Saturday, 19 November 2016

First Year of Blogging - 7 Lessons Learned





It is still a bit hard to digest that my blogging journey is one year old already! I am so excited that I wanted to throw a party, had my hubby not given me that stare of disbelief at even considering doing one. So, I decided to celebrate in my own way and announced a giveaway that I myself would love to win one day. The giveaway is closed for entries now and winner will be announced on the 21st November 2016 but, you can see the details here.

During this little journey of one year, I did make some observations and learned a few things. I decided to share them in this post with all of you. Especially, if you are considering of creating a blog, this might prepare you for what will come your way


1. Blogging is not only about creating content. Though, the importance of good content cannot be denied but, if that content is not advertised and promoted properly, you will not have anyone reading your posts. I can't believe how much time I spend on advertising my blog. Stats of the blog: number of views and visits really effect you when you start blogging. There is so much content out there and so many bloggers writing similar (and good) stuff that you will need shameless advertising and promotion tactics to get readers to your blog. Shameless because some tend to be shy of self
promotion.

2. You need to learn to do back-end work, if like me, you are handling it all by yourself. You will be required to learn a bit about coding and formatting. You will spend considerable amount of time learning to just put a 'LIKE' button on your posts or to change header on the blog. The basic ready made templates also require a bit of modification to shape the way you desire your blog to look and feel. But, do not worry! There are ample of tutorials to help you out. And, the sweet taste of small victories is worth all the efforts!

3. You need lots & lots & lots of content.You need to be fast and regular to keep your audience engaged. If you stop posting, people stop visiting your page and actually forget about the blog all together. To keep your readers engaged, they say, that while you work on a post, you should have at least three posts in pipeline. With a full time job and a house to look after, I am not as regular as I want to be. I hope to achieve this someday and really appreciate those who do! I know it is tough!

4. It takes you a while to understand what content and style of writing attracts more readers. Sometimes a well written post according to my standards does not manage to get any share or comments and sometimes a post that I consider just a filler is received well by my readers. I did not really understand it all in one year. It requires you to analyze your blog's data to derive the right strategy for yourself. Experiment and observe in the beginning with all kinds of styles without worrying about the results.  Let the results show you what your forte is. I am still in experimental stage for this one.

5. You will be disappointed. When I started the blog, I thought that all my 500 friends on my personal Facebook profile will be my regular readers. Sadly, some of my friends have never read any of my posts and most of them have never commented on a single post even after one year. I love those who do <3. I understand that the content should speak for itself but we expect unconditional support from friends, don't we? This very notion could lead to disappointment. I have read numerous bloggers who complain of similar pattern.

Always remember that your friends are not your target audience.

6. While you are disappointed, you will also be pleasantly surprised when you'll see comments, feedback and appreciation from total strangers and genuine readers. It is a testing time, I think, for any blogger in the very beginning but once you learn how to market your post to the right audience,  appreciation and engagement will start coming in! Comments, feedback, shares and Likes really motivate us to write better but it takes time to grow. 

7. When you step into this world, start supporting other bloggers. I spend a lot of time to read blogs by others as I know how much effort and time goes into writing a post. I leave feedback and comments wherever I can. I have joined blogger support groups where I vent out what is in my heart and comfort others who are also newbies or struggling. It is a great feeling! 

The most important lesson that I learned in one year of blogging is that we rise by lifting others. I strongly agree with Winston Churchill,

“We make a living by what we get. But we make a life by what we give.

That's it guys! 

If you are blogger, what did you learn in your blogging journey so far? 
Let me know in comments section!







24 comments:

  1. Hmmmm, learning to be one ☺

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  2. This is as honest as it can be! True that blogging is real hard work, while people think all we do is just sit and write stuff. There is research and planning involved.

    And so true that your friends and even family does not support you or take you seriously. Once I asked my friend to share a post and she told me that she thinks my work needs to improve. Like hellooo you keep posting random sh*tty stuff from all over the world. Senseless memes and what not but something that is so dear to me is not upto your expectation. WTF.

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  3. Hahahah! I hear you! Remember, your friends are not your audience :)

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  4. Thank you for sharing. I am a new blogger and can already relate to #2. I finally figured out the "like" after about 20 hours and many tears.

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  5. I can relate to every single one of these 7 lessons. It's certainly a steep learning curve with lots of stumbles along the way but I love the connection with other bloggers and the feedback I get.

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  6. Being just two months into blogging I can really relate to this post. It's so true what you say about the thrill of getting a comment from a stranger (the highs) but then it's miserable when you put so much effort in and get so few visits (the lows). I'm guessing it's like this in the early days of blogging!

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  7. I relate SO much. Blogging is a one man/woman show and people underestimate how much time goes into it. Some days I feel like I'm going to have a mental breakdown but at the end of the day I wouldn't change a thing ;)

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  8. Congratulations on your first year of blogging. I also went through a lot of lessons learned after a certain time of blogging. But let me tell you, things change and a lot of new things will still be coming by and as bloggers, we need to brace ourselves for a hard learning as well as the things that we can learn not only to blogging but also to life as we read other people's blog. Good luck to you and I hope we can have more connections as fellow bloggers. :D

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  9. Congratulations,
    Will try to follow all this on my blog too.

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  10. I am inspired. I would like to say that I am still the new kid on the bog. I am nearing 3-months. It does take time and a whole lot of effort. This third month was a flop for me. But will continue to try.

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  11. I have been in blogging my personal site for 5 years. I remember when I started it in February 2011 I got a handful of readers. My purpose of creating my own blog is to publicize my newspaper column for my friends who haven't got read it. So at least in the Net, the could read it anytime and anywhere. I just continued posting articles. Sooner or later, I had an invitation to join in the FB group. Then, my blog has started to grow. Not it has nearly 900,000 pageviews. Luckily in its first year of Net circulation, my two blogs received the best lifestyle award and the best culture and arts award.

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  12. Gosh! you got everything right here. same as me, I just also bacame a blogger lastyear and your points here are so striking. It really takes more than content to blog. :)

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  13. Congratulations on your this milestone. The first of many milestones, I am sure. Thank you for expressing all of these ideas in words, I could never have, even if I had been blogging for ten years already.

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  14. You really have to invest in content as well as promotion. It's a continuous learning process as some stuff that work before may be outdated soon.

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  15. I learned that it is not easy to gain readers and keep them coming to your blog. I think with patience, I'd be able to gain more followers.

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  16. You learned so much more than I did in your first year of blogging! Back in early 2009 I spent so much time learning about how to make a website that I couldn't focus on creating good content -- i'm so thankful now days for sites like Wordpress!

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  17. Great lessons learnt. And another lesson I learnt over time now is that as technology, social media etc advances and as we grow up over years, the blog's look, readers etc also changes!!

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  18. Btw, hearty hearty congrats on the 1st year completion. Wishing you to complete several more years of blogging.

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  19. I so relate with this post. I also just completed 1 year of serious blogging.

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  20. Thank you everyone for the meaningful and motivating comments! It feels great to know that we all were in similar boat once and that there is hope :) Good luck to all of us!

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  21. It's a journey with ups and down. I've learned it is best to go with the flow and keep a sensible schedule.

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  22. These are really genuine points which you have highlighted and all the newbie can take some clues from here.

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  23. Totally agree with number 4. There were posts which I put in a lot of effort and thought it was well written, but it was not well received. But posts which I was pretty casual, it got a lot of feedback...

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