It's my 6 month blog anniversary!
And you know what that means... More posts! (lol) I've had so much fun writing my posts. It has been my saving grace these past couple of months.
Needless to say, I've learned a lot more than how to take a picture of me smiling at a mug full of matcha.
I won't get all mushy and say something about how blogging is some magical kindling of emotions that makes you realize your self worth or something... It is hard work, but it is rewarding.
Whether you're a blogger, want to be a blogger, or are just a reader, these are 6 things I've learned in 6 months of blogging.
Let's get to it.
1. Don't Worry So Much
Especially in the early stages. I always want everything to be perfect, look perfect, sound perfect. My punctuation had to be proofread over and over and my photos had to have perfect composition. But honestly, that's not the point of the post. Don't take away from the actual words you want to write because you're focusing too much on what it looks like. Your posts are beautiful because YOU write them.
You'll get to that perfect lighting, perfect flat lay, perfect flow. It takes practice. And that's what the early stages are, practice.
2. Other People's Opinions Matter (to an extent)
You want other people's opinions. It's only normal to ask people what they think about your blog or posts. You want feedback on if they're boring, or stupid, or look okay. But, at the end of the day, it's YOUR blog. Don't let other people's opinions bog down your true reasoning for posting about whatever it is you're posting about. It's not about everyone else's opinions. It's about what message YOU want to convey. So, yes, I think it's important to have feedback and constructive criticism. But, not at at the cost of your creativity and originality. Stay You.
In the beginning, I always cared SO much about what people would think about what I said in my posts or what I posted about. But truthfully, It's not for the people that don't like it. The people that gravitate towards your blog are people that truly care about you, or your writing, or love the messages you convey. Even if they're quick stopper by-ers, they still came by to look at something they thought was interesting. People that hate can just hate away.
3. How To Make A Flat Lay
This is something I'm STILL learning. It's not easy to put together all of your things and fill a bunch of empty corners and spaces.
When doing a flat lay, think about a couple of factors.
- The background: You want it to be crisp and not too busy and match the products and your vibe. White is always an amazing option. Or a solid color of your choosing. Sometimes you want texture, like a towel or wood. But, only if it's appropriate.
*Pro Tip: Get a couple of different colored poster boards or peel and stick wallpapers to create clean amazing backgrounds!
- The shadows: You want to come up over the flat lay and take the picture from above. However, there's always shadow problems because you're usually blocking whatever light is above you and creating a shadow. This one is a toughy. You either have to move around and play with positioning of your body, get more light (like go outside or add a lamp to counteract the shadow), or fix it in photoshop.
I'll do a "how to flat lay" post when I feel like I have it all figured out and go more into detail.
4. How To Promote My Posts
Again, something I'm still learning. It's not easy to make people look at what you've posted. The first step is sharing it all over your social medias. Pick an enticing picture and maybe don't reveal so much about the post in your promotional post. Let the readers wonder what it's about or what you're going to say. Have a couple of your friends share a post or promote your page all together. You'd be surprised how much cross traffic you'll get just by sharing followers. Try to reach out to smaller bloggers on instagram or facebook to see if they'll do a trade of followers. You shout them out and they shout you out. You can pay for promotions from big bloggers. Join Facebook groups that have other bloggers in your niche. There's also Facebook Boosting. You pay a small amount to boost your post so it get's a larger audience. That one isn't always amazing, but it does something. I'm sure there are more ways, but like I said, still figuring it out.
5. What Is Your Blog About?
For most people starting out with a blog, you usually know what your focus is. Beauty, fashion, food, fitness, etc. When I started out, I had no idea what I wanted my blog to be about. I love beauty, but I didn't want to give up my love for fashion, or my new found love of fitness. I wanted it all. That's OKAY! All these big bloggers tell you that you need one specific focus and you need to start with that. This is true, however, if you have many focuses, that's okay too. I've found that if you start with all of your focuses and start writing your posts, you'll begin to realize what you write most about and eventually narrow it down.
6. Posts Are All Around You
In the beginning, I was scared I would run out of things to write about. I had ideas of posts and wondered if it was enough. As I began writing, I had more and more ideas for posts. I realized things in my daily life I've over come or learned how to do that I wanted to teach everyone else. I began not even writing about the things I had in a list. I had so many other ideas to write about. Every day I would find a new idea in something I was doing. Like, right now, just thought of a new post as I'm writing this one. Follow your heart. (there's the cheese) You'll notice that everything you go through is worth writing about. Someone shares a similar opinion/experience.
I hope this gave you a little insight to some challenges you may face if you decide to start a blog. Or know that certain things are fine! You don't have to figure everything out in this moment. Just have fun! The one thing that will communicate to your readers is that you LOVE what you do.