The Ups, Downs, and In-betweens
I have always wanted to start my own blog but between owning and operating three businesses I can barely make time for myself. I remember attending one of my therapy sessions and my therapists asked what I did for fun or to relax. I sat there for a while before I realized that majority of my days were spent working. I decided to start a blog as a quick and easy way to communicate with my growing fan base as well as to express my opinions and thoughts.
Like every project I embark on, I decided to do my research. I read several popular blogs and looked at tips that could help my blog stand out. The reality is there are millions of blogs online so to get notice would require me to be creative and consistent. Further, I would need to determine my primary and secondary target audience and create content that they would have an interest in.
Starting my own blog
Choosing the right platform
There are so many great blogging platforms that are easy to use and require little setup time. Sites such as WordPress (Hosted or self-hosted), Drupal, Gawker, and BlogSmith are just a few platforms that make starting your very first blog easy. Please keep in mind that you must decide if you need to pay for your blog or use a free platform. You can decide if self-hosting or a free alternative is better by learning about Blogging Basis 101.
I personally decided to create my own platform with the help of my web tech Adrian! He made the process easy, but it does come at a cost. Let us factor in your domain name, hosting fees, website templates (unless you opt to use a free template), graphic designing, and most importantly a solid budget for online marketing. It can be overwhelming but if you have a great team and an active support system you will make it happen.
Getting it done!
After Adrian was done setting up this great platform I had to find my market niche. I had to identify the needs and wants of my selected target audience and find topics that would satisfy them. Topics on Public Relations, Business Management, Event Planning, and overall Entrepreneurial Tips were selected. I then developed a content strategy with a posting schedule, this is an actionable plan that helps you to define your goals for your blogs, choose topics for use, get to know your readers through quantitative traits such as age, gender, location, and unmeasurable traits such as values, interests, and attitudes to name a few. Lastly, I started to publish and promote my blog posts.
Nathan Ellering of CoSchedule Blog provided very helpful tips in providing 107 Content Promotion Tactics. It’s a lot of reading but it covers everything! If you want to make an impact, take the time out to research blogging and all that it entails.
Now We are here!
Whew! After all the research and building it came down to writing the very 1st blog. As you continue to read you will realize that I chose to share my first blogging experience with you! Here are its ups, downs, and in-betweens.
- With your own blog, you get to express your thoughts and even share your passions with others.
- Blogging allows you to improve your writing skills and even your communication skills.
- It’s always great to build a professional network; blogging opens the door for this and even building solid business relationships
- Through insightful topics and good marketing, you can gain exposure while blogging
- Blogs require regular updates. If you lose interest in your own blog, then it becomes like a chore
- People can be mean sometimes so you can expect a few rude or unwanted comments
- You must be careful of what you share! You might have regrets
- You must avoid sharing inaccurate information or anything that is defamatory when writing opinion pieces. You do not want to get sued!
- Blogs can be time-consuming which is good and bad. If you have time, then commit to it but if not, you must stick to a blog schedule and make time for other daily activities
- Blogs allow you to share your opinions and thoughts, but your own biases can be the reason someone becomes a fan or a foe
- You must become social and open-minded to other people’s opinions. People will send queries or comments that may not be to your liking, you must learn to respond appropriately
Blogging overall is fun! I would urge all my readers to consider it!