Before you start writing your blog post, make sure you have a clear understanding of your target audience.
Ask questions like: What do they want to know about? What will resonate with them?
This is where the process of creating buyer personas comes in handy. Consider what you know about your buyer personas and their interests while you're coming up with a topic for your blog post.
For instance, if your readers are millennials looking to start a business, you probably don't need to provide them with information about getting started on social media — most of them already have that down.
You might, however, want to give them information about how to adjust their social media approach (for example — from what may be a casual, personal approach to a more business-savvy, networking-focused approach). That kind of tweak is what helps you publish content about the topics your audience really wants and needs.
Don't have buyer personas in place for your business? Here are a few resources to help you get started:
What better way to draw inspiration than to look at your well-established competition?
It’s worth taking a look at popular, highly reviewed blogs because their strategy and execution is what got them to grow in credibility. The purpose of doing this isn’t to copy these elements, but to gain better insight into what readers appreciate in a quality blog.
There are multiple angles you should look at when doing a competitive analysis:
Before you write anything, pick a topic you’d like to write about. The topic can be pretty general to start as you find your desired niche in blogging.
Some ways to choose topics to cover include asking yourself questions like:
What perspective do you bring that makes you stand out from the crowd? This is key to determining the trajectory of your blog’s future and there’s many avenues to choose in the process.
It’s up to you to decide the unique angle you’ll take on topics.
This is your opportunity to get creative and make a name that gives readers an idea of what to expect from your blog. Some tips on how to choose your blog name include:
If you still need more assistance, try using a blog name generator.
Make sure the name you come up with isn’t already taken as it could lessen your visibility and confuse readers looking for your content.
A domain is a part of the web address nomenclature someone would use to find your website or a page of your website online.
Your blog's domain will look like this: www.yourblog.com. The name between the two periods is up to you, as long as this domain name doesn't yet exist on the internet.
Want to create a subdomain for your blog? If you already own a cooking business at www.yourcompany.com, you might create a blog that looks like this: blog.yourcompany.com. In other words, your blog's subdomain will live in its own section of yourcompany.com.
Some CMS platforms offer subdomains as a free service, where your blog lives on the CMS, rather than your business's website. For example, it might look like this: yourblog.contentmanagementsystem.com. However, to create a subdomain that belongs to your company website, register the subdomain with a website host.
Most website hosting services charge very little to host an original domain — in fact, website costs can be as inexpensive as $3 per month when you commit to a 36-month term.
Here are five popular web hosting services to choose from:
A CMS (content management system) is a software application that allows users to build and maintain a website without having to code it from scratch. CMS platforms can manage domains (where you create your website) and subdomains (where you create a webpage that connects to an existing website).
HubSpot customers host web content via CMS Hub. Another popular option is a self-hosted WordPress website on a hosting site such as WP Engine. Whether you create a domain or a subdomain to start your blog, you'll need to choose a web hosting service after you pick a CMS.
Once you have your domain name set up, customize the appearance of your blog to reflect the theme of the content you plan on creating and your brand.
For example, if you're writing about sustainability and the environment, green might be a color to keep in mind while designing your blog.
If you already manage a website and are writing the first post for that existing website, ensure the article is consistent with the website in appearance and subject matter. Two ways to do this are including your:
Once you have your blog set up, the only thing missing is the content. While the design and layout are fun and functionally necessary, it's the content that will draw your readers in and keep them coming back. So how do you actually go about writing one of these engaging and informational pieces?
You’ve got the technical and practical tidbits down — now it’s time to write your very first blog post. And nope, this isn’t the space to introduce yourself and your new blog (i.e. “Welcome to my blog! This is the topic I’ll be covering. Here are my social media handles. Will you please follow?”).
Start with “low-hanging fruit,” writing about a highly specific topic that serves a small segment of your target audience.
That seems unintuitive, right? If more people are searching for a term or a topic, that should mean more readers for you.
But that’s not true. If you choose a general and highly searched topic that’s been covered by major competitors or more established brands, it’s unlikely that your post will rank on the first page of search engine results pages (SERPs). Give your newly born blog a chance by choosing a topic that few bloggers have written about.