Did you recently have an epiphany that the world should hear what you have to say? Is there a product you would like to sell or promote? Have you wanted to start a blog for a while but didn’t know how or felt intimidated by the whole process?… Well my friend, you are not alone! In fact, that is how most people feel in the beginning stages of this crazy and exciting journey.
Having recently started my own blog, I wanted to share with you my experience, what I’ve learned so far, and the resources that have helped me along the way. It is my hope that you too can take the plunge and start a blog today!
After countless hours of blogging research, looking through articles, eBooks, tutorials, videos, and other blogs, I’ve compiled a list of resources that have been imperative in helping me get started. You can see that list here.
I am not an expert blogger by any means. It is for that same reason I can relate to you as I’m writing this. We can walk hand in hand as we tackle it together. There were a thousand questions I had in the very beginning which now I can help you answer.
In fact, you can now join me in my new series “Blogging-Behind the Scenes”, where I take you step-by-step through all the resources, strategies, and techniques I implement on a month-to-month basis, staring March 2017 which is when my blog launched. Each month is packed with tips, takeaways, challenges and mistakes, that you can use to your advantage.
It is an incredible honor to be able to share with you what I know so that you too can reach your goal. But first let’s discuss why you should start a blog in the first place and address the things that might be holding you back from doing so.
WHY START A BLOG?
- Creative outlet– Sometimes you just need a place to speak your mind. A place where you can share your thoughts, ideas, and a piece of your heart. Sure you can choose a personal journal, but what if in the process you can reach others that can benefit from whatever you choose to write about. Pretty neat, huh? As for me, recently becoming a temporary stay-at-home-mom for my 3-year-old and 3-month old, blogging has become a much-needed creative outlet. Don’t get me wrong, it is an incredible blessing to be able to stay home with my children. However, from a professional and creative side of things blogging has given a little piece of myself back. You can read a little more about me here.
- Product sale and promotion– A blog is a fantastic venue if there is a product you wish to sell. Not only does it give you the ability to showcase it, but it keeps your readers up to date with upcoming products, promotions, descriptive posts, social media sharing, and so on.
- Passion, talent, and/or knowledge– Do you know a lot about something in particular and would like to help other people learn about it? A blog is the perfect place to do that. Whether it be DIY, fashion, cooking, finances, parenting, product review, you name it! Blogging allows you to pick a niche (or a few), and reach a specific audience.
- Profit– Blogging makes it possible to make a few extra bucks. In fact, it can even become a full-blown business for those who pursuit it full force. Through ads, affiliate programs, product sales, working with brands, product reviews, and so on, you can definitely make a pretty penny. Blogging allows you to do what you love while being financially compensated for it.
As you can see there are various reasons why to start a blog. Whether it be one of the aforementioned options that work for you, or a few of them combined, the possibilities are endless. Now that we covered some of the reasons why you would start your own blog, let’s go over some of the hurdles that might be preventing you from getting there.
WHAT’S HOLDING YOU BACK?
I want to start by saying that most, if not all, of the following reasons crossed my mind at some point. It took battling through each and every one of them to finally go for it.
- “I don’t know a thing about blogging” or “I don’t have a clue where to start”– Needless to say, blogging can be very intimidating. There is a TON to learn, especially for those of us with no web design, marketing, journalism/ English, or computer background. With that said, it’s not impossible. There are plenty of resources available today that can help you get started and help you keep learning as you go along. I’ve compiled a list of some of the resources that have been imperative in helping me get started. You can see that list here. However, the biggest learning tool is working at it hands on. I can recommend a dozen things that can help you, but putting them to practice is key.
- “My niche is very competitive”– That’s a fact for everything in life. Chances are that for anything you choose to do someone is already doing it, and doing it better! One thing to remember is that they too started from scratch, with just a vision and a lot of hard work. But what I’ve realized is that you don’t need 380 million people to buy your product or read your blogs (although that would be fabulous.. haha), all you need is a few hundred that love what you do and help you spread the word. Only YOU can make what YOU do. Even if it is the same product as 10,000 other people. Only you can give it your touch, which might happen to be what someone else is looking for. Only you can say what you need to say, which might be exactly what someone else needs to hear. Just be yourself and the rest will follow.
- “I am too busy”– If having my three-year old pulling on my leg asking for something every five minutes while at the same time catering to all the needs of my three-month old as I attempt to place the finishing touches of this post isn’t being busy, then I don’t know what busy is. I sometimes feel like I’m stuck in the “Family Guy- Stewie Mom, Mum, Mommy” scene while I’m writing some of these posts (if you haven’t seen it, YouTube it! It’s hilarious). As a wife, a mother, a registered nurse, and a recent blogger, I know a thing or two about finding time for it all. While finding a good balance seems hard at times (and believe me it happens often), it’s not unreachable. The key is to try to set designated times for each responsibility, and allowing for some flexibility as you go along. I’ve found that dedicating an hour most nights after the kids are asleep works best for me right now. Designate a few minutes a day to work on your blog and modify the length and frequency as you go along. Some days I don’t get to even open my computer, and that is ok. You don’t have a boss, or a deadline. You go at your own pace and work on reaching your own goals. It’s a beautiful thing.
- “I don’t have the financial means”– Blogging can be completely free. There are websites that allow you to do so without charging you a penny. However, free isn’t always best as I’m sure you know. Investing a few bucks on good products for your blog, such as web hosting and a beautiful theme for your site, are a few examples of inexpensive resources that will go a long way.
- “What if I fail?”– Failing is not starting at all, in my opinion. We fail when we allow fear to keep us from reaching our goals. In one way or another we are all guilty of this at some point in our lives, I admit that. But honestly, what’s the worst that can happen? When you weigh options the “worst” that can happen doesn’t even come close to the “best” that could. You got this!
Look at it like this.. time doesn’t stop, and a year will come no matter what. The question is… where would you like to be when that time comes? Would you like to be questioning “what if I would have started a year ago?”, or would you like to instead find yourself with a well-established, successful blog and doing what you love? Ultimately it comes down to what drives you and your willingness to succeed. Take it from me my friend… YOU CAN DO IT too!
The best of luck in your journey,