What is a Blog and What are the Benefits of Blogging?

It’s been less than one year since I started my  blog. To begin with, I was more than a little confused on what is a blog, how does it differ from a website, what topics do I write on, and the biggest question of them all, will blogging be worth my time?

Today I say this – despite being a verdant blogger who is learning every day, starting my blog is one of the best things I have done since becoming a full-time freelance writer.

Blogging is for everyone – whether you are a writer, an aficionado of good food, a super-mom, an avid sports fan, a lover of God, an educator, a small business owner, a self proclaimed expert or someone who has an opinion about everything and needs to express it.  Here are answers to some basic questions you may have on blogging.

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Photo Credit: freedigitalphotos.net

What is a blog?

A blog is a website that contains various articles or posts, written in a conversational style. A blog may be defined as all of these –

  • A chronological posting of articles with images, videos and links to other websites or blogs
  • An e-journal, centered on a particular topic ( e.g. a fitness blog), a variety of topics ( e.g. a blog covering politics, environment and education) or completely random ideas ( e.g. an individual posting on the day’s events).
  • An online conversation. A blogger writes a post on a particular topic and the blog followers and visitors can view the blog, as well as submit comments, which the blogger responds to.

A blog may be a personal blog started by an individual or a business blog that is part of the company’s website.

Benefits of Blogging for Everyone

Do you ever wish you could become a better writer, a better thinker, a voice of authority in your specific hobby? Blogging puts all this and much more on the table for you.

  • It is free (or in the very least inexpensive) to start a blog.
  • It will build your knowledge.
  • Blogging will bring in some new friends into your life.
  • You can even make money from your blog.

Blogs are a beautiful platform for sharing ideas, knowledge, and communicating with a wider world. It’s amazing how similar our experiences can be regardless of our ethnicity, sex, age ,education or relationship status.

Developing my blog and indeed this entire website (100% on my own) has been an incredible learning experience. I have also found solace in the candid admissions by fellow bloggers on their own trials and tribulations as freelance artists and writers.

Where Do I Start A Blog?

A lot of bloggers start their blogging careers on free blogging platforms such as WordPress.com and Blogger. There are several advantages of starting your blog on a free hosting platform, such as cost-effectiveness and ease of setting up your blog.

To spruce your blog with a tang of professionalism acquire a domain name. Competition among the web hosting companies has ensured that domain registration costs are extremely affordable ( I pay 18 USD per year for my website’s domain name).

What Do I Blog About?

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Photo Credit: freedigitalphotos.net

  • If its a business blog, you will undoubtedly be blogging about your field of work.
  • For personal blogs, the general consensus is that you center your content on what you are passionate about.
  • Of course, there are many bloggers who simply use the platform to share their day and its happenings.

Best of all you don’t have to be a ‘subject matter expert’ to start blogging on a particular theme.  Your blog will compel you to read more  books and research information online about your topic of interest and in the process make you more of an expert. 

The important thing to remember is to write about topics that are related to your blog’s central theme and which will be of interest to your readers.

Since my website is about working as a freelance writer using the internet, my blogs are centered on freelance writing lessons, internet writing tips and freelance websites.

How Often Do I Need To Blog?

You will find a lot of bloggers struggling with the same question.  The answers you get when you try to research about this, are nothing but confusing.  Some ‘blog experts’ advocate daily blogging, others advocate 3-4 posts every month.

So, what is the recommended blogging frequency?

The frequency of your blogging will largely depend on the type of blog you are running. If, for instance, you have started a Gossip News Site, you may be called upon to blog a few times every day. I personally make 3-4 blog posts on a good month. As a freelance writer, you may need to reduce the number of hours you spend writing your blog and instead focus on things that bring you money, like writing for clients.

Hot Content Tip: Focus on quality of blog content more than quantity. 

So, what’s holding you back from starting a blog? Leave your comments below, and let’s thrash the hesitation to start a blog to a pulp.

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