Starting a blog was something I had been thinking about for a long time before I jumped in and finally did it. If you’ve taken the jump recently as well, congrats! You’ve made it this far! And now that you’ve got a site up and running, what next?
Here are my top 10 Tips on getting your new blog off the ground.
1. Decide what you want your Blog to be about
Being a Mom…Food and Recipes, Baking, Crafts, Fashion…
Whatever it is, just keep in mind who your audience will be. That’s not to say that you can’t blog about more than one topic, but your blog should have a general tone to it so that it doesn’t appear all over the place.
2. Start Forming your Brand
This may come with time, but you do need to realize it’s something your starting to build in the beginning. You want to have something that others can see and relate that to you. This includes not just your content but also your design, pictures, layout & overall feel to your blog. You want others to be able to see you for who you are and your style. This is your brand. Keep this in mind when designing your site and posting content in the beginning.
Note: You do not want your main image and brand to be an avatar. Readers do not connect with illustrations or avatars. If possible you should include a personal picture on your blog in the About Me section.
3. Come up with a Tagline and/or Slogan
This helps with both # 1 & # 2. This is your mission statement for your blog. It helps others see what your blog is all about and it helps you stay true to the purpose of your blog, what you write about and why you started it.
I have a tagline of – “Yeah, I have something to say about that…”.
My blog is honest, unfiltered and real. I never want anyone to think that what I post here is fake or not me. Motherhood is a crazy journey that you can’t entirely prepare for. There are lots of laughs and sometimes cries, and I most likely will have something to say about all of it.
4. Get Good Statistics
Track your page views and site visits and find out where your readers are finding you, and what ultimately drives them to your site.
Make sure to register your site with Google Analytics. With Google Analytics you can look at the articles that receive the most traffic. This gives you a better idea of what your readers want to see more of. You can drill down further and see where that traffic came from. Was it a Google search? Pinterest or some other social media site? This is useful information that will help you when deciding where to continue promoting your site and where you could do better in.
Make sure that you are posting images on every post you make and make sure those images have descriptions and titles. This helps with SEO. So when people are searching online for certain topics, your images are also included in the mix to help people get to your blog.
Note: When someone pins an image from your site, it is the image Description that goes along with it to Pinterest. So always make sure at least this section is filled out.
6. Use Social Media
If you want your blog to get out in cyber-space, there is no question, you need to be involved in social media. You should have, at the very least, a Facebook page, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and nowadays Google+. They all have different reach, and if you want to maximize your blog reach, you should have and utilize them all.
Note: Google+ is emerging as the go-to social media site for bloggers. You can read the article here about why my primary social media site to engage in is now Google+.
Having so many social media sites sounds like a lot to keep up with. But there are ways to link sites together so that when you post on one, it will automatically post to another. You have to figure out which sites are working for you and which sites aren’t, and from there determine which ones you can link together.
Hootsuite is also a major help with this. It lets you schedule posts with all your social media sites and it’s free.
Also, make sure that you make social media buttons stand out on your blog. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been to a site that I want to follow, but I can’t find their social sites to follow them on. Not everyone uses all social sites, so it’s good to give options. Make sure your site icons are up high and front and center on your blog.
7. Image Quality & Pinterest
Your pictures should be of good quality and include captions or text to explain what the picture is. The more quality pictures you have out there in cyberspace, the more chances you have of other people seeing them and the higher chance of people linking back to your blog.
Make your images “pinnable”. Check out my recent post Using Pinterest to Grow your Blog. Pinterest can really take your blog to the next level.
8. Build Relationships with other Bloggers
When you take the time to put a post together with good content and images, you want others to see and read it. Other bloggers can appreciate that effort. So take the time to make connections with them, follow them and show them some comment love and they will reciprocate. It’s worth the time it takes to invest in building these relationships. The blogging community is a wonderful and supportive place.
9. Be you
Be open, honest and transparent. It’s very easy to recognize someone who is not being true to themselves. Stay classy and respectful but honest at the same time.
Create a really good About Me page that speaks to who you are. You want to be able to connect to your readers, and they can’t connect if they know nothing about you.
I also created a New Here page.
10. Link within your Blog
Once you get up and running, you can revive your old content by linking to your old posts from your new ones – if relevant. For example, my post talks about tips to help kick-start your blog, but I wrote a post a while back on all the techie stuff needed to start a blog. So in this case it’s relevant and may help someone.
To get tips on setting up the techie side of it, see my post – 4 Steps to Start your Mom Blog – The Techie Stuff Explained.