[FYI, I am a BlueHost affiliate. The links are affiliate links. I personally love BlueHost and use them for both of my websites so I’m just sharing what I love and if you happen to want to use them, I receive a small referral fee.]
While zillions of businesses (ok, maybe not that many) are using social media as a means to gain, grow and nurture their customer base, the smart ones (like you) know that there is a better plan. With the never-ending changes in algorithms that occur on Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms, you can’t count on social media to consistently show your posts. It’s not our platform, Markie Z rules that kingdom and we are all at the mercy of his decisions. Sure, you can learn and relearn how to get around the changes to maximize your efforts but playing that game gets tiring. If you are running a business or wanting to start a business, this is super frustrating!
The digitally savvy girls, like you, know that owning your own content and having control over it is where it’s at.
That’s why you want to start a blog instead of exclusively using social media to conduct business (I do encourage you to keep your social media game active! It has many great benefits).
Now, should you want to be an Insta-star or be discovered on YouTube, by all means, do that as a side-hustle and run your blog as the business, as a way to showcase your fabulous talents.
Years ago, before blogging was really a thing, I started my first blog as a way to market the retail website I owned at the time. I began to notice the power of blogging and soon sold my retail boutique to focus on blogging instead.
I love blogging because I can share value with my readers, make connections with women all over the world and work with amazing brands! Blogging has taken me to amazing locations like Paris, France and New York City. I have worked with hundreds of brands over the years and have been able to make an impact on the world while making an income from home.
Where to begin?
Have you been dreaming about starting your own blog, either as a side hustle that you can develop into a full time gig, or as a marketing tool for your existing business? Now is the time to get started!
Do you keep putting it off because you don’t know how to get started? (hint, making a decision is the first step!)
Are you overwhelmed with the idea of doing tech? (Hint: tech isn’t what it used to be! it is all very user-friendly now!)
Are you worried about how much extra time it will take away from your already full schedule? (Hint: Don’t wing your blog posts like you do your eyeliner. Have a plan!)
Do you wonder if anyone even reads blogs anymore? (Hint, they do. Seventy-seven percent of internet users read blogs)
It is time to STOP asking these questions and START taking action!
Let’s start by tackling the “elusive tech fears”. I get it, I was also terrified of tech… I didn’t want to mess anything up for fear I wouldn’t know how to fix it but I figured it out anyway because I knew I wanted to blog. Is that you? Are you ready to finally move past “wanting” and start “doing?”
Here we go….
I’m excited to share with you this guide that will walk you through THREE steps that will help you set up a WordPress website on Bluehost so you can start blogging TODAY! Full disclosure, I am an affiliate of Bluehost but I’ve tried a couple other hosting sites and they are the easiest and most affordable that I have worked with.
Step 1: Create Your Bluehost Account
Bluehost is the #1 recommended web hosting by WordPress.org, Every account features 1-click WordPress installation. Powering over 2 million websites worldwide these guys are one of the most popular and affordable options. Whether you are an experienced or a new blogger, Bluehost will accommodate!
Click the “get started now” button and let’s get started! Select a hosting plan that fits your needs. (Normally, if you are just starting out I recommend the basic plan but, if you are really serious about this and want more resources & power go with their Prime or Pro plan). Keep in mind, you can always upgrade your plan as you grow. You will need to pay a full year of hosting but by using this link, you will receive a special price of $3.95/month.
Step 2: Domain Name
Here are a few tips to help you find the right one:
Keep it short and easy to spell. (In fact, short urls are hard to come by since they have been mostly scooped up already so if you come across one, grab it!)
I said easy to spell, just make sure you are spelling it right! Check Dictionary.com to double check yourself.
Share your name idea with friends. Do they get it? Do you have to explain it? If you do, come up with something else. You want it memorable.
The name should basically be a clue as to what your blog is about. Style Edit (about style), Fit Mom (fitness for moms), Lattes and Life Lessons (girl talk, coffee and lifestyle!)
Make sure it is something you are willing to type many times a day!
Don’t go down the rabbit hole on this step. Picking a domain needs to have consideration but you don’t want the reason for not starting your blog to be because you can’t come up with the perfect name. You can always change the domain later if you want to.
Type your domain name into the domain box. If you already have a domain name, type it in the “i have a domain name” step. Bluehost is generous enough to throw in a FREE domain name for every new hosting account created (yes, FREE, that’s like two grande chai lattes with almond milk at Starbucks!) Not sure what domain name you want yet? You can opt to choose later and receive a credit to get your domain later!
The next step is to fill out your account and billing information.
Review the package information below and decide what term/add-ons are desired. The biggest bang for your buck is on the 60 month term, but you can choose 36 months, 24 months or 12 months. *Note, Bluehost will charge you upfront for the entire term.
Insert payment information and accept the terms.
Congrats, your hosting account has been created! Bluehost will send you a welcome email confirming account and FTP information. SAVE THIS EMAIL.
Create your password. Make sure to review the requirements for creating the password. If you need help you can always click the “Suggest Password” option. Either way, write it down and keep it in a safe place. You’ll be needing it later on.
Go ahead and login and start getting familiar with your new Bluehost account.
Step 3: WordPress
Thanks to Bluehost, after your hosting account has been created, WordPress will automatically install. #BOOM Talk about easy!
Start off by picking a theme, these are all free themes from WordPress.org. You can always update your theme later. (don’t get stuck in the Rabbit Hole here. Pick a basic theme that has a basic structure and vibe that you like).
Trust your heart…. you know what you like. Look at the general layout of the theme. Don’t get hung up on the images used, those can be changed!
Now that you’ve picked your theme, let’s jump into WordPress and design your site so you can get your blog LAUNCHED!
Select BUSINESS. (You are here to make an impact AND an income!)
On this step, you’ll see an overview of Bluehost+WordPress integration. You can manage WordPress plugins and blog posts or pages here.
Decide on a site title and description here. The “description” is your tagline.
Now you can make your site look how you want! Since you are using WordPress the sky’s the limit! There are so many great plug-ins to help the blog function the way you want it too. Don’t be scared to test out plug-ins and delete them if you don’t like them.
Before you create your first blog post, consider what your brand will be.
Your brand gives a first-time view and immediate impression of you and your blog. Make sure it is saying what you want it to say!
Your branding should be original and feel authentic to you and relatable to your IR. It is ok to be inspired by someone else’s brand but please don’t copy what they are doing. Incorporate things you like, like maybe that perfect shade of pink but keep the rest of your branding unique to you.
When thinking about your brand, consider these 7 categories:
Style: Will your blog feel sophisticated and elegant or will it feel bold and vibrant? Will it have an edgy feel or a friendly feel? The Style of your blog will somewhat dictate the rest of the branding factors.
Colors: You should pick 2-3 MAIN COLORS and 2-3 accent colors. This gives you some flexibility when creating your images for your blog and social media, as well as font color or graphic colors.
Voice: How you “sound” or come across in your written word. Are you nurturing, sarcastic, snobby, optimistic, sweet, bubbly? Stick with what feels natural to you so it comes across effortlessly. You’ll want to use the same “voice” on video, too.
Personality: Are you hardcore, type A, go with the flow, friendly, matter of fact? Again, be YOU. Just write it down so you start to develop a sense for your branding voice.
Images: be consistent with the types of images you use. Will they be bold and vibrant or do you prefer a washed out look? Do you want to apply a filter to them? Will you primarily use images of nature or the city? Will you use stock photos or take your own photos?
Logo: You can create one in canva or you can pay someone to create one for you. I’ve used Logo Nerd and Etsy before with good results.
Tagline: a short statement is what helps your Ideal Reader understand what your blog is about. It is one more piece of communication to the readers and the search engines.
Great content tells a story, ignites emotion, solves a problem and adds value to your Ideal Reader’s life. Think about what her frustrations are and how you can help her solve them!
A great blog post should:
provide a solution to a problem for your Ideal Reader, even if it is a small problem
should enhance your authority and expertise on your subject matter
should evoke emotion in your reader
should give your Ideal Reader an action to take
should create income potential
should be a traffic magnet
We don’t care about being FAMOUS on social media.
We care about having INFLUENCE on social media.
Just like with blog traffic, you can be an influencer without having a ton of followers. It is better to have the RIGHT followers than it is to have MASSES of followers.
In order to thrive on Social Media, you have to be focused. Pick just ONE social media, two at the most, that you want to build and really work it to get your content on point, your following up to a number you are happy with and build relationships there. It makes the most sense that it is the social media platform that your Ideal Reader uses the most.
Don’t just try to grow your number of followers because that seems important. Focus on your purpose for using the platform.
The purpose of social media is not to SELL to your followers, it is to connect with your follower. Be engaging and personal!
An Email List is Non-Negotiable!
If you are interested in financial success with your blog, you need an email list from day one! Download this free training and get started today: Super Fan Club
CONGRATULATIONS! You started a blog! Now what?!?
If you need help getting your blog theme to look and function the way you want, you can work with me 1-on-1 for an hour of coaching via Skype. We will share a screen and I will walk you through designing and setting up the layout of your blog. Sign-up here: One-on-One Blog Coaching
If you are really ready to step up your game and are serious about creating a laptop lifestyle with your blog, you should definitely consider Project Blog:
You’ve been dreaming of starting a blog for so long and now that you have it, you are not sure what to do with it. I’d love to come along side of you and support you in growing your traffic, your influence and your income!
Learn how to turn your blog into a profitable business with Project Blog. Click here to join now.