Be sure of what you want from your blog. Is it a creative outlet, or are you going into this to grow a business?
From the very start The Green Hub was a business and I’ve always treated it as such. I’ve set goals, been consistent in creating content and set boundaries about working for free.
You need to decide if you are happy to blog as a hobby and accept the occasional free product or if you want to make it your business which supports you financially.
Before I go on I should mention that if you want to become an ethical blogger for Insta fame and to get rich, you should stop before you start. You will probably receive neither.
But, if you want to get into the game to build a small business which aligns with your values and create positive change by sharing the sustainability message. Then keep reading.
The technical stuff
The boring but important information to help you get started. This is the foundation of your new business so it’s important to get it right the first time. It’s much easier to invest the time setting up your platform now than trying to change it later when you realise its not the best option for you.
First you need to pick a name for your business.
Not many people know this but The Green Hub was not my first choice. I spent two weeks coming up with names only to find the domain or ABN was not available. I ‘settled’ for The Green Hub, registered as a business with the government THEN found out the domain was taken. I was gutted.
And that my friends is why our domain has ‘online’ tacked onto the end. It’s for website purposes only, it’s not actually our full name. Despite being a fall back name I now love the name and couldn’t imagine being called anything else!
Love your business name, it’s very difficult to change it later.
Domain, hosting & wordpress
I use WordPress. It’s hands down the best and most flexible platform for starting a blog.
There are many different ways you can set up your WordPress account, domain and hosting but to keep it as simple as possible, I recommend using Bluehost for all three.
Head over to Bluehost here to register your domain name. Bluehost’s basic price is $3.95 a month.
Once you’ve set up your domain and hosting select the simple “one-click” install of WordPress through Bluehost.
If you get stuck at any point, Bluehost have a “live chat” function to help you through the setup. They also answer emails within the day.
Now the fun part!
The Green Hub was designed and custom built by the incredible team at Pixel Palace. I was moving from a store into a publication and needed a complete overhaul.
But if you don’t want to invest money in your design right away, creating one yourself is affordable and very easy to do. You don’t need to be a designer or even need to know how to code.
I built my first blog using the StudioPress their Genesis Framework and one of their beautiful Child Themes.
There are two main benefits here
1. Using the StudioPress framework and themes means that you can build a beautiful, easy to manage website that looks custom made. Content is only half your blog. If your page is poorly designed and difficult to navigate, your readers won’t want to stick around.
2. If I need help or run into problems you open a support ticket with StudioPress, start a thread in the support forums, or a quick Google search will show you tons of video tutorials. Also if you use StudioPress, you aren’t buying a theme from some random person in Timbuktu who won’t answer your emails.
Find your tribe
The ethical and sustainable fashion and lifestyle influencer space is small. There are some who have been around before it became mainstream five to ten years ago, but for the most part, the majority of us have come into this space in the last two to four years.
There’s room enough for everyone to thrive but no room for treading on others to get to where you want. We are a community and we support each other.
In Australia, we’re a very small community, we all know each other and often attend the same events. These wonderful women have become my friends we because we genuinely like each other and love to hang out. Not because we’re part of comment and like pods on social media.
Do not reach out to fellow bloggers solely for the purpose of reciprocal social media follows. Reach out because you think you have something in common and could be friends.
If you’re Australian or from New Zealand check out these awesome ladies to help you start finding your local tribe.
- Sam Leigh – ecomono
- Kate Hall – Ethically Kate
- Nicole Lawrie – Urban Granola
- Natalie Shehata – Tommie Magazine
- Katie Sustainability in Style
- Olivia Burton – Sustainable Cat
- Jasmine Mayhead – Ethical Made Easy
- Jen Nini – Eco Warrior Princess
Ethical Writers & Creatives
Whether you’re in Australia or anywhere in the world, one of the best places to find your tribe is Ethical Writers & Creatives, a group for bloggers, podcasters, vloggers, photographers, influencers and other creatives from around the world who work in the sustainable fashion and lifestyle space.
This group has been an amazing source of education and support and my go to for when I have a questions about brands, technical stuff, want to share a win or just have a rant. The Writers Group is also setting a standard within our industry for honesty and transparency from influencers. This includes the brands we work with and campaigning for fair pay for our work.
Search these hashtags on Instagram and Twitter:
These will help you find people who are also part of the movement and interested in the same things you are.