The 6 Tips I would give myself as a starting out blogger
Hey lovelies, it's been over a year now since I've been running my blog and I have to say I've learnt quite a bit about what makes a blog 'successful' per-say... not necessarily earning money or getting freebies from brands, but building a web presence and personality of your own filled with consistent, rich content that's unique to you. I can tell you, if you're in this for the money and freebies, you will not succeed. Blogging and insta for that matter are bloody hard work, especially when you work full time as well- it'll consume your evenings, free time and weekends, but if this concept makes you excited to post about and share your thoughts and ideas on the things you love then I think you're going to do okay! These are the top tips I would give to myself over a year ago, when I was just thinking about getting started.
1. Learn when to post
It's all about time, my friends. Learn when your target market are online (there are lots of free resources online to help you establish this) and post according to this. It makes the difference of literally hundreds of impressions and dozens of likes- if you count this out over weeks or months, you're loosing out on a large amount of potential site visitors and followers. There are tools to make this easy as well- post scheduling for example, where if you work late nights (like me) and the best time to post is 8pm (like me) you can schedule them so you don't even have to think about it.
2. Make friends and follow fellow people in your niche
One of the things I'm happiest about is the friendliness and supportiveness of the blogs that are of a similar size/age/content type to me. Up and coming mid size bloggers (that share my audience) are lovely and we support each other with lots of shout outs and comments amongst other things. It made me so happy we were all sharing each other on International Woman's Day! And this, in turn will help you out. From sharing experiences to asking for advice, you know that there are people who know exactly what you've put into your blog (effort and love mostly) and will help you if needed. It's nothing like I thought it was going to be when I first started out, which I envisioned to be a dog-eat-dog world with lots of backstabbing. No, it's wholesome and heart-warming to have people on your side, cheering you on and visa versa.
3. Consistency is key
It's the way to try and beat the horrific instagram algorithm, and to achieve more viewers to your blog. Sounds easy right? No, life quite often gets in the way. Again, this is why scheduling is key. I would recommend setting days in the week when you will post blog posts, and post to insta daily or at least once every two days, with lots of stories, in order to reach the top of the search bar or the insta feed of your target market. It also paints you to be a more reliable blogger; in the future, brands will look for consistency as well as engagement when they want to collaborate.
4. If you actually enjoy what you talk about, people will know. And visa versa.
Don't paint yourself to be a make-up blogger if you don't know bronzer from blusher. Don't talk about fashion if you just follow the crowd and have no 'unique style'. Talk about and share what you love most in the world- no matter how obscure, people will be wanting to read it and engage with it. It will come across in your writing that you are actually passionate about it, not just trying to bump out a word count. And people love that. They love to feel connected with the writer, to feel they share things together- be it a passion, hobby or even liking the same band. So trust me, when you talk about something you love, people will love it.
5. Don't be afraid to be yourself (sounds lame I KNOW)
If you're fake, it shows as well. If you're trying to push across an online persona that isn't 100% you, the cracks will show pretty early on. That's why it's important that you're prepared enough, authentic enough and confident enough to show the world the real 'you'- including not only the highs but lows. The authenticity will help build up your brand and show people you are a real person just like them.
6. Success doesn't happen overnight to 99.999% of us. Work hard and reap the rewards.
Not all of us can have one viral post, especially in recent years when the face of blogging has changed considerably. People are accessing the internet completely differently to how they did even 2 years ago, let alone 5 or 10. It's changing so rapidly that it's hard to know what to post or when, but sticking to what you enjoy and are passionate about, and consistently, will be a slow burn success. In my opinion, it's better to put in the work over time and reap the rewards as they come slowly but steadily, then be an overnight success. Just know that when you're authentic and have a true, dedicated audience who want to hear what you have to say, it'll be enjoyable to write and post and create a community, no matter whether thats 10, 100 or 100000 people.
I wish you all the best of luck on your own blogging journey. What are your best tips for bloggers starting out? What would you have said to your younger self when you were just starting out? Let me know below!