Today, I am sharing another learning experience list. This one pertaining to blogging.
After starting this blog back in 2011, I didn't have a clear goal for this space, I didn't know too much about branding and I didn't know ANYTHING about the blogging world. A couple years later, I have learned the value of having a blog including the friendships that can be gained, the content that can inspire others, the growth it can bring to a business and a way to make a little extra cash. There is still so much more experience to gain and lots to learn but this is what I have come to understand from my perspective of blogging.
I will start by saying, bloggers are human beings. Even the most "glamorous" of bloggers, doesn't matter how put together their style posts are, how professional their designs appear and how "perfect" their life seems to be, they are not so different than you and I. Remember this.
As for me, this is how I blog 90% of the time-in the middle of the night while the baby and hubby are sleeping and the house is silent. Keep this in mind when reading anyone's posts because I'm pretty positive, I'm not the only one...
Let's talk photography. Now, I'm not saying you NEED a DSLR camera, but I will certainly encourage saving up for one (or at least a good point and shoot). When I purchased mine off of Craigslist (yup, that's right) and started capturing shots to include in my posts, I noticed a HUGE change in the way I blogged and my brand. My site looked so much more enticing to look at and I also started receiving a lot of compliments on the photography. I honestly enjoy looking at pictures online more than I do reading a lot of content on a computer screen (hello Pinterest age).
Pretty photos certainly increased the "inspiration" factor of my posts. Want to see a difference? This is a DIY post I did with a camera phone. This is a DIY post I did with my Canon DSLR.
No-reply bloggers are not the bees-knees. Most who are no-reply bloggers don't even know it and wonder why their comments aren't responded to. Please link your email to your blog using this tutorial so I (and everyone else) can respond back to your sweet words directly to you! Enough said.
Page views are more important than the amount of followers you have. Or at least when it comes to making some money while blogging. I get several emails asking if I'd like to review product, include links to company sites and/or be a part of different affiliate programs. This is because of my page view count (which at the moment is 71,000+) not because I have thousands of followers-because I don't. Leaving links on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, my shop etc. all leading to my blog, increase that page view count which in turn, increases your analytics. (You can use the site Alexa to view your web sites data).
Totally not saying that followers aren't important to stats because they definitely are if you are serious about making a profit with your blog. Your interaction stats are really important as well but if you want to get started with making a few extra bucks, get people to look at your site. Your followers will trickle in.
If you have a blog, having other social media sites such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook should come with your "blogging package." These sites help with broadening exposure and outreach. Also, create your accounts with consistency in your usernames! It's hard to find someone if their Instagram name is different from their Twitter is different from their blog, etc. I admit that I am guilty of this with some of my accounts such as Twitter because the username LoveSparklePretty is considered too long so I went with KaylafromLSP. Thinking about changing it though because it still doesn't really correlate easily. Do you see how the same usernames are completely helpful though? ***Account update-my twitter has been hacked so I can't log in and change anything. The only time I can post to twitter is through my IG posts.
learn how here) but your blog domain name should match the name of your blog title! This is what I mean-my blog title is Love Sparkle Pretty. That means, my blog URL is lovesparklepretty.blogspot.com and my landing page is lovesparklepretty.com. It is NOT kaylasblog.blogspot.com or even ilovecupcakes.blogspot.com. Make sense? When searching for a blog, you tend to remember it by blog title, not the URL so matching both really makes a difference.
As much as blogging can become a way to earn some extra cash, for me, I have gained so much more than what money can buy. I have created friendships and have met some amazing people through blogging. You put your thoughts out there for everyone to see which in turn, is read by people who can relate or find your story humbling, interesting, exciting, hilarious and/or captivating and a friendly relationship is sparked by an email or a comment.
I have also found that stepping outside of your comfort zone and attending blogging/business/craft conferences are not only knowledgeable and super fun but they expand your networking skills as well as your friendship circle. You can meet others with similar interests and let others get to know the girl (or guy) behind the blog which is crucial because YOU are your brand!
Read about my experience at the Elevate Conference and see the next one one I'm attending at the end of the month!
I am so grateful for the blogging community and even more thankful for those who have impacted this little space by reading, following along, leaving a sweet note or even supporting my handmade shop. This allows me to stay at home with my toddling son to capture his growing and creative years as well as keep our family as close as possible just as the Lord intended. THANK YOU!
Charm by Jourdan' Handmade Jewels