Steps To Building An Author Blog
Steps to Building An Author Blog
Author’s marketing strategy
While an email list should lie at the heart of an author’s marketing strategy an author blog, on the other hand, can help you to build your email list. A blog can be a host to a lead magnet that attracts people to your list.
So both the author blog and email list are central to an author’s marketing strategy.
An author blog is a website. As well as hosting a lead generating machine a successful author blog can act as a hub of valuable content for the author’s growing list of subscribers.
I recommend building an author blog with WordPress. There are a lot of other platforms out there in the online space but WordPress is recognised as the best and easiest platform to use.
When I refer to WordPress I mean WordPress.org which is the most popular and the number 1 platform in the world.
Setting up a WordPress website is not a steep learning curve; you can easily learn to build a website yourself and manage it yourself.
I did, and I’m not a “techie” type person.
WordPress has two platforms (1) wordpress.org, and (2) wordpress.com.
With wordpress.org you arrange and pay for the hosting of your website. With wordpress.com, on the other hand, it is all done for you.
With wordpress.com you don’t have the same freedom that you have with wordpress .org, you cannot monetise it, and you cannot install Plugins and Themes beyond those already there.
WordPress.com has its limitations. Primarily with wordpress.com you do not own or control your website.
Take it from me wordpress.org is the way to go.
The learning curve
The experience I personally had learning to build my own websites was one of the best online learnings in my online education.
These are the benefits that I enjoy:
- I am in control of my websites
- I own my websites
- I can delete a website or build a new one whenever I want to
- I do not have to go to a web developer to do this for me
- This means a saving of thousands of dollars
- I am able to maintain my websites myself
- I have the freedom to build whatever site I want to and whenever I want to
Once you learn the fundamentals of building a WordPress website you can go on from there. You don’t have to start out with all the bells and whistles or anything high tech or fancy.
A website grows with you as you grow in your knowledge and its application.
Build a basic website and get it up and running. That’s all you have to do.
With an author website (or blog) you will be able to
- market and promote your books
- provide links to your books
- build an email list
- get ranked on search engines like Google
- become an authority in your field of expertise
- and, even make an additional income by incorporating affiliate links
Steps to set up your author blog
So how do you go about setting up your wordpress.org platform?
A person would good technical ability can easily build their own WordPress website.
Even if you are not a “techie” type person you can still learn to build your own website. It is not rocket science.
I, for one, am not known for my technical abilities. Yet, I know the basics of building a wordpress.org website.
Once I learned the fundamentals of doing this, I quickly went on to build 10 in the space of one week! Mind you, I did make some serious mistakes and I did have to rebuild those websites that I attempted to build.
But you do learn from making mistakes.
I eventually went on to build about 20 WordPress websites.
I learnt to build WordPress websites by having my coach hold my hand. On Zoom she walked me through the steps that were needed to set up my sites.
I shall now share an outline of these steps.
- Domain Name Research and register a domain name. I use Go Daddy. The current cost is around $13.95 although you can probably get a cheaper promotional offer if doing it for the first time
- Hosting Choose web hosting and select a plan. Again I use Go Daddy which starts at $4.95 month. I was advised to choose the Deluxe ($6.95 month) or Ultimate (10.95) plan as there is greater flexibility and more options.
- Installation Install WordPress. This is free.
- Theme Choose a Theme which controls the visual appearance of your website.
- Pages – Create static, one-off pages. You will need to set up several pages with text and images:
- Static home page
- About page
- Blog page
- Contact page
- Terms & Conditions
- Posts These are your blog posts
- Menus for navigating the website
- Widgets If you have ever been to a website and seen in the sidebar a lead magnet, a video, references to your latest blog post a Widget is what you use to put these things there
- Plugins Plugins are like an App, a piece of software, that performs different functions. Plugins are added to your website and they do whatever functions you are seeking to install. Thousands of WordPress plugins are available for free.
- Security – SSL Certificate, GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation)standards, reCapture
- Social media links
- Mobile responsive
Options for setting up a website
- 1. Hire a web developer which may cost you anywhere from $500 and upwards (literally thousands of dollars).
- DIY if you have plenty of technical talent
- Enrol in a course
- Learn to do it yourself but with a helping hand to guide you.
If you would like to build an author website feel free to have a no-obligation strategy call with me.