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The Skills And Equipment You’ll Need To Be A Blogger In 2017

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If you’re thinking of starting a blog, the first question you have to ask is why you want to do it. Your answer to this question will determine the future of your blog and how you go about creating content and providing value to your audience.

If you have a strong enough ‘why’, you’ll have the patience and persistence to make it happen. At the same time, you’ll need to be willing to learn the technical skills to compete on the internet today. Such skills include; an eagerness to learn how to write increasingly better, getting better at marketing your blog posts and knowing when it makes sense to start monetizing your blog.

People start blogs for a wide variety of reasons:

  • to make money from home
  • to build an audience for a book
  • to build a business brand
  • or to express their insights about a particular passion or discipline.

Identify your reason and build your mission statement around it. Find your primary reason and all the secondary reasons that support it.

Let’s take a look at 3 things you need to do to start blogging:

Decide on your equipment and platform.

You don’t necessarily need a desktop or laptop to start blogging; you can also use a smartphone. For people on the go, people who may have a long commute or travel a great deal, even a small laptop is too big and it’s easier to just use a smartphone. You can also use your smartphone if you want to start vlogging.

If you choose to use a smartphone, it’s important to consider how you will protect your phone from damage and what type of apps to download.Let’s take a quick look at both factors:

Let’s take a quick look at both factors:

Protection

Not all cases offer the same level of protection. If, for example, you’re using an iPhone 6, you can get a wide variety of covers, with some protecting your phone far better than others. When researching iPhone 6 cases, prefer those that offer shock-proof protection.

In addition to keeping your mobile device safe, you will also want to make sure your camera is clean and visible at all times. Vlogging is nothing new, but it’s becoming more popular as mobile devices continue to get better in quality with their recording. In most cases it’s also super fast and easy to upload video content from your phone as well.

Also, if you aren’t thrilled with the idea of using your mobile device to create a site or blog, you can always use a laptop or desktop computer. There are realy not excuses for not getting started immediately, as there are many small laptops that start off in the $200+ range.

Apps

Here are some apps to get if you want to maintain your blog from your smartphone:

  1. Platform. Decide between WordPress or Blogger platforms. Not only are these most recommended, but they also have apps that let you write, edit, and publish your posts from your mobile device.
  2. Text editor. It’s better to write your blog post in a text editor before you paste it into your chosen platform. By using a text editor like Google Docs, your content is backed up on the cloud and you can access it from anywhere from any kind of device.
  3. Picture editor Your blog must have good pictures. It’s rare to find text only blogs because blocks of text tend to turn readers off. If you want to edit your pictures from your phone, then Pixlr Express will make it easier to do.
  4. Social Media. Share your blog posts. After you’ve written your blog posts, you’ll want to promote it on social media, and one excellent app to help you do it from your phone is Buffer.

Set up your blog.

Now that you’ve decided why you want to blog and how to do it from any device, the next thing you have to do is figure out the technical aspects. Essentially, there are four steps that you need to take to set up your blog. You can either get video tutorials on how to do it, read a book on it, or ask someone to help you with these steps. They aren’t hard to do once you’ve done it once. The four steps you have to take are finding a host, picking a domain name, installing or signing up for your platform, and designing your blog.

Create a content calendar.

Now that your blog is up and running, you need to create a regular time of the week to blog and develop a list of topics that you will blog about. By thinking ahead about what you’ll write, you won’t procrastinate when it comes to deciding on what to write each week. Incidentally, it’s not necessary to write daily. You can write once a week, or if you’re really pressed for time, then just once every two weeks.

Stick With It

Blogging like any other project in life has its fair share of challenges. You may encounter obstacles with the blog itself, ranging from technical skills to marketing it effectively. You may also have time conflicts and not always be able to commit to writing your blog post. Even if you have technical problems, marketing issues, or writing challenges, decide ahead of time that whatever happens, you’ll stick with it.

Srish Agrawal is an entrepreneur, branding consultant, and angel investor. He is also the Founder & CEO of A1 Future Technologies, which includes sites like Logo Design Team and Infographic Design Team, and has helped over 25,000 clients improve how they look online.

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Blogging

Why Do You Resist Writing eBooks?

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Writing and self-publishing eBooks scares bloggers.

I piddled in my eBook writing pants until 2012. People told me I should write ’em. I looked for every reason in the eBook NOT to write eBooks. Nobody would listen. Nobody would buy. Nobody would care.

Turns out, people listen, buy and care enough to publish 5 star reviews for my eBooks. Look at the featured image for this blog post describing this eBook:

7 Tips for Writing Successful eBooks Quickly

I locked down five, 5 star reviews because I taught my readers how to write successful eBooks fast. But years prior, fear clouded my mind concerning writing eBooks to the point of me refusing to write one. You may be in the same cyber boat; but you better not miss the eBook writing boat. Lucrative profits serve as one part of the picture. Digging deeper, writing eBooks brands you, distancing you from the herd. Plus you feel good writing short reads and gain trust and extra credibility in the eyes of readers.

Why Do You Resist Writing eBooks?

Fear is the core reason. Fear of failure, criticism or wasting time sit near the top of eBook-related fears. I did not know how to sit down and write the darn things. Fear arose in my mind; how would I do it? Who would teach me? Could I find the process? Would I need special editors? How could I learn the technical steps for conceiving an idea to shipping the eBook on Amazon? Tech stuff really scared me; I had no idea how to save Word files with different, web-based extensions, let alone creating covers with proper dimensions via Canva to meet Amazon’s diligent standards.

From my trip to Oman.

Rather than learn how to do these things I allowed fear to get the better of me, refusing to write eBooks. But during a trip to India I met a reader and friend who begged me to write eBooks for a while. He had been on me for a minute. Meeting in person, he finally convinced me to write and self-publish an eBook on a lesser known digital platform. Later, I went with Amazon, and never looked back.

I had to dive into and nudge through deep fears related to failing and being criticized because I believed nobody would buy what I offered in eBook form. As my friend convinced me, I waded through ideas like wasting my time, getting terrible reviews and promoting my eBook to the tune of zero sales. Did it feel good to embrace these fears? Heck no. But the benefits of self-publishing far outweighed a few unpleasant emotions experienced during these fear-feeling sessions.

Nothing to Lose Everything to Gain

Gain by writing eBooks; if you take experience with you, loss is impossible. Even if you sold not a copy you take valuable writing, marketing and selling experience with you any time you write and launch an eBook. But if you generously help people and make friends, you will sell eBooks and help more people, reflecting gain back to you in physical form.

Digging even deeper, facing and releasing fears associated with criticism and failure benefit you across the board with your blogging campaign. Apply that same fearless nature to other aspects of your blog to boost your blog traffic and profits.

Write and ship.

You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

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Blogging

1 Tip for Being an Intelligent and Prospering Blogger

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My eBook: 10 Tips to Be a Smarter and Richer Blogger

possesses an interesting cover for anyone not familiar with my eBooks.

For anyone familiar with my 100 plus eBooks, my cover is par for the course. Every single one of my eBook covers has been personally snapped by me. Images of paradise preserved by yours truly fit my brand, blog and eBook covers perfectly. Blogging From Paradise means retiring to a life of island hopping through smart blogging. Sometimes I visit islands. Sometimes I visit mainland spots. In all cases, my eBooks and courses – as well as my blog – bleed travel images because this approach fits my brand and is unheard of in the blogging tips niche.

I totally respect any blogging tips blogger who posts featured images for their blogs and eBook covers consistent with content titles. Imagine a light bulb and dollar sign for the above eBook cover, for starters. But I went with a photo I snapped in gorgeous Rawai Bay in Phuket, Thailand for my cover image. Why? Nobody else on earth uses their travel photos as eBook covers and featured post images in the blogging tips niche. If nobody else does it and the move completely aligns with my brand message, this is the starting point for being an intelligent and prospering blogger.

Smart and Prospering Means Different

Every successful blogger I follow sticks to basic fundamentals but deviates from the norm in some regards. Different means bigger bucks and smarter prospering because readers notice that different flavor stepping away from normal. Folks enjoy my covers and blog post images, even though the content and eBook title technically have nothing to do with travel images. Guess what? Adding my brand logo aligns the eBook cover with my blog and brand. People clearly see I am about blogging from paradise. Why not add travel images to each eBook cover?

From my trip to Oman.

I follow a high number of basic blogging rules; create value, build connections, be generous and have fun. But if you do EVERYTHING just like most bloggers, you get lost in the herd. Nothing makes you stand out if you do not choose to stand out with at least one element of your blogging campaign. I stood out with eye-popping eBook images I snapped myself, in a blogging tips niche. How do you stand out? Ask yourself the question. Be straight with yourself to answer.

Bigger Profits from a Smarter Energy by Being Different

Cindy Crawford kept her mole. Muscle Man Arnold kept his accent. Steve Jobs made computers and peripherals outrageously expensive and designed quite weirdly compared to other computers and peripherals. Guess what? Crawford, Arnold and Jobs are legends who we won’t forget for a long time. Different makes you a serious fortune because people notice folks who stand out in some way, shape or form. This different approach bleeds intelligence; why work your butt off if you look just like the next guy and offer a mimicking service?

But Make Sure You Follow Some Fundamentals

Steve Jobs did not attempt to make computers out of cardboard. Arnold did not try to speak German in Hollywood movies. Cindy Crawford did not try to rewrite the foundations of modeling by wearing a fake beard of photo shoots. All icons followed basic rules for their industries because being too far out in left field usually makes you forgettable, or, impossible to spot. Follow blogging fundamentals to stay in the game but find that one thing that distances you from the herd.

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Blogging

Why Should You Help Other Bloggers Succeed?

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If you build it AND if you help other bloggers build it, then they will come.

We have all seen the famous line from Field of Dreams rehashed many times, regarding blogging. Building a blog solo ain’t good enough. Platitudes of content being king and networking queen get bandied about, and I do not disagree.

But I wanted to put a spin on the line; if you build your blog and help other bloggers build their blogs, THEN people will visit your blog, hire you, buy your stuff and endorse you.

A few moments ago, my friend and power house blogger Julie Syl Kalungi tagged me on Facebook with kind words.  She mentioned a common mistake we both see often; bloggers pitch us content with nothing else to show for the pitch, other than mediocre or OK content from an unknown blogger. If it were that easy to get featured on Blogging From Paradise or on Julie’s blog, we would both place 5 to 10 to 20 guest posts daily, or a helluva lot more.

Of course, landing features on established blogs is not easy at all. But struggling, failing bloggers mistakenly believe it *is* as easy as tempting pros with a helpful post, or some other lukewarm incentive, and wonder why they never get featured on top blogs. Plus bloggers do the silly thing of offering a $1 or $3 bulk discount for 25 posts. Having a poverty consciousness makes you do silly things.

Anyway, these strategies NEVER work because the pitching bloggers are trying to build it – aka their blogs – before building other blogger’s blogs. Build your blog and other blogger’s blogs. Grow your friend network. Be genuine. Be generous. Help. Expect nothing. Ask for nothing. As you help other bloggers succeed and improve your writing skills, something neat happens; you befriend a bunch of skilled bloggers who boost your traffic and profits through endorsements, promotions, by buying your stuff and by hiring you.

From my trip to Oman.

This is why you should help other bloggers succeed. Make friends. Profit. 100 is better than 1.

100 Is Better than 1

I learned years ago the efforts of 100 blogging buddies beats my individual efforts. I am not super connected to 100 plus blogging buddies, but at least that many folks promote me or endorse me routinely across a wide range of channels. Imagine how much 100 bloggers can expand your reach, compared to your individual, singular efforts?

Why do 100 plus bloggers help me out? I have helped thousands of bloggers grow their traffic and profits over a decade online by commenting genuinely on their blogs, by promoting them on social media, by endorsing them, by promoting them on my blog, by inviting them to guest post on my blog and by guest posting for them.

I benefit too, of course. This marks my 6th guest post of the day. As I promote my 71% blogging course discount (use the discount code in the first paragraph) across a slew of these guest posts I gain profit potential and boost my blog traffic too. But I also drive free, passive traffic through each guest post. My 3 blogging buddies living in India who I guest post for wake up to free, passive traffic. I help them succeed. My blogging buddies help me succeed by giving me platforms for reaching their readers.

Do you see why building it and helping other bloggers build it makes you incredibly successful over the long term?

Julie became a wildly successful blogger by generously helping other top bloggers succeed. Now, her blogger friend network expands her reach far and wide.

Give What You Want

Do you want money? Help other bloggers make money. Promote them on your blog. Link to them. Buy and review their eBooks. The number of friends you make by being generous will astound you. As this loyal tribe grows in size and scope, and helps you make more and more money, you will be even more astounded.

Blogger Outreach Resource

Are you looking for bloggers to help? Buy my eBook:

27 Influential Bloggers to Follow

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