of you, then you can make an attempt to steal the blinds by raising regardless of what you have. Your goal is not to win the hand or to have the hand continue, but rather to steal the blinds. The best place to attempt this is from the dealer position because you know only the blinds have to act after you, but you can alternatively give it a try from the cut-off or from the late-middle position.
Another tactic that can take place at any point during the game is a tactic known as raising to steal. This is when your goal is to limit the number of players that continue on in a hand by making them pay to see the next card. Top pair against a draw board is a good place to do this, although that could also be considered betting for value. If you are in position with a flop that is all of one suit and you have a Queen or King of that suit, you might want to try a steal-raise in order to get the player holding the Ace of clubs out of the hand.
This is another betting tactic that people use on a frequent basis and the way to use this tactic is to make sure that the vast majority of people that are in the hand are eventually going to have to call two bets cold to stay in the hand. For example, if you first to act and believe that it will be checked around to the last to act who will bet, check-raising rather than betting is a good idea because it will force the other players to cold call two bets rather than one in order to stay in the hand. Check-raising is used either as a trap move or as a move to force people off their hands. Either way though, it is a very strong tactic that when used properly has the potential to make the other players at the table very afraid of you.