I’ve been blogging for a few years now, but only recently decided to take it a bit more seriously and really stick to it. It’s all fine and dandy to say that you will blog an x amount of times in a week, but actually doing it is difficult. I’ve gone from 4 posts a week to 3 posts, to 2 and now to 5 a week. It's been a rollercoaster of emotions and content, but it has really taught me a lot about my interests and myself.
The notions of blogging had always been disjointed in my mind. Is it creative writing? Is it autobiographical? It took me a long time to recognize that blogging can be whatever you want it to. Some people enjoy writing detailed reviews about products or experiences; others like to post quick updates on their life. No matter what your content is, there will be someone out there who enjoys it and I think that is something not all bloggers realize when they first start out.
SHARE YOUR CONTENT
The best way to gain confidence in your blog is by sharing the content and receiving feedback. The most effective way in my opinion is through Facebook blogging groups because they are small communities of people who are just as into the hobby as you are, willing to find new bloggers to follow. Once you begin to see a spike in your readership and receive a few words of encouragement it becomes that much easier to stay motivated to keep going.
Another effective way to share your work is through Instagram and Twitter. Most of my traffic comes from these three platforms. However, with the latter two, you will need to take some extra time on your photos and ensure that they are something you want to put on your profile as a representation of your work. However, once you become comfortable with an aesthetic, it’s easy to mimic it in all future pictures. Soon people will attribute a certain aesthetic to your work and will come back for more if they enjoy it.
I can’t tell you how hard it is for me to start writing when I have no notes or ideas to reference. This was especially difficult when I would try to do some of my writing on my down time at work. Without a starting point to get you going, your writing will feel tedious rather than exciting. The way I combat this tumultuous relationship with my passion is to scribble down a few notes about what I want my next post to be about and the few main points I want to include. Once you have the foundation, most of the hard work is done and all that’s left to do is add your flare. Some people stick to lists, some to detailed explanations with links. I tend to write in short essay format, along with a few headers used to break up my points.
WRITE, WRITE, WRITE
This is probably the simplest advice I could give, but all you have to do is write. Just dedicate some time during the week to get out your blog posts. From experience I know that once you slack on producing any content it becomes easier and easier to fall into the habit of leaving your blog idle. It’s important to remain engaged in some sort of creation, whether that be an entire post, or maybe just a few paragraphs throughout the week. I’ve also found that the more I write, the more my passion grows for this hobby. It becomes more obvious how much enjoyment I get out of it despite having to force myself into it sometimes. Just like working out; you might not enjoy yourself during it, but glad you did it when it’s done.
DON'T FOCUS ON THE NUMBERS
This one is hard, I know, and I fall victim to it all the time. There’s something so satisfying about seeing your numbers increase week by week, but something oh-so-devastating if they begin to fall. Try your best to avoid the rigmarole of immediately checking your stats after every post. All it does is make you feel inferior if the numbers aren’t looking good, and no one should think of their content that way.
Of course, it’s important to recognize that your content can be improved in certain ways, but to base it’s worth solely on numbers is a game you won’t win because no matter what the numbers look like, there will always be that voice in the back of your head saying they should be higher. I believe in putting out content you think is valuable and the right readers will find it.
Also, after a fair amount of research I've learned that it's not impossible to make money from your blog if you don't have a huge amount of followers. Blogging is about passion and if you are passionate about the topics or products you discuss then so will your small blogging community.
How do you stay motivated with your blog?