When you’re interested in starting a blog to promote your brand, grow your business or engage in a cause, one of the first questions that comes to mind is, what is blogging all about and how can I use it to achieve my goals?
You’re asking this question because you don’t merely want to start blogging, you want to start a profitable blog, grow it and use it to achieve your outcomes.
In this guide, you’re going to learn what a blog is all about, the business of blogging and how you can start and grow your blog while using blogging to achieve your goals.
What is Blogging?
Strictly speaking, Blogging is the art of writing, creating or sharing content on a blog (or web log), for a specific purpose, over a period of time.
In contemporary terms, blogging now extends beyond creating content on your own personal website. It is also loosely used to explain the art of writing, sharing and updating posts on social media with the intent of creating a specific outcome.
Before now, blogging was more of a personal thing. It was like writing a personal diary and posting it online so that it can be accessible for other people to read on the web.
Right now, things have changed. Blogging is now used by both individuals and businesses to create content, generate engagement and drive sales among other specific outcomes.
What is a Blog?
A blog is the short form of web-log. It is a term used to describe a website that gets updated continuously.
The term WEB-LOG was first coined by the editor of Robot Wisdom, Jorn Barger in 1997, while trying to describe the daily list of sites that he “logged in” during his web travels.
A few years later Peter Merholz used the word in his sidebar but instead of using the phrase together, he decided to split the word into two words: we blog.
It wasn’t long after that, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs started using the term “blog” as a distinct word on its own both as a verb and a noun, before finally creating the term “blogging” in association with Pyra Labs’ Blogger product.
When it all started, a blog used to be a special kind of website owned by the blogger and which could be used to update content chronologically and on a regular basis.
In recent times, this has changed as well. You can now blog on social media and other third party platforms without necessarily creating those platforms from the scratch.
Who is a Blogger?
Generally speaking, a blogger is someone who writes, creates or publishes content on a blog.
The term Blogger means different things to different people actually. For some, a blogger could be anyone who writes online.
For others, it can be a professional in any profession or business who has a blog that allows him to reach a wider audience with his craft.
Initially, the role of a blogger revolved around things like managing the blog, creating and sharing content with their audience, engaging with them and keeping all posts updated on the blog…
But today, most bloggers do far more than that.
From running their blog as a business in order to reach a larger audience, to creating paid content and partnership with clients, bloggers are today involved with diverse activities on their blogs.
How to Become a Blogger
The first step to become a blogger is to own a blog. Or better put, own a platform where you can create and share your own content.
The reason why this is important is because if you do not have a blog then you cannot become a blogger. That’s what it is.
So, the first step to become a blogger is to get a blog. After you’ve successfully created your blog, the next thing to do is to create content and begin to gather your audience.
Without wasting much more of your time, I will be listing below the simple but important steps that can help you to become a blogger…
- Decide What you Want
Find out for yourself, why exactly do you want to blog? Is it because you like the idea about blogging or you just want to create a blog that can help you to make some meaningful impact and get paid for it?
If all you want is to just create a blog as a hobby, you can start by thinking about topical areas you’re interested in or find topics you have skills and experience on or the ones you’ll like to write about over a long period of time and then create a blog with such topics.
If your goal is to start a blog so you can make money online then you need to look out for topics that have capacity to generate income for you and then find out if you have what it takes to create content in that area.
Where you don’t have the requisite skills, you can always learn or find a way to develop it. Outside that, you can also look within you and find out if you can blog about or monetize your current skillset via your blog.
Taking the above steps is very important as it will help you to find clarity. I’ve extensively covered a post on how to make money online. You can read it here for a better understanding.
- Get a Blog
To get a blog, you’ll need a domain name and a web hosting account. I have written a detailed post on how to start a blog here. As soon as this is sorted out, the next thing you need to do is to build your blog.
After you’re done building your blog, you need to start creating content on the blog. It doesn’t matter whether you can write well, produce great content or not, just start something with what you can do from the beginning.
- Start Creating and Posting Content
Content is the hallmark of blogging. To become a blogger, you need to be able to both create and post content on your blog.
Considering that you already have a good idea about the kind of content you want to create on your blog, the next thing you want to do at this point is to start creating this content.
As much as possible, consider giving it your best shot. Focus on creating valuable content and give your audience the chance to always want to come back to your blog.
How to Grow your Blog
Its one thing to be a blogger and its another thing to grow your blog and make it successful.
I have written extensively about how to grow a successful blog here. But, below are some other tips you can use to grow your blog;
Keep honing your skills
Continue writing and creating your content. Overtime you’ll find an area you’re very comfortable in. This area gives you much satisfaction when you blog about topics in it.
Begin to pay more attention about creating this kind of content. about this area consistently. Research on important questions and topics in the area and share your content all across your social media platforms and with friends until you become well known for this.
Get Social and Grow
Create social media profiles for your blog on either of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and spread the word.
The social media is going to be one of your useful marketing tools for your blog but you have to choose them based on platforms that has a large number of your target audience.
Share and promote your blog posts across the social media platforms. Gather a decent number of fans and keep engaging them with your posts.
Become a thought Leader
If you’re sharing a skill via your blog, when you get comfortable with your skill set here, decide to take it to the next level by helping others.
Helping people builds your expertise. It also demonstrates your capacity and exposes you to a wider audience.
You can read this post on how to become a thought leader to have a better understanding.
To get started, you can start with hosting free programs and events in your niche area with some experts you know.
Don’t worry, you can begin with virtual events if physical events will be costly.
After that continue garnering experience and reaching over to experts and thought leaders in your niche.
There are always three sets of thought leaders. The advanced, the mid-level and the ones at your level.
Shoot for the advanced and well recognized thought leaders and if they ignore you, go for the mid-level ones. Develop robust relationships with these guys. You will need it.
While building your thought leadership, remember to join Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter groups of like-minded bloggers in your niche. Share your posts here and interact with their content.
Guest Post on Other Blogs
Guest blogging is very important for blog growth and expansion.
Whether you’re completely a new blogger or not, from time to time, volunteer to write posts on other important blogs or platforms with similar or closely related audience to your blog.
It will give you back links, expose your brand to a wider audience and enhance your readership.
Blogging is all about creating, updating and sharing content with an audience in order to create a specific outcome but, beyond all of this with your blog, you can create an outstanding platform that can evolve into as much as you want.
If you want to arrive at this results then you need to take the steps as listed above, repeat the process over and again just as you’re gaining more experience.
Keep blogging. Yes! Don’t ever stop blogging, sharing your posts and guest posting on other established blogs.
Learn from your experience, that of other people and keep improving your blogging skills.
Now, to learn more about blogging and gain all the mastery and mentorship you need, can sign up for our smart blogging class here.
So, there you have it. Now , it’s over to you. What’s your biggest challenge when it comes to blogging? Share your comments blow.
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It is always best to start with a paid domain name and web hosting, using the hosted WordPress.org. Doing that has a lot of benefits including giving you a lot of leverage to grow your blog and also monetize it easily.
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Any recommendations or advice would be greatly appreciated.
To get started blogging, you’ll need to choose a niche, get a domain name, a web hosting account and then a blog set up for you.
As soon as this is sorted out, you’ll need to create valuable content, share it with your audience and promote your blog across other platforms to drive traffic and website visits.
To get a more detailed advice on how to get started as a blogger, you can check out this guide here
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