Photo by me.
I am perfectly aware that I'm not a fashion expert or the most stylish person out there, just like I'm aware that blogging may seem to some as a pointless hobby and just a pure showing off from a superficial person. But what I'm convinced is that I'm a type of person who needs to have some sort of creative outlet in her life and who finds that outlet (as well as the sense of happiness and fulfillment) in taking photos and running a fashion, make up & lifestyle blog. And I've been doing that for six months already. Or only? Anyway, I wanted to use this little anniversary, as well as the fact I'm soon reaching the number of hundred published posts, to share couple of things that I have learned along the way. I know it seems like too much tips and directions for something that is, in my case, still considered a hobby. But knowing me, if I'm doing something I'm going to be committed and determined to do it well, otherwise I will not be doing it at all. And I hope these will be useful for you too.
Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.
The thought of thousands similar blogs may feel depressing and discouraging; but the genuine personality, attitude, style and preferences are what will be appreciated by the audience and what will eventually find and hold its little spot in the blogosphere. I know this might be a bit difficult if you are a very young girl still trying to find herself and wanting to please everyone with your style and your blog's content. You will never be able to do that, so focus your energy on working on your confidence and self-esteem, and standing behind what you choose, wear and write.
Write, plan, schedule.
Some days will be very inspiring, while others will bring such a struggle in coming up with an interesting topic, making a single photo and typing a shortest line. So when you have time, browse other blogs, Pinterest, Instagram or magazines for an inspiration and write down as many of the ideas as possible. Then pick the topics that you think will be the most interesting, plan and schedule them for a week long period (I could say a month but we all know the short term plans are more likely to be stick to), and leave the others as a backup. Consistency is the key, and by planning and scheduling you will always have something to offer on your blog and avoid any gaps. Plus, if you have a job besides blogging, this approach will actually be less time and energy consuming and easier in terms of balancing your work and hobby.
If there is one tip I would point out as the most effective one for my blog it would be the social media management. I'm not saying I'm an expert in social media scheduling, strategy and maintenance but, in the last six months, I've became aware of how big traffic drivers social platforms are and how creating and regularly updating different social platforms really does pay off. Bloglovin', Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest - never ever underestimate the power of these. While there's always more to be done and new strategies to try out, setting an account on all these is the perfect first step.
Celebrate every milestone.
It takes time, effort and patience to build both your content and your audience, and if you initially have high expectations it is more likely you would quickly become very disappointed and on the verge of giving up. Some advise to ignore all the numbers, claiming it's about avoiding disappointments and enjoying blogging for the act of blogging and not for the goal of gaining followers. But I prefer to keep up with my posts numbers, page views and followers, and be happy and thankful for each and every one of them.
It's okay to be picky so don't do every season's trend, don't try to cover every single topic and don't accept just any type of collaboration. Many brands have great opportunities that sound like they'd be a lot of fun to take part in and it is very flattering when they contact you for a collaboration. I have already done some of these and I am always interested as long as they are in line with my blog's content and meet my style, preferences and aesthetics. So don't feel bad about saying no to some when they don't represent you - your readers know your taste and you'll lose your credibility if they don't trust what you're doing. Again, it is all about my tip #1.
Take a break.
Remember that you will eventually reach a point when you will need a little time off. Despite all the best intentions, inspirational Pinterest boards and scheduled posts, everything may make you feel fed up and in a need of leaving it and finding a little time for yourself. Because that's life and because we've all been there. Unless you have a certain collaboration that needs to be realized, don't hesitate to take a little hiatus if you feel it will do good for you. And don't fear that taking a couple of days, weeks or months off will make you lose your followers - I am sure they will appreciate you more when you are refreshed and inspired and when you publish posts from your heart and not just for the sake of being published.
If you have some tips from your own blogging experience, don't hesitate to share them in the comments below.
Hope you have a good start of the week!
Hope you have a good start of the week!