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Starting a blog in your retirement

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Blogging has been around for over 10 years, but if you’ve never done it – whatever your age - it can seem daunting. Blogging is actually easy and it can introduce you to new people, encourage you to learn or share skills and even make you a bit of money.
 

It’s easy to get started

If you want to start a blog you don’t need to be a computer whizz; take a look at Wordpress and Blogger. They’re both easy and free to use, but it’s worth playing around with them to see which one you prefer. Once you have an account you can also download apps to your phone that let you post when you’re on the go – very handy if you’re travelling.
 
Just like real life, friendships can only be made if someone starts a conversation.
Once you’ve settled on a platform, you need to think of a title and a purpose for your blog. If you just want to meet likeminded people, you can simply diarise your experiences and search for bloggers with similar lives. Link to them from your blog and comment on their posts: just like real life, friendships can only be made if someone starts a conversation.
 

You can make your retirement blog successful

If you want your blog to stand out and be successful, pick something unique and interesting to write about.
 
Pick a unique blog angle and share your tips, advice and opinionsThis could be anything: places to visit during retirement, great recipes you’ve created, fashion tips for your age group (I’ve been writing about “parenting in style” for the past four years), inspiring craft ideas or even music you’ve recorded. As long as you care about the subject, posting regularly comes naturally - blogging is only a chore if you’re not passionate about it.
 
By picking a unique blog angle and sharing your tips, advice and opinion, you should pick up followers and see the blog gradually grow (you can look at statistics via your blogging dashboard).
 
Focus on posting regularly (readers will only return if they know there’s going to be fresh content waiting for them), interacting with other bloggers, using social networks (like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter) to promote your blog posts and add your blog to free directory services so people can find you. Ask friends and family to visit too, and encourage them to spread the word.
 

Use your blog to sharpen your skills

If you’d like to use your blog to develop new or existing skills, set yourself a target. If you want to improve your culinary talents, for example, resolve to upload one new recipe per week or fortnight so you get some momentum going. As blogs are very visual, try to include images and video content too.
 
You don’t need a fancy video camera; most smartphones have a good enough film function for a blog. Anything that engages your readers and makes a blog feel more interactive and personal works well.
 

How to make money from your blog

Once your blog is established, you can even think about monetising it. You could place banners and ads on your blog and you may be approached by agencies who ask you to write sponsored (paid) posts or pay you to include links in your blog (make sure you read Google’s policy on paid links before going ahead). You will have to disclose that you receive a fee and are not writing independently.
 
Successful bloggers with large followings have done everything from becoming big-name brand ambassadors to appearing on TV.
You can also use affiliate marketing sites like Affiliate Window: you sign up with specific brand programs that relate to your blog and earn a commission if your readers buy products from those brands via the links on your site.
 
If you do start earning, get some tax advice – very successful bloggers with large followings have done everything from becoming big-name brand ambassadors to appearing on TV, so the sky really is the limit.
 

Find blogs to inspire you

 

There are thousands of blogs out there to explore. I write two very different blogs myself, Fashion Detective which is all about living a fashionable life as a parent.
 
If you’re looking for retirement blogs to inspire you try Retirement With No Problem from a couple living on a narrow boat, or Julia’s Place, a retiree who lives life to the full, and if you want to see some inspiring photography, check out Retirement Rocks.
 
Whether your blog becomes a nice little earner or provides you with a creative outlet and new friends online, retirement is a brilliant time of life to give it a go…
 
Have you given blogging a go, how did you find it - did you start and then give up or is it something you’re now totally addicted to? If you’d like to have a go and have any questions and your own tips and advice about blogging, post them below and I’ll do my best to answer. 
 
This article has been commissioned by retiresavvy and any opinions voiced are the author's own.

Comments

Hi there, I started a Blog this year for the over sixties - it has the theme of "Change". I think the blog is quite addictive - its a bit like having a baby - you have to feed it constantly, give it attention and persevere with it until it thrives! Here is a link - www.maddyathome.com Many thanks for your advice. Maddy
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I learned a lot in your blog. It helps me to learn more and do well in writing a blog. It really help a lot. You can also check my website for some blogs to read. http://kuyaarz.com/
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