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Community ideas

How to start a blog

SNOW LAKE 036

If you want to start a blog, you have to think about a few things. You are going to be publishing articles and maybe photographs too. You can choose a number of ways to do it. I use WordPress, but I have used Blogger. You also have to think about who will read your blog. Who will your articles appeal to?

The original idea of a blog; a weblog, was to write a log or diary of your life and many people do that.  I decided to write and try to inform, entertain and amuse my readers with whatever knowledge I have. It was a little later that I decided to use photographs. The photography is now an important part of my blogs.

I have an international readership, over a period of 30 days readers in over 50 countries read my blogs. You might decide to appeal to local readers more; especially if you want to make money from your blog. If you want to put advertising on your blog, you can use Google AdSense on a blog powered by Blogger or on a WordPress blog on your own web space. I think selling advertising space locally might be more profitable. If your blog is targeted on local readers then local businesses might pay a reasonable fee to buy space on your blog. You can publicise your blog locally using leaflets and business cards and build up a reputation. Selling advertising space for periods of up to 12 months might be a good idea, when selling to small businesses.

Your content on a locally focused blog could include news and be something like a local magazine. You might even persuade local people to contribute to it. Local politicians might contribute, it’s in their interests to publicise what they’re doing. Most communities have their experts on particular subjects who might contribute articles. In my community, I would look for articles on gardening and DIY.

You can also add affiliate links to a blog, either as adverts in your sidebar or as links in your text. I don’t have much advertising or affiliates, but it’s worth looking at if your primary objective is to make money. A blog also gives you influence, this can be international, national or local; but you have to use it carefully. There are legal restrictions to publishing a blog, you can’t just libel people or breach copyright laws.

I publicise my blog using Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Social media is an important part of publicising now. I think if you want a lot of readers, it is better to do a blog focused more locally than internationally and you might even get the attention of local newspapers and new web sites. This post will be syndicated by a news website, local to me. That has been useful; since the YamYam has syndicated my blog, I have become aware of other local blogs and bloggers.

Finally, before you start a blog, try to think of a really cool name. I wanted one that would cover everything and one that I could involve other people in. I came up with a Zillion Ideas. This post will be published on both my WordPress blog and on a Zillion Ideas

Why not share your thoughts by making a comment?

In case you didn’t guess from my picture today; we have snow in England…

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