We all love a blog. From Guido Fawkes to Perez Hilton, from Michael Arrington to Zoella, there are writers out there covering every industry and trend. The best bloggers can earn small fortunes from product reviews to opinion pieces, becoming brands in their own right. Even writing about how to set up a blog can be lucrative.
In theory, blogging is easy. Simply register an unclaimed title from an established hosting provider like Blogger, and start writing. However, unless you want your lovingly-crafted entries to disappear into a black hole of public indifference, these nine tips on how to set up a blog will help you to reach the widest possible audience…
- Research competitors. When deciding how to set up a blog, market research is vital. What do you enjoy in other blogs, and how can you improve on it? How frequently do people upload new content, where do they promote it, and what response do they get?
- Establish social media links. Successful writers use social media platforms to promote their work. If your blog is visual, Instagram is a must; if it involves public figures, use Twitter. Publicise every new entry, and connect with other writers.
- Choose topics you’re passionate about. If your blog is corporate, try to approach industry news or company developments from unconventional angles. If you’re writing personally, choose an overarching theme you can write about authoritatively.
- Find a suitable host platform. Personal blogs can be hosted by the likes of WordPress, whereas company blogs usually have a dedicated web page. Alternatively, create your own site to avoid working under third party templates – you can even host it yourself.
- Pick a catchy name. This will be restricted if you’re running off your employer’s servers. Otherwise, choose a name relating to your area/s of expertise (possibly incorporating a play on words), which can be understood on first hearing.
- Make the first post a call to arms. If you’ve followed steps one to five, you should have a ready-made audience. Use blog one to explain why you’ve created it, why you’re an authority, what people can expect and why they should read future entries.
- Promise regular updates – and deliver. This is critical. There’s no point investing time and energy in deciding how to set up a blog, uploading one entry and then abandoning the whole thing. Successful writers grow audiences organically over time, so keep at it!
- Always proofread and spell-check before posting. Never upload a blog as soon as you’ve written it – proofread it the next day with fresh eyes. Look for spelling and grammatical errors, re-check all your facts and edit out any ambiguities.
- Look for platforms to promote your blog. Even in today’s saturated market, there are ways to promote original content, from paid search engine advertising through to networking and affiliate marketing. Speaking of which…Look for ways to raise revenue. Affiliate marketing is one of several ways in which a blog can pay for itself. While the vast majority of people write for commercial or altruistic reasons, sponsored posts or product reviews can generate an income stream.