A lifestyle blog from a forty-something mum

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Six Lessons I've Learnt After Two Years of Blogging...

Blogging, success, lessons
I've been blogging for a little over two years now. My first post went live on 5th January 2013 just days after leaving my job in the NHS where I'd worked for the past 26 years. I'd written for a couple of blogging sites prior to this - but never been brave enough to have my own domain name until last year.

This is what I've learnt so far...

1. There's no place I'd rather be
I'm so happy I decided to start blogging as it's given me more confidence as well as some great opportunities. Most of the time I'm astounded by how much talent there is out there in the blogging world and how kind and generous fellow bloggers can be. If you're thinking about starting a blog, I'd definitely recommend it.

2.Your blog is your space on the Internet
Write about issues that are important to you and remember to be yourself. Not everyone will appreciate your unique view of the world - we're all different after all. And it's OK to say, 'No,' to a sponsored post or review that doesn't feel right. A short, but polite email to the PR company concerned will leave the door open for potential opportunities that might work for you at a later date.

3. Blogging is a journey
I may have been blogging for a couple of years, but I still have a lot to learn. The blogging world is constantly changing and that means you have to change too. There's a wealth of information on the Internet about almost anything you need to know, but I suspect I've mostly made it up as I've gone along. I know I've made a few mistakes along the way. Whenever you need help there's always someone out there who's willing to offer advice. Some things (for me) are never going to be easy - like changing the design of a blog!

(Image: Pixabay)
4. Photography
Blogging is all about the writing and that's the most important part of all. However I think the reader can become a little intimidated by vast amounts of text with nothing to capture their imagination in-between. I try to have at least one photo in every post - sometimes I go a little crazy and add as many as fifteen. If you're not a fan of taking pictures or don't have anything relevant, there are some fabulous websites with free stock photos. One of my favourites is Pixabay.

5. Promote on social media
You may have written a post you're desperate to share with your readers, but how are they going to find it exactly? From experience - I've learnt that it's essential to promote posts on social media in addition to hitting the publish button. There's a knack to doing this in moderation however. It's also important to interact with fellow bloggers by leaving comments on their blogs and sharing any posts that inspire you. And, if you join in with linkies - remember to share the love by commenting on several posts.

I may have saved the most important tip of all for last...

6. Time away from the laptop is always time well spent
It's easy to spend all day creating content for your blog and replying to emails, but it's also important to interact in the real world as that's where most of the inspiration for great content will come from. If you're feeling a bit meh about blogging, there's nothing more inspiring than taking a couple of days away from the laptop to recharge, come back to it with a fresh pair of eyes and hopefully, some fabulous new ideas for posts.

So there you have it, those are my thoughts after two years of blogging. I'd love to hear any tips you've learnt along the way.

Until next time...

 Copyright©2015 Izzie Anderton

15 comments :

  1. Great tips :-) its always really interesting to hear other bloggers points of view about blogging. I have been away from my little blog for a while because of a eye op. I'm slowly beginning to get back into it. Bright screens do not mix well with poorly eyes! x

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  2. Love this, blogging is such an individual journey in many ways, yet the community is wonderful and supportive.
    Well done on 2 years x

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  3. Lovely to hear about your blogging journey and thank you for the tips! I will have a look at the stock photo site you recommend, I always take my own pics but occasionally it is useful to have a resource for them.x

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  4. Congrats on the two year blogging...
    Every day I learn something new through it.
    Great tips!

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  5. I just write what I like and when I like, usually prompted by an event in my personal life. i try to stay away from 'hot' topics

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  6. Congratulations on running this lovely blog for two years! It only seems yesterday when we were both newbies. Some fabulous tips in here.

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  7. Love your tips Izzie and would wholeheartedly agree! It's the long game for me, I'm not going anywhere so don't feel the need to have to do everything if that makes sense? Have a lovely weekend xx #pocolo

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  8. Great post and very good advice.

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  9. That last point in particular is so true - it's so important to separate 'blogging you' from 'family you' and not allow one world to spill over into the other.

    One of the things that has struck me during my blogging journey is that, if you're trying to improve yourself as a blogger and appeal to a wide audience (and I don't just mean boosting stats or 'going pro'), the difference between a decent blogger and a really good one is how much attention you pay to things other than the words you write. That covers the visual design of your blog, how you interact with others and promote yourself, how you use photos, and a million and one other things. And, as you say, the blogging world is constantly changing, so that learning journey never ends.

    Like you, though, there's no place I'd rather be either.

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  10. Congratulations, and great tips. I think that last one is especially important as it's easy to get caught up in it, but you need to step away and immerse yourself in reality, and from that, more blogging inspiration will strike!

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  11. Excellent list Izzie. I thought you'd been blogging longer than that! I definitely agree with taking time away. I LOVE blogging but can easily get totally bogged down in it if I spend all day with my head in my blog. Important to breathe isn't it? I love your blog :)

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  12. I love your comment about how kind & generous fellow bloggers can be, I am continually amazed by what a supportive community it is, and I've only been blogging for 6 months. It's now my main motivation to keep going! xx

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  13. Time away from the laptop is the best point, it gives one time to refresh.

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  14. Too right about time away from the laptop; you need to live to have something to write about! Great post :)

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  15. Great tips - especially the one about being sociable, not just banging out promo tweets all day every day
    Debbie
    www.myrandommusings.blogspot.com

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