A friend of mine decided to start her own Blog writing about food, recipes, and different type of cuisines. Being an Inbound Marketer, I thought it was a great idea and encouraged her to do so. However, during our conversation she raised a few questions about what to do, and what tips she needs to keep in mind before starting a blog. Mary Beth, this is for you.
The following are few tips about starting your own Blog:
- Get your own URL: It is not expansive to do, and it is worth the effort. It is true that WordPress, Typepad, and Bloggerare free services that anyone can use, but having your own URL is unique and in my opinion shows more authority. Also, having your own URL is easier to promote, as opposed to www.yourcompany.wordpress.com for example.
- Have a Blog strategy: with no strategy your Blog is just another Blog. What are you writing about? Is it a personal Blog, is it a professional Blog? What ever it is, make sure to follow your strategy, and do not confuse your readers. You need to be consistent with what you have to say. For example, if you decide to focus on food, do not start writing about TV shows, it will only confuse your readers, forcing them to abandon your blog.
- Do not spend too much time on perfecting your Theme: Many bloggers (I am guilty of thinking this way in the past as well) spend too much time changing and choosing the “right” theme for their Blog. My advice to you is, do NOT spend too much time fixing and changing your theme. Your readers are interested in your content, and not in how your Blog/website looks. Instead try to focus on creative writing, which brings me to my next point.
- Focus on Content: Content is king! This is one phrase you will here over and over again among Inbound Marketers. It takes some practice and a few posts to develop your creativity for writing good content, but do not let it stop you. Always ask yourself this: would I have liked reading this? If the answer is yes, then you are probably already on the right track to becoming a good blogger.
- Allow Comments, Subscription, and RSS: Inbound Marketing is about creating relationship, and communicating back with your customers. Your Blog is not a business (yet), but you do have customers and these are your readers. You will be surprised to discover how many people read your Blog, and share their thoughts with you by commenting on what you have to say. One word of advice, give it some time to happen. It takes time before your readers develop “faith” in your content, and feel confident enough to connect with you.
- Ask someone to help: There are many things you can and need to do with a new Blog or a website. There are professionals out there that their job is to help you with SEO, SEM and SMM. Some of these professionals can be one of your closest friends (like me), or could be a friend who knows someone who is an Inbound Marketer. Do not be afraid to communicate your questions. Most of the advices you will get are totally free, and most Inbound Marketers are always willing to help.
- Have a SMM Strategy: You need to be thinking about ways to promote your Blog. There are over 100 millions Blogs out there, and with out a good SMM strategy plan your blog could and will get lost. Focus on promoting your Blog through different Social Media channels such as Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook(to name a few) to push your Blog forward. One word of advice: do not “push” your content too aggressively, and by that I mean do not tweet or share your latest blog entry 10 or 20 times on Twitter or Facebook in one day. This will only annoy people. Once or twice on the day you publish your post is fine, just make sure you Share it, or Tweet it on times that people are still awake (i.e. high traffic on Twitter, for example).
In sum, having your own website and Blog could be a great way to share your passion with others from around the globe. Always make sure you are passionate about your topic, and focus on creating remarkable content, it is 70% of your success.
I encourage you to comment and share your own experience with Blogging, or alternatively ask some of the questions that you might have.