So, you want to join the masses and become a blogger. There are many reasons people look into starting a blog. They want to let their creative juices flow and write what they want to write. To build up their writing portfolio. Or, they are looking for ways to make additional money. And starting a blog allows you different avenues for bringing in some extra income. If you’re on the fence about starting a blog, why? If you have a passion for writing, do it. Don’t let anything get in your way. There are a lot of “what if’s” you can ask yourself. However, if the pros outweigh the cons? You don’t have anything to lose. If you feel you’re not a great writer? Don’t let that stop you. If people feel your passion coming through? They won’t care.
Let’s look at the steps in starting a blog:
- Pick your Niche. Do you want to write about your kids, or do you want to write about fashion? Are you a traveler and want to share your stories? There are many things to write about. Pick a niche and focus on that.
- Blog name. This one’s important because you don’t want to have to change it later down the line. I did that and lost everything because I didn’t know what I was doing. Lost six years of blog posts when I took a break and then let my URL expire. I chose Flights of Fancy Mom this time around because I have dreams that I want to make a reality. My previous blog name was Single Parent Retreat. I felt that ended up limiting me. Putting me in a box. But, I want to spread my wings and soar. Hence, my new blog name.
- Where do you set up your site? I used to use Blogger. And many still do. However, I’ve switched to WordPress and couldn’t be happier. It’s very user-friendly and the blogging templates that you have access to? Are perfect for any niche. Even if you are setting up your online shop. They offer free and paid templates.
- How are you going to host your site? I highly recommend Bluehost. They are one of the better hosting options out there. Their customer service is fantastic and minimal downtime if any. I haven’t seen or heard many issues with people using Bluehost. They are always running great deals on their monthly fees. Currently (as of 5/7/18) $3.95 per month. There are other plans to chose from at different rates, however, I recommend starting off with the basic plan until you are ready to upgrade. You can also set up your domain name through Bluehost.
- Choosing your blog design. You will determine the best blog theme for your blog niche. There are WordPress themes or the ever popular StudioPress Themes for WordPress. They are currently running a special of $100 off of Pro Plus for the next six days!
- Writing and publishing your first blog post! This is an exciting and vulnerable moment. You’re putting yourself out there for people to read your thoughts. You want to share, but, you don’t know what to expect. My very first blog, I did as a stress reliever. I had one follower and I didn’t care. I needed to write to express what was going on at a particular moment in my life.
When writing your blog posts for publishing, you can choose to write them one at a time, or you can have X amount of posts ready to go. Decide how many posts you want to write each week. There is no wrong answer to this. You can write once a week, twice a week or every day. Just don’t overwhelm yourself. Set up a schedule that works for you and your family.
- Promoting your blog. You’ll want to have your social media pages set up on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. Before your blog goes live, build up your following. Tell people about your blog. What you’re going to be writing about. Interact with them. Don’t just drop a share and leave. If people comment, respond! Let people know they aren’t just a number on your follower count. When you publish your posts, make sure to share them to all your pages. Get people reading your stories.
I hope this has helped you some, in getting you on track for starting a blog. Blogging allows you to be free. Free to write what you want. No one can take that away from you. So, go with it and give it a try. If you have questions, ask!
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