So if you have your blog set up, the only thing to do now is write! Which is great but also can be terrifying.
Where do I start? People have asked me. Well, you have to start somewhere.
Think of these first three blog entries as your start. They’ll set the tone for you.
If you are a super planner, you may enjoy figuring out topics way ahead of time. Here’s how I do that.
But if you just want to get through these first three blog posts, pick three days you want these to publish. (Setting a deadline in your mind will force you to produce.)
Write three blog entries (one of each) about the following:
Post 1: An Introduction Blog
I am going to do something that’s a bit embarassing for me. I am going to link here to my very first blog entry back in 2007: https://breakingeveninc.com/about-me/an-introduction/
I cringe when I read it but hey, you got to start somewhere. (Wow, I was trying so hard!) But in any case, I set the tone for my personal finance blog in that short five paragraphs and you can too.
Think about answering the following questions in that first post:
Who are you?
What’s this blog about?
Why should I care? (If I was a complete stranger reading your blog, why should I read?)
Now you don’t need to be curing cancer here. This is a blog. You just need to have a unique voice, even if it’s a topic people are already talking about. Sure blog about your life but take a step back from it and think about making the stranger care. Whether it’s eeking out a life lesson, being funny, or showing how-t0s, think about making each blog post useful, personal, and having one topic.
Post 2: An Expertise Post
Now that you’ve introduced yourself, it’s time to show a bit of your topic. Don’t try to talk about *everything* you know about; just take a small topic and address it with confidence. Here are some ideas based on some blogger points of view:
Carpenter- Why You Shouldn’t Be Scared Of A Nail Gun
IT Person- Setting Passwords Even I Can’t Hack
Grocery Store Bagger- Why Paper Bags Are Better Than Plastic
See what I did there. We all have cool perspectives and if you just think of what people ask you about or the most interesting parts of your day, you’ll have plenty of ideas. But just start with one topic. As you see, these are narrow. You’ll use your other ideas for other posts.
Here are three examples of ‘expert’ posts I’ve written:
- How to Market Your Restaurant Online
- Why Do I Need To Claim My Venue On Foursquare
- Top Ten Female Wardrobe Staples: The Pencil Skirt (Fun Fact: When I wrote this blog entry years ago, I got a huge traffic spike from Wikipedia. Apparently someone used it as a source on the entry about pencil skirts. (Yup me and Liz Claiborne in the citations. For real.) It’s since been taken down but I was listed there for a year. This proves two things: 1) If you act like you know something, people will assume you do. 2) Don’t cite Wikipedia in research papers. If I got through as fashion authority, it clearly can’t be trusted.
Post 3: The Other People Post
In this third post, you truly show your range by involving someone else. The idea with involving someone else in your blog is getting people to realize it’s not all about you you you. Also, having other people’s perspectives helps you come up with fresh content.
There are plenty of ways to involve other people in your blog:
- Interview someone (a regular customer for your business blog, a fellow knitter for your knitting blog, etc.)
- Ask a question over Facebook or Twitter and summarize the opinions you get. (This is a bit difficult to explain but here’s someone doing that as an example: http://popwatch.ew.com/2012/11/06/obama-wins-election-twitter/)
- Write down a list of links to other blog posts you’ve been reading and what you like about them. (Bloggers call it a link roundup sometimes.)
If you want to see some examples of involving other people on this blog, here are some I’ve written:
- Marketing Monday series– Good ways other companies are promoting themselves online served up as case studies (note: not our clients)
- Wednesday Spotlight series– Where I interviewed writers who inspired me
- Link Roundup: Fortune Cookie Edition– Here’s an example showing you can write about other people’s blog entries you like without being boring while still being cohesive
Congratulations, you’ve written three blog entries! Now schedule them to go online the days you’ve chosen (or sit down on those days and publish them). You’re a blogger now!
If you master these three kinds of posts, you’ll no doubt have more than enough ideas to keep your blog going.
Stay tuned next week for ‘Connecting With Other Bloggers’.
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