You have made the decision – you are going to create a blog. It is probably something you have read about on internet or heard from friends/family members. You think you have stories to tell, experience to share, desire to helping others in need.
Or, maybe you have heard about the stories that bloggers making more than 50,000 USD per month only working 3 – 4 hours per day. You also want a life just like this. And nothing can’t be more awesome than that, if you can do this with something you're passionate about.
Whatever inspirations you have got to create blog, if your strategies to create it not in place, you will be stuck in a hollow zone like many other newbie bloggers. The worse is the waste of your time and money.
My aim with this post is NOT to stop you from blogging, BUT to make you a successful blogger, so that you will reach to your goal for blogging, either to make it your full time job or bring financial independence and mental happiness.
Below are the ultimate strategies which have been proven to be most effective over these years by many successful bloggers, such as ProBlogger, The Smart Passive Income Blog, ShoutMeLoud.
#1. What is the purpose of your blog?
Before you act on anything else, you should ask yourself:
- Why does your blog exist?
- Why you will be blogging?
- Why you want to create your blog?
- What do you want to achieve from your blog?
For example, your blogging purpose maybe to:
- promote your own product or affiliated product or convince future visitors to buy those items
- create your own unique self on internet by creating your way of making statements
- provide guides on a certain topic
So in short, be true to yourself and answer the above questions with some clarity. Once you find answers with some clarity, it will be easier for you to create solid base for your upcoming blog for long time in future.
Read the detailed blog post on What Is The Purpose Of Your Blog and How To Define Blog Purpose?
#2. What is the subject (niche) of your blog?This part is pretty similar to previous one. Ask yourself couple of these question:
- What things in life you are passionate about? Is it fashion, lifestyle niche or are you a technology enthusiast?
- In which niche you have most experience or call yourself an expert/professional?
Read the detailed blog post on how to find your ideal blogging niche?
#3. Who is the audience of your blog?You wonder why you need to think about visitors of a blog which you haven’t launched yet. It’s common logic that the traffic will come once you write and publish posts through your blog.
But if you have found your blog purpose and niche, let me point you to couple of things:
- If you will be promoting/selling stuff, you need customers.
- If you are providing unique and valuable content, you need readers.
So you need to answer this question: your blog is targeting whom?
For example, if you will write about blogging tips and tricks, your target audience will be bloggers who want to learn new techniques for successful blogging, search engine optimization (SEO), how to monetize blogs. If you are writing about camping, you are targeting outdoor enthusiasts.
You can find your audience within the circle of your family members, relatives, friends, office colleagues, people connected with you in different social networking system.
Other way to find your audience is to join your blog specific niche forums. Interact with members, take part into discussion, see what members are asking and if your blog can answer those. For example, if you are an affiliate marketer, here is a List of Top Affiliate Forums.
In addition, Q&A sites, such as Quora or Yahoo Answers, can be also good place to find your potential audience. You search for your blog niche question and see what solution you can provide to members. These Q&A sites are very good to generate content ideas as well.
#4. How Much Time Can You Give To Your BlogIt may seem simple question to ask and answer at first. But, I tell you, BLOGGING TAKES TIME, QUITE A LOT OF IT. If you have a full time job, you need to find a good amount of time for your blog to make it successful. Famous bloggers like Neil Patel has also mentioned the essence of time for blogging in his 11 things to know before starting your blog.
Let me give you some quick heads up why and where you need to spend time after you start a blog.
a) Design of your blog:You need spend certain amount of time to make a good customized design. You also need to implement responsive or mobile friendly theme for your blog to rank better in Google.
That said, once you've found a workable and pretty good looking theme set up, don't tweak too often. Use that time for your posting or researching on internet about your niche.
b) Research proper keywords for your blog and contents written by others in your nicheThere are more than 3,000,000 blogs over the internet. To make your blog stand out from this crowd you need to do some keyword research in your niche either with specific keyword research tool or Google Adwords.
You will need quite some time to check what others (competitors) in your same niche are doing. They may cover some areas for which you may make better content. More importantly, visiting Q&A forum mentioned previously can give you valuable idea for your contents.
c) Writing blog postWhatever you want to write, you write for your broad audience. So you need to make it easy to read yet attractive. You need to create (or find free) images for each of your post, write content, use simple yet effective formatting (font size, bullet, small paragraphs instead a big one).
Famous bloggers like Neil Patel often mentioned that the size of the post really matters and he has had written an awesome post on how long your post content should be.
d) Promoting Your Posts in Social MediaNobody can deny the power of social media. As a new blogger, you will get lot of traffic from social networking sites, such as Facebook, GooglePlus, Twitter, provided you have a large group of followers already. If you don't have a lot of followers, start building relationships with like minded people/groups/pages. Include them in your circle and in return you will gain new followers.
Hootsuite, a famous social media management system posted an awesome guide and tips on How to Promote Your Blog on Social Media.
All of these (promoting your contents, building up relationships) will take lot of time. But my recommendation is not to spend all of your time in social networking sites only, but also spend some time on commenting (that is my next point).
e) Blog CommentingAs you will do research for similar niche, you will find more blogs out there with much better ranks. To get noticed by them, you need to leave a meaningful comment. This will build a relationship, create additional flow of traffic to your blog. Famous blogger Darren Rowse mentioned in his post how comment can improve your blog profile and generate additional traffic.
But to do this, you will need time to search and read the articles.
#5. When and How Often Do You Need To Post?
The answer for 1st question is: there is NO best time concept in case of blogging actually. You can publish whenever time is convenient for you. But if you would like to promote your published blog post in social networks you need to be aware at which time maximum number of people can read your promotional post there.
Famous blog Kissmetrics provides a statistics how timing can affect your blog readership.
For 2nd question, the answer is: Be consistent. This is very important, as posting 1 in every month is still better than posting nothing at all.
To certain extent, it comes down on which type of blog you have. For a news blog, posting several posts in a day may be useful, where for how-to guide blogs posting 1 in every week sounds good enough. A recent post in Hubspot reveals that monthly 16+ posts can get more traffic than 0-4 posts monthly.
However, the most important part is, you should focus on creating QUALITY CONTENT over QUANTITY.
#6. What About Domain, Hosting, Themes, Design?Well done if you have come this far!
The final strategy is no more less important, as this will shape the aesthetics, load time and ranking of your blog.
a) Find Good Domain Name And HostingYour blog's domain name should reflect your blogging purpose AND your blogging niche. In that way, the moment your audience see your blog name, they would know what your blog could offer.
I recommend everyone to buy their own domain instead of using free domain platform, because of better search engine ranking, professionalism and credibility to hold your own domain name.
I use Namecheap domain registrar for all my domains.
Read or Bookmark for later reading:
To check availability, use Domain Availability Search Box in Namecheap. All my domains are hosted on Namecheap, because of their awesome support and super security implemented at their side made them very reliable.
Type the name relevant to your niche and press "Search". The search result will show you if the domain name is available. If not, you can either want to buy an existing one or modify the search until you find your favorite blog name is available.
b) Theme, Design, Plugins
After you will buy your domain and hosting plans, you will need a good theme which will allow you to design the look and feel you want for your blog. Many of you may not be coder. Therefore a theme will make your design much easier. And the important part is, once you buy a theme it will be yours to command!
To make your new blog visually attractive and easier to navigate and share contents, it’s a good idea to install some key plugins. As you can see I have installed some social media sharing plugins, subscriber plugins Keep it minimal so that your site will not get slowed down.
However if you have a Wordpress blog, check this awesome Plugins to install.
ConclusionIt's always good idea to create a well crafted plan before embarking to any journey, creating a blog is no different. You need to focus on your purpose, social media strategy, building audience and creating WOW content. You should give yourself time to master the skills. Don't rush. If you have planned well, even if things go wrong, it will be easier to resolve.
Which part of this ultimate blog strategy you think most important?
Do you have any tips to improve any of these strategies?
Do you know any other essential factors to an effective blog creation strategy?
Please share your thoughts and advice below for all of us!