Questions to ask yourself before you start a blog
You should totally start a blog.
How many times has someone said this to you in the past month? Past few years?
Every time you go off on a rant, someone tells you, “You need a blog.”
People start blogs for all kinds of reasons—an online journal of sorts, somewhere to share information that they think will be helpful to people, to make money, or maybe to position themselves as an expert.
A blog is a time commitment. It’s also a lot of fun. I learned so much about myself through my blog. One of the coolest parts is always when someone emails me to tell me that something I wrote gave them an A-HA moment, or inspired them to do something they’d been putting off or gave them the courage they needed to take a leap.
Did you know that this blog started out as a plant-based (vegan) food blog that dabbled in minimal living? If you’ve been around for that long—thanks for sticking with me while I went through all of these identity changes! I used to blog under the name Barefoot Essence. This brand was about living simply, through organic, plant-based, and sustainable food.
When I stopped being plant-based, having a vegan food blog didn’t make much sense. What blogging helped me to see though, was that it was the writing I enjoyed the most—it was less about the bean burgers.
“I feel I change my mind all the time. And I sort of feel that's your responsibility as a person, as a human being – to constantly be updating your positions on as many things as possible. And if you don't contradict yourself on a regular basis, then you're not thinking.” - Malcolm Gladwell
My blog is a walking contradiction. And I’m okay with this. We’re constantly changing and evolving. I just happen to be doing it publicly. I’m going to change my mind on things. Just like I changed my mind on eating bacon.
If you ask me if you should start a blog, I’ll always say yes. I think writing is the best free therapy on the planet, and someone might need to hear just the words that poured out of you. There are of course other wonderful reasons to blog—share your expertise and show off your smarts are my favorite reasons. I didn’t start my blog to make money. I tried ads for a week and I felt dirty.
I started blogging as an experiment without a hypothesis. I started to just see where it went.
If you’re thinking of starting a blog—great! Here are some questions to consider as you get started. These aren’t intended to make you second guess yourself, but instead, get clear on your big fat why.
Why do you want to blog?
Who is your reader? Can you describe one person? What do they do for a living? What do they struggle with? What keeps them up at night?
How often do you want to blog?
Will you share your blog with your email subscribers? Social media? How will you tell people about new blog posts?
Can you repurpose anything you’ve already written for your blog?
What are people constantly asking for your advice on?
What makes you mad about your industry?
What do you believe in?
Did you have an A-HA moment that led you to today, or wanting to start a blog?
Are you okay with rejection?
Do you like writing?
Do you journal?
Are you an expert on something or do you know more than the average person about a certain topic?
Do you have some valuable experiences to talk about?
Is your perspective unique? Why?
What are your blogging goals?
Where will you write your blog?
How will you come up with blog ideas?
Are you patient?
Do you have time to write and edit?
Are you okay with being ignored?
Do you want to have comments on your blog?
And please, try to avoid getting lost in analysis paralysis. If you think you have an idea for a blog, please start it. You can change it and evolve it with every new piece of content you publish.
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And if you need someone to kick your butt to get you writing, you might be a great fit for Write Like a MOFO.