FIVE THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW BEFORE STARTING A BLOG
Sometimes people forget that blogging is an actual job. Bloggers are photographers, writers, stylists, social media managers, critics and all round content creators. If you're thinking about starting a new blog here are some things you should know before you make the first step.
#1 CHOOSING A NAME
Naming your blog is an essential when it comes to creating a blog. Choose a name that is different and has some connection to the content you will be sharing. For example, if you're starting a food blog, It's obvious you wouldn't name it "Love & Lipstick" but something more along the lines of "Honey & Hannah" if you're looking to incorporate your name in the blog title. Find words that correlate really well with each other. For us, StudioZENY was created with hopes that women from all over the globe would come and be supplied with fashion, beauty, lifestyle, health and home tips that will make their day just that little bit better. Fun fact: Zeny actually means woman in Czech. Don't be alarmed though, sometimes the name of your blog can come naturally, and it can be a very simple process if you do not over think it.
#2 TREATING IT LIKE A BUSINESS
It might start off as a hobby but be aware that your blog is also a business; Especially if it's growing. Like a business you need devote time and money to achieve certain things. Ever heard of the phrase, "You've gotta spend money to make money"? Well, that's exactly the case in your situation. Looking the part is extremely important, so you may need to invest in a few things such as a professional email address. Not that using Gmail or Outlook is bad, but using your own email can often look like you're willing to put more effort into your business. Also, if you're working with a few people you can link all the emails together. Just like you would interact with customers at work, you need to interact with the audience on your blog; after all, they are the reason you gain any traffic. Plus it's always nice to get to know your readers and what they like & dislike.
#3 CREATING A DOMAIN
It's the place where all your readers visit. It's the URL you are sharing on your business cards and Instagram bio. Typically your URL is the name of your blog (also why it's important to choose a good name) with a .com (or your countries equivalent) at the end of it. Technically if you're using a free hosting site such as WordPress, Blogger or WIX, you do not own your blog or the content you share. Using free hosting sites comes with limitations and they have the power to remove any of your content if they desire. Not forgetting to mention the fact that if you do decide to use a hosting site, you can not monetise your blog. Essentially meaning you can not advertise or make any money off your blog. Also, your URL will always include the companies name. For example, had we been using WordPress, our URL would be www.studiozeny.wordpress.com. Besides that being to long, it also doesn't look very nice or professional. As mentioned above, you will need to spend money on a domain. They usually won't cost more than $30AUD (annually) but be sure to shop around for a domain. Crazy Domains often has a sale and hundreds upon hundreds of domains to choose from.
#4 PLANING AHEAD
You would think that this one is a given right? But you would be surprised with how many people don't actually do this. Being prepared is possibly the best part of blogging. There is some sort of satisfaction knowing how well organised you are. We'll let you in on a few things that we do to make ourselves as orchestrated as can be. We use an online system called Trello. Trello is a collaboration tool that organises your projects into boards. In one glance, Trello tells you what's being worked on, who's working on what, and when something is in a process. You can add due dates and pictures to make things more visual or give your teammates an idea of what you're working on. Best of all, its free and its available on the App Store and Google Play which means its great to check up on whilst you're on the go! Be sure to make a list of things you want to post on your site. Dedicate time out of your day to write and research as much as you possibly can. You don't have to post daily if you can't, do what suites you best. In saying that, make sure you don't leave your audience hanging. You can also use apps that schedule your Instagram posts, so again if you're on the go you are still able to keep posting. Or even if you're working your day job and haven't had the chance to grab your phone, scheduled apps will definitely be a massive help.
#5 HAVE FUN!
The others are important but this is easily the most important one. If you're not having fun blogging, than what's the point? Be sure to create content that you love to read and that you think could benefit others. All of the above points may sound scary or confronting but they're just little steps you can take to make sure your blog is successful. You may feel some resistance at first, especially when it comes to promoting your blog. We'll tell you now that it's completely normal to feel that way. But there are so many ways to overcome that fear. You can search other blogs and spend time on reading their posts. Pinterest is always a great idea if you're unsure about what to post or if you just want to feel inspired. Besides, if you're having fun, your content will feel more authentic and your audience will quickly realise that you are passionate! Be sure to remember that all good things come with time.