Blogging is a great way to share your thoughts and ideas. It’s fun, exciting, and doesn’t require you to be an expert writer or an editor. Blogging requires you to take the time to create new content, think about keywords, and pay attention to Google and search engine optimization. Don’t expect to start a blog today and make money from your website visitors tomorrow—it takes time, but it is very rewarding.
A successful blog is well planned, focused, and targeted to a specific audience. Focus is key. Don’t expect to rank well in Google and search engines when your target audience is too broad. Blog content gets too broad when you write about subjects like football and raising chickens. Don’t get us wrong, diverse content is great for a personal blog. Content management is the focus of ensuring your new posts are on point and enable a target market to find and reach you.
Blogging – Where to Start
Blogging and websites are sometimes classified as being different. Blogs were originally thought of as a way to share your thoughts with your followers, while websites were typically characterized as a way to share information about a business’ products and solutions. For the purposes of our discussion here, a blog is any content created for a blog owner, business, or publisher.
Starting a New Blog
If you are ready to learn more about how to start blogging, then we’ve got a guide for you. It discusses the following topics:
- How to Write Your First Blog Post
- How to Create a Content Strategy
- How to Choose a Domain Name
- How to Design a Blog
- How to Promote Your Blog
- How to Make Money Blogging
Yes, the order above is important. It’s what makes our advice a different from most of what you’ll see out there right now. We’ve worked with a lot of bloggers helping them build and monetize their brands and have seen that you absolutely need a plan and some content BEFORE you pick a domain name and start your website if you want to be successful.
WordPress.org has a great Introduction to Blogging if you are interested in learning about all the “nuts and bolts” of WordPress.
Blogging with WordPress
WordPress works great for both blogs and business websites. In fact, many WordPress websites today are used by blog owners, businesses, and publishers.
Blogging – Defining Success
Don’t expect to install a WordPress blog on GoDaddy with a free WordPress theme and have a successful blog (with the blog look you want). Spending a ton of money on a premium theme and fancy VPS hosting isn’t the answer either. Don’t be discouraged though, a successful blog is within your reach.
We define a successful blog as one that receives organic traffic from search engine optimization along with referral traffic from social media and email campaigns. (Yes, you need an email list: you always want to gain enough trust from your readers that they share their email address with you.)
The best part of blogging is that you get to define your success and set your own goals.
Your blog design and web pages should be visually pleasing, easy to read, and communicate authority. Consider a web development and marketing partner to help you define and grow your brand.
There are a few topics you should keep in mind every time you create a new blog post:
- Keyword Strategy
- SEO Optimization
Once you string together a few blog posts, start thinking about your overall business strategy and goal. You’ll want to begin planning a strategy for these topics at that time:
- Content Management
- Content Refresh
Blogging for Businesses
Business blogging should be treated as a marketing channel and can help you get more visibility online. Blogging, search engines, and social media are all ways to drive more traffic to your site. Every blog post in another chance for your site to be indexed in search engines. Most business sites don’t have a ton of content on them either, so new blog posts really help to extend your site’s content breadth.
Blogging also helps you keep your social media channels running strong. You can use your blog posts paired with eye-catching images and meaningful content snippets to share on social media.
Done right, your blog posts should also help with visitor conversion. That attractive blog post was on-topic and brought a new visitor to your site. Now’s your chance to use segmentation to show your visitor additional content that interests them. Or perhaps it’s the second time that visitor has been to your site. Now you’re building trust with content that is relevant and useful.
Blogging is great for lead generation when call-to-actions are displayed on your posts. CTA buttons are a great way to gather leads for your sales team.
Blogging can also help you establish authority. Measuring authority is subjective, however, you can imagine how much easier it is to discuss a topic with a lead when you can point them back to a detailed blog post describing the subject and how you were able to solve someone’s problem.