What are your blogging goals?
Is it to make a full-time living blogging?
Do you want to be able to be location independent?
Or, is it to spend more time with your kids?
Understanding these goals allow you to plan out you blog each step of the way.
From there, you’ll be able to break things down in order to understand what you need to do to get where you want to be.
If you’re just starting out, here are the best goals for new bloggers to have.
Why Goal Setting is Important?
Why bother with goals when you could be spending your time working on things that are more important?
Yes, it’s true that writing up your goals falls under the more administrative side of blogging. But, I still do recommend spending a few hours to do so when starting your blog.
Here are some reasons why.
1. You know what to focus on
Goals help you stay on track.
This makes them especially useful in blogging because there are so many tasks to learn and do.
There’s writing content, promoting on social media, networking with other bloggers, fixing the back end of your website and many more.
Without a goal you may find yourself focusing on the less important tasks. This means spending majority of your time on things that don’t produce results.
That’s not what you want to be doing.
Instead, you want to focus on the tasks that deliver the biggest return on investments for you.
2. They let you plan ahead for the long-term
Blogging is a long-term game. It’s not a get rich quick scheme that some catchy article titles may have led you to believe.
That means you need to plan a few steps ahead each time.
Your goals act like road map that tells you what you should focus on next.
You can do this by:
- Looking at your goals
- Breaking them down into smaller components
- Then figure out what you need to do to accomplish each of those components
In doing so, you’ll be able to stay on course towards your ultimate blogging goals.
3. Goals are a reflection of your dream life
Your goals give you a good idea of:
- Who you want to be
- Where you want to go
- What you want to have or achieve
As such, they’re a reflection of what you want in life.
Setting down on paper (or your computer) allows you to easily prioritize them. In addition, it allows you to break them down into smaller milestones you can tick off one by one on your way to your dream life.
4. Allow you to measure your progress
This is one of the most important reasons to have goals.
- Where are you going?
- Are you moving in the right direction?
- Are you spending enough time to achieve what you want?
Goals allow you to track and measure your progress.
Only when you know what you want and the things you need to do to get there are you able to do this.
5. You’re accountable to them
This is very closely related to the previous point.
Goals make you accountable.
This makes you stick to your schedule and do the things you need to do to get where you want to be.
It’s easy to say things or put them into writing.
But, the hard part starts when you have to hunker down every day and work.
Having a list of your immediate goals in front of you helps remind you of that you need to be taking action.
6. They help you stay motivated
Make no mistake, you’ll have off days. Or, days when you don’t feel like doing any work.
When these days happen, it’s easy to say, “I’ll just take the day off”.
But, having goals, more specifically, being reminded of the benefits of those goals, makes you get back to work.
Think about it…
Once you start thinking about how great it would be to quit your soul-sucking job once you can make a full-time income blogging, you’ll be motivated to work harder.
All because you know that end goal is well worth the sacrifice you’re doing now.
7. They force you to be forward-looking instead of dwell on the past
It’s natural to dwell on mistakes, failures and lost opportunity. But, it’s not very productive to do so.
Because goals are things are you want in the future, you’ll focus more on what’s ahead. And, not the past.
This eliminates the dwelling or feeling sorry for yourself, in addition to wasting time.
Types of Goals You Want to Have
What kind of goals should you have?
Well, it’s easy to just group all your goals together. That works.
However, there’s a better way to classify your goals so you can see which areas you need to focus on first or focus on more.
These are things you want to get done. Here, you want to complete the task. As such, your priority is to put in the work and complete different tasks.
Here are a few examples:
- Write 2 articles this week
- Create 5 different pins for each new article
- Finish one chapter of your eBook
Notice that they’re all geared towards doing some kind of action. More importantly, accomplishing that task.
These goals focus on the end result. That is, are you getting the job done.
They go a step further than the creation goals in that you’re not only looking at completing the tasks. But, you also want to know they produce results.
This is the only way to be sure you’re doing the right thing. If not, figure out what you’re doing wrong. Then, try again.
Here are some examples of performance goals:
- Increase your blog’s traffic from Pinterest by 10% by the end of the month
- Get your first 1,000 email subscribers by month 6
- Write 1 guest post for a well-known blogger this month
Notice that compared to creation goals, they’re more results oriented. That is, you’re looking past the completion and towards achieving something towards your bigger goal.
These come a little later on. These goals are designed to squeeze out every last bit from your results.
The reason why you’ll be applying them later on is because you need some kind of proof that what you’re doing is working first. If there isn’t enough of it, then optimizing things won’t really yield much improvements.
So what are some examples of optimization goals?
- Analyze Google Analytics to see which blog post topics your readers click on most. Then, write more about those topics
- Go through your email opt in numbers. See if you should be improving your (a) freebie, (b) opt in form, (c) landing pages or something else.
- Look at how often visitors are clicking through from Pinterest. What can you fix in order to improve your click through rate to your blog?
Best Blog Planning Goals for New Bloggers
So what are the best goals new bloggers should have? Here are the top things to get done.
What Do You Offer Your Audience
This s where everything begins. It starts with who your audience is.
Knowing who they are allows you to focus on:
- Where to find them
- What’s their biggest problem
- What can you do for them
These 3 things will help you define what your blog will focus on. And, also what kind of content you’ll be writing.
A good way to do this is to use survey and polls. Or, you can simply ask them when they send you an email or subscribe to your list.
Knowing the answer to these basic questions lets you move on to the next part.
Figuring out how you can help them with their problem.
Here, your goal is to help them. In short, your blog is there to service their needs.
- Creating content that will lead them towards a solution to their problem
- Answering their emailswhen they have questions
- Responding to comments
- Giving them useful information in other waysbesides your articles. Things like webinars, informative emails and Facebook lives all give them a way to interact with you.
- Useful freebies and exclusive content to your subscribers
Doing so lets them get to know you better.
Then like you.
And, finally trust you.
Goals for Generating Income
How are you going to make money blogging?
That’s one of the most important questions your blog plan has to answer.
Because it costs money and time to operate a blog. More importantly, if you aren’t getting anything from you’re blog, you’re less likely to stay committed to it.
Without that motivation, you’ll likely end up quitting or not updating your blog frequently.
So, the big question here is, how do you plan on making money from your blog?
Here are 8 popular ways blog makes money.
- Ads. This is as passive as it gets. Putting up ads on your blog means as long as you have traffic coming in, you’ll be able to make some money.
- Affiliate marketing. This is the next most common option for new bloggers. Here, you promote other peoples’ products. And in return, when a visitor buys their product from your website, you earn a commission.
- Sponsored posts. You’ll need some traffic and a bit of social media followers to draw sponsorship deals. That said, once you build your brand, you can earn quite well with sponsored posts.
- Products. You can sell digital or physical products. It all depends on your niche and what you create. This includes eBooks, printables, planners and courses. Physical products can be anything ranging from crafts to embroidered wedding items.
- Services. If you have a skill to offer this is probably a better option to products. For example, you can offer Pinterest marketing services or manage other bloggers’ social media accounts.
- Memberships. If you have premium content, you can create a membership area that only your paid subscribers have access to.
- Freelancing. This is very similar to services. I separated it just for clarity sake. With freelancing you can offer things like writing, proofreading and graphic design.
- Consulting/coaching. This is another form of service. But, it’s more specialized. Often, this involves 1-on-1 or small groups.
Note that you don’t have to do them all. In fact, all you need is 2-3 methods of monetization to have a very successful blog.
And, after a while, you’ll notice that there will be 1 (at most 2) method/s that will bring in bulk of your income. The others will be supplementary contributors
In addition to knowing how you’ll make money, you’ll probably have income goals. That is, specific amounts you’re targeting.
While it may sound materialistic, it’s very important to have these numbers.
Because, for many bloggers the goal is to make a full-time living blogging.
If that’s the case, you’ll be targeting about $3,000 a month at least. A lot will depend on your lifestyle and size of your family.
That’s your starting point…
But in many cases, you may also have an amount that you feel will help you and your family feel more comfortable. For example, something that allows your family to take a vacation once a year and save $2,000 a month extra.
If that’s the case, the figure may go up to about $6,000-$7,000 a month.
If you’re looking to become a 6-figure blogger, then the number will be $8,333 a month.
And so on…
That said, here it’s important to take things one step at a time.
So start with something simple like your first $1,000.
Then, figure out:
- What’s your next income target?
- What changes or additions do you need to doin order to get there?
- What income stream do you need to increase?
- Do you double downon your highest revenue stream?
- Do you find or add a new income stream?
- Or, do you diversifyto something else?
Similarly, what can you optimize from your current setup? This way you don’t need to increase traffic and still boost income.
Goals for Increasing Blog Traffic
When starting a new blog, growing traffic is your number one priority.
That’s because everything else is a byproduct of people coming to your website.
- You’ll only be able to get ad revenue if you have readers.
- You need visitors to sign up to your email list
- You’ll need people to read your content before they share it
What should you do here?
Start with the results. How much traffic would you want your blog to receive after a certain period of time.
- 5,000 visitors by the end of month 1
- 10,000 page views by month 2
- 25,000 page views by month 3
- And so on.
In addition, you’ll need a way to track your progress.
To do so, another goal would be to set up and learn to use Google Analytics. This lets you see your traffic trends as well as figure out how you can improve your pageviews.
When you have these initial goals set up, your next step is to figure out the HOW.
That is, how are you going to get traffic.
Will it be via:
- Social media, if so, which platforms will you focus on?
- Paid ads
Finally, detail the goals for each traffic source you’re targeting.
Let’s say you decide on SEO and Pinterest. Then, your goals for each may look something like.
For SEO and Outreach
- Guest post at least once a month
- Commenton your favorite blogs
- Do On-Page SEOfor all your blog posts
- Create a Business Account
- Set up your Profile and Boards
- Use keywords in your profile and board titles and descriptions
- Create engaging pins
- Sign up for Tailwind
Building Your Brand
Setting up your brand lets your visitors know you mean business. It makes you and your blog look professional.
That said, in the beginning, you don’t need to spend a ton of time on branding and design. You can save most of that for later when you’re making money.
But, you do need to set up a few basic things to make your brand look professional right from the start.
Here are some blog branding goals for new bloggers.
- Your blog name. This is important. Choose something relevant to your niche. And, something that will likely be permanent.
- Your logo. You don’t need a very sophisticated logo. In fact, look at many of the big brands, some of which use text logos.
- Colors. Choose your brand colors. Ideally, they should complement one another, not clash.
- Fonts. This is important. Make sure your fonts are easy to read, especially on mobile phones.
- Favicon. This is an extra way to make your site look professional. The favicon is the small icon that shows up on your browser tab.
Next, Set Up Your Social Media Channels
All well-known brands have social media presence. So, you should too. That said, you don’t need to join all platforms, especially in the beginning.
The goal here is to choose 2, at most 3, platforms you’ll be focusing on. This way, you don’t try to do too many things at once.
Here are the platforms to consider.
- Facebook page. This is often the first thing people ask about. So, you want to have this.
- Twitter. Not as popular as it used to be. But, it’s a good way to get in touch with other bloggers.
- Pinterest business account. This is one of the fastest ways to get traffic to a new blog.
- Instagram. if you’re in a creative, arts or crafts niche.this is a must. You can likewise use this as a way to show your personal side.
- If you’ll be doing a lot of videos, you can create a YouTube account as well.
Finally, Plan Out Your Goals For Spreading Your Brand Name
Here are some goals to help you get started.
- Join FBGroups. Get approved to 4 Facebook groups per month. Make sure to interact with them as well.
- Get to know 5-10 new bloggers each month.
- Increase your followerson social media
- Engage your followers onyour own Facebook group. Spend at least 10 minutes a day asking questions, replying to queries and getting to know your readers.
Content Creation Goals
The content you create will depend on who your audience is. And, what source of traffic you’re targeting.
- If you’re writing for SEO, Google likes long-form, very informative blog posts. As such, targeting at least 2,000 to 2,500 words is a good start.
- In contrast, if you’re main traffic source is PInterest, you’ll be better off publishing a lot of posts. That’s because Pinterest love fresh (new) content.
- Some niches do better with video content or podcasts. As such, it’s a better idea to write less and record more content.
So, your goals here will need to adapt to your audience and traffic source.
Another goal will be to decide what kind of content you’ll be writing. And, to a degree what the breakdown of each will be.
Your blog will look monotonous if all your posts are lists. Similarly, writing just how-to posts can be very taxing because they require more explaining.
So, your goal here will be to decide which types of content you’ll include in your blog. And, a basic estimate of how many of each will you create.
- 25% of your posts will be how to posts
- 15% of your articles will be list posts
- 15% will be question posts
- 5% are round up posts
- 15% are case studies or interviews
- 15% for featured bloggers, interviews and guest posts
How Often Do You Publish Content?
When it comes to writing blog posts, you want to create high quality content. In addition, freshness is now an important factor.
That means you want to great great articles regularly.
So, when it comes to content frequency, here are a few goals you can have:
- Publish 2 blog posts a week. The frequency of when you write new content will depend on how long it takes you to write articles and how much time you have.
- Create a content or editorial calendar. This will let you know when each article is set to be published. It also allows you to plan ahead and organize your posts. Writing our goal here is lets you set aside a specific time for doing it. This way you know exactly when you’ll sit down to write your articles.
- Publishing schedule. If you publish twice a week, do you publish on Mondays and Thursdays for example or some other days. Being regular helps your readers know when to expect a new article.
Social Media Promotion Calendar
Amazing content needs to be discovered. Otherwise, you won’t see a lot of traffic to your blog posts.
That’s such a waste because you’ve put in a lot of effort writing it.
Thus, a good way to ensure your content gets some traction, you’ll want to promote it on social media.
Here, your goals are:
Decide when you’ll be posting on social media
How much time will you be spending on each platform on days you’ll be promoting
How do you get more people to see your content? Is it to get more followers, optimize your titles or something else.
Set Up a System To Write Your Content
This is one of the most effective ways of increasing productivity when it comes to content creation.
It includes a step-by-step process or framework you can follow when you create a new blog post.
Having a system allows you to know what to do next. This eliminates wasting time trying to remember what you should do next. It also reduces the risk of skipping one step.
As such, make sure that one of the first goals you do when writing content is to create a system to follow.
The good news is, you only need to do this once. Then print it out and pin it on your cork board as a reminder.
Do you want to repurpose content?
Re-purposing content allows to you publish new content without having to write an entire new article. Instead, you’ll use another medium to publish the same content.
In doing so, you save a lot of time.
For example, if you have a blog post about why dogs show you their bellies, you can repurpose that into a YouTube video or infographic. That way you have fresh content without having to do all the outlining and researching again.
Email List Building Goals
Your email list is your most valuable source of traffic. That’s because they are people who know you.
More importantly, by virtue of giving you their email address, they’ve given you permission to write to them directly.
As such, you’ll be able to serve them better.
So, as a new blogger, learning, setting up and building your email list is one of the most important steps for the long-term growth of your blog.
When it comes to email marketing, it’s good to start from the beginning.
So your first goals are:
- How to get your first 100 subscribers
- Then, your first 1,000
- And follow that by other milestones
To do that, here’s what you need to do:
- Choose an email software. Mailchimp is a good option for your first 2,000 subscribers because it’s free till then. After that, it’s a good idea to switch to Convertkit.
- Install, setup and learn how to use the email software
- Brainstorm freebie ideas
- Create freebies. Ideally, you have one core freebie, a few secondary giveaways and content upgrades for each blog post.
- Create opt in forms and landing pages. These forms will allow you to collect email addresses.
Finally, there’s the email part.
- Figure out what do you write in your emails
- Create sales funnelsfor affiliate products and your own products
- Learn to workwith your list. This includes tagging and segmenting subscribers as well as analyzing your email marketing stat
Being productive and efficient with your time is key to becoming a successful blogger. That’s because it takes a lot of time to grow you blog.
In addition, there are so many things to do on a regular basis.
Finally, in the beginning, you’ll be doing most of the work yourself.
That means becoming a productivity ninja is one of your early blogging goals.
One good way to do this is by learning time management.
When I started, these were a few of my time management goals:
- Don’t waste time. Read emails at the end of the day so you don’t end up wasting work time on it. Avoid scrolling mindlessly on social media. And, a few other things.
- Set a consistent schedule. This means blocking out the times when I’ll work on my blogs. By having a weekly schedule on hand, I know exactly what times on each day I should be blogging.
- Have systems in place for your recurring major blogging tasks. Tasks like writing content, promoting articles and creating new pins are all part of the regular blogging routine. As such, I’ve created systems for them so I can just follow the steps each time I do them.
- Maximize your work time. For this, I plan ahead. For example, if I’m writing an article tomorrow, I’ll take a peek at the topic and maybe read a little about it before going to bed the night before. This lets me be ready to go when I start writing.
Setting up a blog plan is one for the first steps every beginner blogger should do. It gives you a general overview of what you’re going to be doing.
And, it will help keep you track later on.
Starting with the list above, you’ll be able plan out your first year of blogging from start to finish. This ensures that you don’t waste any time in order for your blog to grow faster.
What are your blogging goals? Let me know in the comments below.