Think it’s too late to start a blog? Guess, again. It’s never too late to start your blog. So, I wrote the post to help you get started. While this post is written for photography or photography related blogs; however, many of these tips can be applied for other niches as well.
*Small note: In this post will have a few affiliate links to some digital products, that I may get a small commission from if you purchase them. I'll point them out when they come up^_^
1. Plan your blog
Before jump right in, I will always recommend creating a plan (at least a small one). Decide why you’re wanting to blog and what type of content will you offer on your blog. Start by asking yourself some questions like:
- Are you a blogging to promote your photography business?
- Will your blog be an extension of your portfolio website?
- Are you blogging about photography as your hobby?
- Do you plan to educate your audience or inspire them?
- Do you plan to make money with your blog?
If you are planning to monetize your blog, I recommend creating a business plan. A business plan will help you outline your goals, determine your audience, and develop your marketing plan. Although business plans can change, it always helps to have some sort of outline to reference to make sure you're lining up with your goals. One thing that really helped me with planning my blog is Melyssa Griffin’s post, How to Create a Bangin’ Blog Business Plan. In the post, Melyssa walks you through some of the essential questions you should ask yourself plus she offers a free business planning workbook you can sign up for.
2. Choose a name & domain name
Choosing your name can be part of your planning stage. I lump choosing your name and domain name together because I feel it’s important for your domain name to match your blog name. And you don’t want to get attached to a business name only to find out there is no domain available matching it. So take some in researching names and domain names for your blog. Make sure you aren’t infringing on any copyright or trademark laws when choosing names. Once you get the name choice sorted out, you’ll want to buy a domain name. There are several places you can buy domain names from such as:
I recommend GoDaddy or Squarespace since their platforms are pretty to navigate. What’s lovely about domain names, is that they are usually pretty cheap to buy. Some domains can be as low $5.99 on Go Daddy. And Squarespace offers domain names with website plans!
3. Choose a platform
This was the most frustrating part when I first started blogging. I kept hearing so many different suggestions on what platform to blog on. Should you use Wordpress, Squarespace, Blogger, or other platforms? That’s entirely dependent on your preference and goals for your blog. While I have tried Wordpress, I found Squarespace to be the perfect platform for my needs. Squarespace is an affordable platform that allows me to customize my websites easily without having to spend extra money on a new theme. However, Wordpress does allow a lot of control over your website. If you’re a photographer you need to make sure that your blog platform allows a nice gallery feature to showcase your portfolio.
If you need help deciding, you should check out this post about the pros and cons of Wordpress and Squarespace:
4. Brand + Design Your Blog
While the content of your blog is probably the most important aspect, your brand is the next most important part of your blog. Your brand is what will catch your audience’s attention and make them remember you. There are tons of experienced and new bloggers on the internet. So, you need to find a way to stand out.
What is branding?
First, you need to understand that branding is more than just how pretty your blog looks. It’s also the personality of your blog. Will you blog sound formal and sophisticated, or will it sound youthful and playful? Whatever your blog’s personality is, you need to make sure your visuals match it. Here is an awesome post by Marie Chang, that explains branding and its importance.
Design + customize your website:
Next, it’s time to make the visuals. Start with customizing your blog’s website. If you’re using Squarespace you'll have a lot of awesome templates to choose and customize from. If you’re using Wordpress, you can either code your website, hire a web designer, or check out some awesome Wordpress themes:
*Creative Market affiliate links below ^_^
Create blog graphics
Your blog graphics include your photography, Pinterest graphics, social media graphics, email banners, and more. These can be designed in programs such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, or Affinity Designer (my favorite). If you don’t want to use complex design programs you can also design your graphics on Canva or purchase design templates that you can easily customize. Here are some of my favorite blog graphic templates on Creative Market:
*More affiliate links below
Styled Stock Photography:
5. Start Blogging and promoting!
Now that you’ve got all of the complicated stuff out the way, you can start writing and promoting your blog. There is a variety of photography topics you can write about for your blog such as tutorial posts, list post, inspiration posts, and more. I’ll be writing a post with a list of photography blog topics soon! ;)
After writing posts, you’ll need to promote them. There are a ton of free and affordable ways to promote your content. Social media is always a great start. Facebook and Pinterest are my two favorite places to promote and connect with other bloggers and photographers. You can also promote through an email newsletter and guest posting. The options are endless. Just keep in mind that no one likes spammers.
Now that you've heard the essential steps of starting a photography blog, you can get started. But also makes sure you do some research on the legal side of blogging before getting started. Laws may very depending on your location, and whether you are treating your blog as a business. So, I strongly recommend getting professional legal and business advice before moving forward with these steps. I hope you found this post very helpful.