As this blog is very new, I would like to share some of the start up knowledge that I have learnt, or wish that I had thought before I began. 21 Surefire Tips for a Successful Blog Launch is also a very good article if you are thinking of starting a new blog and are looking for some advice.
Get at least 5 posts ready
You really don’t want to launch a new blog with less than 5 posts. So you really need to get writing and and get some good content ready. If you have another blog, that has the odd post that relates to the topic of your new blog you could export those into the new blog.
Familiarize yourself with your blogging platform
Make sure you are comfortable with how things work, for example: how you send a track back, what your RSS feed is and how it works, how commenting is set up and how to write posts etc.
Make sure RSS is available
As a new blogger your main target for readers will be other bloggers. Bloggers use RSS readers to track other blogs. You need an RSS feed set up before you begin. Setting up a feed burner feed is the best option as it adds all sorts of extras which allow you to promote your feed, and all sorts of statistics which enable you to track the progress of your feed.
Select a theme
First impressions last, you want your blog theme to be appropriate for your intended target audience, and you also want to consider usability. Pick a theme that suits your needs then stick with it. You want people to remember your blog, and you don’t want returning visitor to be confused about whether they have visited before. The odd tweak is fine, I know I like to play with presentation, but don’t change the overall look.
Plug-ins and extras
Install all the necessary plug-ins. For a good list of some options you should consider looking at: Top 30 WordPress plugins
For a complete check list to look through after you have installed WordPress check out: WordPress – Complete post install guide. For other blogging platforms there are similar tasks which need to be worked through, however I won’t go into detail as I highly suggest that you use WordPress as your blogging platform.
Share your best posts
Share your best posts on social media and bookmarking sites like Digg, Reddit and Netscape. If your post is a hit, it will bring your blog some much needed traffic.
Leave comments on other blogs
Remembering that other bloggers are your main target audience when you are starting out, and you need to let them know you exist. Leaving a comment on their blog that is intelligent and adds to the topic is a good way to get started.
Include tons of outbound links
Although lots of outbound links aren’t good for your page rank, when your starting out you won’t have a page rank anyway, so it’s not like you have anything to lose. Also, you want to send out lots of links to other bloggers to let them know you like their work, and also, to get track back links back to your site.
Start real relationships with bloggers in your niche
Start communicating with bloggers with-in your niche in ways other than via your blogs. Send them an email, IM them. You need all the friends that you can get in this game. It’s probably a good idea if you look for people that are on a similar level to you. Darren from Problogger probably doesn’t have time to chat with you via MSN about ways to boost your blog traffic, so focus on other bloggers with blogs that are about the same size as yours.
Build incoming links
Most people with a blog or Web site know the value of incoming links. You need to work out tactful strategies to get links to your site.
Ask a friend to give you feedback
When you spend a lot of time working on a project you can lose perspective about what is good. Get a friend to have a look at your blog. They don’t need to know anything about blogging, just get them to have a look and see what they say. Also watch what they do. Maybe they will point out things that you hadn’t thought of. Maybe they will have problems figuring out what the purpose of the site is. Maybe they will find it hard to get around the site. This is a great tip for improving any blog, and it is better to get that sort of feedback earlier rather than later.
I hope this article has given you some ideas about paths to success when starting a new blog, there is no sure fire set of instructions that will work for every blog. At the end of the day, you are going to need to keep producing good content day in day out to be a success. But there is always the odd exception to the rule, and the odd case that changes the rules for everyone else. Good luck with your blogging.