If you feel compelled to encourage and inspire others, a motivational blog should be part of what you do. The world’s most renowned motivational speakers don’t possess any secret powers. They just know how to make people believe in themselves. You can do the same thing. A blog is a perfect tool to communicate your message to a wide audience.
To make others believe in themselves, it helps if you believe in yourself. But what’s interesting is the lack of self-belief in some very successful people. How can a motivational blog become successful or be effective if the motivator has self-doubt?
Well, the truth is, we all have self-doubt. And one of the ways to motivate others, under those circumstances, is to serve as an example. If you’re at the top of your field or have a unique or valuable skill, you can be an example. Whether or not you’re brimming with self-confidence.
But regardless of what brought you to this point, now you’re wondering how to start a blog. You know it can help you get your message to people, but maybe you don’t know exactly where to start.
We can help with that.
How to Make Motivational Blog
A big part of motivation is the belief that you can achieve something. If you have a knack for instilling that kind of belief in people, you can build a successful motivational blog. I say “build” because what you put into your blog, your words, are more important than the nuts and bolts. The technical things are simple, and we’ll cover all of them here.
But it’s what you write, or the information and inspiration that you can provide that will make you stand out. But in order to stand out, you need something to stand on. So let’s talk about that foundation.
Choosing a Web Host and Domain Name
Every blog needs a home. If part of motivation is aspiration, you want to appear as if you’ve got everything under control. That means a professional presentation for your blog. That means quality website hosting, the right software, and a good domain name. Sure, here are a lot of things to check off the list. But we’ll take them one by one, and when we do that, you’ll see that they’re all easily attainable.
First is the home of the blog, the web host. And for that, you can’t do any better than GreenGeeks hosting. The service is fast and reliable, and it won’t break the bank.
And as the name suggests, GreenGeeks is eco-friendly, matching with renewable energy three times the amount the network consumes. No other web host can make that claim.
Once hosting is settled, all that’s left is software (we’ll talk about that in a minute) and a domain name. The domain name you use for your blog should match, or nearly match, the name you choose.
We talked about how necessary it is for a motivational or self-help blog to instill confidence in visitors. The domain name can actually help with that.
How? By choosing a .com domain. Using .com is one of the oldest, most well-recognized, and respected domain extensions. And when you sign up with GreenGeeks, we’ll pay your domain registration fees for the first year. Yet another value proposition that we offer.
But all the good .com domains are taken, right?
Maybe not. All the single words are taken, yes, but by combining two or three short words, you can come up with a perfect .com domain name. As I mentioned, choose a domain name that’s as close to the title of your blog as possible. Unless, of course, your blog title is very long. If that’s the case, consider abbreviations (or better yet, shortening the name of the blog).
Now let’s move on to the final piece of the puzzle, your blog software.
You’ve probably heard of WordPress. It’s the most widely-used blog software, showing up on a whopping third of all websites. I’m recommending it to you not only for that reason but because it’s the right tool for the job.
WordPress Is Easy to Use
And when I say easy, I’m not kidding. The initial setup on your GreenGeeks account will only take a minute or two. Then you can get started on your first inspirational blog post.
WordPress Is Ideal for What You Want to Do
What makes it ideal is the fact that once it’s set up and configured, it’s invisible. It becomes part of your workflow, rather than standing in the way. It will do everything you ask it to do, and some things you didn’t realize you wanted it to do.
WordPress Themes and Plugins for a Motivational Blog
All right, you’ve installed WordPress. And yes, it was easy. But now what?
Your site is still kind of bare-bones, so let’s pretty it up. We’ll do that with a theme. WordPress themes establish and guide the appearance of your site. They’re all customizable and configurable; what you’re looking for is a solid starting point.
There are tens of thousands of themes available for free at wordpress.org. Most of them are up to the task. But pay attention to the date they were most recently updated. You may want to steer clear of any themes that haven’t been updated in the past year or so.
WordPress evolves, and when it changes, themes and plugins have to change along with it. Using an outdated theme could put you into a tough spot a year or two down the road. An old, unsupported theme could break your site any time WordPress changes.
Aside from the free themes, there are thousands of “premium” paid themes. They will cost a few dollars upfront but can save time and money in the long run.
While themes are a matter of taste and aesthetics, plugins are a different matter. Plugins expand the capabilities of WordPress, and there are a few that every blog should use.
Jetpack is the Swiss Army knife of WordPress plugins. SEO tools, social share buttons, and blog visitor statistics are just a few of the things you get with Jetpack. Security, performance, and site management all brought to you by the same people who build WordPress.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a vast and intricate subject. But all you have to know about SEO to get started is Yoast SEO. It handles a lot of crucial technical SEO tasks automatically, and can even give you SEO-related writing tips. You will work hard on your blog, make sure people can find it. Yoast will help with that.
Site Kit by Google
Site Kit by Google integrates Analytics, Search Console, AdSense, PageSpeed Insights, Tag Manager, and Optimize with WordPress. Sure, you could access all of those Google tools outside of WordPress, but now you don’t have to.
Promoting Your Motivational Blog
Your priority when starting out should be social media. And really, social media should remain a priority in the long run. The best way to attract visitors to your blog is by being visible and engaging. Post on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook and link back to your blog.
As a motivational writer, it’s important to follow up. Stay connected to your social media accounts; don’t just post and walk away. Nurture the sites and the connections you make there. Start the dialog on social sites and continue it on your blog.
You might also consider offering free seminars to attract readers. If you can give an inspirational talk online, you’re bound to gain blog followers. Of course, once your blog gains traction, you can reverse that and use your blog as a way to promote paid seminars.
Uplifting and Inspiration Are Sacred Callings
I tried to word that without sounding too precious.
But to be a motivational blogger is something that happens on a different level than a typical blog. As bloggers or speakers, we can start to see audiences as collective things. But a motivational blog is something that has the ability to speak to the individual. And once you make that connection, it can remain strong for a long time.
Author: Michael Phillips
Michael Phillips is a web hosting industry veteran, helping people make the most of their web presence since 1995.