Hello bloggers!! This post is for you! Dana from This Silly Girl’s Life and I have decided to take our combined knowledge and experience of blogging and share them with you guys in our new series Blogging 101: Two Girl’s Blogging Basics. In this series we will share with you our personal experiences with blogging and share with you our successes, our failures, incomes we have made, little tips and tricks we have discovered and I am most excited to work on our Blogging On a Budget post where we will share all our tips on how to blog successfully without breaking the bank!
So for our first week’s post we decided to share with you things we wish we knew when first starting a blog. We hope this series is helpful to you, can help you learn so do’s and don’ts and provide you a few laughs :)
1. Blogging is a time suck, but a fun one!! Blogging doesn’t come easy, it is tough work but you definitely get out of it what you put in. Some bloggers might post a recipe every other week, pin it and wonder why their page views don’t go up. You have to post often and quality post and promote the crap out of those posts to get your views to budge.
2. Your first photos suck. I think at least when your photographing food your first few food photos most likely suck, mine did and it has taken forever to for me to learn how to take better photos and they still sometimes suck. Sometimes I don’t feel like having dinner ready at 4 in the afternoon just so I can take a pic with natural lighting. So I do sometimes still take crappy pictures, sorry.
Bad lighting, used flash, too close, bleh! What was I thinking!!
Photo from this week
3. Start at WordPress.org. I know there are a lot of bloggers that use Blogger as a platform but I see so many everyday making the switch to WordPress.org and at first I avoided it all by using blog.com as my platform, then switching to Squarespace before finally going to WordPress. So my advice is avoid that drama and just start at WordPress.org.
4. Linky parties, Linky parties, Linky parties. You need them, trust me. Without linky parties my page views for the entire month of March was 455. With Linky parties so far for the month of July my page views are 34,000. That is a massive jump! So yes linky parties were something I definitely wish I knew of from the get go. You can find a great directory of parties to link up to at my Linky Party Directory.
5. You need social media! The same day you start your blog start your social media for it, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus and Instagram are the big ones. I failed to start a Google Plus account until late in the game and that does come back to bite me in the butt sometimes.
6. You don’t have to go at it alone. Blogging alone blow. You need to find yourself a good blogging friend. One to motivate you on the days you just aren’t feeling it anymore, one who is not afraid to tell you your picture of chili looks like dog food, someone to host giveaways with, go to conventions with, ask their opinion of sketchy emails from people wanting to post on your site about cigars or whatever other weird offers you get. Basically this person becomes your blogging backbone and in return you become theirs. Sometimes it is not just one person it can be a whole group of bloggers who support each other. You learn from them, they learn from you. But I cannot imagine going back to blogging with my blogging backbone Dana! So I highly suggest reaching out to other bloggers, blogging groups and don’t go at it alone.
7. You will do anything to get the best picture for your post. Any picture of Dean I need for my posts costs me an arm and a leg! “Dean please turn around” “Please look at mommy” “You can have ice cream if you look at me and smile!” “Fine!! I will get you new legos if I can just take this one picture!!!!!”
8. Recognition takes forever. It will take forever to get some kind of recognition, people commenting, people pinning, people visiting. It doesn’t happen overnight and at points you will want to throw in the towel but if you keep pushing you will get the views and fans you are looking for :)
Dana has more for you over at her blog on this, so go read the rest of the post there to see her 12 Things I Did Not Think Would Happen When I Started Blogging.