3 Critical Questions To Answer BEFORE You Start Blogging

3 Critical Questions To Answer BEFORE You Start Blogging


You’ve probably heard the phrase “look before you leap” or one similar. This could not be truer than when you’re thinking of starting a blog. Here are 3 critical questions that you should answer before you start blogging to save yourself tons of heartache and frustration.

1. Before You Start Blogging… Why Do You Want To Start A Blog?

Why Blog?

Don’t skip this question… Before you start blogging, you need to know why you’re doing it.

Your why is what’s going to keep you going when you get frustrated and want to give up. Knowing why you want to start a blog BEFORE you start blogging is critical to your success. You don’t need to know all of the “how to” details up front, but you must understand WHY you’re doing it.

Here are the 4 most common reasons for starting a blog:

  1. Start a blog to educate, teach, or show someone how to do something.
  2. Start a blog to share your personal story and experiences.
  3. Start a blog to grow your business or build your personal brand.
  4. Start a blog to sell something and make money online.

Educational BloggingStart A Blog To Educate, Teach, Or Show Someone How To Do Something

This is the most popular kind of blog. Blogging to teach, train, or educate is a way to change the world, help others, and just give back.

When you start an education blog, your thought process is around problems and solutions. Your readers have a problem, and you have an answer. The solution that you provide can be casual like an advice blog or more formal like an online course.

People who start these types of blogs love to learn and share knowledge. They enjoy helping others and watching them succeed.

This is me. I LOVE to help other people succeed, and my superpower is the ability to absorb tons of knowledge and break it down so that others can understand it.

Before starting an educational blog, ask yourself these questions and how you can provide value.

  • What are you truly good at and I mean better than everyone else you know?
  • What is the one topic that you continuously love to research and learn about?
  • What is the one thing that you can talk about for hours and hours and never get bored?
  • What skills have you acquired in your life through work or hobbies?

Educational blogs come in every shape and size. Most blogs will fall into this category.

Here are just a few examples:

  • How to create a beautiful garden
  • Home improvement instructional videos
  • Makeup instructions
  • Online cooking course
  • Teach Yoga
  • How to Master Google Docs

Start A Blog To Share Your Personal Story And Experiences

An experience-based blog is less about teaching and more about sharing. Regardless of your history, you have something to share. This type of blog tends to be less structured and more creative and flowy.

Are you one of those people who has lived a crazy, weird, or enjoyable life? Have you survived a tragedy, illness, or escaped from an abusive relationship? Are you a huge success in your industry? Or maybe, your life has been a total failure, and you can tell people what NOT to do…

Here are a few examples of blogging about life:

  • Travel blog
  • A blog about living with diabetes (though this could also be an educational blog depending on your personal style)
  • Surviving divorce / or stories about marriage or kids
  • What not to do at work
  • Your journey to health and fitness

Start A Blog To Grow Your Business Or BrandStart A Blog To Grow Your Business Or Build Your Personal Brand

Do you have an online or offline business or maybe you provide a service to others? My joy is helping small business owners, so I usually think of shop and restaurant owners, personal trainers, dentists, and new affiliate marketers.

People starting a blog for business or to build their brand need to start with a plan. You need to know what your goals are. Do you want to generate more leads, sell your services online, build a social media presence, and just get more eyes on your website?

Blogging for your business means that your topics are going to be tightly related to that business and the questions your potential customers have.

Here are a few examples of what I mean:

  • Personal Trainer. Your topics are going to be about health, fitness, and diet. The goal should be to teach and show your readers how you can help them achieve their goals.
  • Plumber. An excellent idea for a plumbing blog would be to make videos for how to solve simple plumbing issues. It shows your readers what you know, builds trust and respect, and also keeps you from getting calls where you address their problems for free over the phone.
  • Online store. Product reviews and coupons are excellent blogging topics for an online store. Again, you’re building trust and respect so that when they are ready to buy, they will want to buy from you.

Start A Blog To Make MoneyStart A Blog To Make Money

I would say that around 30% of the bloggers I’ve worked with want to at least make a little money from their blog, even if it’s just enough to cover expenses. And, another 5% of those want to quit their day job to make money online while working from home!

Making money online is very doable. It all depends on how hard you’re willing to work and learn. It’s ‘SIMPLE’ but not always ‘EASY.’ Blogging to make money is NOT a get-rich-quick type of thing as many skilled internet marketers will have you believe. There is no magic 30-day plan, no secret strategy, and there are no guarantees. But yes, it is possible to earn 6 figures from blogging – I do.

So this is where I have to provide a disclosure statement to make the “powers at be” happy…

EARNINGS DISCLAIMER

I cannot make any guarantees about how much money you will make as a blogger or if you will even be successful. Any examples provided on this site are just that, examples. Your earning potential from blogging is 100% dependent on you and your efforts.

There, now that that’s done…

I do make a 6 figure income from blogging and personally know bloggers that make 7 figures! It took me almost 3 years of consistent blogging, promoting, and learning new skills to get there. And while there are many gurus out there who will promise 6 figures in just a few months, trust me… they just want your money. The training programs are probably excellent (I’ll even recommend several on this website), but that timeframe is just not doable for a brand new blogger – there’s WAY too much to learn.

I cannot tell you how long it will take you to grow into a successful blogger, but if you’re willing to learn and work hard, and NEVER ever quit, then it is possible for you.

How To Make Money Blogging

Making money from your blog is definitely possible and can be hugely profitable. Seriously, there’s next to no overhead costs. Again, it all depends on you and how hard you’re willing to work for it.

Here are the most common ways to make money with your blog.

Direct Advertisers

These are individuals, bloggers, or larger companies that will pay you money to place advertisements or write paid reviews on your blog featuring their product or service. This can be very lucrative, and once you start getting traffic in the 10k visitors per month range, these people will find you. There’s no need to solicit them.

Affiliate Marketing

Companies like Amazon, ShareASale, ClickBank, and JVZoo have extensive networks of products and services that you can promote on your blog for a commission.

Ad Networks

The most recognizable ad network is Google Adsense. They connect advertisers with content publishers (bloggers) to place ads on your blog. Unlike traditional affiliate networks, they control what ads to run on your site. This is an excellent option to set it up once and forget it. Talk about passive income!

Create And Sell Your Own Product Or Service

This is where the real money is made. Create your own product or service to sell to your readers. It will convert better because they already know and trust you. It will make you more money because you get to keep it all – duh! So start thinking about a product or service that you can offer in the future.

2.Before You Start Blogging… What Will Your Blog Be About?

You don’t have to know everything up front, but before you start blogging, you should give some thought to what you will blog about and how you will present yourself to the world.

How To Choose Your Blogging Topic Passions Vs Money MakersPick A Blogging Topic – Passions Vs. Money Makers

Sometimes you’ll hear this referred to as your niche. It’s your primary focus, what you will blog about the most. Your niche/topic will drive everything you write about and share on your blog.

There are two schools of thought on picking the right blogging niche.

Blog About Your Passions

Some people say that you should choose something you are passionate about because that’s what gets you out of bed every morning and motivates you to write high-quality content. While that is a great thought, if your passion is underwater basket weaving, you are unlikely to make an excellent income blogging about it. One often overlooked component in blogging is that you need to be able to find related products to promote to your customer base to make money.

While I agree entirely with that concept, if your passion is painting thimbles, you are unlikely to make an excellent income blogging about it – though I’m sure there is a group of people who are very passionate about their thimbles! One often overlooked component in blogging is that you need to be able to find related products to promote to your customer base to make money.

One often overlooked component in blogging is that you need to be able to create a product or easily find related products to promote to your readers to make money blogging.

Blog For Money

There are those who say you should ONLY pick topics that are known money makers whether you are passionate about them or not. That will only work if your real passion is making money! Otherwise, you’re going to find yourself bored and uninspired – that’s no way to live…

I personally believe that it should be BOTH. You want to be sure that thousands (if not millions) of other people share your enthusiasm and interest in the topic and will pay money for products and/or services that you have to offer in the niche from time to time. Even if you’re not interested in making money from your blog, I am assuming that you at least want other people to read it, yes? Then the same rules apply.

Write down your top 3 ideas that you are passionate about and think you want to blog about. And then, do at least some research up front to make sure there are at least 1000’s (hopefully millions) of other people interested in your topic and are willing to pay money for products and services. If no one else is searching for your subject, cross that one off. (We’ll get into how to do this research in another article.)

What Kind Of Blog Do You Want To Create?

Not only do you need to consider your topic before you start blogging, but you’ll also want to think about the type of blog you want to have. Each of these types of blogs has a different layout, personality, and publishing requirements.

  • News Blog
  • Fashion Blog
  • Advice Blog
  • Recipe Blog
  • Travel Blog
  • Story Blog
  • Review Blog
  • eCommerce Blog

Knowing how and what you want to blog before you start blogging will make you a far more successful blogger!

Blogging Persona Reporter

What Kind Of Blogger Do You Want To Be?

When you first start thinking of starting a blog, you may not completely understand your “online persona,” but once again, you’ll at least want to give it some thought.

Your “Blogging Persona”

Your “blogging persona” can impact everything about your blog and the way you present yourself to the world. The style in which you write your blog posts, how often you publish those posts, where to share them on social media, and even how long (how many words) to make your blog posts will all be affected by your “blogging persona.”

Here are a few possible “blogging personas” to help get you started…

“Expert”

You are the ultimate source of knowledge on your particular topic, and you want to be acknowledged for your expertise. Your blog posts will be very focused, very detailed, and often quite long. These days an expert post can easily exceed 3000 – 5000 words and that’s perfectly OK. Gone are the days of 300-word “linkbait” articles.

“Storyteller”

You have a story to tell! What you’re writing is creative and flowy, and your blog posts may cover many different topics from your wedding day to your adventures remodeling your home. Wherever your inspiration leads you, that’s what you write about.

“Helper”

The helper personas are the Reviewers, DIY’ers, and how to bloggers (I tend to fall in this category). You want to help other people solve their problems in whatever way possible.

“Marketer”

You want to become a blogger for a straightforward reason – promote your business and make money. You’re not in it for the passion. You’re in it for the money.

“Reporter”

Whether it’s beauty, fashion, technology, politics, or natural foods, if it’s news and it’s happening now, you know about it want to write about it. You tend to post shorter posts more frequently with lots and lots of pictures to help tell your story.

There are much more “blogging personas” so take the time upfront to understand who you are before you start blogging. Look at other bloggers in your niche to see how they write and format their posts and website as a whole. It will save you and your readers a lot of frustration and confusion later down the road. Seriously, can you imagine going to a technical product review site where the “reviewer” proceeds to tell you about the incredible fashion show she went to last night?

Social Media Time Management3. Before You Start Blogging… How Much Time Can You Realistically Commit When You Start Blogging?

This is the single most significant points of failure for new bloggers! They commit to 5 hours per day thinking they will be successful in 2 weeks… When in reality, they’ll be lucky to get in 5 hours per week – and becoming a successful blogger takes months, maybe even years for some.

Don’t be that guy! Before you start blogging, take a serious look at your schedule – work, family, exercise, all of it. How much time do you really have to dedicate to your blog?

Set Reasonable Expectations For Yourself And Your Blog

If it’s only 1-2 hours per week, that’s great, but it’s unreasonable to expect that you’ll publish 3 posts per week in that one single hour. I recommend giving yourself 2-3 hours per blog post, at least in the beginning. You’ll also need time to get your site looking the way you want and time to learn new skills. Don’t expect to know it all right out of the gates – that’s a recipe for frustration and disaster!

If it’s only 1-2 hours per week, that’s great, but it’s unreasonable to expect that you’ll publish 3 posts per week in that one single hour. I recommend giving yourself 2-3 hours per blog post, at least in the beginning. You’ll also need time to get your site looking the way you want and time to learn new skills. Don’t expect to know it all right out of the gates – that’s a recipe for frustration and disaster!

It’s critical when you start blogging to create habits and be consistent with your posting schedule, so don’t overschedule yourself. That’s just going to stress you out. Time management and consistency are your new best friends!

My Recommendations

  1. Set the goal of writing one high-quality post per week and if you find that’s too easy, then try for 2 posts per week. Depending on your topic and your “blogging persona,” that may be more than enough. If you’re like me, you can also batch write your posts. I love to sit down on a Sunday morning and just write until my brain hurts, then I’m done for the week.
  2. Limit yourself to no more than 3 hours to get your site looking the way you want. It’s far too easy to spend hours, days, weeks, even months tweaking the way your blog looks, and honestly, as long as your blog is well organized with a clean design, that’s all you need. Focus on those 3 hours on defining your categories and setting up your menus. Those are the keys to your success.
  3. Dedicate at least 1 hour per week learning a new skill related to blogging. SEO is my first choice, but Social Media, working with images, and learning how to become a fantastic writer is also essential.

The post 3 Critical Questions To Answer BEFORE You Start Blogging appeared first on BlogPress.


3 Critical Questions To Answer BEFORE You Start Blogging was first posted on July 15, 2018 at 3:07 pm.



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