Lately I have been thinking to write more personal articles and especially to answer the frequent questions I get about blogging. As you may know, I started blogging in September 2010. Seven years back, when websites were the main platforms where bloggers shared their outfits, beauty, travel, lifestyle posts and everything seemed much easier. We didn’t had Instagram or Snapchat, so our subscribers were the real followers we had.
In the last 3 years everything has changed on social media and influencer marketing. It became massive, limitless and you have no idea when and how some influencers became so successful with sky-high number of followers. How did they reach over a million followers within 2-3 years? Becoming an overnight sensation can happen, but don’t rely on it – it’s a rare occurrence.
I still believe “quality is better than the quantity“, and I never want to lose my creativity and motivation because someone else has more followers. For me, what I share on my blog has more value than what I post on Instagram. Why? Because I spend hours, days, even weeks on a piece of content, and, finally I hit publish. Here you can see my work and how much effort I put on each blogpost, and it cannot be compared to my Instagram account.
Since 2010, I have learned many hard lessons regarding blogging and how this business works. When I started, I had no idea how I can monetize my website, how to get partnerships etc. In this article, I want to give you some personal tips I wish, I knew before starting my blog:
- If you don’t take it seriously, no one will
I have always been a serious person, and I always (well, most of the times) knew what I wanted. But in the beginning of my blogger career (in 2010), I didn’t took things seriously enough because times were different. Bloggers were unknown in Austria and I would have never thought that one day it will be my main job and make living out of it. I was too busy with other things and I had a boring 9-5 job. In 2013 everything changed, when I started to work as Editor for a fashion magazine. I knew that writing, creating content, editorial photography, travel are few things that I am really passionate about and these are the things I want to do in the future too. So, I pushed myself to really think about what I wanted, then put together a plan and wrote it down on scrap of paper. So the main point is, you need to have a strong desire and be passionate than you need a good plan.
- You need a good plan
To be honest, I haven’t had such a well thought out plan when I started. When I launched my blog in 2010, I rushed the launch and I registered my blog on blogger.com. That time many bloggers were on this platform, so I thought “why not it’s easy and simple!”. BUT, I wish I’d knew how difficult will be to transfer the website to WordPress. Thanks to my friend Mario, who helped me to make it happen, with lot of struggles, we managed to transfer everything from Blogger to WordPress.
Also the content was ropey and my plan was flaky. If I could launch my blog all over again, I would put together a better plan and launch with better content and take a bit more time over it. Although, it’s very easy to go the other way and obsess over every little detail, so much that it paralyzes you. There needs to be a balance, and this is the most difficult thing to do.
- You need to be very P A S S I O N A T E
You can have wishes and dreams, but they won’t work unless you do. I know some bloggers that launched various blogs and they failed. Why? Because they weren’t passionate. Still after seven years, sometimes it feels overwhelming and I have the feeling that I cannot go on with such an intense work all the time. So when this feeling occurs, I try to take some time off and focus on myself and my well-being.
We are all human beings and as we grow, our interests and desires also change. When you think about creating something your own – either your brand, clothing line or your personal website, you have to make a long-term plan and be beyond passionate about it.
That’s why it’s so important to choose a NICHE that you have real passion for. Passion is the driving force behind everything that I do. Even in my private life, if there is no passion, I don’t want it. I love what I do, and when things are done with love, success is guaranteed.
- If you want to earn something, you also have to invest on it
When I started my blog, I knew there was going to be some costs involved. For example: domain registration, web hosting, mailing list provider, a great WordPress theme etc. In the beginning I just payed for the domain and used gmail as my official contact email address. As time has gone on my costs have gone through the roof, and, for a while I was spending more than I was making. But I made some good purchases that have made my life so much easier, like spending on photography equipment, as well as plenty of the tools that I have bought help me be way more productive and add quality on my content.
- Monetize your blog form the start
In the beginning, it all started as a hobby and I never thought that I will be here where I am today. So making money has never really been a primary goal for me. Now I do, but, I have never really pushed it to the extent that I needed to. There are ways which allow bloggers to make money: high cost consulting and high cost training courses. I haven’t done any of them and learned everything by myself.
My difficulty wasn’t having the ideas, but having the time to do more and having a clear state of mind. Back in September 2010 till late 2015, I was working 7 days a week. I left for work at 7 a.m., and when I came back home around 5 p.m. I often found myself working on my blog until midnight. My focus was split between too many different tasks and projects. Managing clients, collaborations, growing a business, developing processes taught me a lot, and despite coming dangerously close to burning myself out during that time, I wouldn’t change that experience for anything.
- Posting often isn’t always the answer
I’m guilty of this and it’s been a hard lesson to learn. In fact, I’m still working on it. But, I’m getting there and you will too. I used to think that writing more content was the answer. But, it’s not! Of course, you’ll get more traffic when you publish more content but it also means that at some level, the quality can suffer. It’s much better to spend promoting content that’s important, meaning posting less when you are publishing more detailed content and posting more often you write less detailed content. Surely that you have to try what works better for you. It’s about the time you have and what you want to promote.
- Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is a successful blog
There are plenty of bloggers that sit at the top. Why are they there? Because they have worked hard for it; countless late nights, had good plan of how they are going to get to the top as well as published countless blog posts. However, this shouldn’t stop you on doing what you love and you are passionate about. When you put in the time, dedication, passion and raw effort – you can make it!
So these are few personal tips, that I hope will help you to follow your dreams of creating your own blog. Should you have any questions regarding this subject, contact me and I will try to answer as soon as possible.
Photography (c) DisiCouture
Disclosure: *This post is not sponsored