How To Start a Fitness Blog

Starting a blog is one of the best ways to build an audience, get your ideas out into the world, and possibly make some (or a lot) of money while doing what you love. Everyone has different reasons for beginning a blog and different goals in mind when they do so. Your personal path will dictate some of the choices you make along the way. One thing that is true for everyone, however, is that the only way to succeed is to get started.

Taking that first step can be a huge challenge, but by the end of this article, you should have the tools you need to feel confident and prepared to start your fitness blog today.

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This article is a great place to learn the strategy of a fitness blog. If you want step-by-step instructions on how to start your own fitness blog, check out our free blogging course. 

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What Is Your Blog About?

If you are reading this, you already know the answer to this question – you are starting a fitness blog! Of course, having a topic in mind is just the first step in the process of creating a successful blog. You will need to think a little deeper about what, specifically, you want to accomplish with your blog. Are you starting a fitness blog for kids? A fitness blog for those with little free time? A blog about fitness equipment?

Knowing on a deeper level what type of content you want to create will help you hone your focus and ensure that you create content that stands out from the crowd.

There’s a quote that fits this situation perfectly:

"If you try to be everything for everbody, you will be nothing to no one."

Establish Your Niche

When creating a new blog, you need to find your niche. This is the corner of the market that you have the most knowledge about, the place you can establish yourself as an absolute authority. If you try to take on Self.com all at once, you will find yourself struggling to make headway and will likely wind up disappointed.

Your goal is to find a subject that is more narrow than “fitness”, but wider than “fitness band reviews”. If your topic is too wide, you will have a hard time standing out. If it’s too narrow, you’ll quickly exhaust your topic or discover you do not have a big enough audience to sustain a blog.

Some examples of niche fitness blogs are:

  • Taking the Stress Out of Fitness Blog - Born Fitness
  • Running Blog for Black Women - Black Girls Run!
  • Running in NYC Blog - Preppy Runner

Name Your Blog

Once you’ve found your niche, it’s a great time to start brainstorming a name for your blog. You’ll want to pick a name that’s brandable and available. Use our domain name tool to check if your name is available. If it is, scoop it up before someone else gets to it first.

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Finding Your Audience

Having a good sense of who is going to be reading your blog is one of the best ways to know what type of content to create, how to shape it, and, ultimately, how to grow your following. With a clear understanding of your niche, understanding your audience should come more naturally.

Finding your target audience - the people you want hanging out on your blog - isn’t only statistics and demographics. It requires a deeper understanding of who these people are and what they want. Your target audience is the people you’re writing to when you write your blog.

Are you writing to fitness enthusiasts who are looking for a way to gain an edge? Or, are you writing to couch potatoes who need the motivation to start their fitness journey? No matter what the core focus of your blog is, consider who you want your readers to be so that you can determine your tone and content needs.

Create a Persona

One way to understand your audience is to create a persona of your perfect target audience member. This essentially means creating a mock-up of the ideal person you hope to reach with your blog.

Here is an example of a target audience persona:

Tony Trusk Persona

Having a persona for your perfect audience member helps you to visualize and understand who you are writing for and provides important direction to your content.

Be Your Own Persona

Another popular way to find your perfect target audience is to be your own persona. Many of the best products and services come from scratching your own itch. It’s possible you’ve searched for the perfect fitness blog to read, came up short, and decided to create it yourself. This makes you the perfect audience member for your own blog.

This can be a great strategy for creating highly effective content. If you’ve noticed a meaningful omission in blog content, chances are you are not alone. By writing personally satisfying content you are likely to reach an audience in search of the same things.

Where Is Your Audience Hanging Out?

No web content exists in a vacuum. While you should strive to create uniquely entertaining content for your blog, your target audience is almost certainly already out there reading other blogs, engaging on specialized forums, and using social media. Finding the sites where your audience already mingles is a great way to discover what topics they are most interested in, what language they are using, and what valuable content you can add to that mix.

Some examples for your fitness blog may include:

  • MensHealth.com
  • Shape.com
  • WomensHealthMag.com
  • DareBee.com

Visiting these sites is also a great way to begin engaging with your audience before your blog has even gone live. Jump into conversations on forums and in comments sections and get to know the people you’ll be writing for. This is a great, organic way to build relationships and direct people to your blog in its early days. Sharing your passion with like-minded people will make them more excited and passionate about supporting you in your blogging endeavor.

How Will You Present Your Work?

Traditionally, when most people think about a blog they picture written content on a page. However, there are several different ways to present your ideas on your blog, depending on your subject matter and target audience. Every blog will thrive with different formats, so it’s important to think carefully about how to best showcase your content before you start.

There are several effective methods of presenting the material on your fitness blog. They include:

Evergreen Articles

As the name suggests, evergreen articles are composed of content that lasts. These articles are designed to have a long shelf life and continue drawing readers to your blog over time. They are typically long-form, text-based articles that delve more deeply into a particular topic.

One good option for evergreen content on a fitness blog is reviews of fitness equipment. You can mix up your reviews between new equipment and equipment that is standard in gyms and homes. By reviewing classic workout equipment you can create content that will have new readers checking out your blog year after year.

Videos

While the video format is not new, the explosive growth of YouTube and the advent of new and innovative video-based tech like Snapchat and TikTok have shown the true power of video as an online medium. While you may think that creating video is much more difficult and expensive than writing your content, you have access to all the technology you need to make high-quality video content right on your smartphone.

Video how-tos are a great option for video content on a fitness blog. You are already giving people advice and insights into fitness – now you just have to make videos to provide even more help. Depending on your niche, you can make videos on proper running form, lifting exercises, CrossFit routines, etc. You may struggle at first to produce videos you are proud of, but keep going. With practice, your videos will get better and you will steadily build a library of video content for your blog.

News-type Articles

News articles or other “announcement” type content can be a great way to gather new readers. One benefit of news content is the short-term but powerful increase in search volume during an event. While this bump may be temporary, it can be a great tool for grabbing new readers who end up coming back for more.

Writing about current events or new happenings also means there will typically be less competition for readers. Other blogs and media sources are all getting the information as it develops. Since the base of knowledge available is smaller, this gives you a good opportunity to add your own flavor to the article.

The downside to news-type articles is that they tend to lose popularity much more quickly than evergreen content. While the interest for an event may be very large one day, the next day people may already be moving on to the next shiny object.

Fitness is a subject that lends itself to news-type articles. If you think about it, you probably encounter numerous news topics in your niche each day you research your subject. Things are always changing, studies are done, what was once considered common knowledge is discarded for new information. Keep an eye on the news in your niche and write up some news-type articles periodically to flesh out your topical content.

Image-heavy Content

While most people expect to be reading when they visit a blog, image-heavy content can be very appealing and break up your text-focused posts to keep people’s attention. Depending on the topic of your post, displaying multiple images per page on a single subject can give your audience a better sense of what you are trying to convey.

While some topics may take to images very easily, like a car blog or a celebrity gossip site, others may require some deeper thinking to make this strategy work.

Fitness lends itself to image-heavy content, whether you collect images online, take your own photographs or both. You can take pictures of your fitness adventures, track your progress, photography images for tutorials/how-tos, and more.

You will get better at gathering images for your blog as you create more and more content. Collecting images and taking photos will become a part of your research process over time. Then, when you sit down to write your blogs, you will have images that you can incorporate to add to the quality and interest of your content.

Mix and Match

Your blog needs a mix of different content delivery strategies to stay fresh and interesting to your audience. While you may initially prefer one type of content over others – such as writing how-to articles – you should try to stretch yourself by tackling other types of content regularly. You may discover that you love taking photographs, making videos, and experimenting with other types of content. Even if you never come to love certain types of content over others, you will gain skills through practice that will let you keep your blog content varied and attractive to readers new and old.

How To Make Money From A Fitness Blog

One of the main reasons people start blogs is to generate some sort of profit. Whether you’re looking for a few hundred dollars per month or a job-replacing income, blogging is still an excellent way to make those dreams a reality.

There are a few great ways to make money from a fitness blog:

Display Ad Networks

Display ads are the simplest way for websites to generate any sort of income. Ad networks, like Google Adsense, are fairly simple to be accepted into, and implementation onto your site is streamlined and clean. If you’re just beginning to see some traffic to your blog and want to turn this into dollars, display ads are where most people start.

There are a few downsides to display ads, however. The first is that some feel they detract from the user experience on your blog. Most people have been to a site where large ads pop up and block the content in the middle of reading. This can be distracting, frustrating, and even drive people away from your blog. While it’s possible to clean up and control the type of ads you use, it can be a constant battle to balance effective ad placement with aesthetics and readability.

The other main downside is that they don’t pay a lot. These networks generally use a pay-per-click (PPC) model which, depending on the niche, can pay anywhere from $0.01 to $1.50 per click, most on the lower end.

While display ads are a great way to make your first dollars, you’ll want to make sure any negatives they bring are worth the profits they provide. Once you develop a solid following, you can consider moving on to more lucrative and effective profit-making options.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing programs like Amazon Affiliate have become much more popular over the past few years, as they take the payment model from pay-per-click to cost-per-acquisition (CPA). This means you can refer as many users to an advertiser’s product as you want, but will only get paid when the user makes a purchase.

Both advertisers and publishers benefit from an affiliate marketing setup. The advertiser pays nothing until a sale is made and the publisher enjoys much higher commissions than the pay-per-click model.

The Amazon Affiliate program is an awesome fit for a fitness blog. This platform has a very low barrier to entry and pays commissions to publishers for sales that they help facilitate on products from Amazon – which means you get a cut every time you encourage a sale.

Blogging about fitness offers a seamless way to incorporate affiliate links. You can’t help but talk about the different equipment, products, supplies, and media that you are using to pursue your fitness journey. Your readers will expect you to link to those products in your blog and will appreciate having an easy way to purchase them for themselves if they choose. Each time they make a purchase from your link, you get a cut of the sale.

Many fitness blogs start with Amazon Affiliates because it is such an easy way to start making money from a blog. Small blogs may pull in a few dollars, but larger blogs can make thousands from this model.

Sell Digital Products

Digital products are an online entrepreneur's dream. You create the item once, then sell it as many times as you can, with little to no cost of reproduction. This means that you can scale your business to infinity.

Examples of digital products are:

  • Ebooks - A piece of writing, generally in PDF format. These can contain literally anything that your audience would want. They can either be true book-length all the way down to a few pages of content. Depending on your niche, audience, and subject, these can run from $1 to $100 per sale fairly easily.

  • Gated Content - This is content that is served on your website just like any other article, except that is behind a “paywall”. If you are creating content that you don’t want to be released to anyone but your true followers, you have them sign up for an account on your site and charge them a subscription fee for access. Generally, authors charge anywhere from $5 to $200 per month for access to gated content.

  • Online Courses - If you can teach a skill that your audience wants to learn, you can create an online course to sell to them. These courses can be formatted in whatever way makes the most sense to you, but most nowadays are video courses. Online courses can sell from $10 to well over $10,000 per course, obviously depending on the subject matter and audience.

A nice example of a digital product that a fitness blogger could sell is an online course on how to learn a new workout routine or a new nutrition routine. Depending on your niche, you can design a program based on your expertise and sell that program to your readers. You can even ask them for feedback about what questions they need to be answered and incorporate those answers into your product. A well-produced course in this niche could easily sell for $100 per sale or more.

Sell Physical Products

Selling physical products is the original money-making strategy. You gather an audience that is hungry for something, you sell it to them, and everyone wins. You don’t have to be an inventor, designer, or manufacturer to sell products. Sites like Alibaba and AliExpress import already-made items into the United States and sell them for a markup.

The two main methods for the distribution of these items are: dropshipping and self-fulfilled.

Dropshipping is a method where you advertise a product on your site that you do not own. Once you make the sale, you inform the manufacturer, who will handle the shipping and handling to the end-user. While this is simple because you don’t have to worry about storing or shipping any items yourself, you’ll find that the margins can be quite slim.

Self-fulfilled sales are much more of a hands-on approach to sales. You buy the item from the manufacturer, store it, then ship it to the end-user once you have made the sale. While there is much more work involved, you’ll find that the margins per sale are much higher.

Product sales through a fitness blog should be based on your niche and the demands of your audience. If you write about fitness clothing, you could design your own clothing or partner with a fitness manufacturer to put your brand on a clothing line if your blog becomes popular enough. You can also design and purchase more affordable items, like stickers, water bottles, and pins, and sell them for a considerable mark up on your site.

While it can be very profitable when done well, selling products is not generally recommended for the beginner blogger. It’s best to secure an audience that you know will be receptive to the product before making a large investment in product development or acquisition.

Create A Service

Providing a service is another very basic money-making plan. If you can provide a service that you know your audience needs, you have a viable business on your hands.

Whether this service is delivered through one-on-one interaction with the user, through a piece of software that you develop, or by directly completing a task for the user, this is a great way to monetize your skillset and your blog.

Your fitness blog audience will come to trust you as an expert in your niche, which makes selling a service much easier to do than it would be without a blog. Many bloggers are able to make a full-time income from the services they sell, as long as they have the audience to create sufficient demand.

You can charge a premium for your time, whether you are offering one-on-one personal training sessions, nutrition consultations, or coaching in a particular fitness area. However, you want to be careful to avoid overextending yourself if the demand is high for your time. You can only be so many places at once, and your blog still needs regular attention to keep driving interest in your services and your brand.

Next Steps To Get Your Fitness Blog Started

Now that you have the strategies in place to build and grow your own blog, check out our free course: How To Start A Blog.

This course includes all the essentials on how to get your blog out of your head and onto its own website. Starting a blog is simple and inexpensive, so there’s no reason that you shouldn’t start today!

Free Course: How To Start A Blog

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