Blogging

11 Things I Wish I Knew About Blogging When I First Started

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Being a blogger means you have the chance to reach thousands or even millions of people from around the world. The problem is that if you want to make blogging a full-time career, there seems to be a gap of knowledge between those that are trying to make it and those that do.

Sure, bloggers like myself do our best to share the knowledge that we’ve attained, but really, that still doesn’t help out a lot of people.

In this post, I want to share some of the things  I wish I knew when I first started.

1. It is not For Everyone

This is the harsh reality of it all. Just because anybody can create a blog, doesn’t mean anybody can create a successful blog (I know some people don’t like hearing that).

Running a full-time blog is the same as running a full-time business. In fact, your blog is your business.

That means in the beginning you can’t sit around and take days or weeks off. If you want to quit your job six months from now, that means for the next six months you need to live and breathe your blog.

Ignore the bloggers that talk about 2 month vacations and only having to work 4 hours a week.

They didn’t start off that way even if their marketing tries to frame it that way. Many of them were fiddling around in the dark trying to figure out how to make all of this work, and then one day it started to click.

What sets them apart from most people is that they kept on driving forward with a purpose and a plan.

You can’t blindly blog and think you’re doing a good job and that at some point traffic will start to come through.

You have to set a goal and figure out a plan that will lead you to that goal. Then you need to stick to that plan.

That means you might forsake few things along the way. By no means am I telling you to give up your life, but there is a reason they say entrepreneurs are the only people that work 80 hours a week, so they no longer have to work 40 hours a week.

2.Only a small % of Your Audience Really Matters for Your Business

This one is a tough pill to swallow and something that I still need to wrap my head around, but if you plan on running any other type of revenue model besides ads, then you need to focus on your true fans.

Your true fans are the people that will buy anything that you offer. They are the ones that open your emails and read every single blog post.

If you can make them happy then you have yourself a business.

The problem that many bloggers have is that they believe that everybody in their audience is important, so they try to cater to everybody. What they quickly begin to realize is that while trying to please everyone, they end up pleasing no one.

Let’s say you have a mailing list of 3,000 people. That’s a healthy-sized mailing list, and you should be able to make a decent amount of money with that.

Because your mailing list is filled with people that love to cook, you decide to make a cookbook. You figure that the worst case scenario is that 10% of your mailing list will purchase it.

When you launch the book only 10 people purchase it. If you don’t want to do that math on that, then I can tell you that is 0.2% of your audience.

What happened?

You figured that just because your audience loves cooking that everyone would want to buy a cookbook. That wasn’t the case.

Instead, let’s go in a different direction. After talking to people in your audience, you realize that many of them don’t understand how to do meal prep for the week. So you create a $99 course on how to plan and meal prep for an entire week.

You launch and just 1% of your audience purchases it, but that 1% just made you $5,000.

Instead of trying to please everyone, you went for the 1% that you knew had a specific problem that they were willing to pay to have solved.

3.It Can Get Lonely

When I first started my business, I was so happy that I will be able to create a location independent business. However, as time went on, I realized that I was a bit lonely.

Not many people talk about the hard work that goes into trying to make this a reality. When I was first growing my business, I can’t tell you how many nights I stayed up until 4 am writing blog posts, making changes to my website, or coding WordPress themes.

You can learn how I became a blogger by reading My Story

You can’t share your stress or frustration with people that don’t understand and when it’s time to celebrate they won’t quite understand your joy.

That’s why it is important to build relationships with other bloggers. You need to surround yourself with people going through the same things as you.

To find blogging friends, I recommend joining Facebook groups or do blogger outreach.

Here’s a good post:Blogger Outreach: How to Get Influencers to Promote Your Content for Free

4.Blogging Is a Journey

Blogging is more than just finding a niche and writing quality content. There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes that people don’t talk about. It’s much easier to focus on the success of making a blog than it is to talk about the actual process.

Hopefully, I was able to put things into perspective.

So if you know that you want to be a full-time blogger now or in the future, the best time to start is now. You might catch yourself getting caught in a research wormhole because you want to do everything perfectly from the beginning, but that never happens for anybody.

Start writing, start publishing, start promoting, and start interacting with your audience today.

5.Your Passion Might Not Make Money

Whenever you read a blog post about picking a niche, one of the first pieces of advice is to pick a topic that you are passionate about.

This makes sense because who wants to write for years on a topic that they don’t care about?

Unfortunately, the truth of the matter is that not every niche will make you good money. I’m not talking 5 figures a month. I’m saying that some niches will barely make you a couple hundred a month.

The good news is that most niches can make you a full-time income if you approach them the right way. You just need to take the time to figure out what those niches are.

The easiest way to figure this out is to talk to people. I know I already talked about talking to your audience, but if you can find an audience of people that are so desperate to solve a problem that they will pay money to have it solved, then you have yourself a profitable niche.

This is why knitting can work as a niche. The knitting community is always looking for new and awesome patterns. They have no problem paying for them.

This is why there are so many blogs out there about blogging. You might think that these are the only types of blogs that make money, but that would be incorrect. These just happen to be the blogs you know about because you are trying to learn about blogging.

Writing in a niche is nothing more than writing about a set of problems that people are having and how you can help them solve those problems.

A fashion blog helps people find the best things to wear. That is a problem people are trying to solve, and if you can help them find the perfect outfit, they will buy that outfit.

Asking what niche you should blog about isn’t the right question. The right question is what is the problem you are going to help someone solve?

6.Blogging is Work

Blogging is a second full-time job.  Almost every moment of my limited downtime is spent scheduling, prepping, editing and organizing. It all takes a lot of time and effort.When I first started Kebabope Morapedi  it was a great  in the beginning – I read articles, watched ‘How To’ videos  but  what I soon realized was if I ever wanted to grow my blog, I need a strategy.You can read all of the articles in the world about the best platform to use, how to gain more followers, what not to do, don’t use this filter, post this time of day, etc.  You will never really know until you start your own blogging journey.

7.It Takes Money to Build A Successful Blog

At least at the beginning.It is something that is never talked about it a lot but if you want to make it in the blogging world you must spend.You must spend on getting subscribers, SEO tools,writing content and outsourcing.When I started I thought I will just hustle and not spend but soon I realized this is business and if I want it to be successful i need to accord it the necessary attention it deserved and that meant spending on things that will take me forward.

8.You Must Learn Some New Skills

When I started I only had a vision that I wanna put up a blog and write daily and make money but later  realized I have a serious shortage of skills.I had to make google my friend.You will have to know how to get traffic,how to build an email list,how to build backlinks,how to market etc.There is a lot that you must learn in order to make your blog a worthy business.Along the way you must shell some cash to buy case studies,monthly memberships,blueprints etc.In other words take investing in yourself  and your blog very, very seriously.

9.Life Will Happen

While pursuing your blogging business and trying to make it work, the reality is that you are not immune to life problems.You are still going to have relationship problems,you are going to lose a loved one,you are going to be broke along the way,you are going to have internet problems,you are going to have floods,you are going to have midlife crisis.In short life is going to happen but the most important thing is your positive attitude that will give you strength to come back and focus on your blog.

10. Always Remember The 80/20 rule

The 80/20 rule applied to blogging can mean either:

  1. 80 percent of the success you achieve comes from a small 20 percent of your activities, or
  2. You should spend 80% of your time blogging away from your blog and 20% blogging at your blog, not the other way around.

Both 1 and 2 are very much related. You achieve way more success on your blog by blogging for other blogs and promoting your content in places that already have readers. Like Derek Halpern of social triggers says: “It’s smarter to find another 10,000 people to consume what you’ve already created as opposed to creating more.”

11. Your email list is your #1 priority

I say #1 there because everything else doesn’t sound quite as urgent, but the truth is this: if you run a blog you should hook it up with an email list ASAP to start building your community and to show every reader that you’re serious about what you’re creating. Even if someone doesn’t join your email list right away, they’ll always be intrigued by some inner community with secret offerings you’ve created. Just knowing your email list exists will actually make someone a lot more likely to interact with your blog.

What’s a blogging lesson that stands out for you? How did it impact your online career? I’m really curious to hear your thoughts.

See you down below in the comments.

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