Table of Content
- 1 By The Way, What is a Blog?
- 2 Why You Should Learn How To Create a Blog in 2019
- 3 Step 1. Pick a Blog Name
- 4 3 Steps to Choosing the Best Blog Niche That Drive Traffic and Make Money
- 5 Blogging Platform (WordPress Recommended)
- 6 7 Reasons Why You Should Use WordPress
- 7 Step 2. Get Your Blog Online.
- 8 What is Web Hosting?
- 9 How to Host Your Blog/Website With Bluehost In 3 Steps
- 10 Step 3. Customize or Design Your Blog
- 11 Step 4. Write & Publish Your First Blog Post
- 12 Step 5. Promote Your Blog
- 13 Step 6. Make Money Blogging
- 14 Videos on Setting up WordPress
You’re probably here because you’re looking for a free, easy and step-by-step guide to follow on how to create a blog, you’ve come to the right place. I’m here to help guide you through this.
You’ll thank me later…
This guide will help you learn how to create a blog today in 6 easy steps that’ll take you about 30 minutes.
By The Way, What is a Blog?
A blog, simply put is a type of website that focuses mainly on written content, also known as blog posts. As you’ll see in this guide, you can start a successful blog on just about any topic you can imagine or think of.
Bloggers often write from a personal perspective that allows them to connect directly with their readers. In addition, most blogs also have a “comments” section where readers can correspond with the blogger. Interacting with your readers in the comments section helps to further the connection between the blogger and the reader.
This direct connection to the reader is one of the main benefits of starting a blog. This connection allows you to interact and share ideas with other like-minded people. It also allows you to build trust with your readers. Having the trust and loyalty of your readers also opens up the door to making money from your blog, which is something I discuss later in this guide.
Why You Should Learn How To Create a Blog in 2019
Blogging helps you share your thoughts, ideas, creativity and even your business with the world and starting and managing your own blog is quite easy.
You don’t need any development or any design skills to manage your own blog.
It’s a great thing that you want to start your own blog! Not only is blogging a great pastime, but with a blog you can express yourself in a very unique way, you help teach others how to solve problems that you’ve overcome, using a blog, with a blog you establish yourself as an expert, and even make money online passively or actively.
Yes, you read it right, you can make lots of money online blogging.
Gone are the days that requires you to have a skill in coding HTML, CSS, and even PHP, before you can share your thoughts and expertise online.
Luckily, in this our era, creating a blog is easier than you can ever imagine.
Today starting a blog can be as simple as creating a document in Microsoft Word or any other text editor. That is if you follow the simple step-by-step instructions lay down here.
If you’re new to blogging, getting started on the right path and have someone to help you avoid mistakes will really help.
That’s why I’ve put up this step by step guide on how to create a blog in less than 30-45 minutes using the most popular and most used blogging platform WORDPRESS.
My step by step guide is to give beginners a fast, foolproof guide to creating a blog, without having to learn to code.
I’ll guide you through everything with images and videos so you get your blog started immediately.
Lots of people have already used this step by step guide to starting their own blogs and websites and managing their business online very well.
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links (Bluehost affiliate link) and at no additional cost to you, I am compensated when you purchase through my link, so my services are free of charge to you! In fact, if you have any trouble at all setting up a blog with this tutorial, just contact me and I will do it for you.
I’ve divided this guide into 6 concise sections that’ll walk you through the easy process of creating a blog today and getting your first post published within the next 30 minutes. Each of these steps in the blog creating checklist below are clickable and will take you immediately to that section of the guide.
So, how do you create a blog?
- Pick a blog name.
- Get your blog online. Register your blog name and get hosting.
- Customize or design your blog. Choose a free or paid template and tweak it.
- Write & publish your first blog post. The fun part!
- Promote your blog. Get more people to read your blog.
- Make money blogging.
There’s no cause for alarm, and I’m here to guide you through every step of the way. In about tthirty minutes from now, you’ll have a brand new blog to call your own.
Without further ado, let’s dive into the first step of how to create a blog for beginners.
Step 1. Pick a Blog Name
The first step to finding a good blog name is choosing your topic.
If you’re not sure what to blog about, below are some of the few ways to finding a good blog topic to start with:
3 Steps to Choosing the Best Blog Niche That Drive Traffic and Make Money
- Hobbies & passions: One of the first things to consider when deciding on what to blog about is your hobbies or other interests you are passionate about. For instance, Health, Relationship, Cooking, Travel, Fashion, Sports, and Lifystyle, these are all classic examples. Any blogging topic you choose to go with can be successful, since your audience is literally anyone in the world with the internet.
- Life Experiences: Everyone has lessons they have learned through life experience. Sharing this knowledge can be incredibly helpful to others in similar situations. For example, I recently helped a lady start her blog about her failed relatioship with a guy that claimed he loved her only for him to disappear into thin air with this lady’s property. She has a lot of experience and knowledge to share with others about this topic, and it has helped her connect and help others in similar situations and profiling solutions to avoid such occurrences. So, think about the things you have experienced in life. This could be related to your family (example: a blog about being a stay at home mom), work (a blog about experiences dealing with clients), or other life experiences (a blog about dealing with a troubling time such as a disease or divorce, or about a happy time such as preparing for a wedding or a birth of a child) just think of any problem you can provide solutions for.
- A Personal Blog: A personal blog is a blog all about you. This will include a variety of topics, from things you do on a daily basis, to random thoughts and musings. This is a great way to share you thoughts with the world without having to stick to just one topic.
Once you have a topic it’s time to choose your blog name.
Please note that a good blog name should be descriptive. (this doen’st mean using 5-10 words as a blog name) Making your blog name descrptive will help your potential readers instantly tell what your blog is about just from the name.
If you are blogging about one specific topic then you will definitely want to include that in some way in your blog name. Try not to get hung-up on just one word though. For example, a cooking blog doesn’t necessarily have to have the word “cooking” in it. The words “food”, “recipes”, and “meals” would also let people know that your blog is about cooking.
Lets take for instance that you are planning to create a personal blog where you discuss a variety of topics then I recommend using your name, or some variation of it, since your blog is all about you. You can also add your middle name or middle initial if you find your name is already taken. Or you could use a variation like “Leonard Ibong Blog” or “Blogging with Leonard”.
After you’ve gotten some blog name ideas you will need to choose a domain extension. Example of a domain name extensions are .com, .org, .net, .ng, .co.uk, .com.ng, etc. A .com domain extension is the most popular, most common ad most preferred, though .net or .org work as well. It is also important to note that for the purposes of a blog domain you cannot have any spaces between words. So “Blogging with Leonard” becomes bloggingwithleonard.com
Now that you’ve got your name and have picked an extension it’s time to make sure that no one else has already registered the same name: See if your blog name is available
Please note that: You cannot use any spaces or punctuation other than dashes in a domain name.
If you find that the name you wanted is already taken there are a few things you can do:
First: Try a different domain extension. If the .com version is already registered you may still be able to get the .net or .org version of your blog name.
Secondly: Add small words, Words like “a”, “my”, or “the”.
Thirdly: Add dashes between words. For example, my-blog.com
Now that you’ve got a name picked lets quicly talk about the blogging platform we’ll be using before going to step 2 getting your blog online.
The combination of blogging platform & web hosting I personally use (and that majority of other bloggers use) is a WordPress blog, hosted by Bluehost. WordPress is the most preferred publishing platform that’s been around since 2003 and now powers more than 60% of all blogs on the Internet. And Bluehost is one of the longest established companies in the blog hosting industry. This combination of WordPress and Bluehost is what we’ll be using to start blogging within this guide.
Blogging Platform (WordPress Recommended)
Before you start worrying about the design or look of your blog, you’ll need to choose your blogging platform.
There are tons of blogging platform out there to choose from. You can create a blog with many different blogging platforms, such as
- Joomla and more…
Having tried out most of these platforms I have come to the conclusion that a self-hosted WordPress platform is a boss.
Why I Use & Recommend WordPress?
Given that there are over 60 million active users and counting are using WordPress today, it’s clear which platform is the boss. Even my own blogs and my directory site businesslist247.com are built with a WordPress blogging platform.
7 Reasons Why You Should Use WordPress
- WordPress is FREE for everyone to use (including plugins, themes and layouts that many other blogging platforms don’t provide).
- 60% of the web uses WordPress, from hobby blogs to the biggest news sites online.
- It is responsive – WordPress is responsive in the sense that it can display very well on any type of phone, desktop, tablets etc which is what you want to let people access your blog with any device. WordPress is SEO friendly, Mobile friendly and design friendly.
- According to Google WordPress is 99% SEO friendly. So if you are using WordPress for your blog or website be rest assured that Google and other search engine will rank your site very well.
- WordPress is supper easy to use – There are over 45,000+ plugins to help your website meet your needs. Add an online store, galleries, mailing lists, forums, analytics, and much more. You can easily customize the themes design, color, layouts etc to suit your needs.
- Powerful Media Management – WordPress is for powerful media management, it comes with built-in support to handle audios, images, video contents, files and documents management.
- WordPress is secure; WordPress is regularly updating their software and keeping everything sound and secure, to make sure your blog do not come under hacking attacks. That’s why sites like ChannelsTV, Facebook, NASA and even university blogs are using WordPress.
Though other blogging platforms are generally OK, but nothing in my opinion has ever come close to matching the freedom and customization options that self-hosted WordPress offers.
So without a doubt, go with a self-hosted WordPress blog. Especially when you are just starting out.
Why You Shouldn’t Create a Blog on a Free Blogging Platform
You can create your blog free with wordpress or some other blogging platform. But you will be limited in functionality, it’ll look boring, with its address been so long like YourBlogName.WordPress.com, this diminishes your credibility.
Think about it – what famous, successful blogger you know is using a free blogging website, unlike Linda Ikeji who started out with the free blog but when she notice the opportunity in a self-hosted blog and the limitations in the free blog she quickly migrated.
The limitations you have when using a free blogging platform are as follows
- You don’t control your content –Your blog can be shut down without your consent because the blogging platform handles everything for you.
- The web address of your blog will be long and hard to remember (e.g like yourfreeblog.wordpress.com) instead of something like yourdomain.com or whichever extension you choose.
- You cannot advertise on the free blogging platform. Little advice for you, if you really want to set a system that makes a profit don’t use a free blog.
All of these limitations apply to the WordPress.com and other free blogging platform out there.
Therefore, what you really need to set a system that sells is a self-hosted WordPress blog with your blog name and the extension of your choice.
Setting up a self-hosted blog is easier and less expensive than you think.
Step 2. Get Your Blog Online.
In other to get your blog up and running you need a web hosting and in this second step I’ll show you how exactly you can do that but first…
What is Web Hosting?
A web hosting company is a company that stores all of the files for your blog and delivers them to the user when they type in your blog name. You must have a web hosting in order to have a blog.
To make your website accessible to other people on the Internet, you need a “host.” The host keeps all your website files safe, secure and makes sure that people can access your blog when they click on a link or type in your URL.
I use and recommend Bluehost to every blogger because it acts as a one-stop-shop for great (affordable) web hosting and quick & easy registration of your domain name in one swoop.
Think of web hosting like being your home. When someone comes over (types in your URL), they’ll be able to see all the things you’ve been keeping inside. Yes, it comes at a cost you don’t have if you’re on one of the free blogging platforms, but having a proper website host is one of the most important investments in starting a successful blog.
What are the best web hosting services to use?
There are several great web hosting services out there for your blog.
Regardless of who you choose, what you should be looking for in a web hosting company is:
- Track record
The service I’ve found that best checks all of these boxes (and more) for new bloggers is Bluehost. Yes, I know I’ve mentioned them several times as my web hosting company of choice already in this guide, and that’s for very good reason.
For one, Bluehost offers a simple 1-click WordPress install, which makes starting a self-hosted WordPress blog super easy. It also comes with a free domain name (if your desired URL is available) and offers 24/7 support to answer all of your questions and help with troubleshooting (which is fantastic when you’re just getting started).
If you’re committed to learning how to start a blog that can eventually make money (the way I recommend you doing it), nothing gives you the security, features, and peace of mind that your blog will be up when you need it to be like Bluehost does.
That being said, there are a other web hosting providers worth considering for new bloggers:
The 2 best alternative blog hosting platforms worth considering
TMD hosting – I’ve hosted literally dozens of websites on TMD hosting over the years (and I still do). All similar features like 1-click WordPress install, free SSL certificate, free domain, 60 day money back guarantee and site security aside, one of the biggest pros of going with TMD hosting compared to other hosting companies, is that they offer a true pay-per-month plan that allows you to pay for the cost of your blog hosting each month with no strings attached. Here are a few other web hosting companies that also offer monthly payment plans.
WhoGoHost – WhoGoHost is a Nigeria web solutions company, which was founded in 2007 by Opeyemi Awoyemi under ennovate NIGERIA Limited, and later branched out to be incorporated as a company under CAC in 2011 as WhoGoHost Limited. Overtime, WhoGoHost has grown to be one of the top three web hosting companies in Nigeria, providing services for clients inside and outside Nigeria. WhoGoHost is an accredited Google Apps Reseller, .NG Registrar ,Cloudflare Certified Partner as well as an InterSwitch Partner for payment integration solutions.
Click here for the special $2.75 per month rate on BlueHost and then click “get started now”.
Having been on the web for a while now and having used many of the hosting out there and having a lot of downtime every now and then, I have come to a conclusion that Bluehost which is the hosting provider am using presently is the best. Bluehost is my pick and I recommend it for you.
Why You Should Use BlueHost to Host Your Blog
- Bluhost is officially recommended by WordPress since 2005
- It has a one-click WordPress installation, which makes it easy for you to get started.
- Bluhost have 24/7 support, so there’s always someone to answer your questions either by chat or direct phone calls or email.
- They have a money-back guarantee, so you can get a refund if you decide you don’t want anymore
- Lastly, you’ll get a FREE domain name. Click here to get started.
How to Host Your Blog/Website With Bluehost In 3 Steps
Step 1: to www.Bluehost.com and click on the “Get started now” button. Use this link to get 60% discount and a FREE domain, too.
There is a special discount applies to all my blog visitors, so make sure you take advantage of it follow the links on this blog to host your blog with bluehost. I equally get a commission when you use my affiliate links.
Step 2: Select the hosting plan you want (for new bloggers you can pick the cheapest one to start with).
There are three options: Basic (recommended for newbies), Plus, and Choice Plus which is the one am using.
I recommend you start up with the Basic or the plus option if you are just a beginner because there are the most popular. You can always migrate to whenever you want.
After selecting your hosting plan on the next screen you will be ask to enter your domain name.
Type in your domain name in the left box and then click “next” to start the registration process.
If you are registering a new domain use the left box and bluehost will register it for you for free.
If you already have a domain name registered with another domain registrar use the right box with “I have a domain name” and click on next.
Step 3: Fill out the account information and your billing details on the registration page.
There are three parts to this page. The first is the account information. Just fill out your contact information.
On the package options choose the account plan, you can choose to sign up for 12, 24, or 36 months. Going for 36 month is cheaper.
Next, uncheck all the checked add-ons to reduce cost, this can be applied later.
But if you so wish, you might want to consider adding a domain privacy –this option protects you from spammers. If you don’t mind your information being public.
Site Backup Pro – While WordPress is quite secure, It will be a good choice to sign up for Site Backup Pro just in case you are afraid you’ll mess up things.
The last step is to fill in your billing information. If you want to pay with PayPal, click the “More payment options” link.
Agree to the terms and conditions and click on submit
That’s it you’ve just hosted your blog.
Next, check your email for the welcome email from Bluehost.
Step 3. Customize or Design Your Blog
Now that you’ve gotten through the first phase, it’s time to get into the fun part of how to create a blog.
Designing your WordPress blog is when you might start to feel a little friction with the process of starting a blog (if you’ve never done this before), but I promise this won’t get too technical.
Once you’ve received your welcome message from bluehost with your Cpanel login details.
Follow the link and login to your Cpanel to install WordPress.
How to Install WordPress on your Site via Bluehost Cpanel
The videos tutorials below are a step-by-step walkthrough on how to install, configure and design your WordPress website form Bluehost.
If you are not already logged-in, go to Bluehost.com and click “Login” on the top right to bring up the login screen. You can then login using your domain name and the password you set in the previous step. If you have misplaced your password you can reset it by clicking the “Forgot Password” link.
Once you log-in you will be taken to your BlueHost Portal. From the portal, click on “My Sites” and then “Create Site” to install WordPress
On the next page you are to add the tiltle of the website and site tagline tha’s a brief description about your website and click on the next button.
Next is to select the domain where you want WordPress installed and leave the Directory column empty leave the plugins chck if you want it install if not uncheck them and click next to install WordPress
Congratulations, you just installed WordPress, it is now time to customize your blog. Click on the link that say login to WordPress to go to your WordPress dasboard
Changing your blog design
Once you login you will be in the WordPress administrator area. This is where you can make any changes you want to your blog.
Everyone has a different idea of how they want their blog to look. One of the great things about a WordPress blog is that you can change your entire layout and design with just a few clicks.
In WordPress, blog layouts are known as “Themes”. What is a blog theme? Themes control the entire design of your blog. To change your theme you are going to click on the “Appearance” tab on the left menu.
You will see several themes that are already installed on your blog: Twenty Seventeen, Twenty Sixteen, etc. These are well-designed, clean-looking themes that can work for just about any type of blog. In fact, many of the world’s top bloggers use one of these themes.
Unless you have a very specific design in mind for your blog, I suggest you use one of these themes to start with. For our example, let’s use the “Twenty Sixteen” theme. In order to activate the theme on your blog, hover over the theme and click the “Activate” button. That’s it! You have changed the entire design of your blog with just one click!
If you don’t like any of the themes that are already installed you can easily choose from thousands of other free themes. To install a new theme, click on the “Appearance” tab on the left menu and then click “Add New Theme”.
This is the theme search screen. There are thousands of themes to choose from. You can change your entire design at anytime simply by activating a new theme. To find a theme you like, I suggest you click on the “Popular” tab and start browsing. When you find one that you like click the blue “Install” button.
Once the theme is installed click “Activate” to activate the theme on your blog. To see your new theme in action, go to your blog and take a look!
Why design is so important when learning how to start a blog
Even if you don’t really care about design, your readers do.
In a 2012 study from Google and the University of Basel, researchers found that users judge a website’s aesthetic beauty and perceived functionality in 1/20th – 1/50th of a second. Plus, thanks to a little psychological bias called the Halo Effect, we extend that judgement to all parts of your blog.
What this means is that in less time than it takes to snap their fingers, a reader has decided whether or not to trust your blog.
Good design builds trust. It tells people that you care enough about your blog to make it look nice. This doesn’t mean you need crazy animations or tons of fonts and colors. In fact, the best designs are simple, clear, and easy to read.
Choosing the Best WordPress Theme for your Blog.
There are different WordPress themes for different purpose. I don’t necessarily recommend buying a paid WordPress theme like (OptimizePress) as a new blogger, until you have some traffic and are generating at least a little income form your blog. While OptimizePress is an incredible theme, diving into something like that at this stage will be a distraction from your most important priority of actually bringing readers to your blog.
WordPress comes with a ton of free themes to choose from, so start with one of the options you like in Appearance > Themes > Add New Theme > Popular without spending much time on this for now. You can always come back and change it later.
I recommend going with the free Elementor WordPress theme. Once you download the free version of Elementor, you’ll get their (amazing) detailed instructions on how to install & optimize the theme too:
You can try out thrivethemes if you are looking for some landing pages and sales funnel builder.
Step 4. Write & Publish Your First Blog Post
Now that your blog is up and running it’s time to actually do some blogging!
Go to the left menu and click on “Posts”.
You will see there is already a post there. This is a default post on every new WordPress blog, and we don’t need it. To delete it click “Trash” just under the post.
To begin writing a new post, click the “Add New” link.
You are now on the post editor screen. Enter the title of your post in the top box and then begin writing your post in the lower box.
If you would like to add a picture to your post, click on the “Add Image” icon and click “Upload” to upload a picture from your computer. You can make adjustments to the picture size on the next screen. When you are ready click “Insert into post” to add the picture.
Once you have finished your post just click the “Publish” button on the top right side of the screen to publish it.
Publishing Your Blog
Even after you have written a post your blog may still be showing a “Coming Soon” page.
When you are ready to make your blog public just click the “BlueHost” menu at the top left of the menu in your administrator area then click the blue “Launch” button to remove the “Coming Soon” page.
Congratulations! You now know how to start your own blog and publish content!
Step 5. Promote Your Blog
If you’ve made it this far, you should be in fantastic shape on your journey of learning how to create a blog, picking up the basics of writing compelling posts, and creating a beautiful design for your website.
But there’s one last piece of the puzzle that hardly any other bloggers openly talk about: Promotion.
What do you do once you’ve hit publish?
Well, this is the exact reason I’m hired as a consultant by companies to not only write in-depth content for their blogs, but to teach them how to promote their content, bring in new readers and even make money from their blogs.
So you’ve learned how to start a blog… How do you drive traffic now?
It’s a question I hear time and time again. And it’s one that separates the great blogs from the ones that are only read by your mom and a few spambots. If you’re looking to drive traffic and build a successful business from your blog, you need to know how to promote your posts.
In fact, I’m a strong believer that you should spend more time promoting a post than you did writing it.
But where do you start?
Here are a few of the best ways to start sharing your posts and getting in front of new readers.
Using social media to promote your blog
The obvious first place to turn to is social media. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Reddit, Instagram, Snapchat are the biggest networks today. Whichever platform best suits your niche and audience interests, is the right one for you. And that’s an important note.
Each social network naturally appeals to a certain niche and a certain type of reader. This is a pretty broad statement, but generally speaking, here’s what works best on each social platform:
- Facebook: Videos and curated content
- Instagram: High-res photos, quotes, and Stories
- Twitter: News, blog posts, and GIFs
- LinkedIn: Professional content and career news
- Pinterest: Infographics, step-by-step photo guides, visual content
- Google+: Blog posts you want to rank well on Google
- Reddit: Comments about topics in your niche
It’s a lot. But luckily there are lots of tools that can help you manage your social media posts throughout the week. In fact, with the right tool, you should be able to promote all your posts across social in just an hour or two a week. Here are my favorites:
- Buffer: One of the easiest ways to schedule social shares in advance for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google Plus. Their browser plug-in is also great for quickly adding interesting posts you find to your social promotion queue.
- Hootsuite: If you want something a bit more in-depth, Hootsuite is a powerful social sharing, scheduling, and monitoring platform. It’s probably a bit too much for a beginner blogger, but is a worthwhile option to check out once you start to grow.
- Gain App: If you work with multiple people on your blog, Gain is a great tool for collaborating and controlling who posts what from your account. It’s a bit more expensive, but their workflows can save you a ton of time.
Forums and message boards
Often, just throwing your ideas out into the social media void isn’t very effective. Instead, being a part of targeted forums and online communities can give you a way better return on your time. If you find the right ones.
Look for a topically relevant group to join. For example, if you’re making a blog about photography, you could consider joining Facebook groups like Nikon Digital Camera & Photo Enthusiasts (26,000+ members), Nikon D750 Users (27,000+ members) and Nikon UK Photography (13,000+ members).
(I found these groups by searching for “Nikon” and clicking the ‘Groups’ sort tab at the top of the menu.)
If your blog is relevant to anyone with a DSLR camera, you’re sure to find enough people who’d be interested in reading your posts within those groups.
Now, if your search doesn’t come up with any Facebook Groups with a decent number of members (5,000+) there are some other options.
For example, if you’re starting a business or entrepreneurial blog, you might want to try posting your blogs to:
Facebook Groups (Entrepreneurial):
- Freedom Hackers Mastermind (39,000+ members)
- The Smart Passive Income Community (28,000+ members)
- The Joyful Entrepreneur (37,000+ members)
- Heart-centered, soul driven entrepreneurs (16,000+ members)
- Coaches, Authors, Entrepreneurs (13,000+ members)
- Women’s Entrepreneur Network (32,000+ members, women only)
- Super Hero Entrepreneurs (10,000+ members)
LinkedIn Groups (Entrepreneurial):
- On Startups (626,000+ members)
- Future Trends (474,000+ members)
- I love Startups (248,000+ members)
- Entrepreneur’s Network (33,000+ members)
- Band of Entrepreneurs (26,000+ members)
Remember, these aren’t just places to dump links to your blog posts. You need to provide value before you ask for anything in return. So start by building relationships and engaging with people there.
You never know, you might come up with some great blog ideas in the process.
Guest posts and blogging on sites like Medium, Quora, Linkedin, and others
One of the best things about starting a blog is that bloggers love to help each other out. And guest posting on other relevant blogs is THE best way to connect with an already established audience.
I’ve written literally hundreds of guest posts over the past five years, and it’s been the single best strategy for promoting my blog content (and building my own audience).
Using an email newsletter to grow your audience
One of the best forms of promotion for your blog isn’t to other audiences, but to your own.
An email newsletter is probably the most powerful way to keep readers engaged and excited about the work you’re doing and one of the things you should set up as soon as you start a blog.
Building your email list can be relatively easy, too. Simply put a signup form in your posts and on your site. Or, do what Learn to Code with me founder Laurence Bradford did and offer special content for people in return for their email address:
“If you have a blog post on your site and you have some sort of checklist or book they can get just by giving their email that can work really well. I still get around 50 new email subscribers a day just from old posts that have these content upgrades.”
Personally, I use a tool I love called ConvertKit to manage the 100,000+ email subscribers to my blog, but Mailchimp is the best free email marketing tool to get started with.
I send my community an update whenever I post a new blog post, have a resource I want to share, or when new podcast episodes go live—and this now ensures my content will quickly be seen by thousands of people right off the bat.
This has by far been the biggest driver of growth and revenue for my blog, and something I can’t suggest enough.
Other ways to promote your blog and get more traffic
Outside of promotion on social and email and guest posts, here are a few other techniques I’ve personally used to grow my blog audience quickly:
- Interview people in your niche: There’s nothing better than learning from famous people in your niche. Not only does interviewing them help you build a relationship, but other people reading your blog want to hear from them. You can use these interviews for blog posts or even start a podcast
- Network with other bloggers or mention their blogs: Early on, you want to get on other people’s radars. And one of the best ways to do that is to mention other relevant bloggers and blog posts on yours.
- Talk to people about what you’re doing: It might seem too simple, but tell the people around you what you’re doing. Get excited about your blog and share the things you’re working on. As
- Learn from other top bloggers: If you don’t feel ready to connect with other bloggers in your space, at least try to learn from what they’re doing.
Remember that the only thing standing in the way of starting your own blog is you. It’s easy to say that you don’t have time or you’re tired from work or that it’s too much effort. But that effort is what makes starting a blog so worth it.
The bar for how to start a blog—and what constitutes great content—has been raised in 2019. And if you’re starting a blog looking for extremely quick results (i.e. earning money from a blog tomorrow), you’re going to be disappointed. You need to set realistic expectations.
This isn’t to say you can’t start a successful blog in 2019. In fact, there are more opportunities than ever. It’s just that you need to make sure you’re not falling into certain traps early on. Traps like…
- You think you can make a bunch of money writing about something you aren’t familiar with
- You’re not committed to publishing regularly and interacting with your audience
- You want quick results without putting in the work
Here’s a dose of reality: The most popular, successful and profitable blogs in 2019 are all run by people who care deeply about the subject matter they’re writing about. They’re committed and excited to post. And they know that running a blog is an investment that will only bring them bigger returns the more they keep at it.
And as long as you’re on the same page, your blog will be a success!
Now, on to the crucial component of what makes a blog successful…
Learning how to (eventually) monetize your blog.
Step 6. Make Money Blogging
Once you have put in the effort of creating great blog content and promoting your blog, making money from your blog is actually the easy part.
There are several ways you can make money blogging, from selling your own products or services, to getting paid to write reviews of products on your blog. But the easiest way to make money from your blog is to sell advertising space.
Once you have a popular blog, advertisers will be hounding you for the opportunity to advertise. The best way to take advantage of this situation is to use Google Adsense. They find the advertisers for you and all you have to do is place the Google Adsense code on your blog to start running ads. Google Adsense takes all of the hard work out of the process and just cuts you a check.
Need more help?
I hope this guide has answered any questions you had on how to create a blog, but if any of the steps were unclear to you, you can contact me or use the comment section to ask your questions.