When I started my personal blog back in 2008, I did it for a love of writing (that and I was unemployed and a little lost in my career). In 2017 I started again from scratch and launched a brand new blog with a clearer focus…. Because I could.
And this is what I love about blogging. The industry has changed so much over the years and blogs are now more versatile than ever. You have total control.
You can use it as a fun hobby, or you can use it as a platform to launch a business. Whatever your motivation is, blogging can offer so much personally, creatively and even for your career.
If you know you want to start a blog but are feeling a little lost, here are some tips to get you started:
Set your purpose
The first thing I would encourage you to do is consider your purpose. What do you want to blog about and why?
Do you want to share information about a topic you’re passionate about? Do you want to help and inspire people? Do you want to entertain readers? Or do you simply want it to be a space for creativity? There are no right or wrong answers, but understanding your purpose will help guide the rest of the process.
Choose your platform
Setting up a blog may sound intimidating, especially if you’re not very technology-savvy, but it honestly can be an easy process. Choosing which blogging platform you want to use is the first step. Here at Life Coach Directory, we use WordPress, but there are lots of other options available.
This article shows you some helpful comparisons so you can pick the best-suited platform for your purpose.
Choose your design
Once you’ve got your platform sorted, you can get on with the fun bit – making it look pretty! Again, please don’t worry if you have no design knowledge, blogging platforms will provide lots of pre-made designs for you to choose from.
If you want something totally unique (or you simply want a little more control over the design) you may want to go down the custom design route. Again, a quick Google will bring up design companies who will be happy to help with this, just note that it may be a little pricey.
Now you’ve got the skeleton of your blog ready to go, it’s time to flesh it out with some lovely content! Maybe you’ve already got ideas buzzing around, but if you get stuck – look back to your purpose and let this guide you.
You could have a few topics or areas that you regularly talk about (for example food, crafting and family life) or you may simply want to write what you feel inspired to write.
A lot of bloggers choose to have a schedule and publish blogs certain days of the week. Being consistent with your blog (i.e. when and how often you publish a blog) can really help you build your audience – if that’s one of your aims. Being consistent means your readers know when to expect a post.
Share your blog with the world
If you want your blog to be widely read and noticed by others, you can’t just write it and hope people will stumble upon it, it’s up to you to do a little promotion. The easiest way to do this is through social media. Tell your Twitter followers you’ve written a blog, let your Instagram fam know and invite your Facebook friends to check it out.
Most pro bloggers use scheduling tools like HootSuite or Buffer to help them keep on top of promotion. Just remember what social media is for – being social. So don’t just spam followers with links to your blog, have conversations and share other people’s articles too.
A few blogging tips to take-away:
- Make your post visually appealing. Add images (either your own or stock imagery – we love Unsplash for this), break up your text and use box-outs to make it easier to read.
- Get involved in the community. Reach out to fellow bloggers, leave comments on their blog, join Twitter chats and engage on social media. Find your tribe!
- Remember… content is King. Having a flashy site and professional photography is all well and good, but if your writing is lacklustre and your topics dry, no one will read it. Blogging is at its core about writing, so remember this, work on your writing skills and most importantly – enjoy it!