Blog tips: 10 tips to getting started
Here are some tips to help you begin your blogging journey (from flokka.com)
1. Choose your blog name
Choose a catchy, relevant and memorable name. Likewise, write catchy post titles to attract readers.
2. Determine your topic
What’s your blog about? Is it about your personal business journey (like a diary) or is it a way of educating people about your products/services?
Then write a brief, concise description of your blog on your blog profile page that will attract readers to read (and even subscribe to) your blog.
3. Determine your blog purpose
What’s the purpose of your blog? What do you want to achieve? More customers or a bigger profile?. Is your blog a means to vent? Ask questions of readers? Provoke or challenge readers? Entertain? Is it a platform to showcase your expertise? To be seen and get known? Build relationships with existing customers? Or potential customers? Share your dreams and goals? Engage others with your philosophy? Write a book? Publicise your public speaking or workshops or coaching? Promote your cause?
Determining your purpose and the outcome you’d like to achieve from your blog will keep your content on track!
4. When, how often and how much?
We’re busy and writing a blog, reading other blogs and interacting on other blogs requires a commitment of time and effort. However your blog can be a crucial element in your marketing or PR strategy ( you can direct your peers, customers and suppliers to read your blog ). The rewards for actively blogging could be far-reaching, not just for your business but for you personally as well.
It’s worth committing to a strategy in order to reap the rewards. Think about;
- Can you schedule your blog writing time? Will it be first thing Wednesday mornings for example?
- How often will you post to your blog? Weekly? Twice weekly? Fortnightly? Your subscribed readers will expect a regularity to your posting.
Remember you can also write posts when you have extra time and schedule them to be published in the future – so you can write a month’s worth of posts in one sitting and go away on holiday!
- When will you read other blogs, comment on other blogs and reply to comments on your own blog?
How long? Post lengths vary widely – some authors write a couple of sentences while others write thousands of words. Again there are no rules! A good average is around 300-500 words; enough to engage with your audience but not too much that overwhelms them. Your readers are busy too!
5. Plan your content
Lots of bloggers start with a roar and a hiss… and then run out of things to say. Plan an outline of topics and posts for a few months ahead, especially for content that isn’t time bound. And keep a notebook handy to capture those ideas for a great post while you’re on the bus or making dinner.
6. Options, options!
Blogs come with a standard template and limited features – so getting started is easy. But you can add lots more features, depending upon the platform you’re using.
7. Find your ‘voice’
Write in a style that’s comfortable for you – there are no rules… It’s a good idea to read lots of other blogs to get a feel for different writing styles – and try them out.
Remember though, that blogs are popular because they are ‘real’ and their tone is personable and accessible – they aren’t ‘PR or business speak’.
Include links in your blog posts to other blogs, blog posts or websites that you are referring to. Add your favourite blogs and websites to your blogrolls, so your readers can discover them too. The power of blogging is in the linking!
9. Promote your blog
Once you have a few posts under your belt, you might like to tell others about your blog… include your blog URL on your email signature, on your business card, on e-newsletters, your website and so on. Spread the word and connect in an exciting new way with your customers and suppliers and peers.
10. Have fun!
Starting your first blog can be intimidating… you’re putting you, your thoughts, your opinions, ‘out there’ – but our community is based on sharing, trust and support. We all want you to succeed.
And don’t worry about getting everything right – there are no rules – the best idea is to just start!