When you first start a blog, it can be overwhelming figuring out what areas are the most important to invest your time in. When you first start anything for that matter, it’s important to prioritize what will actually move the needle versus filling your time being “busy.” Looking back, there are a few things I wish I would have invested more time and energy into right away versus waiting several years. If you are thinking of starting a blog, or currently have one, I would really think of incorporating these things if you haven’t already!
START AN EMAIL LIST
Having an email list wasn’t even on my radar when I first started, and I wish it had been because now I can see why it’s so important. If you already have one, then I’m guessing you know the value of it, but if you don’t here’s why you need one. Firstly, you OWN that list. Just like you own your blog. You don’t own Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, etc. I’m not saying that I think those platforms are going away, but you can’t control them. You can’t control who views or sees your posts. However, with an email list, you can get anything you want your subscribers to see straight to their inbox!
The other reason it’s important to have one is that whenever you go to launch a product or service, run a challenge, etc., this is the core group of people most likely to be interested. Sure, you can sell to your Instagram or YouTube audience, but who do you think is most invested in you and interested in what you have to say? Your subscribers. They are your most loyal part of your tribe (which is why they get access to extra great content for being a part of your list!). So even if you don’t have a product or service yet you want to be ahead of the game.
So here’s the deal with Pinterest. Pinterest (when done correctly) will probably be the biggest driver of blog traffic (yes, even if you have 100K-1M followers). Here’s why. When you share a blog post on Instagram for example, either in your feed or stories, people will only really see if for the next 24 hours. A week later, very few people are scrolling down and looking through your post captions. And obviously, stories are gone after 24 hours. Don’t get me wrong, I use Instagram to drive a ton of blog traffic but here is why Pinterest is better. Whenever you create a pin that resonates with a blog post, that pin is constantly circulating and being re-pinned. Therefore, a blog post that you did 3 years ago is being seen consistently through Pinterest. Think anyone is scrolling back to your Instagram feed 3 years ago to see what you posted? Definitely not.
This is something I didn’t start until this year for a few reasons. One being, I didn’t even realize how important Pinterest could be for blog traffic until about a year ago. Secondly, it took way to much time for me to constantly be creating pins from blog posts and actually pinning them in a way that would be effective for driving traffic. Thirdly, a year or so ago, it wasn’t in the budget for me to hire someone to do it. Looking back though, I said it wasn’t in the budget because I didn’t realize how effective it is. If you can allocate funds towards hiring a Pinterest manager, I highly recommend it.
CONSISTENCY OVER PERFECTION
Whenever I first started this blog, it was purely as a hobby and for enjoyment. That being said, I never had a strict posting schedule, I really just posted when I felt like it. Then about 2 years in (so about 2 years ago), I decided that I wanted to take things more seriously and be more consistent with posting. But there was one hangup. I would look at all these other bloggers and see that they had beautifully curated, and high-res images to go with each blog post. So I got it in my head that in order for me to publish a blog, I had to have multiple high-res images for each post. This meant meeting with a photographer on a weekly basis which meant time and money. It also meant planning out my blog topics in advance so I could have a certain outfit or backdrop to go with each post. Because of this, I just ended up posting less. I wasn’t consistent in creating content because I was also dependent on a photographer, and having images to go with each post.
Now, if you are currently doing this for your blog posts there’s nothing wrong with that! But you also shouldn’t feel like you need to be doing this. I slowly started to realize that people didn’t really care if I did’t have multiple high-res images per posts–what people wanted was the actual content, the actual value of what was written in a blog. Now sure, if you’re a fashion blogger and your entire post is about an outfit(s), then yes you should probably have multiple images. But my point is, don’t let that need for “perfection” inhibit you from creating consistent content. With my schedule and what I prioritize, it’s not realistic for me to meet with a photographer on a weekly basis. As you can see (like this post), most of my blogs consist of an Iphone photo because I much prefer writing blogs that I feel inspired by, and pairing them with a single photo than waiting weeks to get a post up because I don’t have a ton of photos to go with it.
So there ya have it! Those are 3 things that I wish I would have started long ago! I hope that these tips are helpful if you’re thinking of starting a blog or currently have one! xxC