Blogging for beginners can seem overwhelming at first. Today, there are around 600 million active blogs online, with over four million blog posts being published per day. There is a blog for every niche and topic you can imagine, from food and style to marketing and design. It seems like every person, and every brand has a social media marketing blog these days.
Starting your first blog might seem daunting. You may think you don’t have time or you’re worried that there is too much competition. Sure, there is a lot of competition, and yes, good content does require some time to create. The good news is, we are here to guide you along the way with our guide to blogging for beginners.
Blogging for Beginners
This brief blogging for beginners guide will explain how you can start your blog and maintain a winning content strategy that helps grow your business. We will review the five steps you need to take to start your blog and some helpful recommendations to become a successful content creator and blogger. Whether you are starting your own blog, or thinking of starting a social media marketing blog for your company, we’re here to help.
First, let’s discuss what a blog is and why it’s so important to have one.
What is a Blog?
A blog is essentially a web log, or online journal, in which someone shares their expertise, data, art, information, or opinions on a variety of topics. The word “blog” has evolved quite a bit since its first inception in the 1990s. Today, a blog is more like an extension of your website that serves the purpose to generate warm leads for your business.
A blog is one of the primary strategies of inbound marketing, which draws customers in to discover your products and services. Data shows businesses who use blogs receive 67% more inbound leads than those who don’t. Not to mention, the cost per lead generated from blogs is about 62% less than traditional outbound marketing.
When starting a blog for your brand, your goal is to help generate trust and credibility by providing consistent and accurate information that your target demographic is looking for. This positions your business as an expert with solutions and insights to your customers’ problems or questions online.
For instance, SEO Design Chicago posts blogs about various marketing topics, including SEO, digital marketing, and website design, because those are the services we provide. We take the time and effort to create content that our core demographic will take an interest in so we can be seen as an authority on those subjects to our readers (because we are!)
How to Start Your Blog in 5 Simple Steps
Now that you know why a blog is so important, below, you will find five easy steps you need to take to start your blog:
Choose a Name for Your Blog
The name of your blog tells readers about who you are, the topics you will cover, and what type of content you will be posting. SEO Design Chicago’s blog is “Marketing Blog” because we write about all things marketing. “TechCrunch” is a blog that covers all things tech-related, and “The Penny Hoarder” is about personal finance tips and tricks. Keep it simple, make sure the title is easy to remember, and clearly alludes to what your blog and brand represent.
Find a Blogging Platform and Get Your Blog Hosted Online
There are many different blogging platforms out there. You just need to choose the best blogging platform for you. As a beginner blogger, you should look for a blogging platform that’s easy to set up, intuitive to use, and doesn’t require any coding. We recommend starting with WordPress. We will share why later on in this article. If you want to do some research on your own, the best blogging platforms for beginners include WordPress, Constant Contact Website Builder, Gator, Blogger, Tumblr, Medium, Squarespace, Wix, and Ghost.
Brand and Customize Your Blog
As mentioned previously, you want to think of your business blog as an extension of your website. It should look and feel like your brand and match the aesthetics of your website. Your blog should use the same colors, as seen throughout your website. When you choose a blogging platform, go into settings that will allow you to upload your logo, customize themes, fonts, colors, and everything you need to create a blog that fits your brand.
Write Your First Blog Post
It’s easy to write your first blog post if you don’t overthink it. Ask yourself, “what do my customers ask me for advice or expertise on?” and “what products and services can I position to my customers as a solution to their everyday problems?” Forget all the technical details and nuances when you are first getting started. All you have to do is write about your expertise, know-how, and any company news you think your customers will find interesting. Of course, once you get a few posts up, it’s critical to start to write for SEO and implement keyword strategies. It’s best to find expert SEO writers who can help implement all the tips and tricks to help you create and implement a content strategy that maximizes inbound success.
Market Your Blog
When first getting started with blogging, you don’t need to worry about all the different ways to promote your blog. First, start with promoting your content to your existing audience. Post every new blog on your social channels, link relevant blogs in your email newsletters, and ask your audience to share your blog to their audience if they found it valuable. Once you start gaining some traction, promoting it to your current audience, you can pay to reach more eyes by leveraging Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads, LinkedIn Ads, etc.
In five simple steps, you have started your very first blog! Now let’s get into a few key recommendations and pro tips that take you from beginner to expert in minutes.
Why Choose WordPress Over Other Blogging Platforms
We mentioned that WordPress is our top recommendation as a blogging platform for beginners. WordPress is the most popular blogging software globally. We recommend using this blogging platform for several reasons. (And not just because WordPress is trusted by more than 30% of all websites on the world wide web.)
WordPress allows you to build and customize your blog to be whatever you want it to be (no need to know how to code!) More importantly, you can control 100% of the content, unlike other free platforms who monitor your content and put up advertisements you have no control over. Plus, it’s search engine optimization friendly. When you use WordPress, you can access plugins, integrations, and analytics to help you become a blogging powerhouse.
Let’s quickly review the pros of using WordPress for your first Blog:
- WordPress is open source and customizable, giving you full control over every aspect of your blog.
- WordPress is the top blogging platform if you want to make money with your blog because of their extra features.
- With thousands of themes offered for free, you can design a blog that stands out from the competition and matches your brand perfectly.
- Thousands of free plugins allow you to add features like contact forms, pop ups, galleries, and more.
- Did we mention that WordPress is search engine friendly? You can easily create SEO optimized blog posts that translate into leads.
As you can see, there are many reasons why so many people use WordPress for blogging. From beginners to experts, businesses choose WordPress because they want to control and customize their content, take advantage of all features, plugins, and integrations, and leverage an SEO toolkit to set them up for lead generation success!
How to Start Your Blog on WordPress
It can be intimidating when starting anything as a beginner. Although starting a WordPress blog can be overwhelming at first, once you get over the learning curve, it will become second nature just like every skill set you practice. There are a lot of great step-by-step resources to help you get started. This guide will help you through every step of starting your first WordPress blog.
If you get hung up along the way, don’t hesitate to reach out to an expert content marketer or SEO company. They can ensure you set up your WordPress blog correctly, implement customizations to set you apart from the competition, install the right plugins, and integrate with the right software to set you up for blogging success.
How to Create Blog Content that Generates Leads for Your Business
Once your WordPress blog is all set up, it’s wise to hire freelance writers who know how to create content that impacts your website’s online traffic and generates leads. This may sound simple enough, but to write good content that also includes proper post titles, strategic keyword research, strong calls-to-action, and an optimized system that introduces new leads, can be quite time-consuming. It saves you time and money when you invest in experts, giving you a higher ROI in the long run.
SEO Design Chicago has a network of specialized blog writers who can take the topics your business wants to write about and turn them into an SEO masterpiece. By working together, you name the topics and key talking points, and we start writing. Not only can we help you create a pipeline of highly effective and engaging content, but we can help set up your WordPress blog.