Every blogger, no matter how long you’ve been blogging, stumbles upon roadblocks. Over the past nearly 20 years that I’ve been blogging in some capacity, I’ve had some really amazing highs and some terrible lows including nearly hanging up my blogging hat. BUT, ultimately I blog because I love writing and because I love the blogging community. Because I love reading other blogs. Because I love sharing ideas and inspiring others.
We’ve all made mistakes and those mistakes can take you from amazing influencer to traffic-less pretty flipping quickly if you don’t reverse course.
Blogging isn’t the same as it used to be – it is certainly much more involved since I started in 2001 and even more so since my first influencer campaign in 2008. In order to be “successful” or to be considered an “influencer,” there’s just so much more “stuff” to do. But, if you have a clear vision, and an even clearer understanding of your why, and who your audience is, blogging – while still work for sure – will be a lot more rewarding.
Here are the six things I stopped doing to make blogging more enjoyable again:
Stop Overthinking EVERYTHING
Stop thinking about the quality of my pictures. How often or frequently I share. How often I post. How often I post to social media. Why doesn’t X favorite blogger read me? Why can’t I look cute in that outfit? You get it. Overthinking, or as a boss once said to me “letting perfect be the enemy of good.” You can take high-quality pictures from your iPhone, and YOU set your posting schedule. No one else.
Stop Beating Yourself Up if You Don’t Stick to a Content Calendar
I am the queen of content calendars. But I often wonder if I REALLY need one for myself. A lot of bloggers will make you think you do – but honestly? Depending on your goals, you don’t need to overthink it. If you have bigger goals, then yes, a content calendar is super helpful. I love putting mine in Trello, but I tend to brainstorm lots of ideas and go week by week as far as what’s going to get created.
Stop Overthinking Your Niche
I keep thinking that I need to write about ONE thing. Or perfect ONE topic. That I need to be super well versed in and write about one thing. Here’s the thing. I like to write about a lot of things. Parenting. Mom style. Marketing – especially blogging and social media; I might not be a high-paid, professional lifestyle blogger but I AM a marketer by trade so I know a thing or two about social media and creating content and just because I’m not a high paid lifestyle blogger doesn’t mean I can’t share that expertise here. I write to moms who want to be stylish without much effort, who want to live healthier lives, and maybe that mom out there who wants a little inspiration to start a blog.
Don’t Not Promote Your Blog
Listen, if you want people to read your ish, you have to be a little self-promotional. Understand however, that promoting and getting people other than your family to read it, is an uphill battle and consistency is key. Find tools (that you actually use), and use them consistently. But you write because you want other people to read it, so be sure to share it and share it widely!
Stop thinking you need uber professional photography to be a style blogger.
I’m a working mom. These days, I work from home and 90% of days, I’m in athleisure so I’m ready for when I can fit my workout in (either after camp drop off or after dinner if I’m heading to Body Back). Back when I was in an office, you know where I sometimes documented my outfit? In a bathroom stall before I changed into running clothes to go for a short post-work run. Sure, professional photos always look better but don’t bathroom stall pictures have a little more real-life aspect? One of these days I WILL do a styled photoshoot but that’s going to take some planning content-wise (because ‘natch). Still, though, I read plenty of bloggers without someone taking pro-like quality photos and there’s nothing wrong with that. Get out of your head that you NEED a professional photographer to take your photos to be a well-liked blogger.
Stop Getting Caught Up in the Comparison Trap
Guilty. Guilty as charged. There are tons of bloggers I adore and read every day. But I compare myself to them. I worry I’m not skinny enough or that I look too fat in my outfits. I worry that my content isn’t authentic enough (newsflash: it is). I worry I’m not good enough for blogging anymore because I don’t get sponsorships anymore. I don’t blog enough. I don’t have a large enough email list. I don’t post enough to Pinterest….you get the picture. We all do it but please stop comparing yourself and worrying that you’re not “doing it right” and just do you sista’!
Stop Doing it for the Money
I haven’t gotten paid for blogging in a long time. But doing it for the prospect of getting paid, lacks a certain authenticity – every blogger knows that. Every blogger. Also the likelihood? Well, blogging has become slightly oversaturated so standing out as a big fish in a big pond requires a lot more effort than it used to. And I’m not gonna lie, I just don’t have that kind of energy. Sure, I’ve certainly envisioned or dreamt about working with big brands but when you take away the hopes of getting paid, you find a more authentic voice. Because it all comes back to over-thinking it all. Just stahhhpppp.
So – those mistakes are ones that I’ve made over and over and over again. Those are the ones I’m guilty of – and how I know to turn them around. I know I’m not alone here. I know there are a lot of microinfluencers struggling through those same challenges. But take back your hobby. If you want more from blogging, make the effort but make sure it feels less like work and more like something you truly enjoy doing in your free time that isn’t a burden. But most importantly, make sure that you’re setting goals and being clear with them so you can realistically accomplish whatever those goals are.
What’s your biggest blogging Mistake?
This was originally published in February 2017 and has been updated for content.