You have made the most important step in starting your new blog: taking the first step. While others have dreamed of blogging and continued flipping the channels, you are here learning what you need to be successful. Great Job!
Benjamin Franklin famously said, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” and that is the topic of this blog post.
There is a lot of excitement right now as you start your blogging adventure and it is important to keep in mind that you could be blogging for the next 3, 5, 10, or even 20 years. If you don’t set the foundation correctly you will spend a lot of time trying to get on track.
So, how do we create a solid foundation? Set goals and check in on them frequently.
Are you looking to make money and quit your day job?
Looking to share your passion with the world?
Looking to document your travel adventures?
If you haven’t already, think about what you want out of your blog and write it down.
For GoStartABlog, we had a lot of ideas about what we could build and which type of people we wanted to help. In the end, we came up with:
We are making GoStartABlog... to share our passion and experience with new bloggers to help them succeed.
Think about what your blog will look life if you are successful.
This is very different for each person that joins us on GoStartABlog. Everyone has their own motivation and goals for their blog.
You want this to be specific enough that you can picture it when you close your eyes. Avoid over-arching statements like ‘I want to be successful’. How will you know when you got there?
For GoStartABlog, we came up with this simple, concise statement:
GoStartABlog will be the #1 resource for new bloggers looking to start their blog.
Seems like a lofty goal, right?
It is, but we 100% believe we can get there.
You don’t want to set your expectations too high or you won’t believe yourself. Ensure that whatever successful looks like to you is something you actually believe you can accomplish.
Now that you know what your blog will look like when it is successful, what does it look like 365 days from now? Where do you want it to be? Where do you want yourself to be?
You may have heard of the S.M.A.R.T. technique for goal setting. It isn’t a great fit in all cases, but when starting your first blog it works wonders.
If you haven’t heard about it, here is the high-level information. You create a one sentence goal that follows these rules:
Specific - Your goal needs to be specific enough that you can picture and plan for it.
Measurable - Your goal needs to be measurable so you know when you reached it.
Attainable - You need to believe the goal is reachable. Don’t shoot for the moon if you don’t believe you can get there.
Relevant - Do you actually want this goal? Or, do you think you should have this goal? Come up with something you really believe in.
Time Based - Your goal should have a timeframe so you know when to check back in on it.
At GoStartABlog we went through this same exercise and came up with:
Each year, GoStartABlog will help 1,000 new bloggers start their blogs and feel confident blogging on their own.
Specific: We have a specific result. We want to help new bloggers start their blogs.
Measurable: We have a specific number of people we want to help.
Attainable: Although we are going to have to work hard to help that many people we absolutely believe we can do it.
Relevant: We love blogging and teaching other people. It is a perfect fit for us.
Time Based: We have a time frame in our goal so we know when to check back in
I still have the first goal statements I made for my first blog and I wanted to share them with you:
What do I want out of my blog?
Share my local experiences with others.
What does successful look like?
People choose my blog to help them find great, inexpensive dining experiences.
What is my goal this year?
I want to write one blog post a week where I review a restaurant or talk about a food related topic.
Did it work?
Yes! That year I ended up writing over 100 blog posts and over 10,000 people visited my blog. It took some hard work, but I got to where I wanted to go by writing it down and checking them frequently.
Take some time and really think about what you want out of your blog. It doesn’t have to be something extreme or time-consuming, but it is important that you put yourself in a position to be successful.
Writing down what you want and measuring your progress is a great way to stay on track.
Congratulations on getting through our free guide and setting up your blog!
If you are new to blogging, new to WordPress, or just want an extra helping hand as you continue your blog, check out our Blogging 101 Course.
We will walk you through:
We have helped hundreds of new bloggers get off to a successful start through our course and we can help you too.