It isn’t a cakewalk.
It isn’t something you can do half-arsed if you want any sort of results, whether they be monetary or mental rewards. You gotta have commitment. You gotta have creativity. And you gotta have passion.
Especially if you plan on total blogging domination or something crazy like that.
And in fact, I didn’t actually start out and plan to be a blogger.
I actually started out not knowing what the funk I wanted to do with myself and my life. The only thing I DID know is that I wanted to make a living online so I could work from home, and I wanted to make lots of cash doing it so I would never have to worry about paying my bills again.
Real clear direction there, I know!
But that was my mindset at the time and I had no CLUE what I was jumping into. So I surfed the web for hours, threw away a good chunk of cash chasing ‘Get Rich Quick Scams’, became disheartened and fed up very quickly… and at the end of it all?
Still had no idea where I was going, and no intention of being a blogger.
At least not a real blogger.
Because shortly after that I happened across an amazing forum where I soon began to learn what people really meant by Internet marketing. I soaked up info like a sponge and dabbled in creating auto-blogs and affiliate sites with PLR.
Note to self and you there reading this: Auto-content and PLR for content sucks! Needless to say I’d spent a bit more cash and still hadn’t made a dime with my little ‘investments’.
But somewhere in the mix of mucking things up I realized I had a knack as a wordsmith. Then I met a fellow ghostwriter making a great living and realized “Hey! I could do that!”
So long story short? That’s what I did. I became a ghostwriter.
STILL not a blogger though.
Before I knew it, I was doing quite well for myself, working from home full-time, and paying all my bills all on my own!
However, I began to notice several high profile blogs, and noticed the way the blogger used those blogs as a sort of platform to create new work opportunities. So me being me…
Again I thought “Hey! I can do that!” And another long story short, after a bit of trial and error… Big Girl Branding was born.
Now originally I create BGB as a way to showcase my writing and gain new clients. But I quickly realized I actually really loved blogging… I loved the community aspect… I loved sharing what I know with other people… and let’s face it… I love hearing compliments and when something I write resonates with another! (Yes, I have a very mild narcissistic streak, so sue me!)
Suddenly… I was a blogger!
And so began my journey as a blogger that is probably pretty similar to many other bloggers out there. And the most important things I’ve learned about business blogging and really making an impact and growing a community you can be proud of is this…
Creating a blog that’s at all worthwhile takes commitment. It takes dedication and just plain old hard work. Yes it’s fun and yes it’s a learning experience… but it’s also darn hard!
You Have to Have a Great Design.
You have to create a design that’s functional and user-friendly, while still be pleasing to the eye and satisfying your own creative streak as well.
I’ve gone through at least 3 different designs and two different themes since I began my blogging escapades. And I’m a picky wench, so that’s actually not bad numbers for me.
Plus I’m hard-headed and figure it’s my blog so who cares what it looks like but me? But that’s a poor mentality to have because you have to at least keep it user-friendly for your readers… don’t make them work toohard to read your stuff and visit often, know what I mean?
You Should Really Love to Write… Or Something.
You have to write.
Like, a lot.
Or you have to outsource to spectacular writers, which is a whole other ball game in and of itself. Really, running a blog with any iota of success means content, and usually it’s in the form of written content.
You can of course mix it up and use video and audio as well, especially if you’re more comfy in those arenas. Just be forewarned that some folks (like me) simply don’t have the time or the patience to sit through a 10 minute video when we could have read a 1000 word post in less time.
You Gotta Stick to a Schedule. I Know, It Sounds So Boring!
But it’s true.
You have to write frequently and consistently. As in- write on a regular basis. As in- write often. As in- write a lot. Get it yet?
So does that mean you have to post 10 times a day?
No, not really.
How about even once a day? No, you don’t have to do that either if you don’t want to.
What it will ultimately boil down to in the long run is a posting frequency and schedule that is uniquely yours that keeps your readers happy and coming back often.
One long and spectacular post a week. And that works for them, both within their niche and for their readership.
I also know bloggers who post just two or three times a week, and that works for them. Then there are some bloggers who might post just once a month!
Now I have no idea how that is working out for them, but it’s something some people do regardless.
I think that initially you should definitely focus on posting fairly frequently, and then figure out a good rhythm that works for both you and your readers.
You’ve got to be Creative, Kinda.
Unfortunately many people get really stuck when it comes to ideas and what to blog about.
I’ve been there on occasion. So sometimes you just have to let your creativity loose and see what you can come up with.
Sometimes people also get stuck in a ‘voice’ or ‘tone’ they’re not real happy with.
Often this happens when a writer is worrying too much about what people are going to think of them for saying something, and less about just saying it and speaking their mind.
Honestly I find that people respect you more as a blogger and a person of authority when you stay true to your personality, tell it like it is, and thumb your nose at people who try to make you be something you’re not.
So experiment with both what you say and how you say it.
Get creative when warranted, and just do your thing.
Your readers will either love you or hate you for it, but at least you won’t have ambivalent people trying to force you into a square when you’re perfectly happy being a triangle. Or an octagon even!
Finally… You’ve got to be Passionate.
There’s no bones about it.
If you’re not passionate about what you’re doing, not passionate about your niche or topic, and don’t get fired up with every post you write (or almost every, we’re all allowed some off days)… sorry honey but you’re in the wrong line of work.
It’s hard to be creative, post consistently, and come up with stuff people want to read on a regular basis. But guess what? It’s even harder when you’re not passionate on the subject.
Not sure what I mean by passion? Hmnn… I don’t know if I find that sad or odd or both… but Maren is an excellent example of a blogger who really gets fired up in what she says.
So take a page from her book and please, don’t make the mistake of jumping into blogging with a niche you’re not fired up to be in. Some folks like to follow the money, but I vote follow the passion… and money will follow.