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Read This Before You Start a Blog!
I'm Writing this Hub because...
I wish I had READ an article on this topic before I started my blog. I definitely should have given it more thought and planning. Hindsight, right? I've been blogging consistently for a year now so I thought I'd pass on some tips. Before you start a blog, think about the following...
Keep In Mind As You Start Your Blog
Starting a blog is so exciting - congrats and good luck!
Choosing a Name is the obvious first step, but I have (what I think is) a better first step for you.
Decide on a Niche First What are you going to write about? What is going to be the main focus of your blog? Choosing a tight niche means having a very targeted audience. This is important for many things including advertising and sponsored posts (2 possible blogging goals ). For more information on how to get paid blogging, click here. Most relevantly to this hub, however, choosing a niche first helps you come up with a great name!
Back to Choosing a Name... Choose a name that has to do with what you're writing about. Maybe this sounds like common sense to you, but for me, it wasn't. My blog is called "For Love of Cupcakes", but I don't write about cupcakes. Or sell cupcakes. I do enjoy eating cupcakes though. The idea behind my blog's name is that my daughter is a sweet little [metaphorical] cupcake. I thought it would be cute, but it turns out that it's a bit confusing. I still love my name, but I think I'd have more success if it was more relevant.
Think of a few names, write them down, do some brainstorming, and let it stew for a few days. This might just be the best advice I could give you as you start your blog.
It should be catchy, memorable, and clever too. I love clever blog titles. Have you ever come across a blog and took real notice of their title? Giving yourself more time for planning might help you get such a name.
Talk to supportive friends and family and ask for their honest opinion about your title ideas. Having a fresh pair of eyes to look over your ideas can be very beneficial.
Be Professional in all your social networks related or linked to your blog. Here's a blog post I did about getting yourself out there on the social networks. That is so important as you start your blog! On some networks this is a non-issue, but on others breaking professionalism can be quite tempting. Pinterest, I'm talking about you. There are some hilarious jokes on pinterest and many of them are inappropriate. So think twice before repinning those pins. I keep the language on my blog clean, but I couldn't help myself with a few pins. Just be careful.
Personal vs. Professional Consider keeping personal pins on a separate pinterest account. Similarly, I keep my personal facebook page from my blogging audience. Inappropriate jokes aren't the only things you want to keep from the strangers reading your blog. Hopefully this doesn't need to be said, but just in case: do not share any personal information on your blog. You decide where that line is, but again, think about it before you post anything personal.
Branding is also extremely important. Be consistent throughout the social networks you're on - backgrounds, colors, logos, avatars should be the same or similar throughout. These things are how people recognize you. See the picture for how you can transfer your blog background to your twitter page.
When joining your social networks, always use the same handle (using your own name is a great idea because its unique to you and good for branding, but it might not be as fun as a clever handle... something to think about.). Since forloveofcupcakes was too long for a twitter username, I ended up using 4loveofcupcakes for twitter, facebook, and instagram. Throwing the number four in there has caused me a few problems because it makes it more difficult for people looking for me.
Read a Blogging Book There are some great ones out there. Blogging has been around for a number of years now and there are a lot of success stories! Some of these people have written fabulous books on how to make money blogging or just blogging tips. I wrote a book review on the book, Mom Blogging for Dummies.