How to Launch Your Blog Like a Pro

This week, we’re running the Blog Like a Pro Challenge, and you’re going to want to be a part of it. What does this entail? 7 days. 7 blog posts. 1 epic challenge that will leave you a better blogger.

launch like a pro

But before you jump in, you’d better have a blog. So let’s talk about that.

Why do you need a blog?

Three important reasons:

  • Because blogging is accessible. Anyone can do it.
  • Because blogging is relatively easy once you understand the tools, which I argue even your grandma can figure out.
  • And lastly because blogging is powerful. It’s a simple way to get your words out into the world. If you have something to say, why wouldn’t you have a blog?

But lots of people launch blogs that never make an impact. How will yours be different? Well, there are a few things that I think lft a professional blog apart from the rest of the clutter on the Internet:

First, a professional blog is owned by the author. In other words, it’s a self-hosted blog, which really means that you pay to host the website elsewhere as opposed to letting a free service like WordPress.com or Blogger host it. There’s nothing wrong with those services, except that they can put up ads or any kind of other distractions on your website whenever they like. Why gamble by placing the controls to your content in someone else’s hands? Own your words.

Second, a professional blog is branded well. What I mean by that is you should be using a .com or .org version of your domain name if at all possible (the domain name is the web address people will use to get to your site). A good domain name should be short, memorable, and relevant to the blogger’s message. In other words, dancing-girl-1352.net doesn’t work. Find a good domain name and use it.

Third, a professional blog is designed well. This is why I recommend WordPress. It’s free to download, cheap to host on any number of sites (like Bluehost, for example, which I have an affiliate relationship with and love recommending), and has a ton of free resources including a treasure trove of nice-looking free themes. What makes a theme design a winner? Clean layout, simple graphics, and nothing that distracts the readers from the copy. Invest in the design of your site, and you won’t regret it.

Ready to start blogging?

Okay, so now that I’ve made my case, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Set up your blog. I recommend a self-hosted solution like Bluehost (watch the 8-minute video below to get set up). For less than $4/month, you can get rolling with your very own, customized website. Pretty amazing, right?
  2. Choose a domain name that matches your brand and message. It could just be your name, the subject about which you’ll be blogging, or some kind of mashup of the two (for example, my name is Jeff Goins and I’m a writer, so I chose Goinswriter.com).
  3. Install a WordPress theme. These range from free to fairly expensive (a few hundred dollars). I recommend something simple to begin with like the Twenty Sixteen Theme, which doesn’t cost a thing. You can always upgrade later.
  4. Start blogging! The first thing you want to write is your about page, because that’s one of the most important pages on your website that many bloggers ignore.

If you get stuck, there are tutorials for all this stuff (Google is your friend). But keep in mind, that’s why we’ve built this community of bloggers — so that you can get the help you need. If you need something, just pop into the Intentional Blogging Facebook group and ask your question. I’m sure someone will help you.

And if you don’t have a self-hosted blog, I highly recommend getting one. You can follow my quick tutorial here. Or watch the video below.

So that’s all for today. Get started blogging and make sure you’re signed up for the daily email updates on the challenge if you don’t want to miss a thing. A week goes by pretty fast!

Assignment: Set up your blog. Share the link in the comments.

86 thoughts on “How to Launch Your Blog Like a Pro

  1. This year I decided to finally self-host my blog after blogging through Blogger and WordPress over the past few years. After finally purchasing my domain and hosting last month, I’ve spent the last few weeks learning lots and switching things over, tweaking plugins, and contemplating designs. My blog is http://www.elizabethbookout.me. Looking forward to this challenge to keep me moving forward!

  2. A launched blog [check – leadistics.com/leadr-board]. Downloaded the Beginner’s Guide to Building an Audience [check]. Heading over to Lesson One [on my way].

  3. Just started my blog a few days ago and I need direction. I’m not sure I even set I up correctly, haha
    Leparisprojet.com

  4. Perfect timing! I’ve just re-branded my website bestpeoplebusiness.com and decided to begin blogging 3 times a week beginning today.

    My developer is building the final pieces of my blog and I can’t wait to begin.

    I created a content calendar with my first blog post being published today!

  5. OperationGoosebumps.com. It started as a personal quest to do 40 daring things after I turned 40. After hearing from many friends who told me about the daring things they’d like to do, I’m trying to grow this personal project into a community of people that helps each other achieve their dreams. A tall order, I know, so I could use all the help I can get. Good luck everyone!

    1. I. AM. IN! Just today I w/thinking the same way. Last year I saw a man and exchanged less than 10 words. Today I saw him, introduced myself, told him I’d had a crush on him since last year, gave him my card and said call if you ever want to talk to a new person! Whew! Yeah, Buddy, I’m so in!!!

      1. Wow, now THAT took some guts. Way to go! I can’t wait to hear the rest of the story. 🙂

        1. Honey, I tell u, there comes a time to move and then there’s a time to sit and think! I’m all about moving! There’ll likely be nothing more of it: when I finished speaking, he smiled as if he’d just wet his pants and said nothing… oh well, it’s kinda like this building an audience: do it often enough, long enough, well enough and somebody WILL bite! be good! sd

  6. Wow. I am less tech savvy than I thought! I hope I did this all correctly. I already had my own domain, but I haven’t done anything with it, so this challenge, in conjunction with the 500 words a day challenge, is going to be a big jump for me. I’m hoping to learn how to hone in on audience (target market) and topics more. I want to write about a lot, but it’s unrealistic. So here is to taking the leap: http://www.levelleadership.us

  7. I just finished doing mine, hopefully all the bugs are out, hope it works and everything. (totally not tech savvy but i guess everyone can learn) Here’s my address https://strengthtostruggle.com/ still working on that manifesto though. Might have to do it tomorrow ran out of time with getting it up and running… hope that this week is going to be a good one for me!

    1. Caty, I looked at your blog. If you did it all on your own, u should be proud! I think it’s great. Now that I’ve learned how to enhance the appearance of mine, I’m excited. I’ll subscribe.

      1. Thank you so much! I used a template, but I built the whole thing including logo myself! I’d love for you to subscribe. 🙂

  8. I am excited for the 7 day blogging challenge.
    Here’s my blog: thehowtobesuccessfulinlifeblog.com

    1. I have a request: how did you decide to have both a site and a blog? I’m so thoroughly confused. I’m about to hire a fiverr consultant. this thing is giving me too much push back… thx.

      1. I started out with the free wordpress blog. Then when I published my first 2 books I needed an actual website, so I upgraded to a paid website on wordpress. I just linked my blog to the website so all the content was still there. If I had to do it over, I would just do the website, because you can just blog directly onto it with most themes. Hope that helps.

        1. It does, indeed. in fact, i just engaged a fiverr expert and this morning read a blog that convinced me, indeed, to do so, except that i have a blogger spot, not wordpress. luckily, this virtual world all connects at some point! livewelltoday/drinkteaalways! sd

  9. My blog is here: riainthecity.com Excited for this challenge!
    I have been blogging since 2003 but don’t have the consistency. Using this to put me in the habit!

  10. My blog is at https://www.scribblersden.com.
    I really hate having to sign in with anything besides my email address and name. I particularly resent Disqus. Why does anybody mess up a website with all these hoops? Under normal circumstances, I would not comment on any site that required special sign-ins.

    Ah, late in the process, I am given the opportunity to post as a “guest.”

  11. https://chereemiller.com
    Starting late… I have been largely absent from the internet for the past month. Already had a website set up, but it has been dormant for quite a while. I edited my “about” page, and am looking forward to completing the challenge (even if it is, technically, over now!). Have also signed up for 500 words.

  12. Great idea to do a challenge! I give 20- and 30-something women the tools to budget and improve their finances at juliemorgenlender.com

Comments are closed.