Whether you monetise your teaching, have a completely different side-hustle, or are just passionate about your classroom teaching, teacher blogs are an obvious step. You have probably seen some “rock star teacher” (I hate that phrase), featured on the morning news, or online and felt inspired to start your own blog and get your awesome work out there.
However, blogging is not for everybody. It is a long-term commitment, and you may not see results for a long time. In fact, the average lifespan of a blog is only two months. However, if you are consistent in your approach, and take the right advice, you will see the results in your blogging.
If you are committed to launching a teacher blog, or already have started one, then this guide to teacher blogging is required reading.
Remember, if you are interested in starting a teacher blog, check out my resources page, with all the tools I swear by for my blog.
Why teachers blog?
There are many reasons that teachers start their own blogs. I cannot put my finger on why every single teacher starts their own blog. However, there are definitely some common reasons as to why. Usually, teacher-bloggers are set to share their ideas and resources with the masses, or, a teacher has a side business that they want to grow with a blog.
You can share teaching ideas
While we often work in teams and in a large school environment, there is a certain aspect of teaching that is individual, and sometimes lonely. Once you are in the classroom, it seems as though you are completely by yourself.
And, lets be honest, while we often discuss viewing other teachers’ classes, time is usually against us, and it never gets done. What teachers are doing by blogging is sharing their ideas and lesson plans with teachers all over the world, creating a global community of teachers
If you have read my blog before, or seen much of my work, you will know that I am a huge advocate that teachers should have their own side-hustles. Weather it be selling teaching resources online, making money online, or something completely different, a side business gives you the much-needed freelance economy skills that we can pass to our students.
If you are a teacher with your own business, then blogging is a must. Content marketing, generates new leads and sets yourself up as an authority in your niche.
You can also use your blog as a way to gather emails for your email list.
How to start teacher blogging?
The steps to starting teacher blogs are quite simple. You don’t have to be some tech-guru to figure it all out. God knows I wasn’t a tech expert when I started. However, you do have to be open to learning as you go.
Should my blog be free or self-hosted?
When blogging the first choice you need to make is weather you want your blog to be free, or if you want to host it yourself. Personally, I recommend hosting your own blog.
Basically, when it comes to blogging for free, you get what you pay for. You have to include the name of the blog host in your URL, so for example: http://vincemassara.blogspot.com/ (free blog site) vs. http://www.vincemassara.com (self hosted). Your free blogging platform is also far more difficult to customise than a self hosted blog.
The downsides of having to include your blog host in your URL are massive. Not only is the URL trickier to remember, but more importantly, your website is far less easy to find on Google search. The reason is that, your free blog is technically the online property of the blog host (similar to how you don’t technically own your Facebook page). So, all those back-links and search results count for your blog provider, not you.
I do know some people who started with a free blog and went to transition into a WordPress website, and their paid website had to start from scratch in regards to website authority. All the trust and authority that they had built up in years of blogging was stuck on their free hosted blog.
If you still want to get your writing out there to more people, then there are different free blogging sites you can re-purpose your work onto, like LinkedIn and Medium. These platforms allow you to copy articles from your own blog.
Who should I get to host my blog?
If you are going the self-hosted route, there is a small start-up cost. Blog hosting comes in a range of prices and have a range of different plans. There are plans to suit every need.
Of all the hosting platforms, there are three which I have used and who I recommend.
Bluehost is arguably the biggest WordPress hosting company in the world, and for good reason. The host offer a range of services for different price ranges. Bluehost also offer an easy WordPress installation and they hold your hand the whole way through. If you are just starting, then Bluehost is a great first choice.
I use Bluehost on websites I start now and they are awesome to work with. Starting at only a few bucks a month, they are a great choice.
I launched my first ever blog with Veerotech and they have been great. If you are starting a teacher blog and need assistance, then Veerotech may be the option for you. They helped me with all of my crazy requests and silly mistakes at the beginning and were incredibly helpful. Veerotech are also incredibly cost effective.
WP Engine is a little more expensive, however, you do get what you pay for. WP Engine gives you website security that you would otherwise have to pay for. Trust me, getting your website hacked sucks. Just for that alone, WP Engine are worth the money. However, when you include their other benefits, they are a great option.
Choosing the right theme
If you are starting out blogging, choosing a theme seems like the most exciting part of the process. Almost like clothes shopping for your blog.
There are plenty of free blog themes out there to get yourself started. However, you will find that most of these free themes are limited versions of paid pro themes. Although in the early stages, it is best to just choose a theme and get writing.
If you do want to start with a paid theme, StudioPress is the best in the business and cost-effective too. Using the world-leading Genesis framework, StudioPress are the best theme creators out there. Check them out here.
What should I write about in my teacher blog?
Anything. Well, within reason. Once you know the ideas behind your blog, and who you are writing too, your blog posts should reflect that. Remember to include a range of topics and themes to talk about.
But most importantly, remember to be consistent. Odds are your blog writing won’t be perfect at the start. I look back at old posts and cringe, and hopefully I will look back at this after five years and cringe again.
However, you will improve if you continue to stay consistent with your wiring.
How to make money with teacher blogs?
To borrow an old saying, when it comes to making money from teacher blogs, there are plenty of ways to skin a cat. – To be honest, I don’t know one way to skin a cat, however, I do know more than one way to profit from teacher blogs.
The main ways that you can profit from teacher blogs are.
- Selling products: This one is obvious. If you have a physical or digital product that you want to sell, then blogging to attract customers is a must.
- Affiliate marketing: Do you have tools that you use in your business or classroom that others could benefit with? Affiliate marketing is where you direct readers to products through recommendations and reviews. When people buy that product from your affiliate link, you get a cut of the sale. It is a great way to start monetising your blog.
- Sponsored posts: Once you start getting readers, you will more than likely have businesses reach out to you to sponsor a post. This means that you can write about their brand or product and they will pay you to do so. You can generate a lot of income from sponsored posts. Just make sure you stick true to brands that your readers will get value from.
- Ads: Banner ads and other ads throughout your website is a traditional way to generate income from your blog.
Ideally, you would be looking to diversify your income and make money though a range of these methods.
So there you have it. A run down on teacher blogs, why you need one, and how to start one. If you liked this article I would appreciate it if you shared it!