- When to start a blog?
- How can a blog help?
- What should be prepared for?
- How long does it take to blog?
- Can I quit my blog?
- How to choose a topic?
- What is the most important thing for a blogger?
- How do you get people to read you?
- Where to get inspiration?
- Where to get ideas for content?
- Why do you need a content plan?
- Does a blog need social media?
- Why do you need feedback?
- Will there be a result?
Content marketer. Knows everything about corporate blogs and how to turn readers into customers. Leads his own blog Do it inbound.
When to start a blog?
So you’ve got the idea to start a blog. You have to pour your thoughts somewhere, and psychoanalysts are too expensive. Or you want to promote your company or yourself as a specialist in some field.
If you just got the idea to start a blog, do this:
- Watch lectures by Robert Sapolsky, professor at Stanford University, on the biology of human behavior. They were translated and voiced.
- Learn to make a mouse, crane and fish using origami technique.
- Organize a clean-up day in the yard of your house and arrange a beautiful flower garden.
If after that you still think that blogging is interesting, then you can try.
How can a blog help?
Look at a hundred of your friends on Facebook or VKontakte. How many of them write something themselves instead of endless reposts? How many of these writers are posting interesting thoughts of their own rather than “waking up early today to catch another personal productivity coach session”?
Expressing your own thoughts and arguing them well is a strong advantage in the world of reposts and duckfaces.
People who have this skill stand out from the rest. And a blog is a great chance to grab the attention of your audience. The good news is, it’s easy to learn. You just need to understand what you are writing about and be a disciplined person.
What should be prepared for?
The most important thing to learn is that blogging is not fun. Blogging is a duty that must be constantly fulfilled, like going to the dentist.
And just like going to the dentist, many bloggers postpone writing posts for one, two, three years. If you are not sure that you are ready for the routine work, it is better not to start.
How long does it take to blog?
A lot of. It takes me from an hour to four to write one article. Last year, I spent 19 hours 19 minutes on the Do it inbound blog (and I have others). This is not much, but look how carelessly I drove it!
Articles were not even published every month. My blog is marketing myself. Spending time on it means investing in your own promotion.
Unlike the stock market, the blog has a clear relationship: the more you invest, the more you get.
My little secret is that I don’t just run other blogs, but also get paid for it. And I can also use their example to tell you how I conduct them, and this will also be marketing myself. Therefore, you should not be guided by how much time I spend on Do it inbound. My investment portfolio is balanced: Do it inbound is not the only asset.
I advise you to invest more time in the blog and publish articles regularly. If you can write four times a month it will be great, two times it will be good, once every two months it will be pointless.
Can I quit my blog?
Yes. If you started, but already from the first months you feel that you are not going, quickly admit it to yourself, quit your blog and live in peace. Honestly, no one cares!
The web is full of memes, videos with raccoons, articles about seduction, knitting, Russian rap. Nobody will notice if your blog about quantum interactions of elementary particles ceases to exist.
How to choose a topic?
Mediocrity is not an obstacle to creating a popular blog.
For every blogger, there is a reason why he is read, and a reader. Someone publishes a video on YouTube on how to make repairs, someone writes about their children, someone even writes interestingly about their children.
But think about readers: why will they read your blog? What is their reason for this? Maybe you can write funny, have the gift of a storyteller, notice funny little things in ordinary situations, or are you well versed in a topic and your knowledge will help other people?
Please note: you must like the topic yourself, otherwise you will not last long.
What is the most important thing for a blogger?
If you want the number of readers to exceed zero, follow one most important rule.
Don’t pour a stream of consciousness into your blog. Structure your thoughts.
In this, by the way, the book “Mastery of Presentation” by Alexei Kapterev helps a lot.
Sat down to write an article, define the problem you want to solve. What will change in your readers after reading? Start your writing by posing the problem and explaining why it matters, then describe the solution.
How do you get people to read you?
The Italians have an expression: “Speak as you eat.” This means that you need to speak simply, without floridness. You should write to the blog the same way.
An exception if you know how to write gracefully and subtly, like Tatyana Tolstaya or Lyudmila Ulitskaya. I do not know how and do not try to jump over my head. And you know what? Readers are praising!
Get rid of adverbial expressions, very complex sentences, passive voice. Instead of “the bronze horse was a gift from my friends for a wedding” – “I gave garbage.”
This is taught in the book “Write, cut down”, which was written by Maxim Ilyakhov and Lyudmila Sarycheva (she is my twin sister, by the way).
But I must warn you: first the content, then the form. Don’t expect to deliver brilliant articles after reading Write, Cut. Correctly constructed phrases will not replace knowledge of the topic. Conversely, if you understand what you write about, but do not always express your thoughts harmoniously, readers will be loyal to this.
Where to get inspiration?
If you are actively writing for the first few months, and then you realize that you have already gone through all the topics and there is nothing more to tell, there are two options:
- Or the initial euphoria has simply passed, and the blog has become a routine (this is the norm).
- Or you really have nothing to write (unlikely).
To prevent this from happening, it is important:
- Write about a topic that is close to you, in which you are immersed.
- Understand that any thought can become content.
When a topic is close to you and you love it, it will be inexhaustible for you. I write about content and blogs, I constantly work with it, communicate with people about content, so I constantly have thoughts about what to write about.
Where to get ideas for content?
On Facebook, I follow several people who publish 1-3 posts a day. They have many readers, many comments. And the secret is what they write.
This is not easy for everyone, you have to accustom yourself to this. Set yourself the task of writing a paragraph of text every day (God forbid you post all this on the Web), and after a couple of weeks you will understand that any thought can become content.
Then train yourself to write on a topic you have identified. Then ideas will come constantly.
Why do you need a content plan?
The plan will come in handy during those depressive periods when you feel like there is nothing to write about. When you’re just starting out, when you’re in the air for a new start, write a list of topics for future articles. Fifty pieces. This list will save you when the courage evaporates.
If you are blogging about aircraft construction, and on Facebook you post a photo “My new nails with rhinestones, thanks to my beloved @ nailsismylove1999❤”, readers are unlikely to trust you as a professional. Especially if you are a man.
Social media is a tool for creating an image, and in the case of a professional blog, an image of an expert.
Many people on social networks only have an image, but it works. If you want to look like an expert, act like an expert. On my Facebook 99% of posts are related to work.
Why do you need feedback?
Chat with readers, ask them what they think of your blog. It is very depressing when you think that you are writing into emptiness. Over time, even the comments “Thank you for the helpful post” stop satisfying, you need to hear something more detailed. Praise will cheer you up, and criticism will help you stay toned.
Will there be a result?
If you still steadfastly went through all your creative crises and were able to regularly blog for at least a year, it will pay off.
Twice I got a job thanks to the blog and countless times – job offers or collaboration on small projects.
Content paths are mysterious. Sometimes it bears very unexpected results.
You are waiting for the cherry to ripen on the cherry, and then – once – the cherry really grows. But sometimes an orange appears suddenly.
Renowned SEO specialist, founder of Moz, Rand Fishkin, has a term for this called “serendipitous marketing”.
I’ve had this two or three times. I write about content and blogs and sometimes mention hearing implants (I work for a company that makes them). Once a person who knew me exactly as a marketer wrote to me that he was interested in implants for charity purposes and would like to cooperate. Professionalism in one area brought a potential partner to another. Such cases are rare, but always surprising.
I promise you many surprises and discoveries if you start your own blog and keep it disciplined.
But start mindfully. As in any other activity, the main thing here is work and perseverance. If you are determined, I do not wish you inspiration, but I wish you discipline and will. Then everything will work out.
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