Follow this 6-Month Plan to Starting a Blog to Make Money Blogging
I still remember what those first six months were like after nearly three years of running my own blogs. It’s still a full-time job to run six blogs plus freelancing and self-publishing but it’s getting easier and blog traffic is soaring.
Most new blogs don’t make it past that critical first six months though. Nearly 20 million new blogs are started each year but data from Technocrati reveals 95% aren’t updated after just six months on the web.
I wanted to share this six-month plan to starting a blog and getting over the first half year to where search traffic takes over and starts sending visitors your way. Having a plan or a focus each month will help to keep from moaning over slow site stats and giving up early. Follow the six-month plan here and be sure to check out our 10-page resource guide on how to start a blog.
Why You Should Have an Organized Blogging Plan
Planning is the key to any successful blog. A blogging plan holds you accountable and ensures that you are on track with your goals and putting your best work out there.
A blogging plan allows you to:
- Get clear on what you want to accomplish on your blog
- Build a following around a specific topic
- Use data and analytics to create the best content for your blog, social media channels, and email marketing campaigns
A blog can be a great resource for your company. It can help you reach new clients and grow your audience. Read on for some ideas on how to create a blogging plan that will work for your business.
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Think about the content you want to post each week
The purpose of your blog should be clear to you. What are you trying to achieve? Is it sharing industry best practices or are you just creating content that is relevant to your customers? Once it's clear what the blog's main goal is, everything else will fall into place.
Don't be afraid of repetition
You should not worry about repeating yourself too much if your message needs repeating in order to get through. The more people see it, the more they will understand it and the better they will remember it. This is why you should never be afraid to share your work with others because they may be able to provide you with some valuable feedback.
It is inevitable that people will go through different phases when blogging. At times, they will find content creation difficult and at other times, they will face an overload of ideas. This is why you need to have a plan for your blog so that you can bounce back easier.
Blogging is a great way to build your brand and build a customer base. However, it can be overwhelming with all the things that need to be done in order to maintain your blog and keep it current.
There are many different types of blogs out there and they can range from large corporations that have complete marketing teams to smaller bloggers who do the work on their own. No matter what size blog you have, there are some basic steps that you need to take in order for it to succeed.
Six Month Plan to Start Blogging
Most new bloggers don’t realize that running a successful blog is just like running an entire company…by yourself. You’re not only producing all the content but marketing it out, finding the right partnerships, brainstorming business development and generally trying to figure out how to make more money.
Getting started blogging can be overwhelming and when new bloggers see how much their visitor traffic is growing (or isn’t growing) in those first few months, they give up. Making money blogging is within your reach but you have to learn how to prioritize and let go during those first few months.
Each of the month’s blogging tasks in the infographic focuses on one idea, one thing you need to do to make money blogging. You actually need to be doing all these tasks every month but doing just one each month of your six-month blogging plan will help keep you focused and not worrying about doing everything at once.
Relax! Despite what some bloggers will have you believe, your visitor traffic isn’t going to do much in the first six months. Don’t expect it to surge and don’t think you’re missing anything because your blog isn’t booming. Those bloggers boasting 100,000+ visitors in a few months of starting a new blog are usually trying to sell you their blogging ‘secret’ that doesn’t exist.
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Blogging Plan Month 1:
Spend your first month laying everything out, what you’ll write about and learning how blogging works. Get website hosting and other online tools you’ll need to make everything easier. Find a few blogs within your niche that you like and study how they interact with readers and what kinds of articles are most popular.
Don’t let a bad web hosting service destroy your blog before you get started. Check out these best WordPress hosting websites for different types of blogs.
Blogging Plan Month 2:
Reach out to contacts and other bloggers for interviews and guest posts. You won’t have much traffic yet…ok, there will be crickets chirping on your site but you can reach other blogs’ readers through guest posts.
I know it sucks to write up a whole post just to give it to another blogger for a guest post but what’s the good of writing an article if nobody reads it [on your blog]? You get instant traffic and a link from a guest post which means Google gold later down the road.
Create social media profiles for your blog and start getting social. Post once a day on Facebook and LinkedIn, four or more times on Twitter and social bookmark new articles on sites like StumbleUpon and Tumblr.
Blogging Plan Month 3:
Understand the ways bloggers make money and put together a plan. Google Adsense is easy to start but you’ll make less than $0.01 per page view. Affiliate sales and your own products take longer but you can make much more.
Making money blogging is a constant tradeoff between building traffic and monetization. You have to be constantly writing content, promoting it out and then learning how to make money off that content. It’s the only strategy that works to make money off a blog.
Blogging Plan Month 4:
There’s no ‘secret’ to blogging but there are some tricks you need to know. Learn how to get Google love with on-page SEO by making your articles stand out to the world’s largest search engine.
We covered on-page SEO in our start a blog resource guide but there’s another type of SEO you need to work on as well. Off-page SEO is about getting links from other websites to really rank in search. Check out three of my favorite link-building strategies and how I landed more than 50 high-quality links from .edu sites.
Start republishing your articles after they’ve had a chance to rank, improving the material and boosting your search rankings.
Blogging Plan Month 5:
Even the success I’ve had blogging, I couldn’t have done it without self-publishing and freelancing. You’ll find faster money in those two sources and a great way to supplement your blogging income when it picks up.
Start making real money blogging with self-publishing and freelance work until blog advertising kicks in. We looked at how to make money freelancing and a few websites to get you started in an earlier post.
Self-publishing accounts for half of my blogging income and I make upwards of $5,000 a month doing freelance projects.
Blogging Plan Month 6:
Don’t try to do everything yourself. Learn where to go for help including sites like Fiverr and Upwork. Outsource tasks you’re not good at and routine stuff like link-building research and sorting through junk email.
You’ll want to keep writing your own content but there are a lot of things that can help grow your blog and make money…too many for you to do yourself. For example, after I’ve posted this infographic, I’ll head over to Fiverr and pay someone $5 to bookmark it around the web which helps its search ranking and draws visitors. It would take me an hour or more to do it myself or I can spend $5 to use my time more efficiently.
There’s no perfect plan to starting a blog and this isn’t all you need to make money blogging. It will help you get over that critical first six months blogging without giving up disappointed and without falling for some of the biggest blogging problems. After six months, when Google and other sources start sending you much more traffic, you’ll start seeing your blogging income grow and can worry about all the little things to take it to the next level.
Why You Should Have an Organized Blogging Plan
Read the Entire Blogging Series
- How I Made $23K Blogging in Three Months
- How Do You Start a Blog? [Free Blogging for Beginners Course]
- Ultimate Free Blogging Course to Become a Professional Blogger
- 5 Income Streams to Make Money Blogging [How I Make $300 a day]
- Beginner Blogging Checklist: Daily, Weekly and Monthly Blogging Tasks