So, I made it. This is the second post.
It was tough to get my ass out of bed each day to finally sit down to write this post.
After the introductory post I had a hard time figuring out:
What should I be writing next?
I was confused, what to start with?
But, finally I made up my mind, “I want to start with the pretty basics”.
And as my target audience is the newbies in online marketing and blogging, so I thought why not start from the very beginning.
So, this is what you’re going to read today?
- How is blogging different from normal writing?
- What do you need to know before you jump into blogging?
- How can blogging change your life?
- Do you have what it takes to be a blogger?
How is blogging different from normal writing?
A few days back one of my colleague (who has newly joined the company I am working right now) asked my boss that question.
My boss explained it to her but somehow he made it so hard to understand. I don’t know if she understood it or not.
I didn’t want to overstep and prove my boss any wrong, but that time only I thought to answer that question on my blog.
A writer and a blogger, they both write, then where’s the difference?
Well, how do I put this?
Take writing as when your grandparents used to tell you stories.
“Once upon a time there was a king. He used to live in a palace. The palace had architecture like no other in the nearby kingdoms; the sun would sparkle off the polished marble floors it had, the elevators would reach as far as one could count blah blah and so on… “
They will give you each and every detail and literally take you to the world where you can feel like being there with the characters and seeing it for yourself.
On the other side, bloggers are like, if they’re talking to some friend.
“I heard about this guy, he likes to call himself the king. He has this house with marble floors, I tell you, bloody awesome man! blah blah and so on…”
In other words, blogging is a more casual version of writing.
Writers like to stretch each point with as many words as he or she can think of and as far as it makes sense but bloggers on the other hand like to keep it short, they like to make their point with as fewer words as possible.
Yeah! Writers are expected to write in the second or third person and bloggers mostly write in the first person, using you and I.
See the example above, it’s like someone is talking straight to you.
When you’re just starting to blog, chances are high that your blog post will have typos. Even the experts sometimes make typos. And I am sure I have an ample of them.
But as a blogger, you have the opportunity to correct your typos, even if you’ve already published your post. That’s an advantage only a blogger can have.
As a writer, you are not allowed to make typos and yet if you have made some but found out later, when your book is already out and in your reader’s hand. You have no choice but to let it be and correct it in your next printing.
In short, as a blogger, you may be a little careless about your writing. But it’s always a good idea if you can avoid being that type of a blogger, that’s pretty cool… right?
So, the bottom line is, to run a blog you don’t have to be the next Stephen King; you can be just a mediocre guy who likes to talk through writing.
I hope I made my point.
What do you need to know before you jump into blogging?
Blogging is the most fascinating and exciting work I have ever come across. To be honest I never thought blogging could be taken as a career until I read about many successful blogs who eventually end up making millions.
So, if you are one of those who wants to start a blog and become a millionaire, then here are a few things you should know before you jump in.
Having a Blog doesn’t guarantee you will make money from it:
You must have seen or heard many bloggers saying they make millions from their blog. And that might be one reason why you want to start a blog too.
But they only tell you the half truth.
Keep in mind, just like any job, blogging also needs commitment.
“You have set up a blog and now you will be rich.”
Nope! My friend, it never works that way. Blogging may seem easy but it is not.
To actually make money from your blog you must have to have a big audience, which too should be relevant. Otherwise, you don’t make a dime, at all.
So, you have to provide quality content to the users first, to build your readership. And then, you should know the right way to monetize your blog.
A Successful Blog never happens overnight:
First, define to yourself what a successful blog looks like to you?
If it’s just a hobby and all you want to do is just maintain a daily journal; in straight words, if you want to keep the blog to yourself, then it’s a success every time you write something and publish it.
But if you want to
…make a second income from it.
…prove yourself to be an expert in some field, a thought leader in your space.
…share your research and case studies.
…educate people in a particular field.
…want to make a living out of it.
then, it’s not gonna happen overnight.
Without a traffic (I mean a relevant one) you’re not gonna achieve any of the above.
Except in the first case where all you need is you or a few of your family members with whom you might wanna share your daily activities with.
But if you’re serious about blogging, then, first learn to be patient and you should know how to keep yourself motivated, especially for the toughest first few months, when you might not even have your first followers.
So, don’t just rush into it.
Making a blog successful is sure time consuming and no doubt it’s tough, but it’s worth it.
Rather being too worried about the audience in the initial stage of your blogging journey, focus on making great contents that will help your readers.
That being said…
Good content is not enough.
Once you have got at least 10-15 blog posts under your belt it’s time to promote.
Coz, quality content alone is not enough for your blog to be successful, it’s gonna need the most important element; you guessed it right, an audience, that too a relevant one, otherwise it makes no sense.
If you blog about women’s fashion and the reader is a man and who has no interest in fashion, let alone women’s fashion; it won’t help, right?
That is why it is important to reach only the right audience to grow your blog.
Only an ideal readership will keep your blog alive.
So, it is important to promote your blog as soon as you have enough posts for the readers to navigate around.
Now, if you have ever wondered…
How can blogging change your life?
If you know what you’re doing then, blogging is huge for you.
Blogging can change your life in many ways.
Blogging can give you so much freedom in life that you couldn’t even dream of. You can work anytime you want. You can work from anywhere you want; given you have a computer and access to the internet.
And as you have the freedom to work from anywhere, anytime; it gives you the flexibility and freedom to travel the world on your own terms.
When you start blogging you actually unknowingly get better with your speaking as well. Blogging has this power that can, in fact, make you an influential speaker in your domain, which in turn, can propel you to greater heights.
Blogging can elevate the creative side of yours.
With time you will start to see improvements in your writing, you will suddenly be honing the creative bone of yours. You will start to learn how to play with words to express your thoughts in a much engaging way.
Blogging gives you the opportunity to make a mark in other people’s life.
If you wonder how I end up here, blogging, then you should know, I have read many blogs before I had the thought to start one of mine.
So, someone who inspired me to take this journey is actually a blogger.
And you can do that too. Just find a niche that you have expertise in and just start to write, you never know how you might change someone’s life.
Most importantly, blogging gives you the chance to meet like-minded people.
Once your blog starts to get an audience, it becomes easier for people to connect with you. They know you well by then, and if they like what you write they will share their thoughts and they might even open up to you with their own stories as well.
And here in, the process of sharing starts and you get the chance to bond with them even more.
Besides, without a network of your loyal readers and the fellow bloggers, you cannot survive the journey of blogging. You will need mentoring, support, links, mentions, referrals from other bloggers as well as from your readers.
Finally the biggest question…
Do you have what it takes to be a blogger?
If your only goal is to make money and you hate networking with people then, maybe blogging is not the right job for you. You’d probably be better off spending time pursuing something else.
Blogging cannot be about money alone, if you can’t connect with your audience in any way, then don’t expect them to listen to you.
There are approximately over 152 million blogs on the internet.
Do you think those all blogs are successful?
Of course not; only a few made it to the high ground.
The majority of them started as a hobby and eventually turned out to be more than just that.
You wonder how? They realized they can bring in a change to people’s life.
You have never come across most of the blogs on the internet and some you never will. And if you don’t write for your audience then yours will be lost just like one of them.
So, before you decide to start blogging, first find out if this is your cup of tea.
Here are a few traits I believe every blogger should have:
Some Fair Interest in Writing; Like I said, you don’t have to be the next Stephen King but if you don’t have even a little bit of interest in writing then the case is already closed; find something else you would like to do instead.
A Social Bone; you should be willing to connect with people, even if you are an introvert. I know being an introvert it’s hard to get along with people; but if you have the will, you will always try and one day you will become a master in it.
Discipline; having a lot of time to yourself can be distracting, you should have the ability to set goals and achieve them on time. If you don’t learn to discipline yourself then, days, even months will pass by and you won’t even have the first word written on paper or the notepad on your computer.
Can Accept Criticism; when you put something out there to be judged, trust me; you will get all kind of judgments, few would be cheerful, encouraging but some are gonna be rubbish or even spiteful. In such time, you should know how to combat those trolls. The best way I can suggest is, just ignore them.
A True Interest To Help; blogging is no different from any business. Whatever content you create, take that as a product and your audience as your customer. Now, if your product isn’t helping your customers in any way to solve some problem in their life, then they definitely won’t buy it (in your case, it would be reading your posts, engaging with your content).
Now I leave it to you; Do you have what it takes to be a blogger?
Blogging can be overwhelming, especially when you are just starting up.
I know that coz, this is my second post and I am already sensing a discomfort.
So, am I gonna give up?
I don’t know honestly, but I hope I won’t.
Coz, I know it’s worth it.
Here’s one final thought:
On that note, see you next Thursday; Fingers crossed.
Have I helped you anyway to decide if blogging is right for you?
Do let me know and I am open to criticism, so shoot me with whatever you have in mind.