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Small Business Marketing With Blogs 101

This is a guest post written by Ryan Imel at Theme Playground.

Usually the most difficult part of any endeavor is the beginning. How to start? Entrepreneurs are faced with this issues constantly, and can find an answer a few different ways. For beginning a client project, I find Basecamp useful, for business plans some enjoy PlanHQ. Unfortunately there isn’t a nifty little program to help you through the process of business blogging (yet). Hopefully this simple little guide will get you out and on your way.

Hire a Know-it-all to Setup Your Blog

This is necessarily the first place to start. You have to have a blog to begin, even if you write some posts before it’s ready to go live (highly suggested). If you don’t know anything about the process at all, grab on to these ideas as tightly as you can. If you do, well, you can probably skip this step.

Things to Remember When Setting Up

  • Use WordPress. WordPress is arguably the best blogging platform available. Themes make updating your design a piece of cake, the system is easy to use, and it’s very flexible and scalable for growth.
  • Know what you want. When you get in touch with your designer, you will want to have available as much information as possible. Make it easy on your designer, and s/he will make it easier on you.
  • Grab your own domain. Don’t settle for a WordPress.com domain or a Blogger.com domain. You will regret it in the end. Grab a great deal from HostGator, GoDaddy or Doreo and get moving. Spending money is okay at this stage – if you do it right you won’t have to spend more undoing and redoing later.

Keep Yourself Accountable: Set Up a Blogging Schedule

The most important part about blogging is the actual writing process. And the only way to keep this going on a consistent basis is to make yourself accountable. How do you keep yourself accountable? For some of us it’s a planner or calendar, for others our wives. Any one of these ideas are great.

  • Get others invovled. If someone else is included in your blogging venture, odds are it has a better chance of surviving. Having others around will keep your morale up, make productivity easier to maintain, and give you someone (or many others) to bounce ideas off of.
  • Keep a calendar. If the Backpack calendar works for you, use it. If Google Calendar is better, go for it. Or use 30 Boxes. Or iCalendar. Or Outlook. There’s a reason there are so many calendar systems out there: it seems to work. If you’ve never tried before, attempt to train yourself. If you have and it didn’t work, well, try one of these other ideas.
  • Get involved with your readers. Honestly, the quicker you can get in touch with those who are reading your writing, the more often you will want to write. And feel free to state on your blog how often you plan to write. This will keep you on your toes, even if only so you don’t disappoint loyal readers.

Tear Your Thoughts Apart

You have more to say than you think. In fact, each one of those little thoughts is worthy of filling a blog post. Sometimes even those little thoughts can be broken down into even smaller thoughts for more posts. Carry a notebook or pad with you and write those ideas down. Use them, link back and forth to them, and watch the long tail take effect.



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