We learn so much online these days, and not always through traditional outlets. Rather, blogs have become powerful educational tools, assisting with career development, giving insights into different fields, and helping both bloggers and their readers to build successful businesses.
But what does an educational blog look like and how can you build one? Educational blogs come in as many forms as there are fields, but they all share a few key factors in common.
Here are 5 considerations that can help get your educational blog off the ground, engaging a readership for the long term.
Write What You Know
In order to build an audience, you have to give them something to read, and that something should obviously be well informed. That’s why you should write what you know about, sharing lessons and skills on your blog, even if you don’t think these small lessons have a lot of value, or that you don’t have enough expertise to be the voice backing up the posts. If you had to learn these things, there’s an audience just starting out that could also benefit from your insights.
Don’t Worry About Being An Expert
Your educational blog should look professional, but you don’t need to be a field recognized expert to offer insights via your blog. In fact, some of the most valuable writing comes from people who don’t necessarily have the obvious credentials.
Tim Sykes, for instance, has built an extensive audience teaching others how to trade penny stocks, but he’s not your traditional broker. Rather, Sykes learned to trade while earning a BA in Philosophy. He’s become a millionaire and so have a number of his students. Yet, a philosophy degree isn’t exactly what you’d expect of the man behind his informative posts and challenges.
Use Video As A Tool
Don’t take the concept of blogging too literally when creating your educational blog. Not all of your content needs to be text based posts. In fact, many people are clearer and more powerful on video, and members of your audience may also prefer to learn through the video tutorial format.
Superior online training software solutions allow you to embed webinar-like experiences on your own hosted web pages, which you can gate behind membership logins. Live, real-time access to a mentor is one of the most attractive aspects of sites that command premium membership fees.
Your educational blog is a multimedia space meant to display the best content you have to offer, no matter the format. This flexibility is also part of what makes blogging fun and exciting.
Consider The Business Opportunities
Some of the best blogs are those that take what you already know or the business you’re already in and spin that content to build an entirely new business. That’s what happened, albeit unintentionally, to Pat Flynn of the architecture blog Green Exam Academy. Laid off from his job, Flynn put more effort into his blog and grew it into a lucrative venture. Much like Sykes who grew $12,415 into millions, Flynn’s blog growth is somewhat atypical, but it shows the potential of the format.
Learn While You Teach
When you put yourself and your ideas out there via an educational blog, you’re welcoming feedback from all corners. Sometimes it will come from those who know more than you – and they may be looking to knock you down because of their expertise. Others, though, will build you up and may even become great partners when it comes to learning more and advancing your work.
You’ll also get feedback from readers who want to know more or who are seeking clarification about your ideas. No matter what form it takes, be open and listen. Blogging should be as educational for you as it is for your readers.
Blogs are always a work in progress, offering a platform to test new ideas and make exciting connections, and you can do this easily, even from a basic platform like WordPress. Harness the tech tools available to you, as well as excitement and an open mind, to make the most of your experience. You might be at the beginning of something big.