Blogging Tips A-Z: G for Goals
Like most bloggers I set up my first blog as an experiment. I had a vague idea of what I wanted to write about and a secret goal for my blogging.
Well, we all want our blogs to become bestselling books and get made into movies starring Meryl Streep or Julia Roberts don’t we?
But I wasn’t just hoping to kick start my travel writing career and gain worldwide recognition for my writing. I had a few other goals too:
- because I’d recently moved from Costa Rica to Australia I wanted to share personal stories so family and friends could follow our adventures;
- because I’ve lived overseas in eight different countries and travelled to many more I wanted to inspire and inform other women so they could travel more or move overseas too;
- I wanted my blog to be a fun creative outlet and keep it separate from my web design and web copywriting business.
Can you see a problem here? There are a few of them.
Looking back it’s obvious that I didn’t have one clear blogging goal. But at the time I was so gung ho about starting my blog, updating it and reading all blogging tips ever written, that I hardly had time to think straight.
Despite being a qualified web designer and knowing how important planning an online project is to make it effective and save time and money, I ignored the online planning stages I work through with clients and jumped straight into the fun part: publishing blog posts.
Whoops. With no clear blogging goal or plan in place I burned through several blogs, changed blogging topics and domain names three times and lost countless readers in the process.
It’s not just me either. Every single successful blogger I’ve spoken to has had several failed blogs behind them before they finally honed in on a goal and set up a blog that would achieve that goal.
If a client came to me with four separate goals for their blog and four separate types of people who’d be reading it I’d be wary. In fact, I’d tell them to rethink the whole thing and come up with one main goal and one ideal reader so that they could really focus on achieving that goal.
My travel blog Get In the Hot Spot is my third blog and slowly I’ve built it up to over 20,000 unique readers per month.
If you persevere and stick with it you can find blogging success no matter how many blogging failures you have behind you, but if you want to get there quicker this is the best blogging tip there is:
Pick one main blogging goal, one main topic that will help you achieve that goal and know who your ideal blog readers are.
For example, if your goal is to entertain friends and family with your adventures make sure your family travels are the only topic you cover. You can write stories and put up photos, add videos or audio but keep the focus on your family.
You can still talk about the food, the weather, the local culture or even politics as long as you keep relating it back to the one topic your readers are really interested in – you and your family.
3 Biggest Blogging Goals Mistakes
1. Choosing blogging goals that are too general
My blogging goal is to tap into the lucrative mobile phone market. (How? Why would anyone visit your blog?)
My blogging goal is to work from home and earn money. (Doing what? Where will the money come from?)
2. Choosing blogging goals that are too narrow
3. Focusing on making money online
I recommend business blogging to market a new or existing business or to sell more of your services or products.
It is possible to make money online but it’s a tough environment and it may take years before you can earn enough to live on. If you plan to make money from blog advertising or selling affiliate products you may need a huge readership and that takes time to grow.
Good examples of blogging goals
It’s important to establish one or two clear blogging goals which you can define in one or two sentences. One main blogging goal and a subsidiary goal is fine but you could run into problems if you have too many goals.
Here are some good examples of blogging goals:
- The goal of my blog is to share travel tips and stories which will inspire people to fulfil their travel dreams and make them want to read my travel books.
- My main blogging goal is to grow my freelance writing business by showcasing my writing and connecting with business owners who will hire me.
- My blogging goal is to grow my landscape design business, get new clients and diversify my income by selling books and courses about gardening and landscape design.
Once you’ve established clear blogging goals the next step of focusing on your ideal reader will follow naturally.
Do you have clear goals for your blog? Maybe you want to use blogging to grow your business, launch a new business or build a platform so you can sell your book?
Share your blogging goal in the comments remembering to keep it short, clear and focused. It should help you focus on your blogging goals and help us get to know why you’re blogging.