So you’ve decided to start a blog, eh? Good decision. Wondering how to start blogging?
But how exactly do you start a blog? And, more importantly, how do you create a good blog that will drive traffic and inform and engage readers? There’s a tonne of information about starting blogs and what you should and shouldn’t do; it can get a bit overwhelming if you’re just starting out.
Plus, there’s massive competition with 7.5 million blogs posted per day.
That’s why we’ve put together a Mojo guide on how to start blogging that is for anybody that’s starting out and not sure about the first steps.
Why Start Blogging?
Blogging takes time and effort, and you might be wondering if it’s worth starting one. But here are just a few of the benefits of creating a decent blog:
- Boosts your SEO efforts
- Increases engagement with customers new and old
- Helps establish your brand identity and voice
- Establishes your business as an industry leader
- Free exposure through sharing
Convinced? If you’ve got this far in the article, then we’ll assume so.
How To Start Blogging: Step by Step
If you’re an established business, then you’ll already have a website, so you’ve probably already got a blog platform ready to use. This guide will skip finding a platform for your blog and nailing the design, and get straight down to how to start blogging.
Step 1: Decide On Blog Topics
There’s no point in having a blog if it’s entirely irrelevant for your business, so it’s vital that you find topics that drive traffic to your site and will interest your customers.
You can source potential blog topics from a variety of different places, such as:
- Customer Feedback
- Keyword research
- Competitors blog (don’t copy them, beat them)
By using all five sources, you’ll be able to come up with a long list of potential blog topics, probably more than you’ll be able to write.
Step 2: Turn Ideas Into Titles
Once you’ve got a list of ideas from customer feedback, competitor research or a news story, you can start turning them into potential titles.
There’s a long list of different types of blog types, such as:
- How-To Guides
- Checklists or Cheat Sheets
- Journalistic Articles
- Case Studies
- Personal Stories
From your list of ideas, you can see if any fit straight into any of these formats. For example, say your customers want to learn how to brew their own beer, and your company sells the equipment to do so, you can create a how-to guide.
Or, if your customers want to know more about your company’s founders, arrange an interview with them.
If you get stuck for ideas, do a quick Google search and see what others are doing and how you can improve it. It’s a good idea to keep your titles and ideas separate, as you can probably create different content from the same idea.
Step 3: Plan Out The Content
Now that you’ve got a long list of potential blog posts, you’re going to need to get organising. Set yourself up a content calendar; it doesn’t need to be anything special, just a basic calendar. If you’re not sure where to start, here’s a free content calendar.
Now you’ve got your content calendar; you can start to plan out the content. It’s vital at this stage not to be too eager and plan to write a blog post every single day unless you can realistically do this.
For most people, finding the time to write a blog post every single day isn’t realistic. If you’re running or working in a busy marketing department, there will always be something to do. Google rewards regular content, but the content needs to be good, so work out how much time you can dedicate to the blog each week. A good blog post can take between two and six hours to write.
Once you’ve worked out how many you can do a week, you can fill out your calendar. Do your best to stick to the plan; it’s easy to get behind and be chasing your tail.
Step 4: Get The Write Tools
We’re not all born to write, and that’s why there’s a bunch of tools out there that offer help to aspiring scribes.
Grammarly is one of the best free tools out there for picking up spelling and grammar errors in your writing, but it can also pick up on a bunch of other ways to improve your writing.
If you’re using a WordPress based site, get the Yoast plugin as it gives you an easy way to improve the SEO for a blog piece. It gives you hints and tips on how to improve your writing for search engines and gives you an easy way to edit the meta title and meta description of the piece.
Step 5: Edit
One of the easiest mistakes to make when you’re writing a blog is to skip editing. After spending hours writing a piece, it can be challenging to motivate yourself to go through the article again to check for any errors and look for parts that can be better.
But don’t skip it.
If you can, incorporate editing time into your content calendar and make sure you take a break between writing and editing. If you can, get someone you trust to look through the piece and check for any errors or areas of improvement.
After all of your hard work, the last thing you want is for a customer to be put off by a simple typo.
Step 6: Schedule, Publish and Promote
Once you’ve written, edited and optimised your blog post, it’s time to get it out there in the world. But hold your horses; you might want to schedule the post to be published later and in line with your content calendar.
Getting the post scheduled means that you’ve got a bit of extra time to make sure you’ve nailed it and the time to organise promotion for the post.
Ready to Start Blogging?
As with everything, the more blogs you write, the better you’ll get. You’ll start seeing things in the news and thinking, “I can use that”, or you’ll see another business’s blog and think “that can be better”.
If it takes you time at the beginning, don’t panic. It’ll take a little while to get in the swing of things. Writing business’s for blogs won’t give you overnight results, it takes time for search engines to index, but in six to twelve months of regularly creating good blogs, you should see an increase in organic traffic.
Need a hand getting your blog started? Get in touch with Mojo Content, and we can give you a hand and give you more advice on how to start blogging.