In 2015, I had only one reason to start a blog.
I wanted a place where I could have all of my stuff together. I was thrilled at the idea of blogging not necessarily because I had any knowledge about how it worked, it was just a place to house my stories and have my articles in categories. The best news for me then was that it was free! I didn’t have to pay a dime to start a blog.
For several nights, I tried putting up different blog themes and churning out more content. Blogging for me at that time was just an adventure into a new expression of my passion for writing. As I progressed in my blogging journey, it became a serious venture that required my commitment.
What I’m about to share with you will afford you the right questions to ask if you are wondering whether or not to start a blog or if you are already a blogger, you seek direction for the progress of your blog.
Before I get right to the questions, let me say that as at 2019, there were over 500 million blogs on the net. (Can you imagine that!) Sadly, many blogs do not last a year before shutting down while others keep biting large chunks and growing their blogs exponentially.
500 million plus blogs! sighs…Well, sources have shown that the future of blogs is going to get wider and bigger, but then without the right knowledge, a blogger can be frustrated in a bid to attract the right audience.
Can we go right into the gist of the matter?
What are some important questions you should ask before taking starting a blog. Answering some of these questions may put you on the right footing and help you make proper choices as far as blogging is concerned.
1. Why do you want to blog?
Do you just need an organized place to share your thoughts? Is your reason for starting a blog drawn from your desire to build a content creation career or business? Are you thinking of setting up a blog solely for ministerial reasons? Do you want to blog as part of an adventurial process? Could it be what you have this at the back of your mind-‘What’s this blogging about sef? Let me even open one to see what it’s about.
Understanding the reason behind starting a blog will help you answer other questions, some of which I’ll be posing to you shortly.
2. What are you passionate about?
What interests you? Do you like to write fiction? Are you interested in tech,finance, business, fashion, food? Do you enjoy teaching God’s Word? Do you have answers for relationship issues? Are you desirous of helping mothers get a better grip on parenting? Do you want to primarily share ideas that are not tailored in a specific direction? Answering this question will guide you as you take steps in aligning with the right niche for you.
In answering this question, you’ll be able to explore all possible areas of your supposed niche and narrow down per time to a specific area you want to focus on.
Note that if you kick off your blog in a niche you have no interest in, it may be difficult for you to sustain it. I’m not saying your passion alone will propel you to churn out articles weekly because the truth is that, there will be days you won’t feel like writing and the only reason you’ll get that article out is because you have committed yourself to doing so. Still, you should enjoy what you do. It will fuel and push the momentum that you need.
Once you’ve identified your niche, observe what other established bloggers are doing in your niche. Esther Adeniyi’s blog greatly influenced the non-fiction side of my blogging journey. I had developed a desire to write articles that were not fictional in nature and I remember that before kicking off this blog, I’d visit her blog daily, reading and learning how she expressed her thoughts so powerfully and beautifully.
3. Do you have a name for your blog?
You can’t open a blog without having a name. You should start thinking of one even befire reaching out to a web designer. While making a choice of name, remember to put your target audience in mind unless you don’t care about traffic or you want to establish your first or last name in the minds of people. Imagine a Nigerian Christian lifestyle blogger choosing a difficult Greek name like ‘apokrinomai’ and her reason is that it is a word from scriptures.
4. Who is your target audience?
Why should people come to your blog? Do you have an audience already who you share content with? Who are the first set of people to visit your blog when you open it? Have you tried sharing your thoughts on any social media platform? Who are those who know the value of the content you offer?
Many questions in one right? All of these questions are tied towards the people who will not just read your blog regularly but those who will also spread the word. These are the people I love to call, ‘Tribe.’ Find your target audience and begin to share your thoughts with them. If you already have a few, then good, you have a starting point already.
5. Am I ready to be committed and patient to see my blog grow?
Blogs take time to grow. Yeah, it might be faster for those who have great knowledge in search engine optimization and Google algorithm, but to build a community takes time. No quick fixes here. If in the first few weeks and months, your traffic seem slow, would you be willing to continue to churn content regularly until you are able to see your traffic grow? How many times do you want to blog weekly?
6. Do I have contents ready to be published?
A follow up question is this: Do I plan to open the blog and put content gradually before telling people about the blog? When people visit my blog, what will they find there?
It’s advisable to have some content on ground before starting off the blog. The other option is to put two or three content there while you hold off sharing the news about your blog. If you have old posts published on social media platforms, that’s a great place to start. You can refine old posts and get them on the blog while you churn out new ones.
7. Do I have the monetary commitment needed to run a blog?
This will determine your choice of using the free WordPress or running a self hosted site. If you are just testing to see if blogging is for you or you have challenges with funds, you might want to stay with the free WordPress for a while. You could also get a domain name and use the free hosting provision made by Blogger.
Well, I don’t like Blogger but that’s just me anyway. I have a friend who’s been on Blogger for many years and she is doing pretty well. You never can tell, hosting your site on Blogger might just be perfect for you.
8. How much time in a week do I want to devote to churning out content on a regular basis?
To be a successful blogger, consistency is a key ingredient. You can’t blog three times in a week in August and for the next two months, there is nothing on the blog, except of course you have churn out content consistently and need a break off your blog. I’d rather you stick to regularly publishing once a week than post whenever you feel like. Nobody runs a successful blog that way.
There you have it. There are more questions but I’ll stop there. So tell me, do you have a blog or do you plan to start one? If you already have a blog, you might want to share your blog url in the comments. I’d love to check them out. By the way, why do you blog?
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