Tuesday, July 8, 2014
All About Blogging
A year and a half ago I started this little 'ol blog. Writing has helped me sort my thoughts and feelings about deep topics, learn to laugh at myself, be consistent and share life's experiences.
When I consistently read a blog, even if I've only met the person once, I feel like I know them. What other outlet can do that?
Before I start, if you don't have interest in starting your own blog, this post will be boring for you. Sorry. Read these hilarious sugar-free gummy bear reviews instead.
PICKING A TOPIC
Everything I read online said "Stick to a topic!" "Be specialized!" "Don't try to do it all!"
I debated for months whether or not to make it a beauty blog -where I would share product reviews and favorites- or if it should be a faith blog, or a DIY blog, a home blog, a marriage blog, a fashion blog.
I couldn't pick. So I started a "lifestyle blog". And I have no regrets. Literally endless opportunities because I haven't put myself in a box.
I say, blog about what interests you. Don't worry about what everyone else is doing. My college friend, Sierra, blogs about quilts and her South Dakota farm. People want to read it because she is passionate and honest. She is original and true to herself. That's the kind of blog I want to read.
SELECTING A PLATFORM
I use blogger. Sometimes I love it. Sometimes I hate it.
2 things I hate about blogger:
1) You can't put 2 photos side by side without messing with the HTML. And even then it looks crappy.
2) The stats never make sense. Like ever.
2 things I like about blogger:
1) It's a google product, and I love basically everything else google
2) I couldn't think of a second one.
If you are not tech savvy, use wordpress.com. More options in the long run and easier to navigate.
FINDING A DESIGN
My blog was custom designed by Kristin White.
If you aren't ready for the commitment of a custom design, try a pre-made template on etsy.com. They can run anywhere from $5 to $50 (and beyond, I'm sure).
OTHER ADVICE AND OTHER TID BITS THAT I DON'T KNOW HOW TO ORGANIZE INTO GROUPS FOR THIS POST BECAUSE I WOKE UP EARLY THIS MORNING AND I'M TIRED
-I created different topics such as "faith" or "humor" by creating a "page" in blogger. Kristin made these pages photo links. She is a genius.
-I manually upload every single photo link in these pages by topic.
-You will get sick of blogging really fast if you put unrealistic expectations on yourself. If you blog once one a month and 5 times the next, who cares! Go at your own pace and don't let others (or really, it's probably yourself) convince you that you failed.
-I am ALWAYS wrong about what posts people find interesting. Always. It has really changed my perception of what people want to read. It's also encouraged me to write about what I want to write about or I feel God wants me to share -instead of just what I think people want. I'm wrong anyways. I think all people really want is honesty and vulnerability.
-The majority of my traffic comes from Pinterest. Second Google. Third Facebook. I think this is true for a lot of bloggers. Pinterest is a freaking powerhouse for blogs. If you aren't too embarrassed to create a blog album on Pinterest, then try it.
-I usually try to post in the evenings before bed. Not checking my phone constantly after I post has helped my relationship with my husband. Often, I don't check my phone again till the next morning.
Honestly I have no idea idea what I'm doing on this blog, so don't let me convince you I do. I guessed my way through 99% of this stuff. At the least, I hope you learned one new thing that will make starting your blog a little easier.
Goodnight from Gracie Belle and me. Also the creeper in the background.