Starting a Blog: 7 Basic Steps

Starting a Blog: 7 Basic Steps

Having just moved over from my WordPress hosted blog, I thought I’d start up a series about blogging. I’ll include some lessons learned along the way here as well.


So you’ve heard about blogs and you’re ready to take the big plunge? Good. Here is my top ten list of things to do to start a blog:

1 – Select a good blog platform. WordPress is my favorite, but many others are also good such as Blogger, LiveJournal, Moveable Type (you’ll need a place to host this), and Squarespace are a few.Wordpress

2 – Find a blog type that fits your ability and personality. How technical are you? If you are not, try a WordPress or Blogger hosted blog. If you love to geek out and tweak every plugin, go with a hosted solution.

Blogger

3 – Have a topic in mind. Find a topic that youlike to write about and stick with it. Your content should consist of more than “sorry I haven’t blogged for a while.” Don’t write about nothing. Nobody cares that you didn’t post today. You don’t have to be sorry to your blog. However, be considerate to your readers (you do want them to come and keep coming back, don’t you?) and try to post regularly.

4 – Stick with it. Hey, everyone gets writer’s block. Keep on plugging away though. You’re bound to think of something interesting to write about. Check out the latest news. Review a product you like. Read other blogs in the same space as you. There is always something to talk about. You could even make a list like this one đŸ™‚

5 – Your blog’s purpose. Is this going to be a business blog? If you plan on blogging for a living, you’ll find that while some bloggers are extremely successful, this is a hard road to go. Also, keep in mind that monetizing your blog and putting ads all over won’t work for several blog platforms and could get your blog deleted due to Terms of Service violations.

6 – Truly be interested in what you blog about. Don’t just pick a topic because it’s hot right now. Are you blogging about Web 2.0, but don’t know what Web 2.0 is? Well, it is a made up word, but stick to your knitting. Even if your blog is about knitting.

7 – Promote yourself.

Technorati

The use of promotional blogging tools such as Technorati will help to get your blog noticed by other people.

Want more tips? This is a beginning of a blogging series that will expand on each of these items!

28 Comments

  1. Great post! As a new blogger, I can’t emphasis enough the importance of starting a blog on a hosted server. What is this? I started out using Typepad and having them host it…http://timeforchange.typepad.com/lilsurfergirl..As you can see, the name is not easy to remember. If I had to do it again, I would have went to GoDaddy.com from the beginning, purchased a domain name like http://www.lilsurfergirl.com..GoDaddy makes it easy for you do upload blogging software like WordPress directly to your site. Although I have good traffic, I feel it is too much work to try to move the site now…WordPress is definitely the blogging platform to use. Easy to use, and plenty of add-ons available.

  2. Thanks a lot! whould be very gartefull to read more about blog promotion

  3. @Tina: you’re most welcome. This post was the first of a series of posts on blogging for beginners, and blog promotion will be a part of this series – stay tuned!

  4. If you love to geek out and tweak every plugin, go with a hosted solution.

    Sorry to be picky but don’t you mean a non-hosted solution? With a hosted solution like wordpress.com or blogger, you can’t really fiddle with any of the settings or plugins.

    Regards,
    -drmike

  5. @drmike: maybe we should call it self-hosted…I was trying to make the distinction between a WordPress hosted vs. self-hosted. Non-hosted makes it sound as if your blog exists outside of space and time…floating in the void đŸ™‚

  6. Totally Spanishized!, greate post. Ty đŸ˜‰

  7. @caslunblog: Muchos gracias! I’m glad you like the list!

  8. @Ubuzy: are you talking about caslunblog’s comment?

  9. If you can explain this stuff for non-geeks, i’ll be reading you daily.

    How can the non-geek blogger make the most out of Technorati?

  10. @marta: stay tuned, I will be blogging about this soon!

  11. maybe we should call it self-hosted

    Actually self hosted is bad and we try to stay away from it. Most people think of that and think they’re going to have to lease an entire server and manage it themselves.

    Why not just call blogs hosted on wordpress.com “wordpress.com blogs” and blogs using the wordpress software “a wordpress blog.” That’s what the wordpress community does.

  12. @drmike: Agreed, but the intention of this post was to speak to the non-technical user as well, someone that wouldn’t inherently be in the WordPress community.

  13. Thanks for the great start. I have just started blogging concerning the green chemical industry and like to blog about scientific and environmental concerns that effect everyday people, plus promote our companies green chemical product line: WACO CHEMICAL EARTHKLEAN PRODUCTS.
    The blog is: Green Chemicals are not always Green.
    Had to cut my teeth somewhere. I am a tech person, but don’t have time to get into the more tech blogging area.
    Again thanks and I will be a regualar.
    God Bless,
    S

  14. @Steven: thanks for the kind words, and glad to have you as a regular! I hope that you find the tips in my blogging series useful!

  15. Terrific Article. I am new to blogging, too, and appreciate all the help I can get. I made the mistake of choosing he wrong platform and am now trying to remedy that. With your help and advice, I feel confident I will make the correct choice this time… Carol, another new regular!

  16. @Carol: thanks for your words of praise! Glad that my post was helpful to you, and thanks for tuning in – more helpful posts to come!

  17. Please explain this stuff about site feeds. I don’t get it. How do I choose where to direct my site feeds? Thanks! Marta

  18. @Marta: thanks for posting again! There is a lot of information about RSS feeds. Perhaps so much that I will dedicate for an entire post. However, I strongly recommend that you sign up for Feedburner – they are the best around!

  19. Thanks… with bloggers like you helping us (the new bloggers)… m sure we will learn alot… m sure with each new post here i will get to learn a new lesson… great going.

  20. @Chris: thanks for dropping by, and I’m sure that you will benefit greatly from this post and many posts to come!

  21. I’ve been blogging for awhile and I have a hard time getting people to really be interested.. Check mine out, and feel free to leave any comments..

  22. @mike: have you tried any of the promotion tips I have listed in this post? That would be a good place to start.

  23. Hi. Good article, you’ve just helped me starting my first blog, a panorama blog with 360 degree panoramic photographs. Thank you!

  24. Great information!

  25. I think if you are creating blog for making money then choosing the niche of your blog is very critical decision, and I completely agree that you should blog only about what you love and are passionate about.

  26. Thanks Brian for a great post. You bring blogging down to the basics in very clear, understandable language. This is so helpful for those new to blogging. Keep up the good work!

  27. Great article. Looking forward to tips on how to promote the blog

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