Start Your Blog Today: Blogging Basics
Blogging can be a powerful tool to further brand yourself and get your message to the masses. A blog can allow you to provide people with valuable information and can build relationships and new business opportunities. Nervous about starting a blog? Read on to learn simple, easy steps to get you on your writing way, get readers, and keep the readers coming back for more.
5 necessary steps to start a blog:
#1. Are you a writer? This may seem like the easiest question to ask yourself, but Robin Plotkin, RD, LD, culinary and nutrition expert and founder/blogger of Robins Bite, explains that it is necessary to be consistent with your blog by posting blogs on a regular basis. So if you are not a fan of writing, becoming a blogger may not be for you because it does take time, motivation, and devotion.
#2. Find your voice. Corinne Dobbas, MS, RD, social media strategist and consultant and founder/blogger of CorinneDobbas.com blog, recommends figuring out what message you want to send and be consistent with your specific niche. See what else is currently out there, what you like to read, and how you can define your message through your blog.
#3. Stockpile your blog posts. Both Dobbas and Plotkin suggest writing a few blog posts prior to launching your blog so that you have enough content for readers to get to know you and what you stand for.
#4. Get a platform. Dobbas advises to look at specific blogger formats and get a beginners blogging site such as www.wordpress.com. WordPress also allows you to link your blog to your website.
#5. Design. Design. Design. Plotkin states to look around at other people’s blogs and see what attracts you and what you like. Think of the design, color, and font of your blog posts and layout. What tagline and title do you want for your blog? Are the blogs that attract you content heavy or photo heavy? These questions can help to determine how you’d like to conceptualize your blog and your message.
5 important tips to attract your readers and keep them coming back for more:
#1. Catchy headlines: Dobbas emphasizes how important attractive titles are. Forget the boring bunch. Go big and go bold.
#2. Build relationships. Blogging is important to get your message across, but it’s also a way to build relationships with others and network. Both Dobbas and Plotkin specify the power of commenting on other people’s blog posts and linking your comments to your blog. Make sure to also respond to people’s feedback and comments on your own blog. Making your blog a 2-way street is important.
#3. Social media mix. Both Dobbas and Plotkin agree that using other social media platforms to promote your blog is powerful. Marketing the blog via Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest can help to build noise surrounding your blog. Also joining blogging networks such as Food Buzz, Nutrition Blog Network, and others can help with cross-promotion.
#4. Be true to yourself. Writing about subjects you believe in that are applicable to your audience is key to attracting readers and having them come back for more tells Plotkin. When topics come from the heart, people feel the passion and want more.
#5. Keep the content current. Have fun and stay fresh. If you ever get stuck for content, review some of the top magazines/journals/news stories and write about those topics, suggests Dobbas.
Grow Your Business Through Your Blog:
Dobbas and Plotkin have both grown their businesses through their blogs. When companies and individual people read what Dobbas and Plotkin have to say and what they stand for, they already know the quality of character they will be getting. Companies and individuals have contacted both bloggers to become spokespeople and work for their corporations or on an individual basis. So remember: the power of writing is an extension of your communication. Your blog can launch you into a whole new realm of business and networking. So what are you going to write about today?