Blogging and online publishing is an essential element of leadership and influence in today’s digital culture. But, there are plenty of blogs out there – millions of them, in fact. What will set yours apart?
- YOU! Nobody else will ever write your heart and your voice. The world needs to hear what YOU have to say. Your personality, your brand, your perspective, your expertise, your approach is something that other people can learn from.
- Your tools. Good tools don’t make a leader successful, but it’s way easier to be successful with the right tools.
When it comes to blogging and online publishing, these are some of my favorite tools.
A domain name.
I use GoDaddy so that I can manage multiple domains in one easy spot. They’re cheap and I’ve noticed that when I make changes, they take effect much more quickly than with other providers. Choose carefully – a domain name is really, really hard to change once Google has indexed your site.
Hosting from Dreamhost.
Dreamhost offers easy setup, automated updates and backups, 100% network uptime with no bandwidth limitations and 24/7 WordPress support. Use any WordPress theme or plugin you want. And in case you aren’t sure what this means, “hosting” refers to the server (computer) on which your website will live and be connected to the rest of the internet.
WordPress is web software you can use to create a beautiful website, blog, or app. WordPress is both FREE and priceless at the same time. The core software is built by hundreds of community volunteers, and when you’re ready for more there are thousands of plugins and themes available to transform your site into almost anything you can imagine. Over 60 million people have chosen WordPress to power the place on the web they call “home” — we’d love you to join the family.
If you use Dreamhost (see above), you will be able to install WordPress and start blogging literally with a few clicks. But if you have hosting on a server that doesn’t offer this kind of convenience, you can always download WordPress for free and install it on your server yourself.
When you install WordPress, it will come with some basic themes. You’ll be ready to start blogging right away. You can set up a “page” that tells more about who you are and start publishing “posts,” which are date-based blog posts and articles.
Here’s a great ebook guide to getting started with WordPress…
Want a little more depth and maybe some video? Check out the Udemy Course: WordPress Academy – Master WordPress Step-by-Step.
And my favorite website to learn from about WordPress is WPBeginner.
Congrats if you’ve come this far. You’re a blogger! And you’ve only begun to scratch the surface of your blogging potential.
Wordpress is the software that runs your blog, but your “theme” is the front-end. It’s what people see. You’re looking at one right now. When you install WordPress, it will come with several nice-looking but common themes and you can even find more free themes in the WordPress repository. When you want to make it uniquely yours and get premium features, you’ll need a premium theme.
I’m a huge advocate for Studiopress Themes and the Genesis Theme Framework.
Content Creation Tools
Within WordPress is an excellent writing system. You can write using a nice what-you-see-is-what-you-get editor. You can also easily upload photos, documents, and other kinds of media using the Media Upload tool. It will all be resized and aligned according to your preferences. But at some point, you may also want to get creative and go beyond what the basic editor allows, especially with video.
Great Writing Is the Foundation
Great blogging requires great writing! Building a successful blog can be accomplished on a variety of platforms on virtually every conceivable topic. But there is one common ingredient in every single blog that has ever gone anywhere – great writing! That’s why you need to consider learning from one of the best!
In addition to her own blogging projects, she also created Blog Writer’s Bootcamp.
Joining Blog Writer’s Bootcamp gives you lifetime access to inspiring, instructional content broken down into 34 comprehensive lessons in 10 modules – including 45 videos.
Marketing and Promotional Tools
Blogging is great, but for whom are you writing? Who is your audience, and how do you get your content in front of them? Here are some of my favorite tools for promoting and distributing my blog posts.
Other Favorite Apps and Tools
- Dropbox (my favorite cloud storage solution)
- Brydge Keyboards (awesome keyboards for Ipad)
- Mighty Deals (great deals on creative design resources)
- Fiverr (for hiring someone to do a small creative job for $5)
And by the way, this list is ever-evolving. I will add and remove tools from time to time. Feel free to share this toolbox with the links below!
And remember, if you’re looking to understand how to grow a successful blog, check out
As with every other post or page on this site, many of the links you may click on within this page are affiliate links. If you made a purchase after clicking, I would receive a referral fee. This in no way affects the price you pay.