“This is Chapter two from the Blog for Profit Ebook.” Download your Free Copy now!
Now that you have a pretty good understanding of the power of blogging and how you can use it to grow your business, let’s get into the how-to portion of this ebook. We’ll start at the beginning with setting up your blog and then move into some tips on blogging and what you should do to get the biggest results on your reach and of course your bottom line.
Setting Up Your Blog
This is by no means to be an all-inclusive, step-by-step guide for setting up your blog. I have recorded in-depth videos for that in the Blog for Profit Challenge.
If you already have a blog set up, feel free to skip over this section of the chapter and move right along to the info on how to blog, how often to blog etc.
Setting Up Hosting and Registering a Domain If Needed
The first thing you’ll need is a domain name and hosting. If you already have both for your business, you can easily add a blog and make it
If you’re starting out with a new blog, Bluehost will provide all you need at just $2.95/month and a Free Domain. This gives you plenty of space and bandwidth without breaking the bank.
Before we wrap up this section, let’s talk about free blog hosting. There are a few different options out there where you can set up a free blog.
The biggest provider out there is WordPress.com (not to be confused with
WordPress.org). It’s a great service and if you’re blogging for fun (as a hobby), it’s the way to go.
This ebook however is about blogging for business and there’s one important reason why you don’t want to go with a free service. That reason is that you don’t have control and ownership of your blog. While it may work fine for a while, you never know when the company may choose to close down your account or stop offering this free service.
Stories come up all the time where big bloggers who were making a decent living from their free blogs got their account and with it, their livelihood shut down. It’s simply not worth the risk. You want full ownership and full control over your business blog, buy hosting and spend the few dollars per month to get started.
Choosing a Blogging Platform
Next, it’s time to choose a blogging platform. There are several great options out there. The most popular option out there is free open source software from WordPress.Org. It’s incredibly flexible and you will be able to find themes and plugins that do just about anything you need your blog or website to do.
Another big benefit of WordPress is that it’s so popular that most hosting companies support it well and even offer easy one click installations.
That said, look around and see what platform you want to use.
Think about any functionality you may like to have. It’s also helpful to find a few blogs that you like the layout and look of. This will give you an idea of what you would like your own blog to look like.
Do-It-Yourself or Professional Blog Designer?
Once you’ve decided on a blogging platform and made up your mind how you’d like the blog to look and what functionality you may want, you have to decide if you want to set everything up and customize it as needed yourself, or if you’d rather hire a professional designer to do this for you.
If you go the DIY route, I highly recommend elegant themes. Their Divi theme is the most popular premium WordPress Theme in the world and it makes your site look like a $1000 execution.
Elegant themes also power over 400,000 websites and it comes with tons of tutorials and videos to help you do just about anything.. An $89 membership, gives you access to over 80 premium themes and plugins.
You can also buy premium themes from $29 on mythemeshop
A Few Tips on Writing Your First Blog Post
Once your blog is up and running, it’s time to write your first post. This can seem like a bit of a daunting task when you’re staring at a blank screen. An easy first post is one that simply introduces you to your readers. Share with them who you are, and what your business is all about.
If you have a vision for your blog (which you should), you may want to share some of that with your readers as well.
Wrap it up with a list of other places they can find you (your main website, your brick ‘n’ mortar store, social media accounts etc.) and you’re done. Add a picture of yourself or your store and you’re ready to publish your first post.
Above all don’t worry too much about your first post. Get it under your belt and get comfortable with the process. Early on there won’t be a lot of people reading your blog and you always have the option of editing and improving it later. For now, look at it as good practice.
It may also help you to jot down a quick outline for your post before writing it. With an outline it feels more like a “fill-in-the-blanks” exercise as you simply add a few sentences here and there. Start writing and come back later to edit and improve before publishing if you need to.
In the first 30 days of your blog, there are five pillar content that you should write. They are:
- List Post
- Ultimate Guide
- Roundup Post
- Ego bait Post
I have indepth training videos on each of these blog posts in the Blog for Profit Challenge.
How Often Should You Blog?
One of the first questions you may have once you get started with blogging is how often you should write and publish new posts. I wish there was an easy answer. The truth is, instead of fixating on a certain number, what’s more important is that you blog regularly and keep to a schedule of sorts so your readers know when to expect a new post.
For example, you may start by blogging once per week, keeping up that schedule week after week.
If you find that you can get more blog posts written on a regular basis, go for it. Move up to twice per week and see how that works with your work schedule. Keep trying different blogging schedules until you come up with something you can stick with in the long run.
It’s also helpful to have a few blog posts ready to go in case you have an extra busy couple of days in your business or get sick. This way you can continue to stick to your blog post publishing schedule no matter what.
The only wrong way to do things is to not blog for days and weeks at a time. Don’t over-commit yourself or you’ll burn out and end up doing just that. Don’t allow your blog to go stale. Stick to your blogging schedule and slow down if you need to. At a minimum, you want to get at least one new blog post per week published.
What Type Of Content Should You Post?
Before we start to talk about regular blogging, let’s quickly run through the different types of content you can post on your blog. The first is, of course, a text post. This can take a variety of formats and lengths from quick tips, to lengthy tutorials or lists. Take a look at what other successful bloggers in your niche are doing and take inspiration from the types of posts they create. Of course your text posts can be enhanced by adding images and even video and various other media files.
Images make for great blog post content. You can create posts that mainly consist of a series of images with a little text to help the reader understand what’s going on with the images. Image posts make great tutorials, but you can also use them to showcase your products, or share with your readers how others are using your products for example.
Video and audio posts are another interesting thing to try. It depends on your audience and how they like to consume your content. Try different formats and find a balance between the type of content that’s easy for you to create and showcases your products well, and what your audience wants. You should also switch up the length of your blog posts and mix things up. Most importantly, make sure you get high-quality content published on a regular basis, no matter what the format and length.
Plotting and Planning
I’ve mentioned a few times throughout this report that it is important to blog regularly. This will help you grow a loyal readership and it will also help you with getting free traffic from search engines. They love sites that are updated regularly and reward them by sending more traffic to those types of sites. But how do you go about making sure you’re blogging regularly, even when things get busy and you get distracted?
What you need is a plan, and a Blogging Calendar is a perfect place to record your plotting and planning. There are plugins out there for your blogging platform that allow you to create an editorial calendar, but you can also use whatever existing calendar you’re using – be it digital or physical. Or you can use a simple notebook to keep track of your blog post ideas and scheduling.
The important part is that you sit down, brainstorm blog post ideas, and then figure out what post you want to write when. While your blogging calendar doesn’t have to be set in stone, it will help you get writing in the morning and ensure that you publish blog posts on a regular basis.
How much you plot and plan and in how much detail is up to you. Some people find that writing a topic or idea down for each post is all they need to get them started. Others find it helpful to have an outline and links for further research or resources they want to mention in their posts. Play around with different formats and strategies until you find a system that works well for you and keeps you blogging regularly. Plan at least a week’s worth of content ahead, but you can certainly go much longer than that.
The Importance of Editing Your Blog Posts
Once you’re done writing your post, you may be tempted to hit publish right away. Resist the temptation and instead walk away for a bit. Then come back and start editing your blog post. You’ll be surprised how many little spelling errors you will catch that spell check missed.
You may also find that your post could use some tightening up, or that you didn’t explain something as well as you thought you did. Start editing and improving your post as needed. Make sure it is formatted for easy scanning and reading, that the images support the content, and that your blog post has a purpose. Ask yourself what your goal is with each post and if you’ve accomplished that goal.
Pay Attention to your Blog Post Titles
The single most important part of your blog post is the title. It’s what will hopefully grab your reader’s attention and pull them in to read the post.
It’s also important in letting search engines know what your post is about.
Last but not least the title is usually what shows up when a link is shared on social media.
Take your time when you craft your titles. You want to strike a balance between working in your keywords for search engine optimization and copywriting to pull in your readers. It may be helpful to start with a working title, write your blog post and then spend a little time crafting your final title.
“This is an excerpt from the Blog for Profit Ebook.” Download your Free Copy now!
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