Your blogging life has started. You are now enduring the pain and all the emotions that come with it. The first year is tough, you feel like you are on a road to nowhere and money, there is no money. Welcome to the cruel world of blogging.
At first you envision of living the dream and working with what you are passionate about. But then, you must do the work, set up your website, build your content, social media accounts and find your followers. You literally start from scratch and you begin to wonder why did I ever bother.
Now this article doesn’t tell you how to start your blog, there are plenty of blogs out there with useful guides. I used The Expert Vagabond’s guide to get through a few steps, any genre of blogging will find it useful. This blog is all about the process, the emotions and the rollercoaster that you will endure in your first year of blogging.
- Don’t quit your day job: First thing is first. Don’t chuck your resignation letter at your boss. Unless you win the lotto, there is no way in hope that you will be able to live of blogging in the first few years. Perhaps never, at least not full time.
- Forget about money: Hence, don’t let money be on your mind in the first few months. I have earned nothing and I have not given it a priority. Sure, there is nothing wrong at having a long-term goal at being profitable, I have those endeavours myself. Focus first on building your blog and let the rest take care of itself.
- Do it with Passion or not at all: If you have passion for travel, then don’t we all. If you don’t have passion for writing content, video, photography, web designs, social media, emails and everything else that comes with blogging, then walk away now and don’t waste your time. Make sure the fire burns or it will never work.
- Have thick skin: You are now in the public profile, accept it. There will be negativity heading your way. Let’s face it, there are trolls out there who get a joy out of at making life miserable for those trying to get ahead. Thick skin is a requirement in the worldwide web of sometimes evil. Embrace it, be strong and you will be fine.
- Get the content out there: Build your blog and get the content out there. Whether it is a post, videos, podcasts or photographs. Get it out there and build your portfolio. As the content comes out, so will improvement and the traffic will come. Don’t forget to try and keep the quality in your post and revisit your earlier articles. You would be forgiven at feeling embarrassment on your earlier work. But that is a good thing, it means you are improving and learning you’re your mistakes.
- Don’t piss off google: Google is your friend, so it is best to keep them on your good side. Follow the rules. Use no-follow links when required for sponsored work. And whatever you do don’t go clicking on your AdSense adverts a hundred times thinking it is a quick way to earn a buck. It is a quick way to get blacklisted. You don’t want that.
- Join blogging Facebook groups: Joining a Facebook group or two is a must for any blogger, especially in your own niche. Facebook groups provide support, tips and it is a great way to catch up with bloggers who may be in your area.
- Join a course in your niche: Doing a course in my niche was the best thing I did and it could be for you too. Being a travel blogger I joined up with Travel Blog Success’s main course. It not only comes with a course, but a Facebook group, opportunity boards, perks and most of all on-going support.
- Blogging is a roller coaster, Keep your head up: Up and down, more ups and a lot more downs. It is the emotional ride of a blogger. Keep your head up and persevere. Your journey has only begun, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater when things are going a little tough.
- Celebrate little milestones: A boost in traffic, give yourself a fist pump. First sponsored post, have a beer. Celebrate your little your little milestones and enjoy the moment. These milestones are all important steps in your timeline of blogging.
- Rome wasn’t built in a day: Brick by brick and in your case, word by word. Your blog will get built and get bigger and better and then spectacular. It won’t happen in a day, or a month or a year or two. Momentum is the key, keep moving forwards and never look back. You are a blogger now.