Category: Blogging Tips

Branding Your Blog for Beginners

Whether you’re just starting out or looking to level up your online presence, understanding the what and why of branding is crucial. Here are a few tips for beginners on branding your blog- what it is, why is it important and how to do it:

What is Branding?

Picture this: you’re strolling down the street, and you catch a glimpse of iconic golden arches. Immediately, you know it’s McDonald’s. That is branding. When it comes to your blog, branding is more than just a fancy logo or a catchy name. It’s the overall experience, the feeling that your readers associate with your content. Branding is about creating a cohesive identity that resonates with your audience.

How to Brand Your Blog

Building a Consistent Brand Identity:

Think of your blog as a person. To create a strong brand identity, you need consistency. Choose a color palette that represents your blog’s vibe. Are you all about bright and cheerful or sophisticated and minimalistic? Pick out your visuals, fonts, and style. When your readers see your blog, they should instantly know it’s you.

Creating a Unique Tone:

You have a specific way of speaking. Just like that, your blog needs a distinctive tone that expresses who you are. Are you the sarcastic blogger who keeps it real, or the helpful friend who offers practical advice? Find your style and stick to it. A consistent tone makes your writing authentic and helps you connect with your readers.

Establishing Trust and Credibility:

Imagine you’re scrolling through a blog. The colors are all over the place, the writing style changes from casual to technical (Chat GPT, is that you?), and it feels like a wild rollercoaster of inconsistency. Would you trust that blog? Probably not. Building a strong and cohesive brand helps establish trust and credibility. A well-branded blog appears professional, reliable, and like it knows its stuff. You want your readers to feel like they’re in good hands, so consistency is key. If you’re just starting out or if you’re blogging for fun you probably don’t care about branding. But in the world that we live in, almost everyone can be found online and whether you care about branding or not, people WILL find your blog and they will make assumptions about it (which will then affect your personal brand). I used to think that this blog was private (way back in the beginning when I didn’t have anything personal about me posted here) but I was always hearing friends and family stumble across my blog. Eventually this blog got me my first Marketing job and then my first writing job. By that time I knew I had to do something about the branding.

Increasing Brand Recognition and Recall:

You know that feeling when a song gets stuck in your head and refuses to leave? That’s the power of recognition and recall. When your brand is strong and consistent, it becomes memorable. It’s like having a catchy jingle that’s impossible to forget. The more your readers recognize and remember your brand, the more they’ll share it with others, and that’s great for growing your blog.

Tips for Branding Your Blog as a Beginner:

If you’re just starting out, here are a few tips to help brand your blog:

  • Choose a color palette that reflects your style and niche (a great hack for this is to do some research on colours and their meanings)
  • Create a logo or wordmark that captures your blog’s essence
    Be consistent with your fonts and typography choices
  • Develop a style guide for your blog, including image filters and design elements
  • Maintain a consistent tone throughout your writing

Branding your blog isn’t just about looking pretty; it’s about creating an unforgettable experience. By having a consistent brand identity, a unique tone, and building trust and recognition, you’re setting yourself up for success in the blogosphere.

Looking for more Branding and Digital Marketing tips? Follow my Marketing blog, The Digital Unicorn for more tips.

5 Tools I Wish I Knew as A Beginner Blogger

I remember starting my blog and being so proud of myself. I had a little piece of the internet that belonged to me. But as time went on, I started realising things about my blog that were off. For starters, I had no pictures. Or links. How were other people doing that? Was I a bad blogger? As with most things in life, blogging is something where you learn by doing (or lots of Google). I am hoping to save you some time by sharing the 5 tools I wish I knew about as a beginner blogger.

1. Canva

Canva wins first place because I had zero clue how I managed as a blogger before Canva. Canva can be used to create design assets for your blog, email, social media and so much more. I use Canva for work, for blogging and even for wishing family members on special days. If you don’t know what Canva is or haven’t tried it yet, GO NOW!!!! This is an excellent way for non-graphic designers to create designs.

2. Planable

Soo full disclosure…November and December posts have been planned on Planable- which I have only just discovered. I’ve been blogging for over a decade. I do not know why I am only finding Planable now (hey, we live and learn, right?)

3. Buffer

Buffer is great for scheduling social media posts. And if you haven’t started scheduling social media posts, I strongly suggest you look into this. It is SUCH a game-changer. Simply draw up a social media calendar (or decide how often you want to post), and use Buffer to schedule these posts in advance. Not sure which social media platforms you should be using? Here’s a few steps to choosing your social media platforms.

4. WordPress App

Using the WordPress App is a quick and easy way to draft out blog posts. While I don’t typically post live from the app, I do love using it to write on the go (some of my more emotional posts are done on the app while the content-heavy blog posts are done via laptop).

5. Google Analytics

Google Analytics gives you access to cool information such as where is your audience located, what devices are they using to access your blog and which are the most popular blog posts or pages on your blog. By simply signing up, Google will walk you through the steps for connecting your blog and voila, instant access to user demographics.

Do you use any of these tools or do you have your own set of blogger tools that you’re obsessed with? Let me know below!

How to Create a Content Calendar for Your Blog

A content calendar helps you plan and organize your blog posts ahead of time, ensuring that you always have fresh and engaging content to publish regularly. It’s an excellent way to stay organised as a blogger and prevent burnout or writer’s block. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to create a content calendar for your blog:

1. Determine your goals and target audience

Before you start creating your content calendar, you need to determine your blog’s goals and target audience. Who are you writing for? What topics are they interested in? What type of content do they engage with the most? Knowing the answers to these questions will help you create a content calendar that resonates with your audience and supports your blog’s goals.

2. Choose a content calendar tool

There are many content calendar tools available, ranging from free to paid options. Choose a tool that suits your needs and budget. Some popular options include Trello, Asana, Google Sheets, and CoSchedule. You might even prepare to use a paper planner (which, when combined with sticky notes, is an excellent way to see your posts and reschedule if necessary)

3. Brainstorm content ideas

Research popular topics in your niche, then brainstorm ideas that align with your blog’s goals and target audience. You can also look at your competitors’ blogs (i.e other blogs who write on the same topics as you do) for inspiration.

4. Create a content schedule

Once you have a list of content ideas, it’s time to create a content schedule. Decide how often you want to publish blog posts, and then create a schedule that fits with your blogging frequency. For example, if you want to publish two blog posts per week, you’ll need to create a schedule that outlines which blog post will be published on which day and work in time for other tasks like design and social media.

5. Assign tasks

Assign tasks to yourself or your team members for each blog post. This includes writing the post, creating graphics, optimizing for SEO, and promoting on social media. If you’re the only blogger, you might want to consider batching tasks to help with your productivity.

6. Track your progress

It’s essential to track your progress to ensure that you’re meeting your blogging goals. Track each blog post’s progress, including the date it was published, the number of views, and engagement metrics.

7. Update and adjust your content calendar as needed

Your content calendar is a living document that should be updated and adjusted as needed. If you find that certain topics aren’t performing well, adjust your content to focus on more successful topics. If you have an unexpected event or breaking news, be flexible enough to adjust your content calendar accordingly. When I started as a blogger (in uni) I would often take time off for exams or tough uni projects.

Do you have a content calendar or do you just wing it? Let me know below!

7 Steps to Choosing the Right Social Media Platforms

Choosing the right social media platforms for your blog is a vital decision. While there are many social media platforms available, not all of them are suitable for every blog. Here are some steps to help you choose the right social media platforms for your blog:

Step 1: Define your target audience

The first step in choosing the right social media platforms for your blog is to define your target audience. Who are you writing for, and where do they spend their time online? Different social media platforms attract different demographics, so it’s essential to understand your audience’s preferences and habits.

Step 2: Determine your goals

What are your goals for using social media? Are you looking to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your blog, or engage with your audience? Different social media platforms excel at different goals, so it’s essential to determine what you want to achieve with social media before choosing which platforms to use.

Step 3: Research social media platforms

Once you understand your audience and goals, it’s time to research different social media platforms to determine which ones align with your objectives. Some popular platforms for bloggers include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and TikTok. Each platform has unique features and strengths, so research each one carefully.

Step 4: Evaluate the platform’s features

When evaluating social media platforms, it’s essential to consider their features. For example, if your blog is highly visual, you may want to focus on platforms that emphasize photos and videos, such as Instagram or TikTok. If you’re looking to build a professional network, LinkedIn may be the best platform for you.

Step 5: Consider the platform’s engagement levels

It’s also important to consider the engagement levels of each social media platform. Some platforms, such as Twitter and Instagram, are highly interactive, while others, such as LinkedIn, are more focused

on professional networking. Choose a platform that aligns with your blogging goals and audience preferences.

Step 6: Start small

It’s okay to start with one or two social media platforms and then expand as you grow. Don’t feel like you need to be on every social media platform from the beginning. Focus on platforms that align with your audience and goals, and then expand as needed.

Step 7: Be Open to Trial and Error

Maybe you start on a social media platform and change your mind. It’s okay. Be sure to give your platform of choice atleast a few months as a trial run. If it doesn’t work out, you can move on to something else.

By understanding your audience, goals, and the unique features and strengths of each platform, you can choose the best platforms for your blog and start building your social media presence.

10 Things to Do Before Your Blog Launches

Whether you’re blogging for fun or for business, there are several tasks you should complete before your blog goes live. Here are 10 key things you should do before launching your blog (There’s also a downloadable checklist at the end of this blog post).

1. Pick a Blog Name:

Choosing a unique and memorable blog name is crucial for branding and recognition. Brainstorm ideas that reflect your blog’s theme or niche. Once you’ve settled on an idea or a few options, check if the domain is available as well as social media handles.

2. Purchase Domain and Hosting:

Invest in a reliable domain registrar and web hosting service. Everyone has their own preference. I use Elitehost and I’ve never had an issue. Be sure to select a hosting plan that is suited to your wallet and your blog needs. You need a service provider who is reliable and provides support.

3. Design a Logo on Canva:

Create a logo and header using tools like Canva. Incorporate your blog name, relevant visuals, and colours that represent your brand identity. I talk a bit about branding in this blog post here. Basically you want to keep your colours and fonts consistent. Designing an attractive logo and header will make your blog look more professional.

4. Draft 4 to 5 Blog Posts:

Before launching your blog, prepare a sizable chunk of content by drafting four to five blog posts. This ensures that you have something ready to publish and keeps your blog active from the start. Focus on delivering valuable information and engaging storytelling that resonates with your target audience.

5. Set Up Your Blog Categories:

Organize your blog posts into relevant categories. This will make navigation easier for your readers. Plan out your categories based on your blog’s main topics and ensure they are clear and intuitive. Well-defined categories help visitors find what they’re looking for and improves overall user experience.

6. Write a Compelling About Me Page:

Craft an engaging and authentic About Me page that introduces you to your readers. Share your story, passion, and expertise to build a connection and establish credibility.

7. Create Eye-Catching Pinterest Pins:

Pinterest is a valuable platform for driving traffic to your blog. Use Canva or another graphic design tool to design images for Pinterest. Optimize your pins with compelling headlines, keywords, and relevant descriptions to attract clicks and shares.

8. Create Social Media Accounts:

Establish a strong social media presence by creating accounts on platforms relevant to your target audience. Consider platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn, depending on your blog’s niche and where your audience can be found. Again, consistent branding across all platforms reinforces your blog’s identity and helps you reach a wider audience.

9. Install Yoast SEO:

Optimize your blog’s visibility in search engine results by installing a plugin like Yoast SEO (for WordPress users). This tool provides guidance on optimizing your blog posts for search engines, improving your chances of ranking higher and attracting organic traffic.

10. Publish Your Blog Post:

After completing all of the above, it’s time to hit the publish button and officially launch your blog. Choose your strongest blog post from the ones you drafted earlier and make any necessary final edits. Share your post across your social media platforms and start building a community around your blog.

Launching a blog involves careful planning and execution. Here’s a checklist with the above steps. By following this before your blog goes live, you’ll set a solid foundation for success.

Blogging 101: How Often Should You Blog?

So you’ve created a blog. You wrote your first post or your first few posts. But then life got in the way. Now what? Do you go back after months of radio silence? How often should you be blogging anyway?

There is no one correct answer. Experts say two to three times a week as per a quick Google search. I say that the correct blogging schedule is the one that you can stick to. Maybe that means once a week or once a month. As long as your audience knows when to expect new content from you, you’re good. Just remember that Google also needs to know that your blog is active.

Maybe you don’t feel like blogging constantly but there are things you can do to update your content. Or if you’re feeling too lazy, repurpose your existing content.

Take a look at others in your niche. How often are they blogging? Is it overkill or just enough? If I had time and resources I could get away with daily blog posts on books but things in the corporate world move a little slower.

As long as you continue to engage with your audience in some sort of way, you should be good to go.

5 Tips for Branding Your Blog

Branding is an essential aspect of any successful blog. It’s what sets your blog apart from the competition and helps build a loyal following. If you’re just starting out with your blog or looking to rebrand it, here are some tips to help

1. Define your brand identity

Before you can start branding your blog, you need to define your brand identity. This includes your blog’s mission, values, and voice. What is your blog about? Who is your target audience? What values do you want to communicate? What is the tone of you writing? Defining these elements will help you create a consistent brand image across all your blog content.

2. Create a logo and colour scheme

Once you’ve defined your brand identity, it’s time to create a logo and colour scheme that reflect it. Your logo should be simple, memorable, and relevant to your blog’s theme. Your colour scheme should consist of two or three colours that complement each other and align with your brand identity. Canva is a great tool to help you figure out your colour scheme. If you need help, play around with the Canva colour palette generator. This is a quick way for you to see what colours look good together.

3. Design a visually appealing website (with your chosen colour scheme)

Use your logo and colour scheme in your website design. Make sure that your website is easy to navigate. Use a clear and readable font

4. Develop a consistent content strategy

Your blog’s content is the main way you’ll communicate your brand to your audience. Develop a content strategy that aligns with your brand identity and communicates your values. Use a consistent tone (i.e the brand tone you identified previously) and style in your writing, and make sure your content is relevant to your target audience.

5. Promote your brand on social media

Again, using your brand tone and colours. Promote your blog on social media to grow your audience. Use your logo and color scheme in your social media profiles, and share your blog content regularly. Engage with your followers and respond to their comments and messages. Your brand will become more familiar to them as time goes on which helps you gain brand loyalty.

Branding your blog is essential to building a strong following. By following these steps, you can create a powerful and effective brand for your blog.

5 Lead Magnet Ideas to Build Your Email List

I absolutely LOVE lead magnets. However I am yet to figure out if I like them because they are valuable or because they are free.

So what is a lead magnet? It is a piece of content designed to help expand your email list. You provide something of value to your audience in exchange for their email address.

This is an excellent way for you to expand your email database. However remember that whatever you are offering needs to be valuable and needs to be something that people will be interested in.

It is also a good tip to keep the sign-up process as simple as possible. You do not want people starting to sign up for your lead magnet only to leave halfway because you are requesting too much information.

Here are 5 ideas for lead magnets:

  1. A Guide: Search through all your blog posts for a theme or posts that relate to each other. You can use this to create a guide. For example, I could use my blog posts to create a guide on blogging (or a very outdated guide to uni).
  2. Printables: Printables are also another favorite of mine. These are just items that are helpful that you can print such as a checklist, to-do list, motivational quotes or even a planner.
  3. Free stock images: If your audience is the type to appreciate free stock images then go for it! Personally I am always on the look-out for free stock images.
  4. Workbooks: Have I ever used a workbook? No. Have I ever given my email address away in exchange for a free workbook? Every single time. Put in the effort to create a valuable workbook tailored to your audience and you are sure to get a great response when this lead magnet goes live.
  5. A resource library: Once you have a few lead magnet options, you can compile them all in an exclusive “Members Only” library that can only be accessed by those who have given your their email address. Resource libraries are full of valuable information and so this is an excellent bargain for your audience. Speaking of which, you can join our resource library for access to some great blogging freebies. Just fill out the form below.

Have you ever tried using a lead magnet before? What are your favourite type of digital freebies? Let me know!

SEO Tips for Beginners

Guys, I have tried repeatedly to write an article on SEO basics. But I am old and forgetful and I do not know anymore what SEO techniques I use because I learnt it VS what SEO techniques I use out of habit (the latter which is probably old and outdated and might not work anymore).

As a Digital Marketer, I obviously do not want to give you irrelevant and outdated information so instead I am compiling a few links that could help you learn SEO as a beginner.

1) Moz has a beginner guide to On-Page SEO which looks at all aspects of optimizing your webpages.

2) Wordstream has a beginner guide to SEO basics however be warned, this post is incredibly long. This is an article that would probably be best to bookmark and come back to later.

3) Semrush looks specifically at SEO tips for bloggers

4) Finally, Hubspot has their own guide which I am recommending simply because they’re Hubspot.


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