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Hurdles to blogging – #1 where to ‘host’ my blog?

Welcome to the first in my series about ‘Hurdles to blogging’. In this series, I am going to address your concerns and what you think are insurmountable barriers to blogging…and, hopefully, prove to you that you can make the time and reap the rewards for your business.

Setting up a blog

I think a lot of people really want to blog but finding the time seems impossible. There are two big initial hurdles – a) setting up the blog in the first place and b) writing the very first post.

I completely understand the difficulties, and I am going to offer some support to help you take these first steps into the world of blogging without too much effort.

Using Facebook or LinkedIn

This may come as a surprise to many, but you don’t even need a website to start blogging. If you have a Facebook business page already, then I would highly recommend using Facebook to start your blogging journey. You will have an instant set of readers, rather than trying to direct people to a website and getting them to subscribe (and paying out/making the effort to set up a whole website, if you don’t have one!).

To post a ‘blog-style post’ on Facebook, go to your business page (using a laptop or tablet) and select ‘Write a note’:

Write note section

Once selected, you’ll get a nice, ‘easy to use’, blank page, which prompts you to upload a photo, add a title and offers an obvious place to put your main body of content. There are basic editing tools for headings, bold, italics, bullets point, etc., as well as the functionality to add hyperlinks and insert images.

Blank note

You can save a draft, and then publish once finished (the publish button is at the bottom of the ‘sheet’). You can’t schedule publication, so it is immediate.

The post then has its own URL (web address) which you can copy and paste into a normal Facebook post to further advertise the blog post. You can also ‘pin’ blog posts to the top of your feed.

I appreciate this is quite a lot of technical information, so do just ask any questions in the comments section!

LinkedIn offers a similar function through ‘articles’ – see the couple of screenshots below.

Linkedin article1

LinkedIn write article

Blog hosts

If you are feeling more adventurous, the most popular place currently to host a blog is through a ‘build your own’ type website. These give you a basic website on which to place a blog. WordPress , Wix and SquareSpace seem to be the most popular DIY website providers, providing the option for a free site or free trial period. They offer a range of templates and a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) step-by-step process to creation. So, no need to have a degree in HTML! However, they do take time and they are by no means straightforward at times!

As you are here and can see, my own site is a WordPress and started life as a freebie! I have really enjoyed setting it up and found it not too difficult.

There are also sites such as Blogger, however my understanding is that this is for ‘just bloggers’, whereas I appreciate, as a small business owner, you are likely to want a site where you can have a homepage and a place to advertise yourself and your services, as well as have a page for your blog…like I have here.

I am very happy to share my experiences of creating a website! Just get in touch!

Adding a blog page to your own website

If you have a website already, but not one that you can personally edit or add pages to, then ask your original web designer about adding a ‘blog page’. Make sure you can edit it and publish blog posts easily and regularly…especially if you are charged for edits and changes.

I hope you find this helpful and please feel free to ask any questions!

 

 

 

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  1. […] May 4, 2017May 4, 2017 “I have no time to blog!!!” – I hear this a lot! It is often preceded by “I would love to blog but…”. I completely get it. Owning a small business is time-consuming as it is. But I also know that marketing your business, offering updates on your webpage and social media channels and remaining in your clients ‘consciousness’ is also a priority. Making time to blog doesn’t have to be as difficult as it seems. Firstly, it can be 2-3 jobs rolled in to one. If you write one blog post, it is an instant item for your next newsletter (advertising the blog post and its content), it is at least two Facebook/Twitter posts (advertising the blog) and it is a future blog post (when it can be reworked, updated and republished). Thinking about it this way can also help to make it a priority. It doesn’t have to be an ‘exactly once a month’ kind of job! I do believe blog posts need to be posted regularly but they don’t have to be written regularly. Blog posts are not always time specific. That means blogs can be written in advance – if you are hit by the writing bug then perhaps sit and compose two or three in draft. They don’t have to be perfect and they can even be reshaped or restructured to suit when you decide to finally publish them. Try to write about what interests you to start with. There is nothing worse than trying to write a blog post about something you know little about or what you have little passion for, even if you think your readers will find it of interest. Researching a topic and then writing it up is time-consuming. So, to start with, stick to accessible topics – things you know inside and out. Just because it all seems so ‘obvious’ and ‘everyday’ to you doesn’t mean your clients feel this way. For example, our local greengrocer delivers veg boxes and I am always intrigued as to how he selects what to put in the boxes each week. This is probably such an automatic task to him but I’d happily read about what produce is in season; in excess perhaps or what he wants to ‘introduce’ to his customers that week. Finally, if you really don’t have the time but are keen to have a blog then talk to me – let me do it for you! We can have short regular meetings where you talk me through what you want to say and I go away and write it up into coherent text. Even if you want to write a draft or a few bullet points, I can help edit it or add the ‘flesh’ to your outline to save you the time. Just let me know how I can help. I hope this ‘blog hurdle’ seems a little easier to conquer now. And don’t forget to check out my ‘Blog Hurdle #1’ post. […]

  2. […] hope you have seen other posts like this one in my ‘hurdles to blogging’ series. (If you sort my blog by category they are all listed under ‘Blogging’). Have […]

  3. […] #1 Where should I ‘host’ my blog? […]

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