Rachel Britz spoke at our September meeting. She graciously agreed to summarize her thoughts on blogging.
My blogging journey began 8 years ago. And like many good things it fell right into my lap. It was during a season that I was being awakened to a God-sized dream of writing and speaking. I had a pastor who came alongside me and helped me hone in and develop this dream. He gave me several opportunities to share an encouraging message at church and with our women’s program.
One of my first messages was titled: Writing Your Life Psalms. While crafting the message, and digging deeper in God’s word, I remember learning about the emerging world of blogging. At this time in history, blogging was still new, but becoming a very popular medium for many people to share their gifts and talents and treasures (products) with the world. Shortly after I delivered this speech I launched my very first blog called, The Essence of Pearls.
What is a blog?
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you already know that a blog is written content posted on a webpage. The blog (or website) itself is just a tool that you will use to convey your important messages to the world. There are a million different kinds of blogs—ones that sell products, offer services, teaching blogs, newsworthy, or informational and educational blogs. And yes, even personal blogs. If you’ve considered starting one ask yourself these important questions:
1. What will my blog do?
Will your blog sell a product or service? Will your blog teach or inform? When I first started blogging: my blog was going to tell faith and inspiration stories, specifically aimed with the goal of telling stories of spiritual transformation.
2. What will my blog be called?
Your blog name should encompass your blog’s mission and should clearly articulate your blog’s purpose. Don’t hurry through the process of picking a name; it’s your brand and you want to make sure you love it and it’s something you’re going to love for years to come.
Take a week or two to consider potential names. Make a list. Ask a few trusted friends to give their input. Toss around ideas, and when you land upon ones you like, check to see if the domain name (the www website ad- dress) is available on GoDaddy.com before jumping ahead and settling on any one name. Keep in mind your pen name may be the simplest solution to a blog name.
Important note: Blog names can be federally trademarked. This means that an individual or company owns the federal rights to a particular name or phrase. Others cannot use it or you will be subject to fines and required to discontinue using the name. To be safe, search thoroughly online to make sure no one is using the name you come up with or a very similar variation of it.
3. Who are your readers?
Blogging as a tool for your God-sized dream is net merely an outlet (like many personal bloggers) but rather should be viewed as a professional service, specifically tailored to your unique niche. Yes, I know, niche marketing can feel scary. But niche marketing and knowing your specific audience is like mining for gold: Think narrow and deep. Here are some questions to help you discover your target audience:
a. What is the age and gender?
b. What are they interested in learning about?
c. What is their work? Family? Goals? Fears?
d. What problems do they face and how are you going to help them solve those problems?
For more information on receiving a personalized consultation to help you dive into the actual hands on work of setting up your real live blog consider one of my E-course blogging packages here.