dayTODAYdo is brand new, but I’ve been obsessing (and fantasizing!) about launching a blog months before. I’ve had loads blogs than I care to remember, but they went to dust and I hadd no intention to get something out of it other than self expression.
That’s until, at one point I thought, “Hey, this is fun. If I can do this for a living, that would be great.” So I began my to think about launching a blog as a serious goal.
But because I was so worked up with my undergraduate thesis in Psychology (and that means mostly worrying and reading and thinking for pleasure instead of getting things done) and I need to make practical money for practical use, I can’t afford any idle period where I pay for hosting but can’t attend to the blog fully. I know. Even though they’re just roughly $4 a month. Besides, I’m rather a meticulous planner. I hope that makes up for being a sloppy executer, but I need to plan as much ahead before getting on board with anything.
So, while telling myself that I’m going to focus to graduate for now (yea right), I secretly planned and prepared anything I can for my blog before even launching it.
I know my situation is unconventional and weird, but if you found my story relatable or even plausible for some reasons, here’s what you can start preparing months before launching your blog:
A Blog Name
When I decided that I’m going to get serious about blogging, I started thinking about a blog name. I don’t want to waste hours staring into the my hosting order page thinking “What should be my domain name?”. And apparently it wasn’t as simple as it sounds. I scribbled down any words that I think could represent my blog, combined some of the words, see if any of it makes sense, and finally, see if I like any of it. It took me one whole page and I came up with new ideas every single day for a few weeks before deciding to dayTODAYdo. Of course you’ll have your own process. But my point is, this could take long, so start as soon as you can. You don’t need anything to start crafting for a name, so do it now. Write it in your vision board of notebook to keep you motivated.
Choosing A Platform and a Hosting Site
Before choosing WordPress as a platform and Hostgator as hosting provider, I’ve pretty much learn as much as I can about all the options. I learned the pros and cons of using WordPress.com and WordPress.org. I read many many reviews about various hosting sites. And so far, I’m happy about my decision on both. I recommend you do your own research on this topic before launching a blog to come up with a decision that suits your need and goals.
What kind of stuffs are you planning to post in your blog? Are you writing stories, tips, listicles, reviews? Or all of those things?
This part is particularly hard for me because I want so many things for dayTODAYdo. I want to write tips, devotions, reviews, and I know I have to weave it together to make a comprehensive blog. I’m still working to build an intact blog with all seemingly unrelated parts but I got to start somewhere so for now I’m settling with this categorization:
day-to-day: I’m fascinated with building habits and organizing life day by day. This is where I put posts about planning and self development and devotions.
TODAY: Even though there are things you should do every day, there are things that can only happen TODAY. This is where I put my news roundup.
DO: Things that I’ve tried and recommend for readers to do. Includes reviews to the movies I watch, books I read, places I explored, and activities I enjoyed.
If you want to focus on one category, that’s great. But even if you don’t, you can still make it work with an extra thought on categorizing.
At Least 5 Blog Posts
When I finally launch dayTODAYdo, I’ve already got more than 5 articles in my pocket, ready to publish right away. This is important because once you’ve got your first visitors, you’ll want them to explore your blog more, right? Well, then give them something to see. This way, you’ll also look more professional and credible so visitors will be much more likely to follow or subscribe compared to a new blog with only 1 or 2 posts.
Simple Business Plan
Yes, you can do this even before the blog arrives. Ask yourself these important questions before starting:
What are your goals?
How do you plan to monetize?
Will you be selling products or services?
Who is your ideal target audience?
What sets you apart from other similar bloggers?
Where will you market your contents once its launched?
If you can’t answer some of the questions, it’s totally fine. And even if you can, be sure to evaluate once you launched.
Every blog should have an About page to let readers or potential clients know who you are, what you do, and what makes you different. Writing about yourself and make it sound impressing while still being honest in a non-bragging way can be tricky. You may need to rewrite and revise several times before feeling satisfied about it. Thankfully, you can start doing it right now, even before you launched the blog. Even when you have, always revise and improve your about me page as needed.
Logo or Header
A logo or at least a crafted header will make you look professional. It will also help in branding and social media. You can hire a freelancer to craft an awesome logo or header for your blog. As for me, because I like designing (and I was on a tight blogging budget), I took matter into my own hands. I use Adobe Photoshop to create my simple header.