9 Things to Plan before You Start a Blog ...

When starting a blog, you might think it will be a piece of cake, but there are actually a ton of things to think about before you start a blog. Unless you want it as just a creative outlet, you need to take a ton of things into consideration from audience to advertisements. Blogs can be very rewarding if you do them correctly. By knowing these things to cover before you start a blog, you will be able to tackle it with ease and create the blog of your dreams.

1. Audience

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Before you start a blog, you need to thing about the audience you are trying to reach. Do you want to connect with middle-aged housewives, college students, men, athletes, foodies? The list of potential audiences goes on and on. It is up to you to decide who you want to reach out to. It will be a huge defining factor of your blog and is a great starting point to base your blog around.

2. Analytics

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Once you decide on your audience, how are you going to analyze if you are reaching them? If you want to know if your blog is going to be successful, you need to be able to measure if you are reaching your target audience. You can even take it a step further and analyze the types of posts that get the most comments, the best time of day to post, and even what content gets the most views.

3. Inspiration

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You might have all of these great ideas swarming around in your head, but those ideas will eventually run out. You need to find a constant source of inspiration to keep your posts current and fresh. While every day life is great inspiration, checking out other blogs and sites like Tumblr and Pinterest can also help in creating ideas for new material.

4. Social Media

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In our tech-savvy days, no successful blog can exist without social media. You not only have to keep up with content on your blog, but also keep up with your Facebook page, Twitter account, Instagram, and Pinterest. It may seem easy and fun, but it can be more time consuming than you would think. Make sure you are ready to take on the task of it all if you really want to dedicate yourself to a successful blog.

5. Advertisements

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If you are looking to monetize your blog, advertisements are key. After you get a solid fan base, you can reach out to small companies and ask if they would like to place banner ads on your site. The most important thing to keep in mind when you are attempting to do advertisements or product referrals is to make sure you are advertising products and services you believe in. If you just allow any random company to come in and place ads on your blog, your readers will know that you are only doing it for the money. All aspects of your blog must align with your vision, including the advertisements.

6. Be True to Yourself

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Going along those lines, make sure the blog is what you want it to be. Don’t try to be someone else and post about things you don’t care about. If you are genuinely excited about your blog, other people will be too. Your readers will be able to tell when you are fully yourself on your blog, and when you are not. They don’t want some blog that seems fake and unnatural, so just be yourself.

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You might think that having a blog is just something to do on the side to make some extra money, but there are some costs involved, especially if you are doing a fashion blog. You need to take the costs of cameras, equipment, and miscellaneous costs into account. Another huge hidden cost is the cost of blog conventions. If you want to go out and meet other bloggers, conventions are a great option. The only problem, they are super expensive to attend. Before starting your blog, sit down and see if you are willing to set aside the money.

8. Connecting with Others

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While blogs are a great way to not only connect with other bloggers, but audiences as well, it is key to make sure the connections are organic. All too often, bloggers will spend hours commenting on other blogs and connecting with others, only expecting some type of blogger karma to be in effect. If you genuinely want to connect with people, comment when you actually have something to say. Don’t spend hours just throwing out random compliments to any old blog. People will take notice, and they won’t like it.

9. Time Commitment

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Having a blog isn’t just something you can do in your down time. Readers expect current posts at east multiple times a week. If not, they will just move on to the next blog. And you think that writing a few paragraphs takes only a few seconds, but what about taking pictures, putting the content on social media, and reading all of the comments to see what people are saying? It takes time to create a successful blog.

Blogs are a great way to express your creativity and connect with a ton of interesting people, but they do take some consideration if you want to make them successful. Some people just like having a blog for the sake of having a creative outlet, but if you are looking to have a serious online presence, these tips are a great starting point. What did you think of these things to think about before starting a blog? Are there any other tips to staring a blog? Do you have your own blog, and if so, what advice do you have for other aspiring bloggers?

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