I’ve been so honored to serve as a resource for new writers out there. I get emails, phone calls, texts and comments on social media asking about my writing process and other helpful information. As a new blogger, there are certain things I think are more commonly known like making sure you’re writing strong, captivating titles or keeping a notebook for ideas and inspirations. So I thought it would be more beneficial for me to share with you 5 rookie mistakes to avoid as a new blogger instead of going through all the things that do work because that is a much longer list. So, let’s get into it!
Not investing in a camera or photographer.
I think of all the later lessons I have learned, this one is the hardest. There is nothing I hate more than realizing that I do not own even 1/3 of the photos I use here on TGC. I am always more than willing to give credit to whoever does own it, but I wish I would have known to take my own pictures from the beginning. It’s just a sense of security that I really feel like I need because I do own everything else here. Also, it’s a lot more fun for both you and your readers to come and see new pictures that they haven’t seen anywhere else.
Not committing to deadlines.
I’ve been blogging for almost three years now and this is my hardest struggle to date. Deadlines unfortunately seem to get the best of me more often than not. I write it down everywhere and everything, but it comes down to discipline and unfortunately when you’re doing everything else for your blog (which most of you will), you’ll find that sometimes you just don’t have it in you right then or you’ll say to yourself, “I’ll do it first thing in the morning.” We’ll work on this together. When you set a deadline, make sure it’s realistic. Give yourself enough time to complete it. If you get it done early, great. If not, no big deal.
Not connecting with other bloggers.
This one may seem like it’s common knowledge, but if you’re anything like me it may not seem so appealing. When I first started blogging I was so scared to reach out to other bloggers, especially if they had a strong following. I felt like the begging amateur. I was also afraid of crossing the very thin line that is inspiration versus imitation. I was completely terrified of connecting with other bloggers. After the first six months though, I was getting a lot more shares on social media and people were starting to reach out to me too and that helped me get over the fear. Now, I believe it to be one of the greatest benefits of being a blogger. We’re a community. A family.
Not creating a media kit.
As a serious blogger, think of this as your blog’s resume. Do a little research on how to create it, but make sure that you do. Make sure you think through and solidify the details of your blog that make you stand out, such as your logo, tagline, bio, etc. There is a lot of other information that is included in your media kit, but the most important to me and the hardest to go back and catch up on are the numbers you must include in your media kit. The minute you launch your blog, make sure you have correctly set up everything that tracks your blog’s traffic accurately (I use Google Analytics and WP’s JetPack plugin). From then on, make sure that you are accurately recording those numbers once a month and updating them in your media kit. The numbers will be small at first as far as traffic goes, but they will grow faster than you imagine. Unfortunately, no one told me this key point to becoming a blogger so I had to learn the hard way. You do NOT want to be where I am right now having to go back and figure numbers out from two years ago! Stressful.
Not learning how to effectively write Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
SEO is a marketing discipline that helps your content filter through organic search engines. In other words, it makes it a lot easier for people to find your work without you having to pay a company for that. As I always encourage you to do, definitely do a little research on SEO for yourself. There are a number of guides that help you figure out the best way to find keywords, titles, meta descriptions and more. I use WP’s Yoast SEO plugin to write all of my SEO for all of my articles and it works pretty well for me. There are a number of different plugins you can find for that though.
Keep in mind that these were mistakes that I made and that it may be completely different for you. If you have any mistakes you’d like to share, please let me know in a comment and I would love to add it to the list! I look forward to reading your works, writers.
Peace and light.