6 Signs You Need to Start a Blog Right Now and What to Do Next
If you’ve heard that blogging is dead, you’ve heard the wrong information.
According to Statista, the number of bloggers in the United States alone is set to reach 31.7 million users by 2020 and continues to grow each year. And according to HubSpot, blogging is extremely lucrative and can increase your website traffic at exponential rates, which is why so many people and businesses decide to host a blog.
But how are you to know if you are ready to start a blog, or if hosting a blog will even benefit your online presence? How will you know that it’s something you should be doing or something that you’ll be good at doing? Keep reading to find out.
Six Signs You Need to Start a Blog Today
1. You are Developing a Content Marketing Strategy for Your Business
Businesses of all sizes should have a content marketing strategy and should understand the basics of content marketing if they want to be successful online. Period. And a well-rounded, successful content marketing strategy will most likely include a blog that’s regularly updated. Here’s why:
- Companies that published 16+ blog posts per month get almost 3.5 times more traffic than companies that published zero to four monthly posts, and about 4.5 times more leads than companies that published zero to four monthly posts.
- B2B companies that blogged 11+ times per month had almost three times more traffic than those blogging zero to one time per month.
- B2C companies that blogged 11+ times per month got more than four times as many leads than those that blog only four to five times per month.
2. You Enjoy Research and Writing, and You Write Well
Do you enjoy writing short posts and essays? Did you enjoy writing papers when you were in school? If you didn’t, then you will probably get burned out and not enjoy the regular writing a blog requires, even if you’re passionate about the topic. If you don’t enjoy writing and researching what you’re writing about, you might find it difficult to keep up with publishing regular blog posts. However, if you find yourself often lost in a web of information on the internet that you find fascinating or entertaining, and you love stringing sentences and written pieces together, then you’re likely ready to start a blog today.
Additionally, while some blog posts may not require much writing (e.g., video blogs, infographics, etc.), keep in mind that posts that are 2,000 words or more tend to yield the best results when compared to shorter blog posts. However, even if you don’t have great writing skills or don’t enjoy writing, that’s perfectly fine. You can still easily outsource your writing needs and host a very successful blog that you manage.
3. You Are Always Up to Date in Your Industry and Appreciate Reading Others’ Blogs
Do you already sign up for a lot of newsletters in your industry or actively seek out information about your favorite hobby or past-time? Do you already subscribe to multiple blogs that inspire you to write about topics within your own field or areas of interest? If so, you already have a wealth of information and resources to pull from and may not even know it, which will make it easy for you to start your own blog today.
The most successful blogs require research (including SEO research) and unique content with a unique voice, but you don’t have to start entirely from scratch. You can glean ideas and keywords for your new blog posts from all the current blogs and online content you already read. Simply put your own spin on them and write in your own unique voice. And if the thought of doing this energizes you, you need to start your own blog right now, because it means you have something unique to say about things people online already care about and are reading about.
4. You Love Engaging with Others Online and on Social Media
Successful bloggers realize that blogging can and should be social and that it often requires online relationship building, especially if they want to see their blogs grow or are planning to monetize them. If you think you can simply publish blog posts and leave them unattended for long stretches of time, or have no desire to engage with your blog readers or see what they say about the blog content you’re sharing, then you might not want to start a blog unless you hire outside help.
Successful bloggers often require a strong social media presence. They are members of online groups and forums and enjoy responding to others’ comments, likes, and dislikes. They also encourage others to share guest posts on their blog. And they encourage their readers to leave feedback so that they can continually improve the content they share. If you like seeing what others have to say about a topic you care about, launching a blog of your own is a great way to contribute your knowledge and ideas to the conversation.
5. You are Creative and Adore Creating Content for Others to Enjoy or Learn From
If you enjoy sharing information that genuinely helps others, whether in their professional or personal lives, then you need to start a blog—especially if you have decades of experience to share or are highly creative when solving problems. People are constantly scouring the web for blog posts that are informative and that will answer their many questions about work and life.
People also like to be entertained online. You can easily share your creative gifts–artwork, stories, or videos, for instance—with others online via blogging. First, make sure you know where your audience hangs out online and how you’ll reach them if you want your blog to be successful.
6. You’re Self-Motivated and Will Plan and Stick to a Content Calendar
Creating content and writing for your blog is the fun part about blogging. Planning and sticking to a content calendar can be challenging, especially if blogging isn’t the only thing you do for a living. If you’re self-motivated and can stick to a content schedule, then you should start a blog today.
Believe it or not, the main reason most blogs fail is that they’re abandoned way too soon or because their hosts don’t share enough content on a regular basis—not because the overall content is poor. It takes time and a solid content strategy to build a successful blog, regardless of the passing trends you hear about “viral” content. But if you put in the time and effort, you’ll see the number of subscribers to your blog and your blog’s online reach continue to grow steadily over time.
What to Do Next
Once you discover that you should start a blog, here’s what you’ll want to do next, in three steps.
Select your domain name and web hosting service. See if the web hosting service you select offers a reliable and easy-to-use content management system as well as a reliable website builder. For more detailed information, read How to Select the Best Domain Name and Hosting Service for Your Website.
Continually monitor your blog content and its results (i.e., number of leads it generates, engagement it receives, etc.). This information will tell you about your blog’s target audience, what they want to read about, what topics you should be writing about, and where you should be sharing your blog content online. And more.
For additional details on how to start your blog, especially at the beginning of the new year, read Starting a Blog in the New Year.