If you are about to start a new blog it is important to spend some up front figuring out what your goals are as that will guide every aspect of how you run your blog. One person running a business blog is likely to do things very differently from somebody writing a political blog for example. It doesn’t matter if you are starting a [p2p type=”slug” value=”7-ways-to-increase-reader-interaction-on-your-blog”]new blog[/p2p] from scratch or if you already have one; it’s always a good idea to think about your blog direction periodically.
Develop Profile of Your Target Audience
Think about who your target audience is for your blog. Are they male / female? What is their income? Are they married? Have children? Are they tech-savvy? These questions can help you develop a profile which will affect some of your blogging practices. For example, social media works well with young tech-savvy readers but might be lost on an older audience that is not comfortable with the Internet. How are your readers likely to consume your content? Younger people for example are often very busy, read lots of blogs, and try to consume a lot of information very quickly. They aren’t likely to read every word in full but will scan your posts instead. This will affect the kind of content you produce and your writing style.
Map Out Your Blog Monetization
From the outset you should try to have a clear idea of how you want to monetize your blog. For example, if you are planning on selling private advertising then you’ll need to make sure that your blog theme is designed to support the sizes and shapes of ads that you want to run.
If you are promoting something that is already in existence such as your services, or an existing business then you will want to make sure that you prominently work your promotional content into your blog seamlessly. There are some easy [p2p type=”slug” value=”rules-to-follow-to-make-money-through-your-blog”]monetization[/p2p] options such as AdSense can that slot into just about any blog and there are all sorts of sizes and shapes of ads to choose from. The question then becomes, do I place ads from the beginning or wait until I have more traffic?
My take on that subject is that if you intend to blog for money then you should start placing those ads right from the start. This gives you a chance to experiment with them while your traffic is still low and what also happens is that your readers come to expect to see ads so they don’t resist them. Putting ads on later on can be met with some hostility from regular readers who object to you suddenly trying to make money! Also, you will often pick up future advertisers from within your blog audience but if you don’t have any ads on your blog they would not even know that your blog would be a suitable place to advertise.
What Is My Brand Going To Be?
One very important thing about branding is that it is very difficult to change later on. Right from the start think about what image you are trying to project. Are you promoting yourself as a person in your blog or are you promoting your blog name as a brand within itself (i.e. Lifehacker, TechCrunch, BoingBoing)? If you are promoting yourself then think about graphics – do you have a standard avatar for yourself that you can use? Make sure you do because when you get social media right that avatar gets *everywhere*!
Moving In a New Direction with an Existing Blog?
It is not unusual to start out a blog and then later on realize that you want to change the direction it is going in. If you have an already established blog think about where it stands currently on the points mentioned above. What kind of [p2p type=”slug” value=”top-5-ways-to-make-your-audience-love-your-seo-content”]audience[/p2p] does it currently attract? Is that the audience you want? What monetization are you using and are you happy with it? Is your audience responding well to it? Finally, what image are you projecting, if any?
If you do find that you need to make some changes, don’t worry about it because it’s better to figure that out now rather than blindly going on in a direction you’re not happy with.