When you mention blogging to friends, family or co-workers, they often think that posting yourself online for clothes, money or publicity is easy, and anyone can do it. But it's not just clothes or money, for some it's a business, for some it's a passionate hobby, and it's not just things that we accumulate when working with brands, it's connecting with people around the world, it's making new friends, finding a passion for something you love, and a way to spend your time while getting amazing opportunities you could have only evern once dreamed of. So if you're new at blogging, want to start a blog, or if you have clicked on this blog post just to read something relatable, here's some things i've learned since I started blogging three years ago.
1. Blogging takes a hell of a lot of work!
From writing, to editing, social media, admin to photography to much much more! Blogging not only gives you a chance to develop all of the above skills, it even gives you the chance to start a company from the comfort of your own home! Like many bloggers, I spend about 12 hours per week (on top of the 37 hours in my full time job) writing, editing, emailing and generally working for my blog. I don't earn much money from it, but do often get gifted items which need to be promoted on a daily basis.
2. If you want something, just ask!
I've been asked by tons of people how to fund your blog, how to get free samples or get paid by brands, and the simple answer is ask! I often find that the smaller companies do not have the budget to do sponsored posts, and the big high street brands often work with the biggest bloggers around, so finding a mid-sized company to email works best. Instagram is a great way to find them and get in contact, and if you were wondering, i'd say find a company with between 50K- 200K followers who often post about bloggers wearing their clothing. Alternatively you can find a bloggers' profile with a similar number of followers, find out who they're working with and contact them via email. Include a brief description of yourself and your blog, and what you are asking for e.g. samples, sponsored posts, banner features etc.
3. Promote and be consistent.
Whether you only have time to blog once per week, or every single day, your views have to come from somewhere, right? I find that when I promote a blog post on Twitter, Facebok and Instagram, it gets three or four times as many views or likes then just publishing on my blog. People can also follow you for consistency, and if you post on your Instagram every day, or blog every other day, as sad as it is, people may unfollow you if you break your streak if they visit your page and don't see a new post. I've had this issue on Instagram before, and have heard about it with Youtubers who publish videos on the same day every week, or bloggers who post on their website on certain days. So if you're aiming to grow your blog or social media channels, consistency is key.
4. Don't compare yourself to others.
If I had a pound for the number of times i've heard 'makeup goals', 'hair goals', 'life goals', i'd be a millionnaire. It's so hard not to compare yourself to the bloggers, Instagrammers and Youtubers who seem to have a perfect life, the perfect body and a wardrobe to die for. But the reality is, nobody is perfect. Those with the perfect body train hard as hell. Those people who buy designer bags every month may have them gifted, or may save for months to buy them. We all share the best things in our life on social media, but never share our down days, the days where we wear no makeup and sit in bed watching Netflix all day.
5. If you're not inspired to blog, don't force it.
We've all been there. I remember writing a few blog posts on bloggers' block. Forcing content shows, and nobody wants to read a post you don't want to write. Taking breaks from your blog and getting out of your routine if you're bored of it is the best thing you can do. Make notes of good writing topics, cool blog shoot locations and brands to work with is a great idea!