Sticking to your blogging New Year’s resolution

January 5th, 2015 @ 12:00PM - 0 Comment(s)

So you’ve created a blog as part of your New Year’s resolution, but like many you’re struggling to fulfill the resolution ritual. To ensure your blog doesn’t fall into the pile of incomplete resolutions, and ensure you’re getting the most out of your new venture we’ve compiled a list of strategies to help you develop.

stickingtoblogging

Vision

When setting up any new project, it’s important to have a vision and scope for what you’re wanting to achieve. It’s great to have dreams, but you also need to ensure you set out those goals and objectives based upon those. Lay down what you want to do with the blog regarding topics, what you’re hoping to get out of it and who your target audience is; then formulate S.M.A.R.T. goals. This refers to:

Specific – Be clear in what you are wanting to achieve, you’ll be more likely to succeed.
Measurable – Establish criteria for measuring the goal(s) set.
Attainable – When identifying the goals, make sure it’s one which you can develop the skills and attitude required, but also the capacity to reach.
Realistic – You need to be realistic, it can be high and realistic – something which you are both will and able to make work.
Timely – Whilst long-term goals are excellent, ensure it’s grounded to a realistic time-frame but not too relaxed that there’s no sense of urgency.

With your S.M.A.R.T. goals defined you’re giving yourself accountability for the future of your blog, allowing you to make visible progress and kick your goals.

Content schedule

Set a clear content schedule for your blog from the get go. Determine how much time you have available to you for new content and set a suitable schedule to ensure you can get the content up frequently. Aim for a post or two per week, and give yourself time to write your articles. If you need to set aside some holidays and weekends in advance of your article releases, to give you time to think about your content and structure.

Writing style

Your writing style reflects who you are and who your audience will be. Think about your target audience to understand the post quality, length and language needed to appeal to your readers.

Design

The design of your blog needs to reflect who you are, your content and your audience. Importantly slapping on the first WordPress theme you like may not suit the purpose of your blog, albeit that may be all it needs if that’s your style. Take a look around at blogs with similar content to yours, getting inspiration and a feel for what you want out of yours. Given the popularity of WordPress, there is no doubt you’ll be able to find a nice free or premium theme to suit your needs, but if nothing catches your eye you can always look at a freelance designer to give you that custom look.

Promote yourself

It’s important to promote your blog from the very start to ensure you get your views up and your ideas heard. If you’re blogging about a popular topic, link to other blogs with similar or opposing views and aim to get a link back. Utilise social media to keep in touch with your readers, using Facebook and Twitter to send you traffic you can maximise your visitor reach.

 

Give these points a bit of thought and aim to make the most out of your new blog adventure. The most important part of this process is to learn and have fun, so never lose sight of those. As you progress you’ll develop skills and knowledge which are highly transferable, giving you new discussion points in social experiences, improve your time management, better your writing skills and establish new found project management skills to apply in the work place.

VentraIP Economy Web Hosting with cPanel delivers a quality, fast and reliable service perfect for blogging. VentraIP provides you with a one click auto-installer to setup your new WordPress blog within minutes, allowing you to get started quickly without the fuss. Signup for your new VentraIP Economy Web Hosting service today from just $3.98 per month when using the VIP50 coupon to gain 50% off the first invoice.

 

 


7 reasons why starting a blog should be your New Year’s resolution

December 15th, 2014 @ 12:00PM - 0 Comment(s)

So you’re thinking of starting your own blog, so why not make it a New Year’s resolution? We’ve brought together some key reasons why you should jump in and get started in 2015!

2015

  1. Develop your creative outlet

    You’re looking to find yourself a creative outlet and a blog is just that! Let your ideas and thoughts flow, developing on concepts you’ve long dwelled upon.

  2. Read more

    Another of your New Year’s resolutions may be to read more, and with blogging you’ll hit two birds with one stone. Blogging gets you into the swing of reading about topics relevant to your blog; news articles, journal papers, other blogs and general industry comments. After all, sometimes you need a little inspiration.

  3. Improve your writing

    Haven’t had the chance to practice your writing recently, or always caught writing something uninteresting? Blogging gets you back into writing about what you care for and helps you develop your skills.

  4. Build your network

    You can never do too much networking and blogging takes this to the online sphere, complementing your engagement with social networks like LinkedIn. Connect with friends or new acquaintances through your writing, developing a new network of potential business partners, employers and friends.

  5. Improve your career prospects

    Through the benefits listed above, and provided your content is appropriate, your new blog could open a gateway to a new job or career. Your blog becomes your online CV, showcasing your skills, talents and interests which may pique the interest of potential employers. Just be careful with the content you post!

  6. Reflect on yourself

    If you’re not reflecting upon yourself and your thoughts, you’re missing an excellent opportunity to improve yourself and learn from your experiences. Maybe it’s time to keep a journal of what you’re doing and thinking, allowing you to reflect upon your experiences, learn from them and remember the good times and bad. It’s a way to see your progress and shape your goals moving forward.

  7. Help others

    There’s nothing more rewarding than helping others, and your blog can provide you with a tool to achieve this. Your content, regardless of what it is, will have meaning to others and will always serve a purpose. Whether you’re providing tips on cooking, a humourous story, thoughts on a political situation, or ideas for improving earth footprint, there is a always a meaning which can educate, inspire or entertain your readers. You may not think much of it, but your blog has the capacity to help others.

Start your 2015 on the right foot and launch your blog. With the new year soon to begin, focus on doing something for you and reap the benefits.

VentraIP Economy Web Hosting with cPanel delivers a quality, fast and reliable service perfect for blogging. VentraIP provides you with a one click auto-installer to setup your new WordPress blog within minutes, allowing you to get started quickly without the fuss. Signup for your new VentraIP Economy Web Hosting service today from just $3.98 per month when using the VIP50 coupon to gain 50% off the first invoice.


How do you keep a secret in an industry full of leaks?

January 14th, 2014 @ 12:19PM - 0 Comment(s)

VentraOne Fake

Later today we will be making an official announcement regarding the launch of Synergy Wholesale, Australia’s independent, full service wholesale partner for resellers that will take over the existing VentraIP Wholesale business.

But before we do that, we have to clear the air about a certain web site that people seemed to have found which used the name “VentraOne“, had a logo and colour scheme very similar to ours, and claimed that a new corporate service would be launching soon.

Unfortunately, it was all fake.

But the question that will be asked is why? Why set up a fake web site with a fake logo that said we were going to do something that we were not? Let us explain.

The hardest thing to do in the Australian web hosting industry is keep a secret. Everybody wants to be involved in everyone else’s business, and to some extent we’re just as guilty as the next guy. It’s a stark contrast to the web hosting industry in the United States however, where companies big and small champion each other to innovate and excel rather than point and laugh.

We’re no strangers to having other hosts copy our concepts and ideas. Many have “borrowed” our web page design including the way we lay out our plan page which was unique when the site was first launched, some have decided that our Customer Appreciation Day was a great idea and used that (one even took our Customer Appreciation Week concept and tried to use it, before forgetting they announced it and went back to a “day”), and suddenly almost every host in Australia is using the names “Economy” and “Business” for their plans with very similar differentiation between service types.

In fact, for one host you could actually browse their Facebook page and be forgiven if you were to mistake them for us!

But imitation really is the highest form of flattery so we take it and enjoy it, as it helps motivate our team to continue to innovate and develop new concepts for others to copy.

So when we decided back in June 2013 that the next phase of our overall plan was to come to life, and we knew part of that plan would be to create some hype on social media which would get people playing detective to figure out what we were up to, we made the decision to do our best to ensure that nobody knew what we were doing and the best way to do that was to set up a decoy. That decoy, being VentraOne, had many thinking that we were indeed headed to the corporate space. It even created some discussion on the Whirlpool Forums, with budding detectives keen to solve the mystery.

The next question you’ll be asking yourself is how did they find out about it if we never officially advertised it anywhere? Well that was the easy part! We banked on the fact that with a juicy piece of information like this, you only had to tell the right people and it would be known within days… and we were 100% right.

After the first cryptic post we simply waited for the questions to start being asked. We then tasked one of our staff members, who has several people from other web hosting businesses as Facebook friends, with being the one who couldn’t contain himself and told just two people about the VentraOne business and web site with the strict condition to keep it to themselves. They obviously didn’t.

From that point it was only a matter of time before people started to find out about it and once everybody thought they had figured it all out they simply gave up looking.

great-success

But there were a few very obvious clues that seemed to go unnoticed, such as:

  • The fact that we didn’t secure every domain name for this new business.
  • The fact that we were posting images on social media that were orange and dark grey in colour, which looked nothing like the VentraOne logo.
  • And the fact the we actually removed “Wholesale” from all of our promotional material and Facebook banner image months ago. Check the beverage coolers we sent out last year, there’s not a single mention of Wholesale on them!

While it may seem like we went to a lot of effort for nothing, the fact the we have been able to contain what we were really working on behind the scenes has meant that we are able to use the element of surprise with all of the leg work done and dusted, ready to launch and take on the big end of town.  It will be months or years before anyone can potentially copy us and by that time we will have already moved on to the next part of our plan, something that we’ve been working on for over a year now. Stay tuned!