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How to Start A Successful Blog in 2021

As the Internet continues to unleash a multitude of opportunities for us, there are more and more people who want to dive into blogging. Over the years, blogging has come a long way—it has shifted from a channel for you to express yourself freely online to a lucrative full-time business. The blogosphere has progressed rapidly, and now people are blogging or would like to start blogging for many different reasons.

Whether you are a business employee, a budding entrepreneur, a creative writer, or someone who just simply wants to express his/her passion for a certain subject, you may already have realized the numerous benefits of blogging. However, getting a blog off the ground sounds intimidating and overwhelming. While blogging remains a famous medium wherein you can share your ideas and thoughts, there are still a lot of people who struggle to start with creating their blog.

Today, we will attempt to put an end to your doubts about starting your blog. In this article, we will answer the most commonly asked questions about the blog—its history, the factors that make it successful, how can you make yours successful, and the steps you should take to jumpstart your blogging journey.

What is a blog?

How To Start A Successful Blog in 2021?

Originally curated from the terms “web” and “log,” a blog is a collection of a person’s thoughts, ideas, experiences, and more located on a website. Although a blog is usually made up of a written article, many bloggers are experimenting with various media today and blogging techniques. From being an all-text page, a blog can now contain pictures, videos, animated GIFs, and other forms of media.

The first blogs were published around 1994 and 1995. It served as online journals wherein many individuals post updates about their personal lives, ideas, thoughts, and random experiences related to their careers, studies, family life, and other topics. Blogging gained its reputation as a creative way of documenting one’s thoughts around 1996 and 1997, while its popularity took place during the early 2000s. According to a list curated by Jesse James Garrett, a User Experience Designer, there were roughly 23 blogs on the Internet in 1999. Seven years later, 50 million blogs were already published according to Technorati’s State off the Blogosphere report.

While certain blogs remain for personal use, many businesses now utilize its potential to expand their brand visibility online. Today, blogs serve as online destinations for news, events, and information in a particular niche. These mere pages have become a powerful method for bloggers, entrepreneurs, and other professionals to grow an audience and make money online in exchange for the valuable information they provide for their readers, customers, and prospects.

Why do people blog?

People are driven by various motivations—some just want an online creative outlet, some want to market their products, while several people want to share their expertise to the public. Nevertheless, blogging gives anyone the avenue to connect with like-minded individuals who possess the same passions.

Here are some reasons why people blog:

1. For personal use

Many people blog to express and share their passions and experiences in life, treating it as their online journal of some sort. For instance, if you are passionate about food, you can share your thoughts online through your blog.

Some people use blogging as a way to refine their writing skills—they write and produce content regularly, which gives them plenty of opportunities to analyze and proofread their writings.

2. To impart knowledge

Blogging serves as a free, online avenue for those who are passionate about teaching others regarding their respective fields of expertise. Through blogs, they can impart valuable knowledge to their specific audiences. What is even greater about blogging is that an educational blogger can monetize his blog by crafting educational content, products, and services online.

3. To boost business’ online presence

By providing relevant and valuable information to your audience and prospects, blogging can be a powerful way to build brand awareness. It is an inexpensive way for small and big businesses to drive traffic to their website, attract prospects, build and strengthen relationships with new and existing customers, and encourage the purchase of goods and/or services.

4. To build an online portfolio

Blogging serves as an excellent tool for authors and writers to build an online portfolio. Written blogs are a testament to a blogger’s writing skills and blogging techniques; hence, writers can use their online portfolios to increase their exposure in their respective fields, which can help them land new clients.

5. To make money online

With the Internet taking over a huge part of our lives, people have made it possible to make money online. There are a multitude of ways to make money online, and blogging is one of them. For some people, blogging is not a hobby, rather a profitable online business. People who take blogging as a business often center their content on a specific niche to target a specific target market, attract potential partners and produce sponsored posts. Blogging is also a way for online freelancers to promote their skills and services. Virtual Assistants in the Philippines create their blogs to showcase their talents and even share some helpful tips to beginners.

Why is blogging still popular these days?

How To Start A Successful Blog in 2021?

Blogging has been making waves since the late 1990s. Will it still be relevant this 2021?

 Ever since marketers discovered the profit-yielding benefits of blogging, it will remain a popular way to share ideas, expert opinions, and reviews about products and services.

Blogging remains popular for various reasons. For one thing, blogging provides limitless possibilities—it is people’s free creative space wherein they can express their creativity online. Also, there is a lot to learn, adapt, and experiment in the blogging world as technologies and blogging techniques continue to develop. Through blogs, communities of like-minded people emerged throughout the years. Blogging can build and strengthen relationships, thereby bringing people closer to the digital world.

 For these reasons, blogging will remain relevant this year and the succeeding years. In fact, around 409 million internet users read about 20 billion blog pages monthly, which is why 53% of marketers prioritize blogging as one of their content marketing strategies. You surely would not want to miss its benefits and opportunities. 

What makes a successful blog?

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 To build a successful blog, you must invest in the following factors and blogging techniques to drive more audiences to your blog:

1. Compelling headline

Your blog’s content would not matter if your headline is not interesting or valuable enough to get people to click and read your post. People have limited time online, with the average attention span of humans being around eight seconds, so it is best to ensure that your headline should captivate your audience within that time frame. Try using emotional words to increase the likelihood of getting your blog opened. Also, write a title that contains less than 10 words.

2. Use subheads

Subheads are utilized to divide your content into subjects, make your blog appear more organized, improve search engine optimization (SEO), and help your readers navigate through various subjects. Subheads serve as your content’s “key ideas,” which give your readers an idea of what to expect, so always include these especially when you are writing long-form posts.

3. Write informative, valuable, and engaging content

Your content is the essence of your blog post—make your audience’s time worthwhile by providing relevant, entertaining content. If you aim to establish authority, you shall write well-researched content. If you are trying to establish or deepen your relationship with your audience, you may write your post in a first-person point of view.

It is also worth noting that an effective blog possesses a personality. To stand out amongst millions of blogs online, make yours stand out through your voice. Your personality and honesty are the main factors that you will need to exercise if you want your readers to support you.

4. Be consistent

Consistency is key to success. Avoid inactivity and creating posts out of a whim. Your blog posts should be planned, well-thought-of, and scheduled. When your readers get familiar with your posting schedule, they look forward to reading more of your content.

5. Allow comments

Opening your comments section encourages discourse between your readers, attracts other readers to your blog, enhances credibility, and increases user engagement. It creates a positive effect by allowing your audience to interact with you, which helps strengthen your relationship with them. However, comments will not always be positive. Nevertheless, getting comments means that people are moved or affected by your content.

6 Simple Steps To Get Your Blog Started

 Setting up your blog is not a walk in the park, but it should not be that hard! Start your blogging journey today by following these simple steps:

Step 1: Come up with a unique domain name

 Your domain name will play an essential role in your blog because it creates a first impression on your prospects. Come up with something that will reflect your content and blog personality so your prospects can quickly tell what your blog is all about just from the name. Once you are done with the blog name, choose a domain extension. A .com domain extension is preferred, but .org or .net works as great.

Step 2: Purchase a hosting plan

 This is like renting out your own place on the Internet. Website hosting providers such as Bluehost or Siteground are both excellent hosting services that can help you get your blog off the ground.

Step 3: Install WordPress

 WordPress is a free, beginner-friendly blogging software that lets you change your blog design and hold your content. It allows you to build your website and publish content quickly even without knowing the ins and outs of coding a website. Every Bluehost or Siteground account comes with an easy WordPress installation.

Step 4: Choose a simple theme 

WordPress comes with a wide selection of free built-in themes, all of which should work great for a new blog like yours. With just a few clicks, you can change your entire design and layout. To change your theme, simply click on the “Appearance” tab located at the left menu and choose “Themes.” If you don’t like any of the built-in themes, you can easily browse through other sources of free or paid WordPress themes.

Step 5: Create a few blog posts

Now that you are done setting up your blog, it’s about time to post great content! Before you get your fingers on your keyboard, keep in mind that there are two main types of content your blog should contain: static and dynamic content.

 Static content is meant to provide readers with tools and information they need. These are content that can be accessed through a menu on your blog. Start writing and publishing content for the following static pages: Contact Page, About Page, Start Here Page, Disclaimer Page, or any page you may want to add in the header of your blog.

Meanwhile, dynamic content contains relevant information, stories, and thoughts that your blog can offer to your audience. It should supply entertaining, engaging, and informative content that should benefit your readers. Keep in mind that dynamic content should drive engagements, traffic, and keep your visitors coming back for more. Some tips for making your dynamic content engaging and appealing include providing a captivating title, a lengthy body with subheads, and beautiful, relevant images.

Step 6: Hire web developers

Running a blog can help you in many ways, but it takes a lot of time and effort to know the ropes of web development. If you wish to have a website that will take your blog to the next level, hiring talented web developers is the best way to go. We have a team of highly-skilled web developers at Brightminds PH  who will help you create an exceptional blog containing multiple plugins and features that will optimize user experience, speed, and security. Brightminds PH will help you stay ahead of the game with their knowledge about the latest web technological advancements.  

Blogging can be intimidating, but these steps should be enough to give you a head start to your blogging journey. What are you waiting for? Don’t wait for the perfect time to start your blog—the best time to do it is now!

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Build Brand Credibility Through Social Media

With the rise of digital marketing, people have started to unlock the power of social media. The customer journey has dramatically changed. Instead of heading to the brand’s website right away, people often search for them on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Developing your presence on social media is no longer an option. If you want to stand out in the overcrowded digital marketing landscape and build brand credibility with your customers, you need to join the social media bandwagon. 

You must be thinking, “Is this really necessary?” A customer-centric brand that meets them at various touchpoints builds stronger relationships with the target audience and results in brand credibility and conversion. 

To foster brand trust, you should start working on your credibility and work towards being a thought leader of the select group that your audience listens to. Want to know how to cement that brand credibility? Here’s a step by step guide on how you can build a more sincere relationship with your customers. 

Share Your Brand Story

Each brand, no matter how similar, has a distinct origin story, which people love to hear. Sharing this creates an authentic vibe from your brand. So how exactly do you tell your story?

  • Find out the pain points that your customers experience in their daily life
  • Shortlist the ones you believe could be solved by your product/service
  • Create a great story and purpose for your brand 

If there’s something that people often forget is that we all know how to tell stories. It is through stories that we relate and connect.

Form A Connection

Did you know that people are unlikely to become emotionally attached to brands unless they’ve already interacted with them via social media? The key to building brand credibility with your followers is showing that you’re human. People are social beings and want to interact with other people, not companies. 

Remind your audience that they aren’t interacting with bots on your page-they’re interacting with people. Doing so will allow them to identify with your product/service, therefore, building long-lasting brand credibility and social media presence.

How do you help them relate to your brand?

  • Be conversational
  • Speak the language of your audience
  • Convey your purpose and core values

By observing what your followers are talking about on social (e.g., What do they like about your brand? What is it missing? What are they looking for), you’ll discover how to go about your social media content. Expounding on your customer’s concerns through your content also communicates that you are listening to them.

Create compelling content

Part of building that brand credibility would be by publishing educational and engaging content that solves your customers’ problems. Taking this route will allow you to position yourself as a valuable online resource of insights that they can relate to. This content strategy will inspire them to come back to you again and again for more tips and hacks that they can use. Ensure that the language you use is written in a manner that reflects your brand voice and speaks to your audience.

To engage different audience sets, you could experiment with using multiple types of content such as infographics, FB/IG takeovers, listicles, contests, and the like. Since social media platforms are always adding new features, don’t be afraid to experiment—leverage all available features to get the most out of your captured audience or followers. There’s a possibility that the best way to tell your story (and establish brand trust) is through the newly available features of the social media platform you’re using. 

If you’re on Instagram, experiment with their new feature “Reels.” They have now incentivized users to try this out by putting at the top of the explore page. This means that if you create your brand reel, you can get more organic reach and exposure to new followers.

 For your Instagram stories, you can also try out adding polls. Stickers to encourage your audience to engage with your content. It doesn’t mean all the strategies you implement will work, but it does give you a better understanding of which type of content is effective for your brand. 

Be Consistent

Just because they’re already your followers doesn’t mean they will be forever. 4 out of 5 people would unfollow brands on social media if they rarely post or create content that is irrelevant to them. For your target audience to recognize your brand, consistency is key. Being consistent on social media allows you to strengthen your brand credibility. From the tone of voice used in your messaging to your profiles’ aesthetics, you want your customers to recognize you easily. Consistently push out content that is relevant, interesting, and insightful for your audience. 

Here are some tips on how you can be consistent online.

1. Use a tone of voice your audience can relate to

Know who your target audience is first. If your target audience is millennials, then you wouldn’t use the language of baby boomers. Aim to use a tone of voice that they can relate to and understand.

2. Curate consistent content

Ever noticed feeds where you can’t seem to pinpoint what their account is about? Learn from them, and don’t be scattered in what you post online. Show your audience that you are an expert in your field, whether it’s about career coaching or fitness training. Your goal online would be to elicit a response from your audience by creating content that they can engage with. 

3. Create an editorial calendar

Adding a posting schedule to your online strategy ensures consistency when you post your content. Make sure that you schedule each day’s posts for the different channels you are in and make sure that you stick to it. You can leverage the platform analytics as well to see which time slots are optimal for your brand and audience. Being strategic in your posting schedule, allows you to maximize your organic reach and gets you the maximum engagement possible from your audience. You can even incorporate creating scheduled series such as (e.g., Factual Fridays or Webinar Wednesdays); this way, you can give your audience content that they can look forward to.

Building brand credibility can’t be done overnight. You will need to work consistently on your social media pages to establish the credibility and social media presence of your brand. 

Provide strong customer service

In today’s era of digitalization, building a customer-centric marketing strategy is vital to succeeding online. One of the most effective ways to build brand credibility among your audience would be to deliver helpful and personalized customer service. Did you know that a happy customer tells 3 people; an unhappy customer tells 10 people?

With the rise of chatbot marketing, brands have opted to automate their community management, and there is nothing wrong with this. Some concerns are better addressed through chatbots. However, the human touch will always be preferred by customers.  Brands have forgotten that customer service is a critical part of the customer’s journey, and this touchpoint can be a break or make a deal with your audience.

So how do you ensure that your customers can connect with you and receive helpful information via your social media channels? Here are tried and tested tips on building brand credibility through customer service excellence. 

1. Update your business information

Ensure that your name, address (if applicable) business number and email are the same across all your platforms. Updating your information will reassure your customers that the contact details are consistent and that they quickly connect with you. If your contact details on Facebook versus Instagram are different, there is a chance that your customer will think that you are a scam and there goes your brand credibility. 

2. Work out a schedule for community management.

Remember that a brand is nothing without its community of brand loyalists. Make sure you create a schedule internally on what time you will check your platforms for customer concerns. If you’ve noticed some brands also create an auto-reply sharing the times, they will be online for inquiries and such. If you’ve played it by ear and have a more reactive action plan, you need to rework your strategy and create a system. 

3. Listen to your customers.

Instead of waiting for them to reach out to use, listen to what they’re saying online. In this digital age, customers leverage these channels to voice out their opinion about your brand. And, how exactly do you go about this? There are multiple social listening tools available online that can help you track product mentions (both direct and indirect). Leveraging these tools gives you the advantage of addressing both positive and negative feedback which can be used to develop brand trust. It also gives your customer the impression that you care about their concerns. 

These are some of the tools you can use for social listening:

  • Google Alerts
  • Social Mention
  • Hootsuite
  • Boardreader
  • BuzzSumo

Joining your customer’s discussion helps them resolve their concerns faster. It also allows you to build on that brand credibility because it shows that you are proactive in making their experience as hassle-free and seamless as possible. Even if there was a pain point in your service or product, if you can resolve this quickly and efficiently, you can still turn those who complained into a brand advocate through excellent customer service. 

Get others to advocate your brand online

Today’s consumer has become smarter, and traditional ads no longer work on them. With everyone sharing opinions online, they are now using this to their advantage. What does this mean for you as a brand? You need to use this behavior to establish a word-of-mouth marketing strategy. This will help you foster brand trust and strengthen the relationship between you and your audience. 

Here are some ways you can get others to advocate your brand:

1. Leverage user-generated content

Did you know that consumers are 2.4 times more likely to view user-generated content versus curated and polished content from brands? Encourage your satisfied customers to share photos of your product/service online with your branded hashtag. These are what you would call user-generated content (UGC), which are text, videos, or images created by people not influenced by the brands whatsoever. UGC is something brands love using in their social media channels primarily because it serves the purpose of communicating authentic feedback.

2. Post an online survey

This may sound very traditional, but we can assure you that surveys are still one of the most effective means of gathering information from your customers. Just because you are asking for their feedback does not mean they will always give you good ones. Don’t be afraid to share the results of your surveys online; consumers appreciate and value brand transparency. Showing case studies on how you listened to your customers and addressing their concerns will increase your brand trust. 

3. Collaborate with influencers

Influencers are experts in their niche, and they already have a captured audience that trusts their recommendations. Ensure that the influencer you would like to work with has an audience that resonates with your brand and values. You don’t just want to pick the one with the most followers; your efforts will deem useless if you aren’t talking to the right audience.

Always remember that trust equals an increase in visibility. If more people are talking about you (in a good way), this will positively impact your brand trust. 

Today’s digital landscape is ever-changing, and to be able to survive, you will need to foster an unformidable brand trust between you and your target audience. Consumers are now becoming smarter and pickier in trusting brands. It is more important now, more than ever, for you to create a future-proof branding strategy through social media. You’ll gain the trust of your target audience by creating a customer-centric brand strategy. 

If you’re ready to give your brand the ammo it needs to cut through all the noise of your competition, reach out to us at Brightminds.com.ph, and we’ll create an effective strategy for you.