Having a blog plan is great.
Having a business plan is also great.
But what if you combined both?
And easily transformed your blog into a business!
At the core, every successful business uses some sort of plan to understand where they stand, what their goals are and how they actively reach out to their audience and sell products.
The same goes for profitable blog owners, they have a plan. This plan helps direct your blog into becoming a business, but letting you create a summary, define your audience build traffic and create your service or product.
In this guide today, I’m going to take you through each stage + give you a free download of my personal blog business plan template.
1. What happens if you don’t have a blog business plan
Here’s the deal:
If you’re not using a blog business plan, you’re stuck in the mud.
Your blog won’t grow…
…Traffic won’t grow…
…Community, won’t grow!
You get the idea 🙂
It’s important to set goals as soon as you can. This lets you stay focused, whilst reaching and growing a community who is truly interested in what you do.
If you do have a blog business plan, you’re going to start making money doing what you love.
Which means you’re ready for point #2…
2. Why Bother Creating a Blog Business Plan
Transforming your blog into a full-time income is completely possible.
Creating your blog business plan will allow you to define your service or product, your ideal audience (customers) and how you will reach and market to them.
It get’s better:
After creating your blog business plan today, it will be the first stepping stone to quitting your day job and pursuing your passion, whilst making money doing what you love.
This plan will stick with you as you grow, it may change along the way as you want to pursue new things–that’s the beauty of having a plan.
It simply helps you define your end goals.
And as humans, we looooove setting goals and achieving them.
3. Get My Blog Business Plan Template
Before we get into the next sections…
I want you to download my personal free blog business plan template.
This template is great because:
There very quick and easy to answer questions.
…it’s going to get you on the road to taking you from blog to business.
The next parts will guide you through the blog business plan template, giving tips and guidance on how to best fill out the answers.
[bctt tweet=”Check this awesome free profitable blog business plan!” username=”itsaaronward” prompt=”Tell a friend”]
4. Your Blog Summary
What’s your blog all about?
Start having a think about why you created your blog, what the goals you want to achieve are and how you’re going to get there.
If your new HOLD UP. It can be much easier to come back to this section after completing the others as you will have a more defined direction on your blog.
1 – Your Mission Statement
This is where you give the main brief overview of why you created your blog.
Aaronward.com was created to help online entrepreneurs and bloggers grow their traffic, write killer blog posts, build an email list, learn marketing techniques and turn their blog into a business through creating profitable online courses.
2 – Your Blog Goals
Why did you actually create your blog? For fame, maybe to travel the world for free? Do you want extra cash for a watch or to pay bills? Maybe it’s to live a more fulfilled life talking about your passion? Or you simply want financial freedom.
I created my blog, aaronward.com, to have more financial freedom, not be limited to holidays and expectations in a typical 9-5 job, be able to travel and surf when I want and share my experience on how I do this.
3 – Your Products or services
If you’re already selling something this will be easy. If you don’t have a product, no worries this can be filled out later.
I sell online courses that help transform my customers as quickly as possible. These courses specifically focus on blog growth techniques (traffic, email list, social) and monetization.
4 – Your Blogs Legal
When starting out you probably won’t be too worried on turning your blog into a LLC (Limited Liability Corporation). But it’s worth considering down the road to avoid any lawsuits as you grow. In addition, because you will be selling products and making money online you will need to file taxes too – I recommend speaking to a tax advisor about this.
[bctt tweet=”Here’s how you can start your blog business plan ” username=”itsaaronward”]
5. Audience Research
You have a blog:
Who the heck are you targeting though?
In this section, you’ll figure out WHO you want to target and HOW you can offer them value.
1 – Who Visits Your Blog
Lot’s of questions to answer here. You want to try and have the clearest idea of who you are trying to target, as this will help you find them easier online.
2 – If someone visited your blog, how would it be ‘made for them’?
Your blog should be designed for your audience when they visit it for the first time they should be saying “hot damn this is exactly what I was looking for!”.
When someone new visits aaronward.com, it is made for them because they’re looking to grow their blogs traffic, community, email list and make money from their blog–aaronward.com provides guides, case studies and tutorials on exactly how they can do this which are up-to-date actionable strategies and techniques.
3- What’s your blog’s branding?
People should generally feel safe, welcomed and excited when they visit your site.
Here’s the deal:
Branding ain’t no walk in the park but asking questions on how your blog should look and feel will help you understand how to write your blog posts out (are they fun or super serious?) and the colors you use on your site (dark for mature, warm colors for welcoming and friendly).
4 – How can you help your audience?
The most important question—if you can help your audience in a specific way you will naturally create a community who will be interested in your products through providing them with free value: blog posts, guides, tutorials, tips, case studies all fall into this category.
Aaronward.com contains free guides and tutorials which help the readers with one specific end goal that will help them grow a better, successful and profitable blog.
It also includes free downloads in exchange for an email, which helps them reach their goal even quicker.
[bctt tweet=”Learn how to research your perfect blog’s audience” username=”itsaaronward”]
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6. Traffic Building
This is all about how your audience will find out about your blog.
It’s much simpler than it seems:
While overwhelming, you’ll have an easy and actionable plan after this section.
1 – What platforms will you use to ‘expose’ yourself?
There are tons of platforms to market yourself.
It’s best to not overwhelm yourself and start with 3.
But make sure:
That the 3 you pick are where your target audience exists. You don’t want to use LinkedIn when targeting teenagers as they’re not on it!
Aaronward.com uses a range of platforms.
Facebook posts, Pinterest Pins, YouTube Videos, SEO and Twitter posts. Each time a blog post is made, or free download, it is posted to each social channel on the same day to pick up quick traction and exposure.
2 – Do you already use any marketing?
Already doing marketing methods?
List them out and explain what’s working well and what isn’t.
This will let you reflect on where to focus your efforts.
3 – Do you have competitors?
What do they promote and how do they promote it?
Are there any strategies that many of your competitors seem to use (for example, are most of them hosting webinars)?
What sets them apart from the other competitors?
Do they have any goals they’re trying to achieve?
4 – Competitors products or services
Do your competitors have products or services?
How much do they charge? What are they about? Do they seem to sell a lot, have good reviews or are there issues?
5 – Email list growth
How will you grow your email list?
What will your main lead magnet (digital download freebie) be?
What will you email your list?
Your list is essential for selling your products and services.
There are a few questions to answer but this question will help you keep on a path with your email lists goals in mind.
I collect emails through my main lead magnet, which is a series of free blog training videos.
I also collect emails through smaller lead magnets, such as a PDF blog business plan.
Users are emailed minimum once a week with high quality and valuable information, this builds trust.
Finally, I email them information about my products and how it can benefit them.
[bctt tweet=”Building your blog’s traffic is much easier with this plan” username=”itsaaronward”]
7. Your Service or Product
The final stage of transforming your blog into a business.
If you’re new to blogging, don’t rush this stage—building your audience will cause their problems to show which you can use to create products.
1 – What will you sell?
I’m personally a massive fan of online courses.
Get this right:
They require minimum financial investment.
You already will be writing helpful blog posts.
You’ll understand your audience’s main problems.
A course can be made once then sold over and over again.
If you’re looking for more information on how you can create online courses, check out my free blog training here.
2 – How does your product benefit your audience?
What is the end goal a user gets from your product?
The simpler and more clear this goal is, the better and easier it is for your customers to understand the benefit of purchasing your product.
After taking The Ultimate FollowLiker Course, my student will be able to automatically gain 100+ new Instagram followers per day.
3 – How is your product different?
What makes your product stand out.
Does it get users to the end goal quicker?
List out the main benefits (not features) of your product.
4 – How will you market your product or service?
What will you use to advertise and market your product?
While Facebook’s ads may seem promising, a lot of us don’t have the budget right?
There still amazing options such as Pinterest and Youtube.
Or maybe you explore Reddit forms.
5 – How will you make the sales evergreen?
The final stage of making your blog profitable.
How will you create a system that will automatically sell your product?
The best way:
Bring visitors to your blog, give them something for free in return for their email, then promote your product to them with an automated email sequence.
[bctt tweet=”Here’s how you can easily sell a product on your blog” username=”itsaaronward”]
You made it through.
It wasn’t too long, right?
Hopefully, these questions have opened your mind up on where your blog stands and how you will grow it.
Just keep in mind this is not the end-all-be-all. You can come back once or every few months and update the plan.
And guess what:
That’s very normal.
You’ve read about the steps to creating a blog business plan. Now it’s time to implement them.
The first step?
Let me know in the comments below on how you plan to grow your blog!
And of course:
don’t forget to download your free blog business plan template PDF.