Once you decide to take the plunge, blogging can be like that fictional rabbit hole that Alice fell through in the fairy tale. There are so many facets to blogging that you can find your head spinning! Obviously the crucial element to blogging is to actually post content. But what about creating a name for yourself?
Well in the business, that's called branding. And in this article, I'll share a few handy tips with you that should clearly define your branding efforts. And after I lay out the path, the results you get will depend on your effort.
The first tip is to get yourself a good name. Rest assured, this doesn't mean that you'll need to come up with a fictitious name; your given name will do fine. But if you choose to use a screen name, make sure to go with something that's catchy. And by catchy, think in terms of a play on words or a clever spelling of a slang term. Just make sure it's unique.
Once you have your name, use it consistently. Any time you comment or share your thoughts and opinions going forward, do so under your new screen name. This will give you the momentum you need to establish a name for yourself.
Think of this as giving your blog a head start outta the box. The point here is that you want to create a digital footprint for your blog. Believe me, if you do this right, people will take notice of you across several online mediums.
Next, you'll want to establish a signature color scheme that reflects well upon your site. The aim here is to come up with a blend of colors (along with your site design) that speaks to your intended audience. If you're setting up a horror movie commentary blog, then of course a dark and bone-chilling color scheme and site design will set the mood perfectly. Get the picture?
Remember, we're talking about branding a blog here, so the tone of your writing style is crucial. Look at it this way; your written content is your product. That's what your readers will be consuming during their visits. Therefore, you must not only offer them quality content, but content that is distinctly written in your voice as well.
Be mindful that a post on cookies can be found anywhere, but your post on homemade cookie pies made from scratch is your unique creation. Or maybe your readers return for the sassy, or witty, or the tell-it-like-it-is style of your writing. It is imperative that you establish a distinctive tone to your blog in style or substance. Or both. Don't forget that your style is a primary selling point.
Now let's talk about investing into your brand. Yes, you can do it all yourself for free. And many bloggers do. But in order to stand out from the crowd on day one, consider investing in the elements that you aren't an expert in. A typical blog needs a logo, a header, a clean site design, content, SEO, a social media presence, and an auto responder with an email sequence.
Are you an expert in all of those things? Or even proficient? If your answer is no, then you may want to consider getting some outside help. Look, there's no shame in hiring folks for tasks that you have no skill in. In fact, it's definitely the smart play. And keep in mind that if you're not in a position to do it now, then do it when you are able. But for the sake of your blog, please do it.
Last, but not least, have your own site. You got to set up your own self hosted site, period. All that requires is to open up an account with a hosting company, which is no more than $10 a month. And you will also need to buy a domain name, which for a.com will also run you about $10 (although this gives you that name for a minimum of a year).
Both of these together will cost you $20 tops. But that twenty bucks puts you in business! Going the free route is risky because you'll be building an asset that you will never own. And if you are seriously committed to being a blogger, that scenario is out of the question. Self hosting your blog is the only sensible option here.
So there it is. These points are my best advice for you in terms of branding your own blog. Now I'm not saying that branding is easy, or that this is all there is to it. But if you commit to following this advice alone, I guarantee you that your site will be in a strong position to compete in whatever niche you choose.
To see an example of branding in action, visit http://freestatements.us/why-freestatements/. Here I discuss my branding strategy more in depth.
About The Author:
John Calvert (best known as FreeStateMents) is a personal blogger diligently focused on honing his craft. When he's not blogging, he's studying blogging.