How to Start Your Own Blog and Why It’s Beneficial
There was a time when popular culture viewed the blog–or “web log,” as it was first known–as a simple fad. To many, there was no way blogs would become a formidable rival to the established forms of media. How times have changed. Even if you aren’t interested in starting a site that gets millions of readers, having your own blog is a great way to express yourself, make connections, and share stories that people should know about. You might even be able to make a little money. Here’s how to start.
Have an Idea for the Site
Do you think authors simply sit down and say, “I’m going to write a book” without having an idea about the characters and plot? Of course not! Many people who start a blog are more in love with the idea of keeping a blog than the actual work of it. Like anything in life, if you don’t have a plan for your blog, it’s going to be that much harder to follow through on.
Even more, if you want to have readers (though you certainly don’t need to), they’ll expect some consistency in your posts. So, whether you want to keep your friends posted on your family’s daily exploits or you want to draft well-researched political history, keep things on track. The trick to writing a killer blog is giving your readers the content they expect while knocking their socks off with insights they weren’t expecting.
Post Regularly and Don’t Give Up
The number-one reason blogs fail? It isn’t lack of time, as anyone can find a little time to work on a post. Rather, it’s failing to update the blog regularly and letting too much time go between posts before everyone forgets the whole thing. You don’t need to post every day, or even every week, but if you let months and months go by with scant updates, it’ll be easy to let your blog fall by the wayside.
If you have a great idea for a blog–one that gets you really excited to sit down and write your heart out–you probably have tons of ideas for post topics. Schedule these ideas out on a calendar and stick to it! You don’t need to have all the details ironed out now. Those can, and probably will, change later, but you schedule will serve as good motivation for you to follow through with your goals.
Make Some Money
Believe it or not, some people make good money blogging – enough even to support themselves as a main source of income. While you shouldn’t jump into blogging full-time just yet, you can dip your toes in the waters by putting some ads on your website. Just don’t expect too much, as the quit-your-day-job type money requires millions of readers actively clicking on your ads. Still, you might be able to make a few bucks here and there.
Your money-making pursuits don’t need to be limited to the site itself. Many folks use their blog to network and make a name for themselves in whatever topic their blog covers. Those who become well-known among the blogosphere have an easier time branching out into other forms of media, like YouTube videos and podcasts, and some even get paid to give guest speeches.
Making money with your blog is the dream, but it takes a lot of time and a lot of work. That’s why it’s better, especially when you’re starting out, to just focus on the joy of having your own blog rather than the money. Do what you love, and even if the money doesn’t follow, you’ll still be spending your time wisely.