Do you want to monetize your blog? If the answer is yes, then you need a plan. Becoming successful without a strategy like your boyfriend saying he still wants to play in the NBA (he’s 28, didn’t play HS basketball, and severely out of shape). While you need a business plan, you cannot write one overnight. It takes the time to research and strategize. Unlike more traditional business methods, it does not need to be formal. A blog business plan should identify core elements of your brand and help you effectively communicate your key message to potential customers and readers.
What is your blog? What does it provide?
In my project questionnaire, I ask all of my clients what the goal of their blog is and how their content embodies their goals. Early on in my design career, when I worked with a lot of side-hustle and hobby bloggers, they struggled to elaborate on this question beyond “style blog” or “food blog.” As I started to work with professional bloggers, I noticed a trend in how specific and concrete their responses were. They respond succinctly and with examples.
Your blog is more than a type; it has a distinct point of view and agenda. Fine-tuning that message will help you align your content with your overall message, and provide readers with a distinct reason for visiting your site. In Color By K, Kristin shares colorful inspiration for a stylish life in fashion, home decor, and travel. For a food blog example, The Cookie Rookie is a go-to destination for beginning cooks looking to make delicious food for their families.
Who are you? Who is your audience?
Once you’ve established your blog mission, you need to identify how you (the expert) fit into that narrative and who your audience is. Crafting who you are is imperative to your About page, and it helps shape your brand values. Identifying your audience is just as vital. By identifying who your audience is, it will help you create targeted content. When defining your audience, it is essential to determine an audience that is seeking this information. Let’s look at Omnivore’s Cookbook as an example of a Chinese food blog – the target audience is someone looking to make Chinese food at home. Sometimes they might want to make quick Chinese meals (everyday Chinese) or more traditional meals (real-deal Chinese).
Why you? Why should readers buy into it?
Consulting clients often struggle with this question; I did for the longest time. It is crucial that you offer a familiar but differential value to potential readers. If you write about the same old thing that everyone else does, you are not providing anything new. I’ve had people say that their added value is their point of view. I then follow-up with them with, “what is your point of view?” They cannot describe it to me.
Here’s my example: As a designer and WordPress developer, I offer expertise in both building hundreds of brands from a strategy and technical point-of-view. My experience as a teacher lends itself well to provide informative and illustrative tutorials, and I ensure that my content is relevant to my audience as it is often simple tutorials and tips used with my clients and customers.
How will you generate income?
The core of a business plan is your financial plan. Your monetization strategy should be rooted in results. I often encourage my consulting clients to do a little outside of the box thinking. With the saturated blog market, traditional methods of monetization – sponsored posts and affiliate linking – might not be for everyone. Plus, sponsorship and affiliates are both based on other people. How can you monetize the content of your blog?
If you found this post helpful, then you would love Brand Soirée. We are a learning resource for creative entrepreneurs. We have launched two ebooks – Branding and Website. They focus on the process of creating a brand or website respectively. It’s full of tips and examples from our experience working with over 500 clients. These books are meant to help clients become more informed about the process so that they can make strategic decisions. Also, check out our Facebook group!
Interested in working together? I’d love to hear about your project!