On February 8, 2019, I started this blog. A year later, I was still blogging, but, I didn’t realize I had missed my blogging anniversary until March, when we were knee deep in a global pandemic. August 8, 2020 marked one and a half years of blogging for me! (FYI, I used a different platform for the first few months then moved over to WordPress in the spring of 2019, which is what I use now and will continue to use.)
This is my first experience with blogging, but not my first rodeo with writing and using WordPress. Blogging has changed my life for the better and I can honestly say that I enjoy blogging so much. In honor of The Wild Woman’s anniversary, here are ten things I have learned about blogging in the last year and a half.
- Being honest and consistent is vital to your success. I try to be honest in every aspect of my life, but when I stepped into a role where I would be reviewing products, promoting products or companies and giving people advice, I saw the need for honesty even more. I’m not going to sugar coat it, honey. If you want the truth, you got the right lady. I have also realized that being consistent with posting and with the format in which I post allows readers to get comfortable and regularly tune in to see what I have to say.
- The shorter and easier to read your posts are the better and more well-received they will be. We are in the digital age where our opinions are broken down into 140 characters or less or are on 2x playback speed. I always try to make posts skim-able and concise, even if I am naturally long-winded.
- Views aren’t everything. Engagement will ebb and flow. I had a lot more time to work on my blog during the last few months, so I was able to notice that my views and engagement were looking like a rollercoaster at times. But, news flash to me, we are in a global pandemic and racial injustice is alive and well. There are more important things happening in the world that draw my readers elsewhere and for good reason. Also, some months my content just doesn’t go over as well as I hope it does and that’s okay. I gave myself a hard time over views for awhile and then I was slapped with the hard truth: I am not blogging for the views.
- Learn about analytics and study them. I am still learning about analytics and insights, but I know how important they are. I focus on tags and SEO (search engine optimization) as well as sharing on social media.
- Write about what you want to write about, even if it’s uncomfortable or won’t get as many views as other posts. My analytics tell me that when I write about certain things my readers like it more. That’s cool, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to write about those things that don’t get a lot of views. This also seems like a good time to bring up my life motto: If you are scared to do something that means you have to do it. I recently posted a bathing suit guide. I didn’t want to do that! But, I did it so that someone else would see it and would feel confident enough to do the same. My most vulnerable posts are usually the most meaningful and successful.
- Taking photos of yourself is hard and can make you feel vulnerable. Finding locations to take photos is hard too. It was not easy to find my good sides and my good angles. You would not believe the amount of photos that I have deleted. But, practice makes perfect. I am slowly learning what poses and expressions work for me. I have also learned to laugh at the goofy photos I capture and thrive in the amazing candids.
- Tripods and remotes for my camera or phone are your best freakin’ friend. Take them everywhere with you. Self-timers only work for a little while. I have been through three phone tripods, two of which I still have. They are absolutely essential to my success. I even have a remote that you may be able to see in some of my photos that helps me take snaps when I want to.
- Making money blogging takes time, a lot of work and sacrifice. As you know, I talk a lot about the environment, zero waste and ethical fashion and lifestyle choices on my blog. What you may not know is that small bloggers, myself included, get offers from cheap, unethical companies often. They want us to help sell their shit products and promote their shit companies and values. No, thanks. I am never, ever going to break my morals to earn money. So, it may take me longer for me to make money off of this blog, but that’s okay. My integrity is in tact.
- As with everything in life it seems, some people will support you and some won’t. Pay attention to both groups of people. I don’t need to explain this one very much. But, I do want to say that I appreciate every single person that has read this blog. You are making my dreams come true every day.
- Don’t blog unless you love it. Blogging isn’t easy and it’s not profitable until you make it big. But, if you love it, like I do, it’s worth it. If I ever get to the point where I don’t love what I am doing, I won’t do it anymore.
And with that I will say happy anniversary to me and my blog, The Wild Woman! I have so much more to learn and so much more to write.
I am just getting started.