How to Start a Blog
If you’re a social activist and have a cause you want to rally the troops (or at least other people who share your passion) around, blogging can be an excellent way to create a platform to share news, write articles, and spread the word. When you’ve got a blog, you have a place to communicate with your “people” — and ultimately help your movement gain momentum.
But what if you’re not super tech savvy and you’re looking at launching a blog all on your own? Fear not — with a few simple directions and an hour to spare, you can have your own blog up and running. Here’s how:
1. Choose Your Platform: There are a ton of free blogging platforms you can choose from, the more popular ones being Live Journal, Blogger, WordPress (that’s what Heart of Gold is built on!), Xanga, and Tumblr. To find out what might work for you, check out other people’s blogs created in the various platforms so you can get an idea of how they look and work.
2. Register: Once you’ve settled on a platform, you’ll need to register your blog. Come up with a name that reflects your cause when you register — this name will ultimately be part of your URL for your blog site. For example: youcausenamehere.blogspot.com
3. Choose a Template: Free blogging sites offer a bunch of different design templates to choose from to create the look you’re after. Note that to fully customize your blog, you’ll need a little technical know-how, so if that’s your plan and coding HTML isn’t your thing, connect with someone who can help you with this piece of the puzzle.
4. Beef Up Your Blog: Depending on the platform you’re using, you can add in different features, like buttons, guestbooks, search bars, archives, and more. To learn how to add plug-ins and features for your blog, do a Google search on the topic to find step-by-step instructions on how to add in the features. For example, search “How do I add archives to my WordPress blog?” and you’ll find a ton of resources — both articles and videos — walking you through the process.
5. Test Your Blog: Write a blog post and preview it to see how it looks. Do you need to add photos? Do you like the template you’ve chosen? What length post looks best for your blog? Once you’ve previewed your post, make any adjustments to the design and look before officially launching.
6. Publish Your Blog & Share! You’re ready to write away! Once you post to your blog, that post will have its own URL. Grab it and share it wherever people who would be interested in your post hang out… Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest…whatever you come up with!
Do you keep a blog about something you’re passionate about? Share a link to it here in the comments!