Launch a Bad-Ass Blog in a Weekend

 

How many times have you heard that blogging is a vital part of running an online business? About a million, right? I really cannot stress enough how much blogging can help take your business from kinda-sorta-maybe-working to holy-crap-I-just-doubled-my-income. 

Blogging does so much! Like...
- Give you an outlet to show your potential clients how knowledgeable you are
- Allow you to gather emails and start building a loyal following
- Boost SEO through keyword rich text
- Help your potential clients get to know you and how you work
- Help people find you online through articles shared on social media
- Give you content to share on social media
-Create a backlog of articles for you to send to your customers with valuable information

 
 Launch a Bad-Ass Blog in a Weekend
 

Blogging is increasingly becoming more and more prevalent in business.  In fact, blogging could be a business all on its own. Think about fashion, beauty, travel, and food bloggers. They use their blogs to house sponsored posts to earn an income, but they rarely sell a physical product. 

With all that in mind, it should come as no surprise that businesses with blogs have 434% more indexed pages (source) which means that their sites are seeing higher engagement than ever. 

Alright. Have I convinced you to start blogging yet?? ;)

Good! While blogging is hard work (I'm not going to sugarcoat that) it definitely can be something you can launch in just a few days.    

 
 Its a great day to start something big | lady and company creative | mantra
 

 

Launch a Bad-Ass Blog in a Weekend

When it comes to launching a blog, it breaks down into these steps: choosing a platform, branding, site navigation, content creation, and creating an email opt-in. If you do those 5 things followed by promotion and social media shares, you will be on your way to kicking ass with pageviews and engagement!

  

Launch a Bad-Ass Blog In A Weekend:
Choose a platform

The first order of business is to lock down where you want your blog to live online. If you already have a website, just create a new page and move onto the next step. But, if you're new to the online business world, you'll need to create a brand new website. There are some excellent platforms to help you out with this.

I personally love Squarespace. In fact, because it's all I use for myself as well as my clients, it's the only one I can fully get behind. I already have a whole blog post dedicated to why I love Squarespace and you can read that here.

Now, if you are looking for a free option, you can look to places like Wordpress.com and Weebly. These options will give you a web address with a subdomain (i.e. www.yourblogname.wordpress.com) and templates to choose from. They will be slightly less customizable and come with restrictions, but, for those you just starting out, this may be the best option just to dip your toes in the water.

You can see a full list of free blogging resources here
 

Launch a Bad-Ass Blog in a Weekend:
Brand yourself

The branding for your blog includes things like: your logo, fonts, color palette, icons, and any other visual aspects of your blog/website.

You'll want to create a brand that aligns with your mission behind your blog. And there are a few ways to execute that: hire someone or do a little DIY. 

 
 Branding is what people say when you're not in the room | Lady and Company Creative | Mantra
 

Hiring someone
You babes know that I can't talk about branding without a little plug to myself #NoShame. You know, in the least yucky way possible...

I truly believe that hiring a professional to create your brand is the best way to ensure that your visuals are cohesive with your blog or business as a whole. I can totally do that for you! Whether you just need a quick logo design or a full blown branding overhaul I am your gal. Check out my prices here, and book a consultation with me here.

DIY
I understand if you'd rather try out the design side of things on your own, and will not hold it against you in the least. I know that dabbling in all the areas of your business/blog in the beginning is enticing and fun- so, go ahead, give it a whirl. 

And to make things oh so easy for you, I have created a collection of blog posts dedicated to all things branding. You can take a look at all 5 posts here and implement them within your own website! (Oh, and did I mention there's a free workweek to go along with the posts?)
 

Launch a Bad-Ass Blog in a Weekend:
Blog Sidebar

Something that every blog should have is a sexy sidebar. Not only is this prime real estate for your branding, but it's also a place for your readers to get to know you and find your content more easily.

The sidebar is shown on the side of every blog post so utilizing this space is a must! 

You can add all sorts of goodies to a sidebar, so be creative! Some of my favorite things for a blog sidebar are: your headshot, links to other content, newsletter opt-ins, Instagram feed, social media buttons, and promotions.

For more info, you can check out my blog post all about setting up an ultra sexy blog sidebar

 

Launch a Bad-Ass Blog in a Weekend:
Create Content

Alright, now that you have a place to house all your glorious content, it's now time to create some posts to fill up your feed.

 
 Launch a bad-ass blog in a weekend | Lady and Company Creative | Blog
 

Before you get to writing, sit down and think about the type of content you want to create and what topics you are going to be writing about. Do you want to create written articles? Video content? Have guest writers? Share images? 

I personally suggest having 5 posts ready on launch day- this way your readers will have multiple posts to look at and you'll have plenty of articles to share. This will help in creating social media content and scheduling future posts. Tip: always try to be ahead of the game and have blog posts scheduled to post at a later date. 

Just as important as the content within the post is it's headline/title. You can refer to this post to find some easy fill-in-the-blank blog post titles you can steal from me!

Once you have written your posts, divide them up into categories and tag them as such on your website.  Try to stick to 3-6 categories and write evenly between them.

 

Launch a Bad-Ass Blog in a Weekend:
Create an opt-in

Since your email list is the bread and butter to the growth to your business/blog, it's important to give your readers a reason to sign up for it! The fastest way to get more people on your list is to create a free thing and allow them to download it in exchange for their email!

You can do this by creating content upgrades for your blog posts (think one page worksheets, ebooks, desktop backgrounds) or by creating a super awesome downloadable that you can hook people to without the need to write another piece of content. 

You can see an example of a content upgrade in this post where I offer a free desktop background. This is directly related to the blog post and adds a little bit of extra value to the content. 

In comparison, I also have a free downloadable that adds so much value that it can stand alone without needing to be attached to a blog post: 

 
 
 

By creating an opt-in by offering something fo' free, you will result in exponentially more subscribers. In fact, I can personally tell you that the above downloadable is the reason why I had 3 months worth of inquiries for my design services before my website even launched! They work, and if you add enough value, your readers won't have a reason to not sign up!

 

Types of opt-ins include:
-workbooks
-printables
-recipe cards
-planner pages
-style guides
-cheatsheets


-checklists
-graphics
-templates
- flashcards
-quick start guide
-fill in the blank sheets

 

Once you have your free thing created, just link it up to your email service provider (you can use mailchimp for free, ladies!) and let those subs start rolling in!... ya know, after you promote it some, of course! ;)

 

Now go launch it, babe!

Thats it! 5 steps and you'll have a launch ready blog by the end of the weekend! Find yourself a blogging platform (ahem, Squarespace), get your branding in order, create a blog sidebar, write some content, and create an opt-in! Bam. Bad-Ass blog= finished. Now go rock it babe! Then, come back here and link to your new blog in the comments!