You’ve all heard about the bloggers who have risen to stardom by writing a few words or making a short video. The truth is, it’s unlikely that it’s going to happen to you unless you’re publishing content that’s outrageous or unlike any other. However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t make a very tasty figure from your blogging skills.
More and more bloggers are monetising their blogs and turning it into a nice little side income to fall back on - but can it really be a business that you can live from? Of course it can! If the idea of doing what you love the most (blogging) sounds like heaven to you, then take a look at these 7 things you need to do to make your blog work as a business.
Give your readers/viewers a reason to come to you
So, unless you’re a celebrity that’s writing their very own blog, it’s unlikely that people will click on your links just to read about your day, or what little Jimmy did this week. While you may have some avid followers who are interested in catching up on your life, it’s not going to pay the bills.
While you should totally carry on letting your readers have a personal insight into your life, you need to be offering them something in return for coming to your blog. So, perhaps you’re really good at graphic design and have made some examples of your work - people will come to you for advice on how they can do it, or even with interest of buying it from you.
That’s when you’re in. You can then sell yourself and your products, while having a decent amount of readership and something nice for people to look at. Here are some ways to attract people to your blog:
Run a competition. Nobody can resist something for free. Now, you have to abide by the rules of sharing on social media, but your fans will often share your post in hope that they are chosen as the winner. The bigger the prize - the more entries - the more exposure.
Offer them something for free. Going back to the example of being a graphic designer, you could offer your readers a free downloadable image that you’ve created that they can use on your blog. In return, all they have to do is enter their email address. From there on, you’re able to email them updates on your blog which will bring them back to you. Just remember to make sure that you’re complying with the new GDPR rules.
Invest into your business
A simple but true fact in the world of business is that you need to spend money to make money. This is no different for your blog. While you may have already invested in your domain name and self hosting, there’s a bunch of other things that could totally help your blog exel as a business. Check it out:
Paying a professional to design your blog will make you seem more legitimate as a business and impress your readers even more.
Spending a little bit more on your photography and video equipment will make all of the difference, and your readers will see it too.
Training that will help you run your blog as it should be...a business. You will need to keep track of earnings, viewers, and other metrics to do with your blog. Microsoft Access has a whole range of different tools that can help you do just that. Microsoft Access can be tricky to learn. In-person training courses can lead to better results. So it’s definitely worth investing in training that could help you further your business.
SEO, SEO, SEO
If there’s one thing that will help your blog grow more than anything else, it’s SEO (search engine optimisation). Now, if you’re using WordPress as your hosting platform, you could install a handy plugin called Yoast that can help you utilise the use of SEO. It gives you tips and tricks on how to improve your writing so that your post is more likely to rank higher in search engine results. The plugin is free, and works just fine but if you wanted to ramp things up a bit, it’s definitely worth buying the premium version so that you’re able to step up your game and your business with your SEO skills. It’s also worth reading up on the ins and outs of SEO to get a better understanding of it.
Spend time learning social media algorithms
Social media is one of your best friends whether you’re blogging for fun or for a business. The rate in which a piece of information can be shared is staggering, so to help your business, learn the social media algorithms to find out when is best to post on each social media platform. You can read useful articles on this, or even use the process of trial and error. Just don’t forget to record your stats!
Join groups or networks of like minded bloggers
While you want people to come to your blog rather than anyone else’s, there’s still hundreds of thousands of other bloggers just like you, trying to make it big with their blog. Rather than stand against them, join a community and rise each other up to be the best that you can be!
Attend events that can improve your strategies
Quite often there are events such as blog camp held by Sally Whittle and a bunch of other brilliantly minded bloggers to help those who want to learn more about the industry that they are in. Look out for and attend these events so that you can learn as much as possible and apply it to your blog!
Put together game plans
Finally, when you’re blogging for fun you just sort of, well, post whenever you’ve got something to write about. When it’s your business, you will need to plan weeks ahead of yourself so that you don’t fall behind and lose readers. Buy yourself a handy little diary to write down any ideas, and schedule things like a photoshoot for one of your posts, or even the time to review an item that you’ve been sent.
Doing all of this will ramp up your business strategies and leave you wishing that you’d known it all before! Good luck with your enterprise!