How to become a blogger: 10 practical tips

Ever wondered how to establish a blog or how to become a blogger? Blogging is a way of conveying a message to a potentially broad audience and interacting with people who visit your blog. Here are 10 practical tips that can help you better understand how to become a blogger.

With reports of top bloggers being paid astronomical amounts to post content and work with brands, some people want to establish a blog for purely professional reasons: with the right planning and execution blogging can be a way of earning a living or supplementing income. For others blogging is a hobby, a way of expressing passion and knowledge about a subject. Increasingly, businesses are finding that having a blog is an effective way of communicating about their products and brand.

So, what does it take to establish a blog? That’s something we’ll be looking at in this blog post.

1. Know why you want to become a blogger

Millions of blogs are already in existence. Every day, more than two million new blog posts are published on sites using WordPress, one of several platforms for blogging. That raises a key question: how are you going to stand out among the crowd? What can do that will make you attract an audience? Of course, you may also want to establish a blog purely as a means of self-expression.

The spectrum of the blogosphere — that’s a term used to describe the world’s network of blogs, bloggers and their readers — encompasses for blogs established for all kinds of reasons. Rather than merely knowing you want to blog, it helps if you have a clear idea of what you’d like to cover.

2. Start creating content to post on your blog

Writing and regularly creating high-quality, well-edited content takes time and effort. If you have no or little experience of writing it makes sense to sit down and start creating content on a subject that you know about.

Many of the world’s existing blogs have only one post. They were abandoned after being created. All too frequently, people start a blog without being aware of what is required to create content.

If you have a handful of posts ready when you eventually establish your blog it makes a positive impression. It also means that readers who like what you are posting have a reason to stay on your site.

Who is your ideal reader? What will appeal to them? Knowing that can help you create the right kind of content, using the right tone and level of detail.

3. Photos and video content for your blog

Photos and video content can go a long way to helping attract readers to your blog. If you can already create your own, great, that means you’ll have a ready stream of potential content. If you don’t maybe you can learn how with the right kind of training?

Some people have no interest in creating images or videos. If that’s the case, establish where you can source visual content. There are lots of libraries that license images and video clips, including Alamy and Shutterstock.

4. Decide upon a platform for our blog

There are many established blogging pIatforms that have templates that will enable you to upload the words that you write and post them to your blog. They include Blogger, Tumblr, Wix and WordPress. It makes sense to undertake research to decide which platform is best for you and your requirements.

The functionality behind each of the platforms varies. To an extent, the right choice comes down to a question of personal preference.

5. Choosing between free hosting or your own domain name

If you want or need to keep costs to a minimum then you’ll be able to start blogging free from the costs of hosting fees. Blogs with wordpress.com in their name, for example, are hosted free of charge. In return for free hosting you may see adverts appearing.

To make a more professional impression, choosing a domain name makes sense. You can check whether domain names are available via service providers such as GoDaddy and 121 Webhosting.

Your blog will be accessible when people type your domain name into their browser. Hosting fees for domains are charged by tech companies. They have servers in data centres that are used to store the content that you upload to your website. In return for a monthly or annual fee you’ll be allocated a set amount of memory for your content and bandwidth for the transfer of data.

6. How to choose the right domain name

It makes sense to choose a name that is relevant to the subject that you plan to blog about. Don’t forget that many of the obvious domain names are already in use or reserved.

Undertake market research to identify which names are likely to attract the kind of person you want to be in your audience.

You may need to choose something different to what you’d originally hoped to reserve. Alternatively, you may be able to purchase a domain that’s already reserved by approaching the person or company who already owns a domain name.

It makes sense not to use a domain name that is similar to an existing blog. After all, part of the joy of blogging is having your own identity and expressing yourself.

7. Identify your training requirements

Not everyone is technically gifted. You may not have a natural flair for writing. You may not understand the best way of marketing your blog.

By understanding your strengths and weaknesses you can put together a training plan.

Of course, there are some things that you can learn by the experience of doing them. For others it will be better to take online courses, read books or attend specialist training.

8. Decide on the design of your website

The various blogging platforms have a selection of templates that you can use to launch a blog without incurring costs.

You can also browse sites such as Envato for templates for websites and blogs. In return for modest fee these can be installed and used.

It makes sense to have a distinctive look if you plan on taking blogging seriously, as a blog becomes a brand. To achieve that you can amend a template’s colours and fonts. Plugins are also a way of changing the appearance and functionality of your site.

If you want, you can add a logo. For that you may find it useful to employ the services of a graphic designer such as Anthony Antoniou. In addition to logo designs, graphic designers can provide advice on colour schemes and the aesthetic appeal of your blog. Yes, that costs money, but the value you gain can outstrip the cost.

9. Install and use an analytics programme

Google Analytics is regarded the blogging industry’s standard tool for analysing traffic to websites.

Among other things, it tells you how many unique visits your site attracts, how many hits pages receive, the channels through which you are attracting traffic, where your audience is based around the world, the demographics of your audience and your blog’s busiest times. That proves useful information in understanding what works and what doesn’t in terms of the content you create.

Using Google Analytics can be an effective tool in you finding a niche and, potentially, expanding beyond it.

10. Plan posts in advance

Decide how frequently you want to post and commit the time and effort to ensure that happens.

It’s helpful to plan posts well in advance. If you develop a calendar of posts for your blog it gives you an opportunity to undertake research, create content, ensure you have suitable images and pre-schedule posts.

If you have a busy time or can’t get online due to other reasons then scheduled posts ensure the blog remains active.

Be patient – don’t expect overnight success

We’ve all heard tales of bloggers who establish their blog and become an instant success, attracting a huge following and subsequently earning enormous fees. Yet for most people that isn’t the case.

Being influential doesn’t necessarily equate to readership size. It can relate to influencing peers, being a thought leader and winning critical acclaim.

It takes time to build an audience and following. Not every blogger is inundated with comments in response to posts. It’s important not to be disheartened if you don’t get a lot of direct interactions with your blog.

Build a social media following so you can promote posts. Interact with other bloggers. Join Facebook groups to exchange ideas and for support.

Good luck in starting your blog. For see the work of some inspirational bloggers, why not take a look at MannedUp’s recent post 10 top travel blogs you should start following today.

Hopefully this post, how to become a blogger: 10 practical tips, has proven useful? If you have any comments or questions about blogging, feel free to ask them below.

Social-Media-Footprint-Blogging-Creating-a-blog

What steps are you taking to create a blog and leave a noticeable social media footprint?

This post includes affiliate links to publications that may be useful to people wishing to establish a blog.

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