Business plans are just so yuk, quick run away. No no no come back they aren’t that bad really. When I started blogging so many years ago I didn’t realize how much it would grow, how addictive it would become or take it seriously. So, of course, I didn’t have a business plan for my first blog, or second or third. It’s only now I am taking it all so much more seriously that I have finally been able to tick this off my list to do.
What Is a Business Plan?
In plain English, a business plan is an outline of your goals and details how you are planning to achieve those goals. See it’s not that bad, is it?
It can be as long or short as you want. But if it’s as short as ‘to make money blogging’ and fits on a napkin then it might need some work if you want to achieve that goal or to be treated seriously.
On the other extreme, it doesn’t have to be so detailed that it would take a month of Sundays to get through. That said it would though have to be fairly detailed in a style of a formal business plan if you plan to apply for a commercial loan or seek investors.
It doesn’t even have to be printed out and is actually best kept on the computer as the idea is that you constantly update it as goals are achieved and new goals become important.
Keeping it updated is the most important bit about having a business plan for your blog. You will get more out of it if you use your business plan as an ongoing tool.
Plus also blogging can feel quite overwhelming and you can feel like your drowning with so much info being bombarded at you. Just the act of writing it all down of what you want to achieve and how you plan to get there can help enormously. It helps you clarify your goals. It will make you look at your blog in a different light and can help you notice things you might not notice.
A business plan for your blog will also keep you organized and on track as it can be very easy to go off on a tangent with blogging. When you know what you are aiming at it is easy to plan your working day and even more so when your blogging time is only a few hours and not your day job.
What To Put In Your Business Plan?
Describe your blog in a few sentences – this is what your blog is about, who writes it, where it is written and when was the blog started.
Explain your mission – what are you wanting to and trying to achieve with your blog.
Things to ask yourself and maybe include – What makes your blog different to others in the same niche. What is your niche? What do you offer that other blogs don’t?
Know Your Reader
Describe who is your ideal audience?
Build a big a picture as possible with things like how old they are, where do they live, are they male, female or is your audience a mixture of both, what are they interested in?
What are their problems? How are you solving their problems? What value are you giving to them?
Know Your Competition and The Trends
Are there any seasonal trends that happen in your niche? Will this affect your content? Who is the number one blogger in your niche?
How Will You Market and Advertise Your Blog?
What format will your content be in? Which social media channels will you target? How will you reach your target reader?
Income and Expenses
Do you have a budget for advertising? What things do you have to pay weekly, monthly and annually?
What current ways are you earning with your blog? What other ways can you earn with your blog?
Your Blog Goals
Where do you want your blog in 1 months time, 1 year and 5 years?
What steps do you need in place to achieve this?
Lastly, also note how often you want to check back into your business plan. Will it be a weekly thing or monthly? When? Commit to it.