So you have something to say about your industry and you want to start blogging about it, but where do you start? Is it enough to know you want to blog? Is it enough to want a blog to fill to need for one?
The first thing you need to do is pick a blogging platform. There are plenty of blogging platforms out there with today’s technologically advanced world. Feel free to pick one. You can choose. We have been given that freedom. Feel free to practice that freedom. I will not tell you that one is better than the other. I leave that to your own discretion. The important thing to keep in mind when selecting one platform over another is – if you are choosing this to represent your business, your primary choice should reflect the professionalism of your company. Even a laid back company should reflect professionalism. This should be your first and foremost concern when making a decision. Can I best represent my company using this platform?
Ideally, you will purchase your own domain name. Your domain name should be a reflection of your company name or the products and/or services you provide. It should be relevant to you and your products and services. You do not have to self-host your blog to have your own domain name routed to your blog. You have much more flexibility of you use a service where you are hosting your own blog, but this may not be necessary in the beginning.
The second thing you will need to do is pick a blogging template or have one custom designed. This too should professionally represent your business, thus I lean towards having one custom designed. Often this is far more affordable than you think. It has an upfront cost, but when stretched out over the length of time you will use the template the cost is much more reasonable. Keep in mind that this is part of your marketing costs. Your website is part of your marketing kit as it is a way your represent yourself to your potential, future, and even current customers. Make every inch of your internet real estate count.
Once you have your blog live for the world to see, you will need to fill your blog with content. This should be done regularly and consistently. You should make a plan for when you want to make posts on a regular basis. Do you want to blog daily, weekly, or monthly, etc? Will you blog certain topics weekly? Will you blog certain topics monthly? These are the questions you should answer before you begin blogging. Have a plan and then set the plan into action. There is are great infographic about the “balanced diet” of a blogger over at: socialfresh.com. It projects that a blog should be well balanced in several topic areas.
It is important to remember that you have to write consistently. You have to have relevant content for your target audience (niche) and you have to write consistently. There is no set word limit on the length of blog posts you should have, but you should be consistent and thoroughly think out the topic you have at hand. Keep in mind that internet readers are not the same as paper readers, they are impatient and skim rather than read. They get bored easily so get to your point quickly. You are probably good with a maximum word count between 2000-2500 words per blog post. Be precise.
Unlike highways, if you build a blog they will not come. You have to promote your blog. Get out there and promote your blog on social networks and other digital media where it is allowed. Talk about your blog and let word of mouth carry it. There are 50 great ideas on how to promote your blog over at: jeffbullas.com.
Once you have done all of this – wash, rinse, repeat. Blogging is an ongoing cycle.