Wondering How to Become a Blogger? Before you Jump In, Start Here!
Blogging Tips When You’re Just Starting Out
You know what question I get asked at least a billion and one times per week (rough estimate)? “How can I start a blog?” Instead of answering it directly, I usually answer with some probing questions, like, “why do you want to start a blog?” or “what do you want to blog about?”
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Not that the how-to is a big secret, but I always want to know how serious the person is before I curate the perfect responses. The majority of the time, the answer I’m given is something like, “because I think it would be such an easy way to get free things and money.”
Mmmhmm. Are there perks to blogging? Heck yeah! However, if you’re thinking about starting a blog because you think the perks or money come easy, you’re starting for the wrong reasons. Contrary to what a lot of people think, blogging is not 1) Sitting around taking a lot of pictures of yourself, 2) waiting for your mailman to deliver alllll the goodies, or 3) an easy way to make money.
Blogging takes time guys and I know people think that when they hit that “publish” button, anyone browsing the internet just flocks to read everything you have to say, but that’s not true. Not even a little. In fact, initially, unless you have a crazy good knowledge of keywords and SEO, probably the only people that visit your site will be your friends and family that you tell or click through from social media.
And I’m not trying to be negative Nelly, but companies probably won’t send you too much, let alone pay you, when your audience consists of your mom, sister, two best friends and a girl you went to high school with 20 years ago.
I’m not telling you this to scare you away from the idea, I’m telling you this because that’s the reality. You know in sales they say you have to hear soooo many “no’s” before you get to a “yes?” That’s the same concept of getting people to your site when it comes to blogging. It’s not automatic.
Anyway, I know there’s so much curiousness out there about blogging and what all it entails and if it’s something for you, so I wanted to start a series detailing and sharing all of my experiences. The things I’ve learned, mistakes I’ve made and advice I have for anyone wanting to get started in this amazing little world.
Is Blogging Right for You?
If you think it looks like an easy lil’ gig to get your hands on amazing products and extra cash, just remember, looks can be deceiving. And as I mentioned above if you’re thinking you want to start a blog to get free things and easily earn an income while working from home, you are going to be disappointed.
Blogging might be for you however if any or all of the following apply:
You have a creative/entrepreneurial side you’re dying to let out.
Hard work is your middle name.
You can devote extra time to learning the trade.
You have something to say.
You Love to Create. Today, successful bloggers are genuine creative souls. It’s not like writing a paper in college. Posts (both blog and social media) need to have “that” look. Like it or not, people judge books by their covers. If you want people to stay on your site, you’ll need to enjoy creating posts that are styled correctly and in a way that’s easy for your readers/fans to follow. Creating a nice site, well written text and properly styles photos is essential.
Hard Work Really Does Pay Off. Guess what guys? Creating the posts I mentioned above is actually hard work. Throw in researching SEO, taking and editing pictures and the construction of the post in general, this isn’t something that you can snap out in an hour and be done.
The Writing Might Be the Easy Part. Some of these things you might not know or learn right away, but if you’re serious about blogging, after awhile, you’ll want to become better. Want more visitors ? Learn SEO and keyword research. Want pictures that look like someone you follow? Learn camera and photography basics. For me, writing the posts takes way less time than everything else.
Patience is a Virtue. For Real Though. When I first started blogging, I was certain blogs (websites in general) followed the Field of Dreams motto, “if you build it, they will come.” Nope. Not even close. If you’re looking for instant gratification, you are likely going to be disappointed. Even if you have something super valuable to say. You’re also not going to hit publish and suddenly have 100 brands reaching out to work with you. Again, not how this works:) I’m in a variety of groups and constantly read the same kinds of posts, “how can I get brands to work with me.” Patience and consistency. Now grant it, it was a loooong time ago that I started blogging, but, it took me several years before a brand ever reached out to me and although it can move more quickly now, regardless, it will take quite a few posts and hours of work just for the shear love if it, before you land a product or monetary deal. That’s my way of politely saying, today’s younger generation isn’t used to having to put in the work to reap the benefits. They expect things to be immediate. Sorry if you’re a part of that generation, but I really think that’s the reality.
You Know It, We Want It. The most successful bloggers have something to say, a way to help their followers or people browsing the internet with an answer to something. Maybe like me, you’ll focus on style. Or maybe you’re a car mechanic and you can teach people how to change their oil or fix a flat. Maybe you’ve focused on getting out of debt and have advice for the millions of people wanting to do the same thing. Whatever it is, there are people searching for it!
So, if you’ve gotten to the end of this post and are still like, “yes, I’m in!” you can sign up for my blog updates, related just to blogging, here. And FULL disclosure, I’m not some mega-millionaire blogger. I’m still working my way through it too. I wanted to start this though for those of you who need some genuine budget-friendly tips in getting your blog up and running.
If you have questions feel free to leave them in the comments below, have an amazing day!