Hi there, it’s Darren from ProBlogger. Welcome to Episode 219 of the ProBlogger podcast. Today I’ve got something a little bit different. Normally I teach something to you. I share an idea or a tip on how to improve your blog. But today I want to invite you to teach the rest of our audience. I want to try something a little different and give you an invitation to be featured in an upcoming episode of the ProBlogger podcast.
Early next year we’re going to be releasing a brand new course for bloggers to help them to launch their first blog, pre-bloggers really. In the lead up to that, we would love to feature stories and tips from ProBlogger listeners and readers who’ve already started their blog. If you’ve started a blog, whether it be in the last few months, the last year, or a long time ago, I would to love to include you in this upcoming series.
Today’s episode is all about how you can be involved in this little project we’re running. Listen on to find out how. But let me share the show notes for today where you can find all the details of what I’m going to mention, it’s at problogger.com/podcast/219.
Every year in January we notice a really big swing, upswing, in traffic to ProBlogger’s articles on the topic of how to start a blog. It seems that many people make this their New Year’s resolution. “I’m going to start a blog in 2018.” And we’re expecting that in the beginning of next year, many people will begin to do that.
This next January, we want to really help as many of those bloggers as possible in a way that we’ve never done it before. We want to really see in 2018 be the year that thousands of new blogs get started. And to do this we’ve been working on a brand new free course on that very topic that’s going to walk pre-bloggers through the process of not only setting up a blog, the technicalities of that, but setting up the foundations for a profitable blog.
We’re going to be talking about choosing a topic, and a niche, and really refining what it is that you want to do on that blog. It’s not just about getting a domain and a server, that’s certainly part of what we want to help people with that. But we want to really get the right foundations for starting a blog.
If you are one of our listeners, and there are quite a few of you who are yet to start, yet to do your first blog, or you’re thinking about starting a second blog, I want to encourage you to just be on the lookout for that because it’ll happen early next year. You can sign up to be notified of that in today’s show notes at problogger.com/podcast/219.
But if you are someone who’s already started blogging, we would also love to involve you in the process as much as possible. We want to ask you to share your story and a few tips on the topic of starting a blog.
My team and I are really excited about this course we’ve already put together. I’s very comprehensive. It’s the kind of thing I wish I had when I was starting out. However, we know that in the wider ProBlogger community, there’s such amazing knowledge and some really inspirational stories that come from a variety of different backgrounds that would be invaluable to bloggers just starting out. We know that there are people in our audience who are fashion bloggers, food bloggers, travel bloggers, business blogger, technology bloggers, sports bloggers, the list could go on and on and on. To be honest, I don’t have experience at all of those different niches and all the different styles of blogging. We want to include as many of your stories and tips as possible so that new bloggers have different things to draw and different experiences to draw on.
We want you to be involved. And want to give you an opportunity to share some of your stories and advice here on the ProBlogger podcast and potentially over on the ProBlogger blog as well.
We would love to hear from you and we’d love to hear from you whether you are an old-time blogger, you’ve been maybe at it as long as I have, from 2002, or maybe you’re a newer blogger. We actually want to feature blogs of all stages and in all niches and of all styles, we want to encourage video bloggers and those who are doing audio blogs, and those who are doing more visual blogs, we really don’t mind. As long as you classify what you’re doing as a blog, we would love to hear your story, no matter what the niche, the style, where your background is, whether you’re from America, Australia, Zimbabwe, it really doesn’t matter. We would like you to keep it in English because that’s where the bulk of our audience is from. But apart from that, whatever background, whatever accent you have, we would love to try and feature as many of you as possible.
This is really going to help a lot of new bloggers, but hopefully, it’s also going to be good for you as it’s going to get your story, your blog, your URL, in front of thousands of listeners of this podcast and tens of thousands of subscribers of the email list that we send out every day. Our readers are a friendly bunch, so don’t worry about that.
Here’s what we need you to do. If you want to participate in this, and again, blogs of all sizes, it doesn’t matter, we would love you to submit a short audio file. We want to keep it under ten minutes. You can go five minutes if you want, but anything up to ten minutes and we want you to share your story of starting a blog and share some tips for those starting out. You can do it in your style, but there are few things that we do want you to include. Before you go run off and do your recording, we want to have some consistency between the storytelling. There are six questions we would like you to answer. As long as you cover these six things in some way in your story, that would be great. You don’t have to read the question and then answer it (if you want to do it that way, you can), but as long as you include these things we’d love to include you as much as possible.
Here are the six things.
We want you to tell you us your name, your blog’s name and the topic, its URL, that’s the first thing. Just keep that really short.
The second thing is for you to tell us the story of starting a blog. Include things like why did you start, when did you start, what were your objectives, hopes and goals, what were your dreams when you started out. It’s the expectations that you had, I guess, and anything interesting happening in that starting process.
The third thing we want you to include is in hindsight, what did you do in starting your blog that you’re most grateful that you did? We want you to identify something that you did right, something that you’re grateful that you did, something that maybe helped you to grow faster or made the process easier. Keep in mind here that these are new pre-bloggers who will be listening to this. Anything that’s going to help them to make their process easier would be great.
The fourth thing, what mistake or mistakes did you make that you would advise other people watch out for. Did you choose the wrong domain, the wrong server, the wrong theme, did you not have a tight enough niche, whatever it is, mistake or mistakes.
Number five, what good things have happened to you since you’ve started blogging. We would love to hear the upside, what has happened since you started blogging. For some of you, there’ll be a lot that you can choose from. Don’t go into great depth in all of it, just choose one thing. Something specific as possible. Maybe it’s traffic, maybe it’s an opportunity that came, maybe it’s a lesson you learned, maybe it’s you got some self-confidence, maybe you’ve got a new income. Feel free to be specific about that if you’d like. Really, I guess what we’re trying here to do is to share with pre-bloggers some of the upside, some of the good things that can come. We want to inspire people to start blogging.
The sixth thing is what is your number one tip for a new blogger. Something practical that new bloggers can do or decide that will have a big impact on their blog. Again, we want them to come away from this with some practical things to do, to try. Keep in mind with that last one that we don’t want to really feature ten of the same tips. You can choose something that might be common. But if you’ve got something interesting, something a little bit unique that you haven’t heard other people talk about, feel free to include that as well.
There are the six things we want you to include. Keep it under ten minutes, it’s going to have to be fairly tight. My team has set up a page for you at problogger.com/blogstory where you’ll find all of that information, and it will point you to a Google Form where you can log in with your Google account and submit your audio file and a headshot.
We’d love a headshot. If you are blogging anonymously, for your freedom, maybe include your logo or something that symbolizes who you are if you want to keep that anonymous. But we’d love to see who are if you’re happy and comfortable to do that.
Before you record anything, please do read through the guidelines that we’ve included on that page just so you do it in the right way to increase your chance of being featured. One other thing: we really need you to act in the next week or so, if possible, to be considered in the first batch of episodes that we’d like to do. We may do more episodes down the track but if you would like to be considered for this first batch, we really do need your audio file by the 11th of December. As this podcast goes live, you got about a week to do that. You can submit after that time for potential lighter episodes but we’d love as many as possible by the 11th of December.
It’s also worth saying that I’m very excited about this but I’m also slightly nervous about doing it because we really don’t know how many are going to be submitted. It may be that we get ten, those ten, we’ll probably be able to feature a lot them. But we may get a hundred or we may get a thousand. I really don’t know. We will try and include as many as we possibly can. But it’s really going to come down to trying to choose ones that we think are going to be most practical and inspiring for new bloggers. And maybe something that’s a little bit unique as well. If you’ve got sort of a unique story, or if you’re blogging a unique way or a unique niche, that would be great as well.
Your recording certainly doesn’t have to be perfect but do try and make your audio quality decent and clear and think about how you can stand out from everyone else that does submit.
I hope that’s clear. If you got any questions, feel free to ask them over at the ProBlogger Facebook group. We’ll be watching out for those over the next week or so. Again, head over to problogger.com/blogstory to participate and I’ll link to that over on the show notes as well.
I’m really excited about this. I love this type of thing. We actually, a few years ago now, invited readers to submit video tips. We had 20 or so people record a tip on video and that was a fantastic post, I really love seeing and hearing the voices of our readers. Particularly the breadth of people that came from around the world, all those different accents. I know there are a lot of you who listen from America, or in Australia, or in the UK, Canada. We’ve also got a lot of listeners in India, Singapore, Manila. We’ve got listeners throughout Africa. I’d love to get as many different accents and experiences as possible. It’s fascinating to see that. Please feel confident to do it, please submit something and I really look forward to seeing what comes in as a result of this. Again, problogger.com/blogstory.