Have you ever wondered what things need to be done before starting a blog or do you think it’s just writing and not much else? Boy, are you in for a surprise!
Starting a blog, however fun and easy it might seem, is hardly a simple task. Before you dig deep and start writing, there is quite a few stuff to consider. There are some of the things I wish I knew before starting a blog which, if I were to start today, would mean a lot! And each and every one of them I share with you in this post, so enjoy your reading and take notes!
8 facts to consider before starting a blog
1. It’s not as easy as it seems
„Nothing great comes easy, and nothing easy can ever equate to greatness.”
– Edmond Mbiaka
Yes, blogging is fun, creative and oh so engaging, but… It’s way much more than misty eye there. Before you even start your writings, there are so many things to think about and cover. From choosing the niche, the blog name, the right domain, hosting, CMS platform… And, this is not to scare you, no. We want you to deeply understand the amount of work needed to get your blog off the ground. Writing comes at the end, and even then you’re not finished working.
So, think things through, such as:
- What it is you want with your blog, what is your end goal?
- Who is your ideal target audience and how will you attract them?
- Have you came up with the name of your blog and checked availability?
Answer these questions for starters, and you’ll get the bigger picture of the overall end goal/s.
2. Design matters
“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”
– Steve Jobs
Boy, does it matters! To put it short: if the content is the king, the design is the queen! From user experience to accessibility, to how fast and reliable and strong the design is… It all helps you tell a more structured, valuable story about you, your hobby, a brand or business. That is why choosing the right platform, and the design of your blog is so important. You want your blog to be fast, appealing to the eye, useful and easy to engage with. Good design does all that, which is why we always recommend WordPress. A CMS that powers more than 33% worldwide websites, which tells you just how solid it is. If you want a design that gets results, WordPress should be the choice you make.
And talking about design, we at Meks take it extremely seriously, which is why all of our premium themes are up-to-date with all the changes and improvements. And – we make them with particular needs you might have. Coming from the world of photography? We have a perfect match for you! A travel blogger, perhaps? Did we make the ideal travel blog theme or what? Are words your strongest asset? We have the perfect Typology theme for ya! Just go over our Themes gallery and see for yourself.
A good design helps you in awareness, gives you a better approach to your target audience, appealingly speaks to them. Don’t go for ’quick fixes’ or way to easy solutions that simply won’t do you good. Sure, there are plenty of other solutions out there but just how good and adequate they are? A well-designed blog makes all the difference, and you’ll surely have that with WordPress. Not convinced? Just go over these comparison posts we wrote and see for yourselves:
3. You don’t need to do it all
“The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”
– Warren Buffett
Just because well-established bloggers are „doing it“ /whatever that might be/ doesn’t mean you have to, too. Take your time and set small/er/, achievable goals towards building your blog. As we said, think things through and define who are you aiming for, what you want to achieve with your blog and take it one day at a time. Not quite sure how to start blogging? Start small, maybe with social media, begin building awareness and a community and prepare them /as well as yourself/ for the next chapter. And that next chapter is the blog.
4. But you do need a plan
“A goal without a plan is just a wish.”
– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
A must-have, no doubt there. All these previous steps are driving you toward this one. If you want to have a successful blog – whatever niche – you need to have a strategy, a plan in place. How else are you going to track your success, monitor achievements, provide meaningful, valuable content for your readers?
When setting up a strategy, think about answering these questions as well:
- Who is your competition and what can you do better?
- What are the topics you will cover with your blog?
- How much time can you invest in creating content?
- How often should you write and post and engage with your audience?
- How will you deal with potential brand collaborations?
All these serve as stepping points and help you create a meaningful strategy and a plan you can execute in the coming months. Without a plan, you’ll end up spending a considerable amount of time without any focus or idea how will you achieve those goals of yours.
5. Google is your friend
“If you can spell “Nietzsche” without Google, you deserve a cookie.”
– Lauren Leto
And by friend, we mean friend in a way that he’s providing you with a ton of data you can use to kickstart your blog in the right direction. Over time, I saw too many bloggers starting their path without doing this particular pre-blog step. Can’t emphasize enough – Google Analytics is a must, people! You can’t really move into the house that has no roof, right? Just as WordPress is the foundation, Google Analytics is the roof of your blog, and you need to have it installed before you even start writing! Luckily, you don’t need developer’s help for that, follow our how-to add Google Analytics to WordPress guide, and you’re done in no time!
6. Writing is just half of the job
“The greatest part of a writer’s time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make one book.”
– Samuel Johnson
Before you start writing your first blog posts, there are (more than) a few things to consider.
- Who is your audience?
- How can you help/entertain/inform them, what it is they want of your content?
- How well do you know the topic/s?
- What about SEO?
- Where are they online?
So, you see, plenty of work needs to be done before writing itself. From tons and tons of research, to really knowing your audience and their pain points. Not to mention SEO knowledge and where to find your audience online. Why are we telling you this? Simply, we want you to know just how much work there’s into blogging so that you can prepare yourself in the best possible way. We see too many people talking about blogging, even starting one just to give it all up after a few weeks or months. And why? The most common reason is they didn’t know the wholesome scope of work that bloggers put into their online presence.
And what about all the other work that needs to be done? Keyword research, taking and making good visuals, thinking about your tone of voice… Blogging isn’t just writing per se, with it you get to learn and master so many other skills. Something to think about, for sure.
7. Promotion, promotion, promotion
“You can buy attention (advertising). You can beg for attention from the media (PR). You can bug people one at a time to get attention (sales). Or you can earn attention by creating something interesting and valuable and then publishing it online for free.”
– David Meerman Scott
Once you finish writing your posts, the work is hardly done. 🙂 To help become more visible, you need to promote your posts and your blog, introduce it to the world. Which is where social media steps in. Go where your audience is, no need to be everywhere at once – not it’s possible if you want to do it right. If your audience is on Twitter, go there, if they hang out on Pinterest, be present there and make sure you have stunning visuals! Also, take your time to get to know the Facebook group for bloggers and choose the ones that fit you the most. That’s another great engaging and promotional way to bring more awareness to your blog. You need all these ways to make your blog more visible, connect it to the broader audience and improve traffic. All which you need if you ever want to monetize your blog and make a substantial income out of it.
8. Ask for help
„You don’t have to do it all by yourself.“
– Elizabeth Dehn
Feeling stuck? Don’t know where to start? It’s ok to ask for help and advice. By choosing WordPress as your blog platform, you’re becoming a part of the worldwide WordPress family. People from all over the world can help you if you need a hand in choosing the right theme or setting one up. Just go to the WordPress forum, scroll over topics, see if there’s a solution shared already or simply ask what you need. That’s the beauty of the open source – people are open and willing to help! The same goes for premium themes, too! You don’t just buy a theme, you get the best customer support with it – and we should know a thing or two about it! 🙂
The same goes for friends and family. No need to keep your blogging aspiration a secret. Share your thoughts and doubts with them, ask if they would be willing to help you turn it into reality. That can be anything from reading your posts, sharing it on social, to assisting you to come up with topics. Or, giving you a hand with choosing brand colors or the design. No need to do it all by yourself.
To conclude this post, blogging really isn’t a campaign or something you do from time to time. Not if you want to do it right. Blogging is a process that, hopefully, has no end. It’s something you do continuously, and it’s the only way to do it if you want to monetize your blog someday. People seek connection, and they can’t have it if you’re not there for a longer period. However, that doesn’t mean you need to post every day, just have in mind that blogging is a lot of work. It requires commitment, dedication, willingness to really put yourself out there, so…
Go through this post once again and really let all this information sink in before you start a blog. Be sure that you are ready and willing to turn that wish of yours into a reality. And, good luck!
Feel free to share your thoughts on this topic and add any question you may have. And if you liked the post, look us up on social and share some love!