Are you thinking to start a blog?
According to HostingFacts, There are 1.24 Billion websites available as of August 2017, and this number is growing every day.
You are not only going to compete with them but also with the new ones coming up every day.
There are two key things to start a blog and make it a success:
- Your knowledge about your niche
- Understanding of your audience
Most of the first time blog owners do a good research on the niche, make sure they have a good hand on their topic, write quality content and assume that’s what their audience wants.
Many times it’s not true. If you are starting a blog, knowing what your audience wants and where to find them can save you from the long uneventful journey.
So How Should You Start?
To start any successful blog, you need to make sure that your research your audience along with your niche.
The downfall of many blogs is that they try to concentrate too much on organic traffic or Google at the start.
Google or organic traffic takes its sweet time to grow, and you need to keep putting your effort, and blog owners lose motivation long before they would have seen the results.
If you research your audience in advance, you would know how to reach them, and you will not be dependent on Google.
Even if everyone wants organic traffic, if you can build a steady stream of traffic from other sources, that’s going to be beneficial.
During my last blog launch, I got over 5k visitor on the first month. By the third month, I was getting over 20k views and earning over $100 from that blog.
You know what was the contribution of Google in that audience? 300 people.
Just because I have researched my audience and where to find them, I was able to put my content in front of them.
Now you can assume what will happen when Google will start recognizing that blog and start sending traffic.
For doing your audience research try to answer two questions:
Who is your ideal reader? Who do you think will look for this information and why?
Give a lot of thought about this. Because once you are sure about who is reading your content, your thought process will be clear and your content will be more organized.
If you ever need this information, where will go to look for it?
If the answer is Google, think again that if you do not get a good information at Google where will you look. These are the places where you should go and find your audience.
Once you have an answer to above two questions, you can create a one-pager under construction or coming soon site.
The page should indicate what your site is going to be, why the readers should be excited about this launch and include an email subscription form to let people join the waitlist.
I prefer using Under Construction plugin as it provides a way to display social media profiles on the under construction page.
You can make your under construction page SEO friendly by setting up options in the setting page.
Also, you may alter the page template to showcase the topics or call to action.
Here is the quick overview of the plugin:
If you would have created the social media profiles, do show those profiles and allow users to
connect on social media.
How To Validate Your Audience
The main idea behind audience research is validating the blog idea. You should try to reach your audience and see how many of them would be interested in joining your waitlist.
Let’s take an example, If you are planning to start a travel blog then what do you think about your audience.
- People who live in the geo-location you want to cover and looking to explore the area
- People who are planning to visit the location
You can create an under construction page for your travel blog with the help of Under Construction Plugin.
Now try to connect with those people and see if they are interested in what you are planning to offer.
There are many avenues you can explore to connect with your audience like create a very targeted reach on social networks like Facebook.
You can decide on few initial locations which you want to cover on your travel blog and create some ads with a call to action.
Ask people if they want to learn more about those locations or read your travel stories.
Photos are an essential part of travel blogs so try to include some in your ads.
If you see people responding to your ads or coming up and signing up for launch notification, you will know that people are interested in your idea and you can make it work.
Otherwise, you will know what needs to be changed.
So use under construction pages to reach and validate your audience. This way you not only validate your idea but you will also create a funnel which you can use later on to generate traffic for your blog.
Also, most of the people who have signed up for your launch notification can be converted into regular readers as you will be starting with an email list rather than an empty list.
So have you created an under construction page for your upcoming blog and tried to connect with your audience? How was your experience?