Did you know; as a new blogger, there is a 30% chance your blog will fail within the first two years of launching it? And that is after you take a bumpy ride of following one hack after another, in the attempt to clinch the ever so elusive blog success.
Most blogs fail without ever having a return to the blogger.
Now, don’t misinterpret me. I am not trying to throw you off the cliff of blogging withdrawal before you even start (I may sound like it now, but keep reading)
According to the U.S Small Business Association, 30% of new businesses fail within the first two years of opening shop. 50% within the first five years and 66% within the first ten years.
You may be wondering, why am I telling you this? After all you are an upcoming blogger if not yet a blogger.
And the simple reason is, your blog is actually a small business.
It will take up time and resources to get it off the ground as you would a new business.
So why not give it the respect it deserves and treat it as a business rather than a hobby or thrill that may or may not take off. After all, isn’t anything worth doing, is worth doing well?
So whether you have started a blog or about to; do you have clear written answers to following questions?
Why do I want to be a blogger?
Take a moment to scrap WordPress.com and you will find a majority of the bloggers have started one or more of their posts on their blog with “Sorry I haven’t been as active as I wanted to…”
Or jump over to YouTube and watch vloggers start with “I really have nothing to tell you… LOL” as they tilt their neck to the left whilst giggling.
These pieces of content come after a long hiatus from the YouTube channel or blog.
So have you asked yourself, why do you want to be a blogger?
Is it because you want to share your new found passion with the world? Is it because you are seeking financial freedom? Is it because you are want to establish yourself as an industry expert in your field?
Knowing the reason why, is the first step in making sure you maintain a sense of authenticity and focus on your blog. In fact, take a deep dive and follow the 5 whys technique to find the core reason as to why you want to be a blogger.
What do you want to blog about?
Now that you already know why you want to be a blogger, what do you want to blog about?
As much as it is enticing to want blog about your lifestyle and business together. It may not be the best use of your time and resources.
You will need to narrow down your niche as much as possible. This will enable you to test and measure the market to your efforts. It will also help you in standing out in the market place.
You have to drill down to exactly what you would like to be known for. For example, Emma, the persuasive copywriter who talks about relationship conflicts. Or Dana the goat yoga instructor who talks about diet fads.
Specificity in what you are going to blog about makes it easier for you to be remembered and shape what the market says about you.
Who is your blog targeted to?
We have already established your blog is a small business. And one of the core pillars of starting a business is providing a solution to the market.
Take a moment and jump over on Facebook for a minute (not now, I will tell you when to) Now I need you to take note of every post that makes you pause and read further or watch further. Take note of what that post contained that made you pause. Was it the video or image or copy? Come back after you have come across five ads. (yes, now you can go)
What you will notice all the posts that made you pause did one of the following key things:
- They were relevant to you.
- They provided a certain kind of value to you.
And the best posts contained both.
What does this show you? Whatever content you are trying to create should focus more on the consumer more than it does the creator.
Take a moment to create a target persona for your blog. Is it Sally, the stay at home mom across the street with a passion to travel and explore the world but thinks it is an expensive desire. Or is it Nancy the human resource manager at a corporate law firm by day and student by night in pursuit of a doctorate. Who yearns to be in a relationship and start a family but doesn’t know how to slot this desire into a her current busy schedule.
Knowing whom the blog is for will help you in retaining and converting readers into buyers as you build your blog into a business.9a
How are you going to deliver value to your readers?
Now that we have established what your blog is going to be about and whom it is for, it is time to determine how you are going to deliver value to your target audience.
It is only after you give value, and more value and more value can you ask for business. Without this, you will end up asking what are you doing wrong and lose interest in blogging. And we do not want that to happen.
The more value you deliver the more you will be top of mind with your readers. You can deliver value in any form. Infographics, tutorials, case studies, data breakdown and analysis, videos etc.
Just make sure any piece of content you create will be relevant to your readers as well as valuable to them. And most importantly help you in building trust with them.
When are you going to break even?
After all, this is a business. And what differentiates a business from a hobby is money. How are you going to make money with your blog? You need to determine this as early as possible.
Will you be providing services as a consultant or a coach? Will you be paid for sponsored content and populate your blog with ads? Will you create your own products, programs and courses to sell? Will you use your blog as an affiliate channel?
Whatever means of making money you choose (and you can pick as many options as you would like) you need to be clear about it and set milestones that you can measure.
As a blogging coach, the number one reason I have witnessed most bloggers lead their blogs to failure is because of lack of interest. After the thrill and excitement of starting a new project wore off, they were left with the ever daunting task of growing their blogs with lack of planning.
They didn’t take the time to research the market, set goals and clear strategies to follow.
After you take an afternoon with a wonderful mug of coffee and clear yourself of all distractions, and genuinely answer these questions. You would set yourself and your blog up for success and finally achieve the core reason as to why you wanted to be known as a blogger.
Let me know in the comments below, why do you want to be a blogger?