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Create A Blog in 30 Minutes: Step by Step Guide (+ Plugins I Love!)

Have you been wanting to create a blog but not sure how to start? Or haven’t had the time? This step by step guide will walk you through the whoooole process in 30 minutes flat.

I’ve set up (and promptly abandoned lol) many blogs in my time, so I’ve got this down to a routine now. Sit back and relax… well, there’s a bit of clicking involved. What I mean is, follow along and you’ll have your very own blog 30 minutes from now! Let’s go!

Create a Blog in 30 Minutes with Bluehost

 

Okay, first, a few things you should know…

  1. I am partial to WordPress, because it’s what I know. It’s also a pretty popular blogging platform. There are other ones out there like Squarespace and Blogger, so you should check out each option and see what’s best for you. I like WordPress because it’s free, so… you know, that’s cool.
  2. You’ll need to spend a teeeeeny tiny bit of money to set up a professional blog. Yes, you could just setup a WordPress.com blog for free (in which case, you don’t need this tutorial), but that ain’t exactly pro. For one, you’re gonna get blogperson452.wordpress.com as your URL, and you can’t do advanced stuff like install plugins and other cool shit.
  3. There’s gonna be a few terms I throw around like hosting, domain, CSS, themes, plugins… don’t panic, yo. It’s really easy stuff and I’ll explain it. You got this.

 

OKAY LET’S START ALREADY.

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How to Create a Rockin’ Blog Content Strategy (Free Course!)

Why is Content Strategy Important for Bloggers?

There are a million blogs out there. It’s hard to capture attention from your target audience when there’s probably thousands of other blogs in your niche, offering similar content in a similar format.

So what makes you different? Why should people take time out of their day to read YOU, instead of some other blog?

It comes down to having a good blog content strategy. If you know WHAT your audience wants, WHEN they want it, and HOW to deliver it — you’ll be successful. Sounds simple, but of course it’s not and it does take practice to make perfect.

Blog Content Strategy Free Email Course for Bloggers

Good blog content strategy means thinking less about you, and more about who you want to read your blog. When you focus on what your readers want, they will be attracted to your content.

More importantly, the right kind of readers will be attracted to your content. I don’t mean that in a snobby way – hell, I’m thankful that anyone even reads my blog (Hi Mom!). By “the right readers”, I mean that the people you want to drive into your sales funnel will be attracted to your content.

Oh don’t have a sales funnel yet? Don’t have any products to sell yet? That’s okay! You still need a content strategy, though.

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Make Money Blogging: How & Why to Choose a Niche

If you want to make money blogging, it’s really important to choose a niche for your blog. When I say choose a niche, I mean choose a very specific topic (or small group of related topics) to write about, and stick to writing about just those things. You’ve probably heard this mentioned a few places before, but it really is so important. FO REALZ.

Make Money Blogging: How and Why to Choose a Niche

The main reason you want to pick a niche for your blog is to attract the right audience, and to make them stick around for the long haul (i.e. hopefully convert them into subscribers and customers later on, if you plan to sell products).

The “right audience” means the specific target market you want to attract.

Who do you help with your blog? For me, I help new to intermediate level bloggers grow their blog and business, and provide marketing tips for solopreneurs, or aspiring solopreneurs. So that’s who I want to attract. In order to do that, I write posts specifically about topics those people want to know (like how to make money blogging!).

That means that when one of those magical unicorns comes along that I want to keep, they see my content is written for their benefit, read lots of it, (hopefully) like it, and decide to stick around and subscribe to my blog. Great!

Without a clearly defined niche, it’s super super hard to build any sort of engaged audience at all. Unless you’re like a Kardashian or something, aka the popular bitch.

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10 Things Your Small Business Website Needs

If you’re trying to grow your home based or creative business online, this post is for you!

As a freelance writer, I spend most of my time working on website projects. My clients cover a diverse range of industries, but there are common elements among them that make their small business websites successful.

Whether you are a creative freelancer, or a local small business, these ten things apply to everyone looking to attract and convert more customers online.

10 Things Your Small Business Website Needs to be Successful and Get You Clients

Sure, you might be thinking the obvious things, like a contact page, or a newsletter subscribe box.

Those are great, but you need a few more things to ramp up your success.

So this post is going to cover each of those items, and some examples from around the web from businesses who’ve done a great job implementing them.

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How to Make Awesome Content Upgrade Worksheets with Canva

Wooo, are you ready for this? This is going to be a game changer for you fellow bloggers out there if you’re not already making sweet ass content upgrades like a pro.

 How to Make Awesome Content Upgrades with Canva

If you’ve been blogging for more than five minutes, you’ve probably heard how important having quality content upgrades are to growing your blog’s following, and your email list… which helps grow your blog’s following. You get what I’m saying. And yes, it’s so true, content upgrades are truly the best thing since sliced cheese on sliced bread.

Let’s cover a few basics first before we dive right in…

What’s a Content Upgrade & Why Should I Care?

Valid question, pal. So a “content upgrade” is something that your visitors can download (or access) in exchange for their email address. So you get their contact deets, and they get some sort of cool THING. Like this shameless example:

The key here is to make the content upgrade not only valuable to your visitor to make them want to give you their email address to get it, but also to make it relevant to the original post it’s in. So for this post, I’m offering a five point checklist you can download to ensure your content upgrade is on point and ready to conquer the world. Easy, right?

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The Difference Between Digital Strategy and Digital Project Management

My name is Michelle, and I’m a recovering Digital Project Manager.

The Difference Between Digital Project Management and Digital Strategy

 

You see, I was a digital PM for awhile, back in the heady days of 2015, a distant blur now. And then I became a digital strategist. “Cool,” I thought. “A totally different job, how exciting!” And then weeks and months went on and I found myself thinking, “Hmm. This seems an awful lot like what I was doing before. What gives?”

Months turned into almost a year and I became more disillusioned and confused than ever.

cat confused gif

So what is the actual difference between a digital PM and a digital strategist? It’s taken me awhile to learn.

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Losing Your Way on A Winding Path (This Is A Metaphor for Getting Shit Done)

Oh, hello.

Remember when I said that when you feel like you’re fed up, and burnt out, you should connect with other humans that remind you why you love what you do? Wellllllll, that worked for me once. But now I have new advice: be a hermit.

How to Get Shit Done (fo realz!)

 

Seriously. The best advice I received for dealing with feelings of burnout was a few days ago, and that advice was: when you are so fed up that you just don’t care anymore, actively attempt to care less. Like just really get all the giving a shit out of your system. Stop caring at a molecular level. Split the atoms of the fucks you do not give, and then split them again. Create a nuclear meltdown out of all the energy that you’re not caring with. Enough metaphors for now…

In my situation, I could never focus on what I was supposed to be doing, due to a number of factors, some of them complex and one of them just being that I am an insane, quality-obsessed, control freak bitch-ola. I was so used to responding quickly to everything that came my way — emails, Slack messages, carrier pigeons — that people expected it of me, and I felt like I owed it to them.

But then my boss told me something radical. Like some life-changing shit right here. She said, “Just… don’t.” That’s basically what she said. There were more words and it sounded better than that, but that was the gist of it.

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Embracing Failure as a Digital Project Manager/Human Being

It’s difficult to accept failure. I think that’s part of human nature — to be proud, defend ourselves, survive, and dislike failing. But sometimes we fail as human beings, and as project managers. And sometimes, spectacularly, we fail at those two things at the same time.

Embracing Failure as a Digital Project Manager (and Human Being)

 

I’ve been a total failure over the past few months.

  • I started this blog, intending to keep it going with new content twice a week. Fail.
  • I transitioned out of project management recently, but didn’t actually transition out of it because I’m a total control freak. Fail.
  • Even though I didn’t transition out of it, I still failed at doing a bunch of PM stuff properly. Fail.
  • I couldn’t think of new content ideas to save my life. Fail.
  • I lost my focus, my energy, my drive, and my love of what I do (temporarily). Fail.
  • I ate an entire tray of four cinnamon buns and washed them down with an entire bottle of wine. Fail (or… win?).

Cinnamon Bun GIF

I think the important thing to remember here is that cinnamon buns fix all failures until you step on the scale and feel like a failure in an entirely new way. Not as a project manager or a human being, but even worse, a failure of a woman for not fitting into your pants anymore.

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