By: Martha Pointer
When I started my first blog in 2012, I didn’t know what I was doing. Blogging was less established back then than it is now and I had to start from scratch with only a few examples to follow. Deciding to start a blog can be intimidating, so Atlantic Publishing released a guidebook on how to go about making one. Today, I want to share some of the best tips and tricks from So You Want to Start a Blog and my own experience on starting a book blog.
Choose a Platform
Unless you want to start completely from scratch with designing a website and paying for a domain (which I advise against) you’ll need to pick a blogging platform to host your site. There are a number to choose from (Blogspot, Tumblr, Wix, etc.), but I recommend WordPress, especially for a book blog. WordPress is very reader-friendly and is better than other hosts, like Blogspot, at bringing traffic to your blog — i.e., more readers. It allows for more interaction between bloggers, and after trying a few different host sites, I’ve found it’s my favorite by far.
Build Your Brand
This is probably the most exciting part of starting a blog. You’ll need to pick a web design theme, customize it to your needs, and come up with a blog name and logo. I recommend starting out with a free theme provided by the host site and using a free logo or banner maker to design your header. Pick a blog name that’s unique, catchy, and that you won’t mind sharing with other people, because that’s the first thing people will see and remember when they view your blog.
Consistency is key. Try to develop some sort of schedule for your posts so that your readers know when to expect new content and so that you can keep yourself accountable. I recommend writing posts in advance and scheduling them so that they post automatically on a specific day, especially if you have other responsibilities (which, let’s face it, we all do). Make sure you’re mixing up your content, as well. If you review a lot of books, add a feature post or recommendations list every once in awhile to keep your readers entertained and on their toes.
Interact with the Blogging Community
The best way to build readership for your blog is to read and interact with other people’s. Find other book blogs, both popular and up and coming, to read and comment on. This will help other readers find your blog (free publicity, yay!) and can also lead to you making new blogging friends. Then you can write collaboration posts with other bloggers, which will help you increase your followers and be really fun!
Share Your Posts
This last tip is so important if you want to increase your blog’s following. Share every blog post on your social media accounts (the basics are Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram). Post your book reviews on Goodreads. You might even consider making separate social media pages solely dedicated to your blog in order to streamline your brand and keep your personal life separate. Whatever you decide, make sure you share your content as much as possible so that people can find it!
Well, there you have it: five of my top tips for starting a book blog. While I tailored this post towards book blogging, these tips can actually be applied to any type of blog. So whether you want to start a book blog, a fashion blog, or something else, I hope they help! Good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor.