Yesterday, on our
, Seth expressed his desire for me to take blogging
and to really make it a business like I dream of doing. Trust me, I know how lucky I am! In June, while waiting for William to arrive I started doing research on how to build a blog business plan and worked up a rough draft. After yesterday I felt even more inspired and encouraged to finalize my business plan and get the ball rolling. I'm still in the building phase of my business plan but through this process I have found some wonderful resources to share with you that will help you as you plan out your blog goals and dreams.
The number one resource I have found for building my business plan is from
and she literally writes out
. I cannot tell you how many times I have gone back to her post as a guide and reference for building my own plan. In my plan I've skipped or combined a few sections that Regina includes in her outline. Below is my outline (as of now) with notes and links to the most helpful resources that I've found.
1.0 Blog + Brand Summary
1.1 Vision Statement
- Why does this blog exist?
- Where do I see it going in the future?
- The best visions are inspirational, clear, memorable, and concise
1.2 Mission Statement
- What are my responsibilities and commitments to my readers?
- Why is my blog culture?
- How will I accomplish my vision day-to-day?
- How do I want my blog to be perceived?
- Shouldn't be more than 3 sentences - cut out the fluff
1.3 Ideal Reader
- Includes the reader's basic demographics, preferences and habits, social habits, and money habits
1.4 Blog Culture
- What quirks will you show?
- What tone and style will you write in?
- If your blog was a human, what personality traits would it have?
- culture drives empowerment which drives enthusiasm which leads to greater productivity
- your culture will include the values, priorities, and vision for your blog
2.0 Blog + Brand Goals
- objectives need to be concise and measurable
- use deadlines
2.2 Keys to Success
- items that are vital for growth
- these make your objectives possible
2.3 Platform + Expansion Goals
- Do you want to build a community around your blog? Develop a platform for speaking engagements or book? Make a full-time income? Etc.
3.0 Blog Guidelines + Best
3.1 Blog Categories
3.2 Blog Schedule
3.3 Business Tasks + Schedule
- accounting, marketing, invoices, customer service, etc. tasks
- What regular tasks do you need to complete and when?
3.4 Guest Posting Guidelines
- general guidelines to email out or post on blog/media kit
4.0 Blog Offerings + Monetization
4.1 Blog Products
4.2 Affiliates + Partnerships
4.3 Ad Space
- What types of organizations/blogs would be a good fit?
- What types of ads/organizations will you deny?
- What requirements do you have for accepting ads?
4.4 Sponsored Posts + Reviews
5.0 Market + Reader Analysis
5.1 Leading Blogs in my Genre
- analyze 5-10 leading blogs in your niche, records 3-5 key points of what they do well and 3-5 things you might do to change/grow these if it were your blog
5.2 Blog Benefits + Reader Use
- find 3-5 comparable blogs in your niche and see what they are doing, support them, etc. Do the same with them as in the above section
5.3 Blog Benefits + Reader Use
- refer to ideal reader profile
5.4 Blog Traffic Goals
6.0 Social Promotion Strategy
6.1 Pinterest Plan
6.2 Facebook Plan
6.3 Twitter Plan
6.4 Instagram Plan
6.5 Email List Plan
6.6 Guest Appearances Plan
- make a list of blogs you could write great blogs posts for and contact them
6.7 Social Media Strategies + Best Practices
- tie together above plans into one overall strategy
7.0 Other Marketing + Sales Strategies
7.1 Offline Marketing
- promoting your brand in "real life"
7.2 Sales Plan
- Other than marketing on social media, how will you sell blog services and items?
- come up with several milestones you want to reach in growth and sales (i.e. 100 visitors per month to 10 per day to 1,000 per month, etc.)
8.0 Continued Education + Growth Plan
9.0 Blog Financials
9.1 Startup Budget
- itemize things needed to launch your blog business (i.e. logo and brand identity design, web hosting and domain name, business cards, monthly internet fees, etc.)
9.2 Monthly Expenses
9.3 Monthly Product Revenue Streams
9.4 Production Budget per Post
- How much will a post in each category cost to develop in terms of money and time?
10.0 Blog Style Guide
- pick 2-4 colors to use consistently for text, titles, graphics, etc.
- decide on 2-3 fonts to use
- make sure fonts can be used for commercial use
10.3 Image Styles
- include a list of words and phrases not to use (hand for guest posts)
10.5 Post Specifics
10.6 Category Specifics
10.7 Other Blog Elements
Any section that does not have notes written under it, reference the article from
, it just means that I did not have any extra notes or anything special to note. What are your goals for growing your blog over the next year?