HOW TO: Launch and Grow a Successful Blog


Published on

Follow these steps to develop a smart, effective blogging strategy -- whether you're blogging for business or personal reasons. Learn how to measure your progress, develop topic ideas, attract the right kind of readers and promote your content.

Published in: Business, Technology

HOW TO: Launch and Grow a Successful Blog

  1. 1. HOW TO: Launch & Grow a Successful Blog A Blogging Bootcamp presented by Thurber House Heather Whaling • @prTini [email_address]
  2. 2. introductions
  3. 3. Case Study: Geben Gives
  4. 4. … shared on Twitter
  5. 5. … shared on Facebook
  6. 6. … nearly 8,000 votes later
  7. 7. 75% of my company’s business stems from relationships that began via social media, particularly blogging and Twitter
  8. 8. what’s a blog?
  9. 9. <ul><li>“ A blog is a type of website that is usually arranged in chronological order from the most recent ‘post’ (or entry) at the top of the main page to the older entries towards the bottom.” </li></ul>-- Problogger .com
  10. 10. Your Turn: What blogs do you read? Why do you like them?
  11. 11. so, you want to blog …
  12. 12. Reasons to Blog <ul><li>Share experiences </li></ul><ul><li>Build a community of like-minded people </li></ul><ul><li>Express opinions </li></ul><ul><li>Sell a product/service </li></ul><ul><li>Provide advice </li></ul><ul><li>Keep up with family/friends </li></ul><ul><li>Why do you want to blog? </li></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>Educational </li></ul><ul><li>Community </li></ul><ul><li>Foodie </li></ul><ul><li>Crafts </li></ul><ul><li>Parent/lifestyle </li></ul><ul><li>Business </li></ul><ul><li>Sports </li></ul><ul><li>Celebrity/entertainment </li></ul><ul><li>Fashion </li></ul><ul><li>Group/collaborative </li></ul>Types of Blogs
  14. 14. Young house Love
  15. 15. Naked redhead
  16. 19. <ul><li>“ If you build it, they will come” doesn’t apply to most blogs. </li></ul>
  17. 20. <ul><li>S pecific </li></ul><ul><li>M easurable </li></ul><ul><li>A ttainable </li></ul><ul><li>R ealistic </li></ul><ul><li>T ime-sensitive </li></ul>Creating SMART Blog Goals
  18. 21. exercise: establish a goal.
  19. 22. Attracting Readers <ul><li>Create Reader Profiles: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Age </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interests (online & offline) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Favorite book, movie, magazines </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where do they live? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When are they online? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What do they like to read/see online? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Why are they coming to your blog? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What challenges do they face? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What’s their financial situation? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How familiar are they with your topic? </li></ul></ul>
  20. 23. exercise: profile 3 potential readers
  21. 24. time to start creating content
  22. 25. Types of Blog Posts <ul><li>Instructional </li></ul><ul><li>Informational </li></ul><ul><li>Reviews </li></ul><ul><li>Lists </li></ul><ul><li>Interviews </li></ul><ul><li>Case studies </li></ul><ul><li>Profiles </li></ul><ul><li>Link posts </li></ul><ul><li>“ Problem” posts </li></ul><ul><li>Rant </li></ul><ul><li>Inspirational </li></ul><ul><li>Research </li></ul><ul><li>Predictions </li></ul><ul><li>Critique posts </li></ul><ul><li>Debate </li></ul><ul><li>Hypothetical </li></ul><ul><li>Satirical </li></ul><ul><li>Memes and projects </li></ul>
  23. 26. Traffic-Attracting Posts <ul><li>How To </li></ul><ul><li>Lists </li></ul><ul><ul><li>5 Ways to do X </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>25 Easy Kid Crafts </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Seasonal events </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How to find the best Black Friday bargains </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Using social media to honor veterans </li></ul></ul><ul><li>DIY (posts with ideas readers can implement) </li></ul>
  24. 27. exercise: write headlines for 5 types of posts that support your goals
  25. 28. content creation is only the beginning …
  26. 29. Promote Yourself & Your Blog <ul><li>Guest posting </li></ul><ul><li>Share on social media </li></ul><ul><li>Create “companion” videos on YouTube </li></ul><ul><li>SEO </li></ul><ul><li>Forums </li></ul><ul><li>Pitch other bloggers </li></ul><ul><li>Leverage other online & offline presence </li></ul><ul><li>Participate in memes and projects of others </li></ul><ul><li>Competitions and awards </li></ul><ul><li>Speak at events and workshops </li></ul><ul><li>Incentivize subscriptions </li></ul><ul><li>Interview someone/be interviewed </li></ul><ul><li>Comment on other blogs </li></ul><ul><li>Comment on readers’ blogs </li></ul>
  27. 30. tips & best practices
  28. 31. Assimilate into the Culture <ul><li>Understand the blogosphere: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Regularly read other blogs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Comment on other blogs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Read things outside your “niche” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be a good neighbor </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Link to other people’s work </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Give credit where credit is due </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be a good host </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Thank commenters and people who share your work </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t just talk about yourself Focus on your audience and building community </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Encourage participation. </li></ul></ul>
  29. 32. Writing Tips <ul><li>Plan ahead. Create a “calendar” to stay on schedule </li></ul><ul><li>Keep a list of evergreen topics handy for days when you have writer’s block </li></ul><ul><li>Ask readers/followers what topics they’re interested in </li></ul><ul><li>Posts can include photos and video. </li></ul><ul><li>Invite guest posters on your own site </li></ul><ul><li>Develop a habit </li></ul>
  30. 33. questions?
  31. 34. Heather Whaling • @prTini [email_address] subscribe to my blog: connect on Facebook: Collaboration. Integration. Social Good.