So, you’re a new blogger?
I’ve been blogging for nearly 2 years. (Related: How did that happen?) Shortly after I celebrated my one year blogiversary, I wrote about eight things I did right during my first year. I have learned so much. And sometimes? I learned the hard way.
You are probably hearing lots of advice about things you should do as you take your first steps on your blogging journey. I am going to take a different approach to help you as you trek to your blogging future. I present:
That’s right, if you want to be successful faster DO NOT do the following:
Don’t just lurk on blogs that you like
Do: Comment on a post that you like. Let the blogger know you read it and what you think. The more personal you make your comment, the more it will make an impression on the blogger. For example: “This post makes me remember our summers spent at the lake and starry night campfires.” or “My oldest son went through a similar stage. At first we wondered if it was here to stay, but it eventually passed. Hang in there!” are more memorable than “Great post!” or “Thank you for sharing!”
Bonus Points: Share the post with your social media followers
Don’t wait to set up social media accounts for your blog
I knew nothing about Twitter when I first started blogging so I focused on it exclusively for months – totally ignoring all the other platforms. The result? My Twitter presence grew much faster than the reach of any of my other accounts.
Do: Set up social media accounts immediately upon starting your blog. Set up your accounts and start promoting your blog and latest posts right away. If you are not familiar with a social media platform, plug away at it with the others.
Bonus Points: Jump into a Twitter or Facebook conversation and connect with others. That is when social media is the most fun and rewarding.
Don’t underestimate the value of photos and blog graphics
I started without any images of any kind.
Do: Include an image in every post. It breaks up the text and can illustrate your story and points so effectively. Speaking of which, there is is big wall of text here. Time for a photo:
Bonus points: Photos and images you create yourself let you show more of your personality.
Don’t expect to write “when you have time”
It is hard to find the time; sometimes it doesn’t happen.
Do: Set aside some time – whether it is first thing in the morning before anyone else is up, nap time, or a few quiet moments in the evening – make time. Get in a routine. Even if you don’t end up publishing it right away – just write.
Bonus points: Write without social media distractions.
Don’t be afraid to say what is in your heart, to let people get to know you, to reach out
I was shy (still am sometimes) and I spent time trying to “find my voice” as a new blogger.
Do: Let us get to know you, we want to read your posts and say “Oh! ME TOO!!” We want to feel like we are chatting over a cup of coffee or tea or learning something new. We want to hear about what you know, what you don’t. I want to read about your questions and concerns – because maybe I have the same ones.
Keep going, blogging padawan learners. Avoid these pitfalls and you will more than likely be ahead of me as you approach the end of your second year. (Again, how?)
Are you a blogger? What are you glad you did? What would you do differently if you could?