Learn How to write a business plan for your blog in this post by Shawn Williamson of DoYouLiveOrSimplyExist.com.
Successful businesses create a business plan. It is a road map to establish how the business will operate, its goals, and to be a showpiece for investors when seeking funding. Probloggers can use the same technique to build a successful blog.
A blog plan, like a business plan, is important to give your blog a path to follow, rather than randomly blogging day to day and hoping for success. It will help you plan what your blog will look like and where it is going one year, two years, even five years from now.
Get out a piece of paper, or open a new document. Start with these…
Why does your blog exist? Is it purely for ego or self-expression? To generate income? To expose yourself and your writing to the world as a method of promoting other ventures? Work out why you are blogging. This will help to determine your goals for the future.
Who are you and why are you uniquely qualified to write this blog? Remember that successful blogs are personal. Blogs that reveal the lives of their writers tend to have more subscribers than blogs that reveal nothing of their writers. The statement you write here will serve to guide you in the coming months. It may help you find your blogging voice. As you grow as a blogger, you may find yourself reflecting back on who you used to be when you started and who you have become.
What are the topic areas this blog will discuss? Be just broad enough to have plenty to write about, but narrow enough to stay within your niche. It’s important to have regular topics rather than complete randomness. Readers who want to read particular topics will come back to your blog again and again. Random posting won’t build a targeted readership.
Where are you? Do you blog from a certain country or city? Do you travel as you blog? While not specifically required for a good plan, it can help readership identify with you as a “local” or a respected foreign authority.
How will you deliver your messages? Is this a one-person blog, or a multi-blogger magazine-type blog? Will you use a custom theme or modified stock theme? RSS delivery should be a must.
Will you plan your weekly topics, or just shoot from the hip? Consider an editorial calendar to plan your posting schedule, not only through the week, but through the year as well. Having a calendar of upcoming events and holidays makes sure you aren’t scrambling at the last minute for that special St. Patrick’s day entry. :)
If you want to invite guest posts, I suggest having a basic editorial calendar available so a guest blogger can see if you will be covering a subject which they may be interested in writing.
With the basic questions out of the way, now it time to address specifics of how you will succeed.
If you hope to generate income from your blog, you will need to address how you will monetize. Some methods are expected, but don’t forget to brainstorm for other ideas.
Many business start with the end in mind. What does the endgame of your blog look like? Do you plan to blog until you are in your 90’s? Or until blogs become unpopular? Or maybe you plan to sell your blog when it reaches the pinnacle of it’s popularity?
Having the end in mind will guide how you will build your blog. For example, if you end goal is to sell, how will you extricate yourself from your blog after the sale? Will it be a sudden shift of writers or will you stay onboard for a while? If you know you want to sell and need to extricate yourself easily, maybe you would build the blog using many guest writers, or even write under a pseudonym which another writer can take over.
Building the roadmap
Once you have laid the foundation for your blog business, the day to day operations, topics and goals should be much easier.
Shawn Williamson is a Salt Lake City writer who found that he has squandered most of his days by living on autopilot. He documents his journey of escaping the rat race at DoYouLiveOrSimplyExist.com. His writing has attracted an astounding 8 subscribers. Visitors are always welcome.