Tag Archives: Canva

New Blog in 2015?

Quote for Today: “A blog is only as interesting as the interest shown in others.” Lee Odden

December is traditionally a time when we reflect on our achievements and highlights from the previous year. Along with reflections from the past comes fresh ideas about the possibilities in the new year. It is an exciting time to ponder new business possibilities and begin setting goals for the new year.

There has been much hype about blogging as a business in the past year. So much, that you would think everyone needs a space in the blogosphere. From brick and mortar store (brand) blogs to the sharing of journals and diaries, it seems everyone should have a web presence.

The Popularity of Blogs

According to Wikipedia, “On 20 February 2014, there were around 172 million Tumblr and 75.8 million WordPress blogs in existence worldwide. According to critics and other bloggers, Blogger is the most popular blogging service used today, however Blogger does not offer public statistics. Technorati has 1.3 million blogs as of February 22, 2014.” The number of new blogs has continued climbing throughout the year. For an idea of the number of posts made daily, check Worldometers for some calculations in real time.

Today, it is common for business web-sites to include a blog to inform the public about their offerings, special events, brand and etc. These are the exception to the business of a blog website. If the idea of starting your own blog is crossing your mind – this post is for you.

My New Blog, Carolyn Bowen, The Writing LifeBusiness Planning

First, ask the question, Why do you want to write a blog? When the idea surfaces its common to think that it will be easy writing about something you enjoy doing and you will make lots of money sharing your knowledge plus there’s always affiliate or other marketing options – right? Although there are web-sites that do generate substantial revenue, the masses fall at the other end of the spectrum. However, if you are satisfied with your reasons for creating a blog, it’s time to move forward.

Treat your blog the same as if it was any other new business you are opening. I know it’s easy to think, well I’ll be doing it all and from anywhere I choose. Indeed, bloggers do not only produce content to post on their blogs, but also build social relations with their readers and other bloggers. For this, you need a well researched business plan that will help you find your niche, know your competition, costs for delivery, maintenance, domain and social media marketing as well as expansion.

 The Writing Life, Carolyn M. Bowen, BloggingYou will need to consider which platform you will use to establish your web domain. Hosted vs standalone blog platforms? Hosted blog platforms like Blogger, WordPress, GoDaddy and many more or whether you should go for a stand alone platform that you host on your own domain and server like WordPress.org or others. I have tried it both ways, hosted and standalone and the greatest difference for two of the web-sites was a standalone using BlueHost with WordPress for creating posts. However, with the right SEO and content any of the above will accomplish the same results. You can always start with the basics like this web-site and work your way up. It’s all about how much time and money you want to put into it. And, for me and hopefully for you – time is money.

Social Media Icons, The Writng Life
Social Media

There are platforms that provide free hosting to help get you started. However, if you want your posts to be seen by the masses you are going to need some SEO help whether you do it yourself or hire someone else. In addition, to help your posts fly and enjoy higher visibility you need social media sites where potential readers hang-out. Check the demographics and the interests of major social sites before creating a profile. Make sure it will be a good fit with folks of common interests in your topics. Then take it slowly, building your following on 2-3 major social sites at the time. The key here is building relationships and engaging with your followers. For business planning, consider your time and budget for promoting your social media site.

Pictures are worth a thousand words

The Writing Life, CMBowenWhether or not you snap your own pictures for your blog and social media posts you will need to have an idea about the costs for apps to help you customize your designs unless you are an accomplished graphic artists. Although I do enjoy using some apps like Canva for they provide an assortment of photos to select from, I have also purchased photos from stock companies and then customized them using another source. Key thought – know what you should budget for marketing your new business.

This is not at all an inclusive listing for planning your blog start-up, but rather some notes to direct you in making decisions. The year 2015 could be your breakthrough year, I hope you will use your time, energy and money wisely. Wishing you the success you deserve. Carolyn

#Unpaid Ad

###

Social Media Tips for Writers

Thought for today: “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
Maya Angelou

http://www.postplanner.com/

I am a writer and have a passion for writing. Today’s writer wears more than one hat for it is important to know how to market your books too. In addition, it is not uncommon for many writers to hold other employment as well. Marketing is my other passion. So, time is of the essence.

For marketing, many hours of a day are spent on a variety of social media sites updating fans with latest writing news, inspiring others to achieve their dreams, and connecting on a personal basis. So when do you have time to work on new material?

I have found that prioritizing my goals for the day is helpful. I like to wake early in the morning and work on my manuscripts for new books. It’s a great time when my mind is fresh and thoughts come together easier for stories. Even though I have an urge to check my email’s and tune in to my social network, I attempt to stay focused on my writing. When my mind is set – most times I win.

In the search for social media applications that will make my life run smoother, I found two that standout for their easy use and refreshing content – Canva and Post Planner. What’s so great about both of them is that you can try them for free. Once you see the results you can subscribe or not. I enjoy the benefits of using my own content or theirs from pictures, quotes to relevant articles. These applications provide me with the opportunity to do more of what I love – writing and forming relationships with those of similar interests. Yes, I love content writing that is pertinent within the scope of my interests. And, you can see I do a lot of it. Yet, a little help is always welcome when wearing several hats. You may want to try these too.

Do you have favorite digital applications for sharing on social media? Share your time saving tips with me. Streamlining frees us to focus on what’s more important in life. I’d like to get to know you. Let’s connect on Google Plus,  Facebook and Twitter. Carolyn 

Unpaid Advertisement

###