7 Suggestions Before You Start Your Blog

IMG_0779I hear it often. You want to start a blog, but you don’t know where to start. You don’t know what you’re doing. You are paralyzed by too many options, too much information, too many buttons, or the least simple saboteur: self-doubt.

Start here. You don’t have to know what you’re doing. Not yet.

  1. Ask yourself: why do I want to start a blog? Get in touch with your motivations before you proceed. This will help determine the technicalities such as hosting and template (you can’t use a free WordPress.com blog and expect to use Amazon affiliate links, for example), as well as your title and niche and so on. If you do not have passionate reasons for starting a blog, I suggest you rethink it.
  2. Adopt a blog notebook. This could be a pocket-sized journal or a file on your computer. I use a notebook as well as the application Evernote for scratching down posts and ideas. The more you write in your blog notebook, the more you will want to write in your blog notebook. Ideas are funny like that. Ideas also tend to generate posts. Go figure.
  3. Create a schedule. This is my weakness. My rebel nature means that I like to break my own rules. I try to avoid this by simply not setting any expectations, and not giving myself the chance to rebel. Fortunately I can rebel against my normative ways and therefore, change my behavior, with a bit of mind washing. Case in point, I undertook a 30 day blogging marathon to exercise my voice, grow my readership and see what comes up; promising myself I would set a schedule at the end. << EDIT/DISCLAIMER: I have still not taken my own advice of setting a schedule.
  4. Analyze the blogs you love. What makes them so appealing? Why do you keep coming back for more? How is this blogger different from and similar to you? What can you learn from this blog?
  5. Write your first week or two of posts, then ask a trusted friend or family member for feedback and support. Feedback and support are both necessary ingredients for longevity.
  6. Get active on your social media accounts. Don’t drop off the radar some days because you don’t think you have anything interesting to post. Comment, share, like. Social media will be your best friend when you launch your site.
  7. Educate yourself. There is a wealth of information to help you build your own blog. Invest time and perhaps some money into the site, and you will be glad you did. The internet is overly saturated with blogs. You may as well let yours be awesome.

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