Blogging is a fantastic way of earning passive income, and if you’re good at it, you could end up turning it into a full-fledged career. Data shows that more than 70% of internet users read blogs.
However, it can be a daunting task to start a blog successfully. If you look on the internet, you’ll be bombarded by so much information that you might get appalled at the thought of starting a blog.
Since blogging could be a saturated space, should you start a podcast instead?
Don’t worry; we’ve gathered all the information you need in one place. Here is our expert-backed step-by-step guide on how to start a blog or podcast.
- 8 Steps To Start Your Blog
- Starting a Podcast: Step by Step Guide
- Step One: Find Your Passion
- Step Two: Building Relationships & Developing Trustworthiness
- Step Three: Selecting Your Topic
- Step Four: Doing Research
- Step Five: Recording Your First Episode
- Step Six: Scheduling Your Recording Time
- Step Seven: Editing Your Podcast
- Step Eight: Publishing Your Podcast
- Step Nine: Get Feedback
- Tips for new podcasters
8 Steps To Start Your Blog
Let’s start with blogging. Starting a blog from scratch takes a few steps, which are mentioned below:
- Choose your blog’s niche
- Pick an attractive blog name
- Purchase a web host
- Choose a blogging platform
- Personalize your blog
- Start writing
- Optimize your blog for SEO
Step One: Choose Your Blog’s Niche
Before you start a blog, you need to find a niche for it. Why? Because this will allow you to attract a very particular crowd enabling you to sell specific things, which will enable you to generate money.
There are over 600 million blogs globally, and if you don’t have a niche, you could get lost in the overcrowded market. If you already have a niche you’re passionate about; it’ll be a lot easier. However, you also need to ensure that your niche has a sizable audience that you can attract.
If you don’t already have a niche, here are some common blogging niches:
- Beauty and skincare
- Health and fitness
Step Two: Pick An Attractive Blog Name
You need to give your blog a creative and professional name that sticks. However, this can be easier said than done. When choosing a blog name, you need to keep a couple of things in mind.
Firstly, make sure that it resonates with your niche and target audience. Secondly, ensure that it’s easier to spell. Thirdly, don’t make it long as people might find it cumbersome to type.
Lastly, ensure that it reads well when it’s in a URL format. If you’re still unsure, you can use online blog name generators or a thesaurus. After you’ve decided on the name, you’ll have to register and purchase your domain.
Step Three: Purchase A Web Host
After you’ve chosen your domain, it’s time to purchase a web host. What is it? A web host stores your website files and ensures that your blog appears when people type your domain name on search engines.
Your task is to find the best web host as poor hosting can cause your blog many problems. A primary concern is your blog’s security and speed; if your blog’s speed is too slow, search engines will rank your site lower than your competitors.
There are many web hosts available, but for beginners, we recommend Bluehost; millions of users back it, and it’s known for its reliability and customer service.
Step Four: Choose A Blogging Platform
You’re done with the techy stuff now; the next step is to choose an appropriate blogging platform. There are various platforms such as Blogger, Wix, and WordPress, among others. If you’re serious about blogging, we recommend you go for WordPress.
WordPress has over 60% market share and powers more than 14% of the top websites in the world. WordPress offer’s users a lot of flexibility and has a plethora of plugins and themes for you to choose from, allowing you to set up and launch your blog quickly.
Step Five: Personalize Your Blog
Now, you need to personalize and design your blog. Firstly, you need to choose a theme. For this, you can design it yourself, use free ones available on the internet, or pay for premium templates.
Make sure you research and choose color combinations that resonate with your niche. WordPress offers a lot of customization support that can’t be fully covered in this guide. Still, the homepage settings, widgets, menus, background image, cover template, theme, and colors are essential features that need customization.
Additionally, you should consider making a logo for your blog. If it’s too much work for you, you can consider hiring a professional website designer.
Step Six: Start Writing
Now that you’re done with setting up your blog, you need to start writing. First, you must come up with your content schedule and ensure that you stick to it. Writing for a blog isn’t the same as writing for print, so you’ll have to adapt your writing style.
Incorporate a conversational tone, break up your text with subheadings and bullet points and add some images and videos to grab your readers’ attention as well.
Step Seven: Optimize Your Blog For SEO
According to a study, more than 50% of website traffic comes from organic search. This data shows how crucial it is for you to make your blog SEO-friendly.
SEO includes various techniques and tactics, and you’ll have to familiarize yourself with them if you’re serious about blogging. However, at a bare minimum, make sure that every one of your posts is Keyword optimized and add SEO meta tags when you’ve just started blogging.
Step Eight: Promote
Finally, you need to start the promotion and monetization process. Again, there are various ways for blogs to do this, and instead of sticking with just one method, you should utilize all of them.
The first thing you need to do is create awareness of your blog on social media. If you’re not on it already, ensure that you have a social media account for your blog on leading platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
You can also consider affiliate programs through which you partner up with retailers to advertise their products. On successful purchases, you’ll receive a commission. There are various affiliate programs, such as Amazon Associates.
One of the best ways to generate money through blogging is by applying for Google AdSense. However, you need to bear in mind that you’ll need to create many views, and it’s time-consuming to be approved for it.
Now let’s move onto Podcasting. Still with me?
Starting a Podcast: Step by Step Guide
Starting a podcast can seem like an overwhelming task, but you don’t have to be intimidated. This step-by-step guide will show you how to create a podcast from scratch without prior experience or knowledge of the industry.
Step One: Find Your Passion
One of the essential parts of starting a podcast is finding your passion. So what will you talk about?
Think about what you are passionate about and could share with others on an ongoing basis. Once you have established this, it’s time to move onto step two.
Step Two: Building Relationships & Developing Trustworthiness
It’s always smart for bloggers or podcasters to build relationships before they start their show just as much as any other entrepreneur would work on building a following or clientele to find success.
Social media can help create platforms where these relationships can be built if someone has not been able to reach out offline yet. In addition, developing trustworthiness is always a great way to attract new audiences as it builds credibility.
Step Three: Selecting Your Topic
After the relationships have been built and trustworthiness has been established, now comes selecting your topic for podcast content.
This step may take some time but try not to rush into decisions about what you should cover or talk about on air because this could lead to burnout quickly, which can affect future episodes of your show.
If any topics come up during conversations with friends or family members that seem interesting enough and worth an episode, note them down somewhere, so they don’t get forgotten later. It’s better than having regrets later!
Step Four: Doing Research
The next thing to do is find out who in the world of podcasting has done something relevant to your interests and explore what they have created-you’ll be able to use these examples for inspiration throughout this process!
Step Five: Recording Your First Episode
Now that you’ve come up with a topic, found some people/podcasts related to it, you’re ready to start recording episodes of your show!
Don’t worry about expensive mics and gears. All that matters is whether your content has any value for the listener.
The only requirement? A microphone (which can even be on your phone!), so make sure you get one before getting started. You might also want some headphones, a USB cable to connect your device, and the computer you’re recording on.
It’s also essential that you get some sort of audio editing software-there are plenty out there, including Audacity, which is free!
Step Six: Scheduling Your Recording Time
You’ll want to dedicate time in your week for podcasting. This can be done two ways: either by blocking off an hour or so every day where you will do this exclusively or choosing certain days of the week (say Monday through Thursday) where only one episode per week is recorded during set hours each day.
You might even find it helpful to schedule podcast recordings around other parts of your life, like commute times if they happen earlier than usual in the morning. But, again, what matters is making sure you have a scheduled time when your podcasting will be done.
The more often you record, the better chance there is of consistency and quality in your episodes.
Step Seven: Editing Your Podcast
You’ll need some editing software to edit the audio files from Audacity or whichever recording software you’re using for your podcasts.
This can range from free tools like Hindenburg Journalist (a favorite among podcasters), Adobe Audition, or GarageBand’s built-in sound editor to paid options such as Logic Pro X with its built-in Audioshare plug-ins.
The choice depends on what fits into your budget! You might also want to look at Creative Cloud Audio, which includes Soundbooth and other audio editing tools like Audition.
Step Eight: Publishing Your Podcast
Now, you’ll need to get your audio edited and uploaded for publishing on a host site. Again, there are many options, including Libsyn (my personal favorite), Podbean, Soundcloud, or hosting it yourself via WordPress with their new media uploader plugin!
The choice is yours based on what platform makes the most sense for your needs, but self-hosting will require some technical knowledge outside of this guide, so make sure you have that down before using this method.
You can also use any other service like Spreaker because all they do is provide an embed code, which means no uploading is necessary! Just paste the link into your website’s text editor and hit publish when ready. Easy peasy!
Step Nine: Get Feedback
Once you’re done recording your podcast and are ready to upload it, make sure to get feedback from a trusted friend or family member.
It’s always best to have someone else look over something before publishing-especially if this is the first time stepping out on your own like this.
After all, they’ll be the ones listening in for most of these episodes, so why not take advantage of their opinion?
So find somebody who will listen to your episode at least once through, then ask them what they think about it.
If you can’t find anyone close by, there are plenty of websites where strangers offer constructive criticism as well.
If the person gives you positive feedback with no significant complaints, then go ahead and publish your episode.
However, if they have some suggestions be sure to consider them before pushing the ‘publish button.
It’s better than having someone be mad at you because of a misunderstanding and press that unsubscribe button on their podcast app!
The person may point out something so minor that it wouldn’t even cross your mind or make sense without first hearing the whole thing.
For example: say one sentence is too long-cut it up into two sentences, or break off part of what would have been included in this sentence as its paragraph elsewhere.
In other words, pay attention to detail when an outside voice has feedback for you! You’ll thank yourself later with more listeners (and less angry people).
Tips for new podcasters
- Remember to keep it short and sweet. It’s better to have a small, focused show than one that tries to cover every topic under the sun.
- Keep your recording sessions shorter so you can release them more frequently without having a backlog of material.
- Invite guests on your podcast as often as possible for fresh content and perspectives. You don’t need many people either- just get three or four great conversations in each season, and listeners will be happy campers all summer long!
- Just make sure everything sounds great by taking care in how you record and edit each episode – sound quality is paramount if people are going to be listening (and subscribing) over long periods.
- Save recordings externally before transferring files into audio editing software like GarageBand or Audacity. This saves space on your hard drive because most computers will only allow you to have a finite amount of storage space.
- Promote from day one by providing links whenever possible, including social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter that allow you to upload images as posts (you can include a picture attachment). Continue blogging about each new podcast starting at least two weeks before the release date, but promote your latest episodes every week.
- Promote on your website, too. For example, create a podcast page with information about release dates and links to episodes for download or streaming so that people can find it without any effort at all.
You can start your blog with these easy steps, and you’ll be on your way to being a successful blogger in no time.
We’ve also provided some tips for how you can find success as an author of podcasts.
That’s it! That’s all it takes to start your blog or a podcast.
It isn’t as hard as you’d think and with a little bit of effort, you’ll start earning money in no time.
Following the steps mentioned in this guide will ensure that you set up your blog and podcast the right way quickly and efficiently.
As a dedicated SEO professional, I help businesses improve their online visibility and attract more customers through search engine optimization. Whether you’re a small local business or a large corporation, I can help improve your search rankings, drive more traffic to your website, and ultimately grow your business.Christian Tanobey