For the past few weeks we have been looking at social media options that help support your side business. Today we are focussing on the Granddaddy/mummy of them all – the blog. Blogs allow us to share our thoughts and connect with other people on pretty much any topic. Whether you want to start blogging for personal enjoyment, to support your professional goals or to develop a business idea, here are titles that will inspire and help you get started.
This is a great tool for those of us who like a bit of structure and a “big picture” overview before we plunge into a project. Meera Kothand is a digital marketing specialist, and this is her method for generating a year’s worth of blog post ideas in an hour or less. The secret is to set regular blogging goals, and to never forget the purpose of your blog. The One Hour Content Plan contains downloadable worksheets and templates to help you work through Meera’s actionable ideas. This mix of business / marketing and writing advice will help you craft a cohesive, authentic blog that will support your public/professional persona or business.
You know a book must be good if it is onto its Third Edition in eight years. Likeable Social Media is not just about how to get more “Likes” on Facebook; instead it is about how to develop likeable business practices and likeable content that capture customer loyalty, build communities and strengthen reputations in the long run. This latest revision offers strategies about newer social media platforms such as Snapchat, and news and tactics on the latest tools and options. The direct, conversational tone of the book is easy to read and feels like Dave Kerpen has become your personal mentor.
If you’ve ever dreamt of making a living as a blogger – or want to know how to make money from your blog – then you need this book. In The Essential Habits of 6-Figure Bloggers, Sally Miller interviewed 17 top bloggers to learn the strategies, habits and mindsets that have helped them become successful. These bloggers make six- or even seven-figure salaries from blogging – when most bloggers struggle to make a tiny fraction of that. The bloggers all took different paths to success, but showed that persistence and smart work habits are essential. The tips and advice they shared are sensible and practical, and can help to improve the focus and quality of any blog.
Creative Confidence is not specifically about blogging, but is a guide on how we can use creative thinking to become more productive and successful in our lives. Tom and David Kelley are brothers and co-founders of the award-winning design firm, IDEO – innovation and creativity is their life’s work. They wrote Creative Confidence in order to inspire and help everyone realise their creative potential. Using many interesting anecdotes, and ideas based on design / iterative thinking, the Kelleys show that greater creativity can be learnt – by trying new things without fear of failure, and by learning from our mistakes.
If you’ve ever scrolled through your Instagram feed and thought, I wear clothes, eat avocado toast and like sunsets, why can’t someone pay me to live my best life? Then this book is for you – Influencer is a detailed guide on how to nurture your social media presence – including your blog and your personal brand – into valuable social influence. With her experience from both sides of the industry – starting as a blogger, eventually entering senior marketing roles in influencer strategy for various companies – Brittany Hennessy is able to offer a range of tips and tricks to help you. She is also refreshingly honest about the flipside of the influencer lifestyle – the amount of hard work and attention-to-detail required to live that picture-perfect life. Essential reading.
Dana Fox fell in love with the creative potential of the internet as a teen, then went on to build a successful career as a graphic artist, web designer, and blogger. She is now paying it forward, sharing tips and tutorials on how to start blogging, through her blog I Can Build a Blog, and this book, 365 Blog Topic Ideas. On each page there is a basic topic, such as “7 things found on the net this week”. These are great starting points that also prompt you to modify or expand to suit the tone and focus of your own blog. There is also a section full of holiday and seasonal ideas. 365 Blog Topic Ideas is a great resource for getting started, injecting variety or helping you become unstuck in your blogging.