Very few people take a trip without a destination in mind. When we travel, good planning makes for a good trip. When it comes to blogging, there are key questions to planning an effective blog.Defining purpose, audience, and style creates a foundation for successful blogging. Click To Tweet
Purpose and niche keeps bloggers focused and consistent with content.
When I started blogging, my purpose was to discover voice, learn craft, and share inspirational thoughts. As I got started, I learned the value of having a plan and a focus.
I would have benefitted from understanding the value of defining purpose and audience. With today’s massive volume of how-to information on blogging, it is worthwhile to do some research and planning before you get started.
Six questions to build a strong foundation for your blog:
1. Why am I blogging?
Begin with the why. Effective blogging requires commitment, time, and effort. If you don’t have strong reason for writing, you won’t stick with it. Answering the why, is the cornerstone of a purposeful blog.
Purpose gives focus to blogging. Are you creating a community, teaching ideas, inspiring action, selling a product, encouraging hope, sharing truth, swaying opinion, expressing passion, or exploring ideas? A strong purpose attracts an audience. Purpose also provides motivation to keep writing on the hard days.
Motivation and purpose relates to the niche, or the topic of your blog. What are you knowledgeable about? What are your interests? Passions? Needs? In today’s world you can find a blog on nearly any topic, so choose something that you enjoy writing about.
Designate your audience. Who are you writing to? Why should they be interested in your blog? Audience relates to topic, tone, and perspective. Are you writing to men, women, or a mixed group? What is the demographic and age range of your target audience? What are their needs and interests? What will compel them to read? Understanding your audience is key to creating relevant content for your reader.
5. What 3-5 topics will I write about?
Choose 3-5 main categories for your blog. Choose topics broad enough that there are plenty of ideas in each topic. Understanding your audience is helpful in refining the scope of your content. People who read mommy blogs are not reading for technology how-to’s or stock market tips. They are looking for content that relates to parenting. Audiences of food bloggers don’t want to read political opinion or unrelated book reviews.
Brainstorm ideas that relate to your topics and are of interest to your audience. Keep a running list of possible ideas and prompts. Use your list to plan content. It can also be a resource list to overcome writer’s block. I frequently use my list of ideas to inspire my writing when I struggle with what to write about.
What is your voice? What persona will you use? Think through the personality you will present to your audience. Are you an expert on your topic? Do you want to come across as a friend or confidante? Are you marketing a product?
Whether you are starting or refining your blog, take time to build a strong foundation. Purpose, topic, audience, and personality are crucial to good blogging that appeals to readers. Click To Tweet
Which of these questions will be most helpful for you?