Considerations Before Starting A Blog In 2021
As an adjunct professor teaching Oral Communications for the past 5 years I have listened to hundreds of speeches and I am constantly reminded that every single person has something of value to contribute to the community conversation. Not only can we all speak from our own life’s experience but perhaps we have a unique interest or a topic that we want to learn about and share the research we conduct. There is likely a community of people who have similar mindsets or who may benefit greatly from hearing a new perspective. So, if you have ever considered writing a blog, you should start blogging in 2021.
Five Unexpected Benefits Of Blogging
- Blogging has provided me with a creative outlet that I didn’t even know I wanted let alone needed.
- As you learn more about the topic you are blogging about you are also learning how to improve your blogging skills, maybe learning about SEO and other concepts you did not know prior to blogging. The intellectual growth you can achieve through blogging is a great asset for anyone interested in lifelong learning.
- Creating a blog is a personal achievement, which you should be proud of! The confidence boost is an unexpected and pleasant benefit of blogging.
- As someone who moved halfway across the country during a pandemic it has been difficult to meet new friends and be away from family. Blogging may provide a way to grow a community of people you connect with.
- There is always the potential to bring in additional income, and who couldn’t use that?
Truly, what are you waiting for? As everything in our world continues to become more dependent on communication online there is no better time than now to do just that. The opportunities are endless and there are many ways you can improve upon the discussion in all possible areas of interest to you.
Begin Your Blog By:
Analyzing Successful Blogs
- What draws you to this particular blog? Is it the catchy name, the colorful images, the researched based information?
- How could you apply some of the same strategies in your blog moving forward? While you don’t want to totally mimic someone else, there is no point in reinventing a wheel that already works. You can adapt previously successful blogging strategies to your unique information/style.
- What would make these blogs better? No one is perfect, how can you improve upon the existing blog format?
Is there an angle within a particular niche that is not currently being blogged about? Perhaps that is a great avenue to pursue.
Brainstorming Article Topics:
- To do this start by eliminating distractions and setting a timer for 5 minutes. Write down every topic that comes to your head.
- Go through your youtube and google search history, what are you interested in listening to/watching and reading about?
- What is your knowledge base?
- Do you have a special skill?
- Educational background?
- Professional background?
- Personal background?
- What are things you enjoy learning about?
- Things you want to research and learn about in 2021?
- Unique hobby?
- Is there a service or product you want to offer people?
Analyze Blogs In Your Niche. Can you contribute:
- A new perspective?
- Better research, updated content or some new aspect?
Drafting Your First 10 Articles
- Shoot for 1,000 words or more.
- Write in smaller paragraphs with proper titles leading the reader to each topic.
- Do not post on the same day you started writing, go back and edit your articles with fresh eyes on another day.
- Don’t forget to properly cite by including backlinks to further resources for your readers.
- You’ll develop SEO later on, during the draft stage just write
Buying a Domain and Wordpress
- Categories (start with 4 core categories that you can really build up with many articles in each, you can always change/add categories as needed)
Considering Images that You’ll Use
- Using images is an important part of your blog because it adds another interesting element for the readers and draws people’s attention to your articles/blog.
- How will you obtain these images?
- Pixabay, for example, provides images that you can use for free but of course you have to properly cite where you obtained the images.
- Will you have a set color theme/image theme for your blog?
- Will you be using a pen name?
- Remember, you are in control of how much you choose to share about yourself on the internet. Choose wisely.
Create Social Media Pages For Your Blog.
- Try to be consistent on all platforms, same name, same image, same style/topics.
- The key social media platforms to help grow your community and drive traffic to your blog are: Pinterest, TikTok, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Continue to Improve As You Go
There are many free resources out there with information on how to start and improve a blog. Keep growing!
Start Sooner Rather Than Later
Your articles will not be perfect. Even now, I will go read my articles that I have already posted and realize I need to reword something. I just go back and update the article, it’s not a big deal. As you continue down your blogging path you will get better at creating amazing content but in order to get better you have to start producing.
Give yourself a deadline to publish your first article. Then, actually publish it, no matter what.
Set Realistic Schedule Goals
When I first started planning for my blog I thought I would be spending every free moment I get during the week to blog. Epic fail. Come up with a realistic schedule so that you can successfully meet the expectations you have made for yourself. This way you can avoid frustration and disappointment. What works for me is ensuring 3 hours early in the week for drafting and 2 hours for editing later in the week. This helps me to meet my goal of posting 2 articles per week.
Monetizing Your Blog
Once you have at least 20 articles published on your blog, consider applying for Google Adsense. You may also want to consider affiliate marketing opportunities with Target or Amazon. If brands are contacting you to promote something for them you’ll want to get a PO Box to receive free products for you to review.