Hello prospective mom bloggers! When I decided I wanted to start a mom blog I was overwhelmed by the amount of information available online. I found a couple of free courses, read countless articles, and saved blogging pins like it was nobody’s business. Ultimately, I ended up starting my blog and then putting it on hold for a few months. I was completely overrun with information to the point where I thought it was too complicated a task to take on. Now that I have been up and running for a couple of months, I realize that it really doesn’t have to be!
How to Start a Mom Blog: A Beginners Perspective
Decide What You Want to Blog About
All of the articles I was reading talked about finding your niche. While I agree it is important to have a focus, the resources I was looking at all made it sound like you had to pick a niche that was in high demand. I spent hours doing research to decide which niches would be most profitable before I realized that picking something for that reason defeated the purpose of blogging for me. I want to blog about the things I am passionate about and I hope that others will enjoy it enough to make it profitable. So when it comes to finding your niche, don’t complicate it. What do you feel passionate about? What topic or theme can you write for days on end about? So what if the Mom Blog Market is saturated? If you create excellent content and market it correctly, you can be successful.
Create Your Brand and Your Site
Decide on a blog name and snag your website. This is something else I made into way more work than it needed to be. You want to select something that defines you and/or your blog, but not to the extent that it complicates things. Sane Momma was not my first choice. It came to me after going through many other options. Take your time on this one. Once you pick your domain, you most likely won’t want to change it later. Don’t forget to consider things like a tag line to go along with the name, what you might use as a logo, etc. While you don’t need to hash out these details immediately, sometimes thinking about these things a bit bring to light potential issues for the future.
Once you have your top options selected, check to see if your domain is available and reserve it immediately! I also recommend reserving your username on all social media platforms that you think you might use. I signed up for accounts on Pinterest and Twitter right away and added a page to my Facebook profile (though I kept it private until I was ready to unveil everything).
Where to Host Your Site
There are many options available for website hosting, but my recommendation would absolutely be to start a WordPress blog hosted through Siteground. Keep in mind that there will be a small investment to get started, though nothing compared to the cost of starting any other business. You don’t need to start with anything fancier than the Siteground start-up plan which is $3.95/month. Additionally, if you register your domain on Siteground when you sign up, it’s $14.95 for an entire year. WordPress doesn’t cost anything and it integrates right into your Siteground admin site.
Write Your Content
Before you release your blog to the world, make sure they have something to read! I️ recommend starting with at least 5 posts. I️ always try to rotate my topics, all within the same general subject area. One post may be focused more on self-care for moms, the next on parenting, and then one on marriage. Not only does it prevent users from getting bored but it gives you the chance to reach a larger audience.
Try to think about things that would be useful for your target audience. For example, my audience will likely be interested in parenting, but they also might want to start a mom blog just like I did (thus the need for this article). I also wrote up an introduction post to announce my blog called Welcome to Sane Momma. This was helpful when it came to time to sharing the blog on social media as it provided a nice segway into my more serious content.
Once you have your content written, you will want to create media for each post. This can be done using stock photos (I use Pexels for free stock photos), your own photography, or no photos at all if you prefer to stick with basic graphic design instead. I️ make a little media package for each post. I create an image to use as my featured image on my website (what you see before you click on the article to read it), images customized for each social media platform (Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.) and an image to go in the post (I️ usually use my Pinterest image for this so that people can easily pin the post). This can all easily be done for free using Canva, which I absolutely love! The drag and drop editing style makes it easy for anyone to create professional designs in minutes!
Design Your Site
WordPress makes it so easy to design a beautiful website. You can pick from many free themes to get started and then customize it to for your exact needs. For those of you who need a little extra guidance, there are plenty of resources online if you do a google search or look on Pinterest. My favorite resource so far has been www.startamomblog.com. There is a wealth of information available; however, it can be overwhelming. Personally, I️ just took my time exploring the options and previewing and I accomplished a lot more than I thought I could. You can always tweak things as you go along. Just make sure your readers can easily access your content and that your site looks presentable. Once you have things up and running you will have more time to focus on the details.
Prep for Subscribers
It may seem early to start thinking about subscribers but you’ll be glad you did when you finally get one and you don’t have to stress about what to do with them. Make sure you have signed up for an email marketing service and set up some basics. I️ highly recommend MailChimp. They have all the features you need to get started at your first 2000 subscribers are free!
Within MailChimp you can set up the subscriber sign up forms, welcome emails and RSS Feed emails (emails that go out every time you write a new post). Automation is free so once you set everything up you won’t have to do anything for new subscribers. The system will do it all for you! Make sure to test out all of your emails on yourself first. Mailchimp has excellent support if you need help figuring out how to do anything – not to mention the wealth of articles online.
Update Your Social Media Platforms
Ok, your site is up and running. Your fresh content is posted. You are prepared for all the subscribers the World Wide Web throws your way. It seems like the next step would be to share it with the everyone. But there’s just one more step!
At this point you most likely haven’t received much, if any, traffic. Social media is a huge factor in obtaining blog traffic so you want to make sure you do it right. Login to each of the social media platforms you signed up for and update all the little details, particularly your profile. Look at each one from the perspective of a new visitor. Is it easy for them to find your website address? And if they do, does your bio make them want to click it?
If you haven’t already created a logo in Canva, I️ recommend doing so now. You will want to make sure it is added to your website, of course. Then, you can use it as your profile image across all of your different platforms. This will help with branding and will look much more professional than a personal photo of yourself.
Just like you did with your blog itself, you will want to make sure that your social media pages aren’t bare. Start by adding your recent posts, and sharing some content from others that is relevant to the readers in your niche. Make sure that you sign up or convert to a business account on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Additionally, Pinterest has something called Rich Pins that you should apply for ASAP. It makes your pins look much more professional.
Promote, Promote, Promote!
So, you’re ready to share your blog with the world. Before you do, make sure you are ready to work. Once you start up on social media, you will want to make sure you are not only providing new content on your site, but also posting on each social media platform regularly. If someone comments on your blog, you want to reply to them, and the same goes for social media. If you really want to get traffic to you blog, you can sign up for group boards on Pinterest, or groups in Facebook, both of which can be extremely helpful but will require more of your time as well.
Social Media Schedulers
In the interest of saving time, there are a few good options out there to help. In regard to Twitter and Facebook, HootSuite is a free service that allows you to schedule posts in advance. The free version is limited but it does give you the ability to manage all three platforms in one place and get all of your posts planned out in one sitting.
When it comes to Pinterest, there are really only two good options: Tailwind and BoardBooster. I️ tend to lean toward Tailwind because it is a Pinterest partner, but other swear by the BoardBooster looping feature, which essentially recycles your pins for you. I️ haven’t tried BoardBooster so I️ can’t speak to that, but I️ can touch on Tailwind a bit.
Tailwind allows you to schedule pins out for the week all at once. They suggest the best times for you to post based on your boards’ specific activity but you can customize your times as much as you like. There is a free trial for your first 100 pins and after that it’s $15 each month or $120 for the year with unlimited pins on the yearly plan. Being a Stay at Home Mom who can’t find the time to be on Pinterest all day, I️ can honestly say that Tailwind is the one paid service I️ think even new bloggers should get. Pinterest is a huge source of traffic for most bloggers and in my opinion it’s worth it to pay a small fee and know that it is taken care of.
Now that you are officially up and running, you need to tend to your readers above all else. Keep creating quality content (I recommend at least one new post a week), stay active on social media, and pay attention to your results. Did your post about your kid’s birthday party get 100 repins? Did your latest recipe post get lost in the shuffle? Maybe focus more on parenting, or evaluate your recipe post for possible improvements. Now is also the time to hone in on all of those details you tried not to get wrapped up in when you first decided to start a mom blog. Try out some new themes, learn more about the plug-ins available on WordPress, and go back through and customize things even further.
After you start to get some traffic, you might be interested in looking into monetizing your blog. I am still new to this but I plan to post an article with my methods on this as well. If you want to follow me on my new mom blogger journey, subscribe below!
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