Last week I celebrated my 2-year blogiversary (I’m still trying to work out everything for the giveaway). 2 years is a long time to sit behind a computer screen and just type. I like to think that in these last 2 years I’ve gotten better at blogging and that I sort of know what I’m doing now. So in celebration of my 2 years, I thought I’d share some advice that I’ve picked up along the way.
You don’t have to blog every day – find a schedule that suits you.
When I first started blogging the first thing I decided to do was the 100 days of happiness challenge. I didn’t know what I wanted my blog to be and figured I’d just post every day until I figured it out. Turns out that was the worst thing I could have done. I ended up not only hating the challenge but I very rarely managed to post every day. This lead to like 5 posts being published one day a week. After that challenge, I kind of stepped back and figured out what I really loved and books stood out more than anything. From then on I decided to make this a book blog and post a few days out of the week. Although I am really bad for posting reviews right now I do find posting 3 days out of 7 a lot easier to manage. If I’m feeling creative I even throw in a couple of extra posts throughout the week. Anyway, the main point of this ramble – don’t feel like you have to blog every day to make yourself noticed. You don’t.
Create a blog and write posts about what you want, not what everyone else wants.
To link back to what’s above – you have to find something you’re passionate about. It’s all good saying you’re going to start a blog but if you don’t love what you’re writing about then you’ll soon get bored. I did this with the 100 days of happiness challenge and looking back at those posts is shows. Create a blog that reflects something you’re passionate about – don’t just do it because these are the types of blogs most people read about. If you’re not passionate about your blog subject your readers won’t be. Secondly, make sure your posts are what you want to write about. Don’t follow the crowd and talk about the latest craze because it’s been popular on other blogs you follow. What will make readers come back every week is your own take on creative ideas. There are a lot of blogs out there and you need to make your own shine with your personality and creative touch.
Keep things organised
Okay, I admit this one might be because I love everything to be perfectly organised for the week ahead. I like to keep a diary where I keep note of upcoming blog posts and guest posts so I know what’s happening. I hate not knowing what’s coming up in my schedule. I find this particularly helpful when you’re being asked to take part in any blog tours or guest posts. It’s super handy to be able to look and see if it’s something you’re going to be able to fit into your weekly schedule.
Put time aside each week to manage your upcoming posts
Time for a little honest truth – blogging takes up a lot of my time. Seriously I take the time to sort out what I’m going to be posting, writing posts and then scheduling them. Recently I’ve been sitting down on a Friday and figuring out what’s happening for the next week – I guess this is my super organiser agenda coming into play again. Blogging does take up a lot of time so to link back to earlier it really helps if you’re talking about something you’re passionate about. This also helps if you’re looking for bloggers to promote your post if it’s a giveaway or something they collaborated on with you. It lets them know that it’ll be published soon and they can figure out how they’ll share it with their audience.
Put time aside each week to read other blogger’s posts
Reading posts is just as important as creating them. If I have the time I’ll sit for 30 minutes to an hour some nights seeing what was posted that day. If I don’t then Wednesday nights I scroll through my blogger feed and catch up on what I’ve missed. Reading other posts is great for finding inspiration for your new posts but also for finding people who love the same things as you. I have a lot of amazing blogger friends who I wouldn’t have found if I hadn’t been looking at other blogs.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to other bloggers
I promise we don’t bite and we’re a really friendly bunch of people, at least that’s been my experience in the blogging community. When I first started I didn’t really want to chat with other bloggers and it’s not because I was unsocial (or as unsocial as you can be over a computer). Honestly, my biggest problem was seeing all these really amazing bloggers talking to each other and feeling like I didn’t belong. They all seemed like a really close group of friend with inside jokes. I hate that I didn’t start talking to other bloggers sooner because they’ve been nothing but welcoming, supportive and super friendly. So whether it’s saying you like their latest post or replying to one of their tweets reach out. There are even a few out there who are happy to help you out if you’re new or simply have any questions. It’s been 2 years and I’m still asking questions so don’t be afraid.
Finally, my last piece of advice would be to just have fun. Blogging is a lot of work but don’t forget that you’re doing this because you love it and not because you have to. Sometimes I find that things get a little too crazy and all I do is step away for a week or two and hit refresh, literally. What’s important is that you never lose the spark that made you want to blog in the first place.