Preslav Mihaylov

Speaker, Software Engineer, Technical Trainer. Passionate about computer science, presenting and playing board games

How to start your own blog and why?

I recently started this blog with the idea of posting some things I find useful with the purpose of helping out people. But I also found a blogging course from a very famous software development blog called Simple Programmer. It is maintained by John Sonmez, a developer dedicated to helping out other developers with topics such as Finance, Fitness, Specialization and all sorts of other useful stuff. You should definitely check out his blog.

John has a lot of cool content out there, some of which is paid, but there is a free course he created with the purpose of helping you start out with your software development blog. I wanted to share this course with you as I recently completed it myself and I found it quite useful. Dropping you a link to it.

Some of the key things this course covers is:

  • How to generate ideas for your blog content
  • What your blog should be about
  • How to get traffic on your blog

Now, one final question you might ask is

Why do I actually need a blog?

There are a number of things which you benefit from by keeping up a blog. I will share with you those which I found out myself by blogging for nearly four months now:

Marketing

Getting your name out there. This is perhaps the greatest benefit of having a blog. This one takes time, though, and I haven’t really got to the point where I have seen this benefit make a huge impact still.

However, after some of my first posts I actually got an offer for leading a presentation about a product one company has developed. Furthermore, just recently someone contacted me and made me an offer to lead a software development training in their company.

But truth is, I have been able to gain reputation from different channels as well and that is why I got those opportunities. Blogging is one of those channels and it can surely bring me value with time. But my point is, marketing is important for your career and growth as it can bring you opportunities you won’t otherwise have. That is why you should definitely start thinking seriously about it. Having a blog is a good starting point.

Imagine going to an interview and before you even start, the interviewers look at you and say “Ah, I know you. I have read your blog!”. Clearly, such a situation gives you great leverage and can bring you to the point where the employers are searching for you and not the other way around.

Bottom line, marketing is important. I know software developers hate this word, but marketing really means to connect a product with the users. If the product you are offering (your services) is of good quality, there is nothing to be ashamed or worried about.

Knowledge

One of the best ways to learn something is to teach it. I have found this out by leading software development courses for more than two years now. I am still amazed how you can learn something new by even teaching the basic stuff you thought you knew brilliantly. But I know that not everyone has the opportunity, time or dedication to teach others. That is where blogging comes in.

Maintaining a blog actually makes you a teacher in some degree. Every time you have to write an article about a topic, you have to research it pretty thoroughly. By doing that, you not only prepare yourself for writing the article but learn new stuff as well. Apart from that, there is a huge difference from knowing something in your head and trying to explain it in an article.

I do not remember the exact quote, but I am sure someone once said that if you can’t explain a topic to a young kid, you don’t understand the topic yourself. Blogging gives you the platform for training that skill, which helps you gain more knowledge yourself, but can come in handy in another context as well.

Satisfaction

By writing articles, you bring value to others. This simply grants you pleasure. I firmly believe that only by bringing value can you advance and succeed in your journey. The reward may not come immediately, but people will be grateful and it will get back to you someday.

As a smart guy once said:

Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.

Albert Einstein

Conclusion

Making a blog can really boost your career. However, this is a long-term investment and it takes time, patience and persistence to have a blog. I shared with you a course which could get you up and running, but it is still be a serious endeavor. But once you start picking up the fruits from this journey, I am sure you won’t regret starting.

I started out just recently. Want to head on the journey together?

2 Comments

  1. Hi Preslav,

    Thank you for your insight on blogging and the link to the online course. While I haven’t been writing as long, I also started blogging a few weeks ago. Since I’m interested in data science and machine learning, I mainly talk about the algorithms involved in the field and some datasets that I analyze to apply some of the knowledge that I learned. I’ll go check out the course to see how I can improve my blog.

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