When you start out with professional blogging, you follow a cycle. You create your first successful blog, and then you move to starting another blog, and then another.
But for the majority of bloggers, this dream remains just a dream because of the many ups and downs they face while trying to build a successful blog network.
Starting a blog network is not an easy task.
Every blog in a blog network must be popular in order to make the entire blog network popular.
You will face many hurdles while building and maintaining a blog network. Many bloggers eventually quit because of these hurdles. To avoid such situations, you need to stay positive and remember a few factors which are very important to building a blog network.
Building a Blog Network? Things you should know
If you want to make your blog or blog network successful you need to have proper planning. You need to be clear about your goals and what you want to achieve. Make a plan and a detailed checklist of all your necessary intentions.
Your plans should include:
- How many blogs do you want in your blog network?
- Choosing the niche for all blogs
- Frequency of posts on each blog
- Deciding on and planning out milestones
- Market research about competitors in the blogosphere (Use SEMRUSH)
- Where you will outsource work? What’s your budget?
- Blog platform and architecture (use managewp.com to maintain multiple blogs)
- Make a blogging business plan for each and every blog
These are just a few must-have tasks in order to make and build a blog network. As soon as you start building, this list will shift and change and it will be wise to re-evaluate these intentions when that network is up and running.
Hard and Smart Work:
After planning, it’s time to start implementing and doing disciplined work. Make sure you meet your deadlines. Find the best way for you to be productive and active in writing articles, as well as in social media.
Maintaining all of the blogs and actively promoting them is a very time-consuming task. Blogging is not only about writing articles. Blogs need constant maintenance and promotion in order to be successful.
So if you are planning to build a blog network, make sure you prepare yourself mentally and physically for all of the necessary hard work that’s about to come.
Building a Team:
If you want to make your blog network successful it’s important to update your blog on a regular basis. Therefore, it will be better if you have a team who can help you in managing your blogs by doing things like:
- Writing articles
- Managing social networks
- Building email campaigns
- Handling the blog’s technical side
Having a team helps you to maintain your blog even when you are busy with other things.
- Note: When hiring writers, make sure they can provide you with unique, updated, and quality articles. Low quality content is not a good thing to put on any blog.
Also, one of the mistakes we often do when managing multiple blogs is we tend to ignore some of our lower performing (or less interesting) blogs as we move ahead. My recommendation would be to follow a posting schedule and stick to it.
- Blog A: 20 posts a month ( 5/week)
- Blog B: 8 posts a month ( 2/week)
- Blog C: 4 Posts a month (1/week)
On the first of every month, schedule posts on all of these blogs with the frequency you have decided upon. This way, you don’t need to worry about updating in the middle of the month. And, if you want, you can always post new and fresh content right away.
Preparing a plan or a team might be easy for you, but managing your blogs according to that plan and actually managing your team is always much harder.
Keeping and sticking to your plan for all of your blogs while maintaining all of the errors and problems your blogs may be having is not easy, but it’s very important.
You can make use of tools like ManageWP to manage all of your WordPress blogs from a single dashboard.
Also, keeping your team motivated and giving proper feedback is a very important thing to do. Here at ShoutMeLoud, our team uses Slack to stay connected & it works out pretty well.
If you are planning to go big, you have to think big.
- “Money makes money.”
Have a decent budget for the marketing of your blog as well as other necessary tools.
There are many free and paid tools which you will need, and also as I mentioned, you need to outsource a lot of work.
The investment factor depends on the individual. Ask yourself this question:
- How much do you want to invest on your blog network?
Regardless of extra investments, there are a few basic things which are required. One of those things is investing in reliable web hosting for all of your blogs to avoid downtimes and/or poor maintenance.
- It is important(!) to avoid free web-hosting services.
You may also choose to invest in SEO services or blog designs which will help you gain a wider audience with a more professional appearance.
You will also need to pay your team.
One of the hardest parts about running a blog network is managing and updating so many social media profiles at one time. I suggest a professional tool like Hootsuite. You can manage all of your social media profiles and even set up auto-publishing on your Google + pages.
Things to Remember:
Maintaining multiple blogs is not a one-man job. You need to learn how to delegate tasks in order to get all of the work done on schedule.
Many bloggers, including me, find it hard to delegate work and end up doing most of the work ourselves, which is a pretty wrong approach. If your target is to build a big network of blogs, you need to create a team hierarchy and assign one blog to one team.
You also need:
- an SEO person
- a designer
- a marketer
- a B.D.O.
- and many more people as you grow and expand your network.
You need to be really focused and aim for something really high.
For example, you can set your goal as something like:
“I want to create a network of blogs bigger than Lifehacker.”
It’s important to aim high, but never compromise the quality of your blogs and give every blog its own identity.
Try to take advantage of branding by keeping something similar in all your blog networks; this could be a design element or could be the name of a domain.
For example, here at ShoutMeLoud, we use “SHOUT” in many of our brands.
I hope the above tips will help you when starting a blog network of your own. But if you have more questions related to maintaining and managing your network, please ask in the comments.
These are a few factors which you should keep in mind before starting your blog network. If you are aware of some other important tips to starting a blog network, do share them with us. We would love to know your views.