By June 19, 2013 Read More →

Planning your first blog post

Planning your first blog postHave you started a blog yet? Maybe you’d like to but don’t know how to get it going. Or maybe you don’t want your own blog but would like to share your experience by writing a blog post for someone else (me, for example!) but don’t have the confidence.

It’s a situation that A helps his See A Man About A Blog clients with, and that I occasionally come across with guest post writers. So here are a few tips to start you off:

What to think about before starting to write your first blog post:

What’s your objective? For most of us it’s to demonstrate we are an expert in our field. The way to do that is not by talking about ourselves, our qualifications, clients, and how wonderful our products are, but by offering helpful information that’s readable, useful and gives a flavour of our personality.

Not sure what that might be? Ask friends and colleagues what they think are the most notable features of you and your business. What is clear as mud to you is likely to be crystal clear to them. For example, they might say ‘You supply well-designed garden offices that your clients use for all sorts of interesting activities.’ Or ‘You design eye-catching web sites at a reasonable price for freelancers’.

So you could write about the factors to consider when choosing a garden office, or describe one of your more unusual builds. The web designer could talk about what makes a web site stand out, or the information you should have ready before contacting a designer.

Still stumped? Maybe you’d be better coming at it from a different angle. Have a look at the 22 Ways to Create Compelling Content When You Don’t Have a Clue infographic on A’s See a Man About a Blog. Some of the suggestions may work best once your blog is up and running (asking other people to write guest posts, for example) but there are lots of ideas you can run with straightaway.

An interview is good because once you’ve thought up some leading questions, the interviewee will provide most of the content! You may, however, need to edit for length or readability once you receive their answers.

Lists are good to get the brain cells working – 10 ways to save money setting up your home office, 5 points to remember when completing your tax returns. You can create a series of posts later by expanding on each point.

As soon as you start to get ideas, jot down notes. They don’t have to be in any order or complete sentences, just write them down in the same place and make sure they’re legible!

Keep talking
to family and friends, because they’ll often have a different perspective and give you ideas you’d never have thought of.

Read through your notes when you’ve accumulated a few and you’ll see some themes appearing. From these you can take the introduction, body and ending of the post.

Do let me know how you tackled your first post, or if you’re doing it right now and have any questions.

And don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’d like to write a guest post on a subject relevant to home workers, whether it’s a product or service you provide, or some valuable tips you’ve picked up. Readers are always telling me how useful guest posts are, so don’t miss the chance for some free PR 🙂

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4 Comments on "Planning your first blog post"

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  1. Patti Hale says:

    These are great ideas to help new bloggers get started! I use lists a lot on my website but would also suggest “how to’s”, personal stories about how you overcame a problem and articles that educates your readers on a certain topic.

    • I agree, Patti, those stories are really useful to other home workers. It’s good to have a place to share when we spend so much time working alone.

  2. Lisa says:

    I think its important to have a clear cut objective and topic before writing your first or any blog post. Just as in setting a goal it gives you something to work towards and something that gives you the ability to take specific steps to ensure you are going to reach or obtain that goal. Instead of spinning the wheels in every which direction and coming up with nothing it gives you a direction in which to drive your thoughts and words. When it comes to blogging content is king and quality content is what will compel readers to not only come to your blog but continue to come back to your blog. Good ideas and all around solid post!

    • Thanks, Lisa! Spinning wheels is a good metaphor for those times when you just can’t come up with an idea not matter how hard you try – the brain cells are whirring round but you’re going absolutely nowhere!