. MAKE YOUR BLOG A BUSINESS: PART 2 .
Last week I kicked off my new blogging tips series, all about turning your blog into a business, and everything you need to know and prepare for on that journey.
I started off with defining your brand, knowing what your product is, and letting your consumers know in turn. You can check out part 1 in the series here. But today it’s onto the slightly less fluffy task of creating a business plan. To turn your blog into a business you must have a plan … A plan of what you need to achieve and how you will get there. The plan will include big things, like hitting financial goals, to small tactics like networking and sharing your content.
Today i wanted to share my advice on how to create your own business plan, and things to be thinking about as part of developing it.
. HOW TO CREATE A BUSINESS PLAN FOR YOUR BLOG .
A business plan shouldn’t be created and left to gather dust, it should be ever evolving and adapting based on the journey your blog is taking. Having a monthly check in and update is a good idea to keep pushing yourself forward … But to get started here’s what you need to do;
#1 SET OBJECTIVES
First things first is you need to have something that you’re working toward, what is it that you want to achieve. You may have a few objectives that you’re keen on achieving, but as with anything don’t overload yourself. Your objectives should push you hard, but still be achievable.
An objective could be anything from giving yourself a financial target to a blog traffic growth figure or even something like content quality and frequency.
Aim to have around 3 objectives. These should be the big things that you need to deliver on for your business to succeed.
#2 BREAK IT DOWN INTO GOALS
Naturally those lofty objectives may feel a little scary and far away, so it’s important that you break them each down into little goals, for example breaking down an annual salary target into a monthly revenue you need to try and hit to sustain living. Or if your objective is about content, perhaps your goals define how many times a week you’ll post, what sort of features you want to write (at a top line level).
Think of it as the 4 or 5 smaller goals you need to deliver on, to overall help you hit that big end objective.
#3 CREATE SOME TACTICS
Taking it one step further, for each objective and each goal you set yourself, you then should set some tactics for what you’ll do to achieve them. These are the more everyday actions that will help you deliver on your goals.
For example, posting regularly on instagram to build your following, sharing your blog features across X, Y, Z channels each day, sending a PR email each week, creating a media pack, developing a weekly blog schedule, planning shoots etc.
These are the ‘small’ actions you can act on everyday, or every week to help deliver on your overall ambition & plans … everything should ladder back up to your overall objectives you’ve set!
#4 DEFINE YOUR SUCCESS MEASURES
How will you know if you’re succeeding? You must measure your work, your success and your progress. For every objective or goal you set, think SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, timely), and ensure that every goal has a clear KPI for you to measure against.
And don’t forget to think outside the box … you can measure anything from income & collaborations, to traffic, bounce rate and shares to sentiment, engagement & comments. Utilise google analytics, your own blog interface and don’t forget to consider your social channels too. These are all part of your overall brand.
But most importantly, agree up front what you’ll be measuring, how you’ll measure it, when you’ll be reviewing progress & what overall timings you’ll be working to. Be as specific as possible.
#5 KEEP INNOVATING
And don’t forget to use your insights & learnings to keep improving things moving forward.
On a monthly basis, review your progress, monitor the successes and failures and adapt your business plan accordingly. Make changes, learn from mistakes, maximise the tactics that work the hardest for you, continuously pushing & building your progression plan is key.
The temptation to quit will be greatest just before you are about to succeed.
And one last thought for you: Live less out of habit and more out of intent.