Introducing Blogging 101, a new series dedicated to aspiring bloggers! Last week, after talking about my own experience becoming a full time blogger, I asked what you all thought of a series about starting & running your own blog. I was happy to hear that many of you either have your own blog or are thinking of starting one! To help you with your endeavors, I’ll be sharing my own tips — including creating content, tech advice, design resources, marketing, generating revenue, and so much more. So let’s get started with the first post of the series!
The most common questions I get about blogging are about taking those first steps. Before you jump in, there are so many questions you have, you feel like your mind is spinning. With a gagillion blogs out there already (yes, that’s an exact amount), you feel like you’re behind, and overwhelm ensues. Well, let’s take a step back and start from the beginning.
What’s your goal?
Ask yourself this: why are you starting a blog? Are you looking for a place to express your creativity outside of your day-to-day routine? Is this an extension of what you do or want to do for a living? Do you want to help others or raise money for a cause? Figure out what your purpose is for this blog and go back to that every time you’re trying to make a decision about anything.
Don’t Worry About Getting it Right the First Time
It can take forever to nail down the right logo, the right font, the best layout, the perfect name, etc. Don’t get hung up on this stuff when you’re first getting started. It’s totally okay (and common!) to change these things down the road. There is no way to guess what direction your blog will take you, so don’t stress trying to get it right the first time. Just go with what feels right in this moment, and know that you can always change it later on.
It’s a strange feeling putting your thoughts into words for the entire world to see. Especially that first post. Rather than waiting to find the right topic or the best time to get your first article up, just do it. Remember that there are probably only three people that are going to read it anyway (you, your mom, and one random stranger who randomly stumbled across your “welcome!” post). That’s the great thing about just getting started. It takes time for people to find your site, so while it’s still hidden in the background, just start writing as if it’s just you and your computer. As you continue to publish posts, you’ll start to figure out what works best for you, what you need to work on, and what sort of content you want to focus on. Just get that first post up and the rest will follow.
Experiment Like Crazy
With few eyeballs on your blog to start, now’s the time to have a little fun. Experiment with anything you’re curious about. Some of you may not know this, but I had a completely different blog before I even started Advice from a 20 Something. I launched it right out of college with no knowledge of the blogging space or what I wanted to really do with it. Looking back, while I’m terribly embarrassed by some of the photos, it was the perfect tool for experimenting. I figured out the kind of content I enjoy writing best, how to take better photos, what my goals were, and grew a better understanding of the blogging space in general. So let yourself truly be a beginner, try everything, and you’ll begin to figure out where all of this is going.
Do any of you know the name of my first blog?
If so, I’ll personally high five you. As long as you don’t go try to find it :).