It can seem scary and confusing when you want to start a blog.
There are many blogs on the web already, with millions of new blog posts being published every day. You may have also heard some appalling failure stories. The popular blogs seem to have gone so far ahead, that it looks impossible to catch up or even beat them. So how do you weave yourself through that quagmire? How do you start a successful blog?
1. Market Research
Many bloggers fail because they don’t conduct proper market research. They just start blogging using the methods they think will work. However, many end up failing miserably.
Below are some things to consider when researching:
- What niche do you want to get into?
- How are other blogs in that niche performing?
- What are the monetization methods that work today?
- Who is your target audience and how will you reach them?
- Who is your main competitor?
- Are there any challenges in your niche that have not been properly addressed by other bloggers?
The aforementioned examples are just to get you started. If you truly want to succeed and capture your reader’s attention you have to take into account as much information as possible before setting up your blog and writing some content. It’s all about identifying your persona, as well as having a plan in advance on how to appeal to them and obviously, a clear vision of how to monetize your blog once they’re active and engaged to you.
2. Proper Monetization
For your blog to make money, it needs to be built properly and monetized. Smart marketers do not just haphazardly add things that they think will make money. In fact, they don’t focus on making money, but rather providing awesome solutions to the deep problems that their audiences face. Think about your favorite brands. Why do you keep going back to them over and over again? Chances are that they continuously offer you a solution that you are in dire need of.
There are many ways of monetizing a blog. Some are niche specific. Some of the best monetization methods include:
- Selling eBooks that offer great solutions to your audience
- Online courses that can be delivered through email or membership sites
- Sale of physical products
- Posting sponsored content
There are many options so make sure you properly research and decide on exactly how you’ll monetize. Do this before you even write one sentence on your blog; this will help you to craft your content in a way that it will attract the right audience who will benefit from whatever you’re selling or promoting.
3. Write Quality Content
You hate boring content, right? So does everyone else. Quality content is not just good grammar, spellings, and sentence structure. Yes, it is important to do all that, but for your blog to succeed, much more is needed. You need to ensure you provide rich content that provides concrete answers to your audience’s problems.
Your content should be unique and relevant to today’s problems. This means that you should always stay updated with industry news and latest happenings. Once you become a blogger, your research on your niche should never stop. Your blog should give information that actually works, not just something you read somewhere.
Add your personality and deep thoughts to your content. This gives you a unique voice that your audience will know you for. For example, if something new was launched today and everyone is talking about it, enrich it with deep thoughts and don’t just talk about the item launched. Talk about the possible impact it will have in the future, give awesome tips and tricks, test it and give your genuine review, etc.
When it comes to content delivery, don’t just do text. Make sure you also include videos, images, infographics and audios among others. That will ensure that people are not easily bored as they read your blogs, especially with the present cut-throat competition online.
The best “one liner” of advice in regard to content is that you have to make the content relevant to both the readers of your blog but also to search engines. Maybe people just focus on one, but you cannot truly succeed without addressing both.
4. Serious Promotion
Promote your blog heavily. Visitors do not just somehow land on your blog. Yes, you may have been told that blogging can be passive; but a new blogger should be as active as just about any other businessman. Top bloggers have many times confessed that their first year of blogging involved so much work creating an audience. Here are some methods that you can use to promote your content:
- Post in major publications to create social proof
- Reach out to influential bloggers in your niche and pitch to guest post on their blogs
- Create infographics which are currently traffic magnets. When done well, they will get you a lot of backlinks as other people share them on their blogs
- Create YouTube tutorials and take advantage of YouTube traffic
- Implement the latest search engine optimization strategies so that you can get droves of search engine traffic
- Consider doing some Google and Facebook ads
- Leverage on social media marketing through superb content on your social media profiles, pages, groups, and boards.
Finally, take some time in pushing your latest blogs to content upvoting platforms such as inbound.org, growthhackers.com, bizsugar.com, klinkk.com and many others. That will ensure your content reaches more people, who in turn will share, comment and engage – providing that they like the content of course. Promoting your blog is not an easy task and arguable the hardest ongoing effort you have to make.
Proper promotion will take you far, especially when you have splendid content on your blog. Make sure you always keep in step with the latest blogging tactics. It is a great feeling to have a blog that has lots of traffic, leads, and sales. This will also make you an industry leader and influencer whose opinions will be widely respected.