A Guest Post by Maire Hunter
When you become a mom, you hear a lot of parenting advice from friends and family – and maybe you even seek out that advice online. You can find countless parenting blogs\, but even so, there’s always room for another point of view. So if you've learned some important lessons about being a mother and enjoy writing, why not start your own parenting blog?
Following are five tips to get you started.
1. Choose your platform
Your blog can be anything you want it to be – from a casual blog with few graphics, to a fully-functioning website, complete with videos, guest articles and advertisements. Think about how much time you’ll be able to devote to your blog, and that should help you figure out what you want your blog to look like.
You can get started with free blogging software – Blogger, WordPress or Movable Type, for example. The beauty of these tools is that you can do a lot of experimenting before the site goes live. But if your goal is to appear in search engine results – or if you’re simply a competitive person – you might consider going with a professional Web design service instead. You’ll have more flexibility in choosing a domain name, and you’ll enjoy other perks, like custom email addresses.
2. Write about what you know
Once you've gotten the basic framework for your blog set up, you can move on to the fun stuff: writing! Think about lessons you've learned that might be helpful for other moms, and share your personal stories. Be genuine and personable – humorous, if you want to be.
Remember that people respond favorably to content that’s positive, so even if you’re writing about a tough lesson or bad experience, be careful to avoid coming across overly negative.
3. Make connections
Bloggers want people to read what they write. So as you develop your blog, make connections with other parenting blogs you appreciate. You can link to each other, or exchange guest articles, which should drive traffic for you and the bloggers you associate with.
4. Be mindful of privacy
You’ll probably be writing mainly about your children, but as you do, be careful to maintain your family’s privacy. Don’t reveal any sensitive information, like what school your child attends or where you work.
All good blogs should include photos, but those photos don’t necessarily need to be of your family members. As one family learned in 2009, anyone can grab your online photos and use them – a Missouri mom who posted a family photo on her blog learned it was being used in an advertisement in Czechoslovakia! If your privacy is important to you, you can always use free stock photo images, or post pictures of objects (like baby toys) instead.
5. Be consistent
Try to stick to a schedule – whether you post daily, once a week or once per month. Readers are more likely to return to your blog when they know it’s being updated regularly.
Blogging can be a great way to make new connections in the world, so if you’ve got some insights to share, think about starting your own parenting blog.