One of the posts that I love to read from other bloggers is advice posts. I wish so much that I would have seen some of these posts when I first started out because it could have saved me so much hassle, heartache, and tears. Yes, tears. When I first started my blog I knew nothing! I’m the type of person who jumps feet first into something if I want it bad enough and do my research as I go along. Looking back, I probably should have done more research, but I wanted this blog so badly! I wanted a place to talk about books as they’ve been a constant passion from a very young age. But blogging is a little more than just passion. Obviously, being passionate about something is necessary to maintaining a place on the internet dedicated to a certain subject BUT, feeling successful is what I think drives us all to continue. We need to feel validated in some way, shape, or form. Like people actually care about what we have to say. Blogs are, after all, a place where we pour our thoughts and hearts into! And in the beginning I struggled. So, I hope that these little tips can help you keep going and feel like you’re moving in the right direction. I will be splitting this post up into 2 sections (as this would be an insanely long post if I didn’t!) so be on the look out for part two next week.
*** Disclaimer! *** I do NOT think I’m a blogging goddess! Quite the opposite! I feel like an amateur. I’m just a girl who loves books and puts a ridiculous amount of time and effort into my blog lol! These are just the tips and tricks that I’ve learned through my experiences and I hope these help you too! I still feel like I have SO much to learn and so much room to grow. But hey, if we aren’t learning then we’re doing something wrong!
BE PREPARED TO SPEND A LOT OF TIME ON YOUR BLOG!!!
This is probably the number one thing I wish I could have known in the beginning. It wouldn’t have changed the outcome, but it would have prepared me for what was to come. I’m a quick writer. Once I have something in my mind it pours out quickly. But there’s also the time I put into edits, formatting, pictures, graphics, writing down ideas, chatting with the community, blog hopping and more. I first thought that I would spend a few minutes a day doing all of these things – WRONG! More like hours! This is something that comes with time. Balancing your life and your blog is a personal thing and no one thing works the same for everyone. Don’t get frustrated and just do what you can! Your blog is a hobby after all and should never feel like work! This is something you love and are doing for yourself!
This is where you should all be screaming “take your own advice woman!” Trust me – it’s gratifying to see numbers and know that your hard work is worth something BUT it doesn’t happen overnight!! We all start somewhere. You just need to keep at it and not give up. Perseverance and dedication makes goals come to reality.
This is probably the biggest piece of advice I can give to a new blogger!! If you want to torture yourself, then go ahead, be my guest. But comparing your blog to someone else will only make you crazy! I watched a few other people who started at the same time I did reach 2-3,000 followers in their first 3 months…. no word of a lie. I sat there in tears watching their numbers grow and mine would inch up 1 or two a week. I couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong. But here’s the thing – I wasn’t doing anything wrong! Except for the fact that I was comparing. There are so many different factors that go into the speed of growth and there’s no way to see everything little thing they are doing. Just do you and know that you’re doing great!
LOOK AT THE BIGGER PICTURE!
It’s so hard not to look at those daily stats. Ok I admit that I do look at them daily. But the key here is to understand that the daily stats don’t matter. You’re going to have ups and downs. These are always due to the higher traffic blog hopping days, any features that you do. So many different variables! Want to see if your blog is growing? Then stop looking at the daily and look at the weekly. Better yet – go to your monthly! Those stats give you a better average of how things are going. It takes your ups and downs and brings it all together. If you’re moving in one direction or another, your weekly/monthly stats will tell you more!
BLOG FOR YOURSELF – NO ONE ELSE!
There’s some debate about this one actually and I actually agree with both points. Side one says – blog for yourself. Side two says – blog for your audience. While I understand doing posts that your audience enjoys, I actually think it should be the other way around. Your audience should be following you because of your interests and passions! When you’re excited and passionate about something – it shows! If your audience views something that you don’t particularly enjoy then try to put a spin on it to suit you and your personality. My point with this section is that when you try to be someone you’re not, it can easily feel one dimensional, inauthentic, and fake. When you’re true to what you love, it will reach out to the others who are passionate about the same things and that’s where your following will come from!
Like I said, I am not a blogging guru. These are just a few things that I wish I would have known before going head first into my blog. I really hope this helps and maybe even eases some pressure and frustrations. I will be doing a post next week talking about increasing blog traffic. So I will talk to you all then! Feel free to enter any other pieces of advice and I may do an updated post in a couple weeks showcasing your wisdom! Lets help each other out and share our knowledge!!
Until next time, happy reading!