Have you looked at your favorite bloggers that have taken their blogs to the ultimate levels and made careers out of them? Have you ever seen someone like Ariana Huffington, who created “The Huffington Post” and is now of the most sought after and followed blogs out there? How about one of my personal favorites, Ree Drummond? “The Pioneer Woman” herself. How she started a blog just hoping to share pictures with her Mom, and instead it turned into this business that includes training herself to be a Brilliant Photographer and #1 New York Times Bestselling Authors!
How many of you are fascinated by these stories and wish that yours would someday be a major blog that people will love? Or how many of you hope to turn yours into a business? Yes, I think that a lot of us do. But, I’m sure that many of us have done research, trying to figure out the secret. Is there a secret? Is there a secret that we haven’t learned yet and we need to know?
Well, I wondered, too. So, I researched everything that I could. From checking out books from the library on blogging and online marketing to googling information to reading blogs. Hoping to be able to pick up some tips. And my Blogging home, BlogHer, has some brilliant bloggers. People that are really fascinating and great to learn from and talk to.
I just wanted to know what I needed to do in order to become a better blogger. Now, that I’ve been blogging for a year now, I’ve learned quite a lot about blogging and I would like to share some of these lessons. Now, to many of you, this is beginner stuff. But, I really wanted to just share some of what I’ve learned, just in case there are readers that are getting into blogging for the first time.
*Don’t be scared to create a Blog! Even if you feel that you have nothing to say!
This is one of the things that I dealt with when I got started. Mom, whom is the one that got us all hooked on “The Pioneer Woman”, suggested that I start a blog. I was very hesistant. Seeing as how, I was a homeschooled kid, an only child and I had no friends that I’d hang out with. Plus, I’ve always been a homebody that leads a very sheltered life. So, I asked her, Who would want to read anything I’d have to write? And what would I write about? And she said, Well, you never know. Ree homeschools her kids and you never how many people out there might be homeschoolers, too. So share your story.” So I thought about it. And when I say I thought about it, I mean, I really thought about it. A couple of months later, I decided to take the plunge and start a blog. On August 11th, 2013, I made my first post. As usual, I was on Ree’s blog and I saw the “BlogHer” ad. For the first time, I clicked it. And things were never the same. I checked it out, loved what I saw and found that this was a great site to be a part of. And I am glad that I clicked on it. “My very first post was entitled, “Mom said this was a Good idea!”
*Before you create a blog, do some research. Look at other blogs. But, only for inspiration.
Before I start a blog, I found Ree’s blog. And I read it everyday. I didn’t stop reading it. I would look at the photography and the way each piece was written. I thought that blogging as complicated. I thought that blogging would be far more challenging. I wasn’t wrong. Blogging is challenging. It’s not the simplest tasks you’ll ever take on. But, I also had no idea what it takes to put a blog together. I found out about domains and I thought that I had to buy a domain. And since I was unemployed, I didn’t have the money for it. Then, I found out that you can create blogs and those still get publish on the internet. So, I decided to look into it. That’s when I found WordPress. And putting it together wasn’t difficult as I thought. By looking at other blogs, I found how important the Visual is. I didn’t know this. But, pretty much every incredibly popular blog has photographs and other colorful visuals. And some, has visuals through the words that they write. Some create clear pictures, based upon the words that they use and how they use them. Don’t Copy Anybody Else’s Blogging Ideas! Be innovative and come up with your own. Be inspired,but, don’t be a thief! Read blogs and research. Then, figure out how and what visuals will represent your blog.
*Figure out the type of Blog you want to have or if you want your blog to be organic.
Sometimes, the best things in life, are free hand. Not complicated and over analyzed. Not questioned. You feel it and let it be what it wants to be. Then, there are those people like me, that are used to having a plan, an outline. I love having thing organized and knowing exactly what I have to do at a specific time. But, with blogging, I found that to be complicated. I mean with blogging,unless you’ve planned a head, is kind of an organic thing. It’s one of those things where you think you’ve got it down, then the post changes course. And you realize that you’ve got to just roll with it and let it be. Just don’t try to micromanage everything. Just let the post do what it’s going to do. And in these cases, I’ve found myself pretty happy with it. So, sometimes it’s best, to just let things take their natural course and have some laughs along the way. But, if you’re going to blog about a specific thing like Fashion or Food, then make sure that you’re passionate about it and that you are willing to come with new ideas that will excite your readers. You want to them to always come to you, when they’ve got a question or they just want to see what’s new. That’s what keeps your blog followed and appreciated, and fresh.
Be patient. Rome wasn’t built in a day, even though your blog was. Your following isn’t.
One of the things that you must keep in mind, is that your blog is not going to rock the blogosphere in one evening! You’ve got to give yourself time to get it together. You’ve got to give your mind time and your blog time to develop. You’ve got to understand that it’s important to have great content and visuals. But, it’s not going to happen for you overnight. It’s going to take time and you’re going to have to allow that. Blogs are fanstastic, but they are a lot of work. It’s not going to be easy. But, it will be well worth it. It will be something that we can look on and see the effort and attention to detail paid, Believe it or not, these are the points that matter. So, keep it up. Don’t quit. Even when things get challenging, keep going. Trust me. We’ll all get discouraged and those days will come when you feel like nobody’s reading. But, they are. Believe me, they are.
Understand your market. And know how to market your blog and where.
You never know just challenging things can get, until you begin trying to get traffic to your blog. Now, in case you don’t know, Social Media will be your friend. Whenever you complete a post, you need to get on it right then and post it on all of your social media outlets. Don’t hold back. Put it on everything. Get the word out and don’t be afraid to link or tag some people in it, in order to read your post. Since people are on social media throughout the day, re-post it. Now, don’t get me wrong here. I’m not saying annoy people with it. But, just let them know that you are excited about sharing this post with them and you’d appreciate it if they gave it a read. Like Mom said, you’d be surprised at who would be interested in reading what you have got to say.
See, all of these things that I’ve shared with you, are some of the secrets that so many bloggers start learning and they just keep going. They just keep blogging and learning and growing, etc. Blogging is a never ending job. But, it’s one of the most exciting things as well. knowing that something that takes you about ten minutes to create, can end up being so amazing! I love blogging and I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. I can’t believe it’s been a year already. So much as happened in my blogging life. I wasn’t expecting to become a book reviewer, but now, I am reviewing books for both Tracee Ford and Wendy Ewurum! I feel so privileged and I know that the best is yet to come.