⚡️ Hi guys, I hope you’re having an AMAZING day, full of good readings! 💞 Today I bring you another discussion post! (super excited), It’s something that really makes me happy to have started doing this year and I don’t want to start without thanking you for the support you have given me in my previous posts, it means the world to me. So, I love checking out this type of posts around the blogosphere, so I think it could be fun to start writing them myself and share with you so we can all talk about different topics related to the literary world, books & blogging.
Today I wanted to come up with an idea for a discussion that I’ve had for some time, but I couldn’t find a way to develop it correctly until now, so I simply decided to go for it and pour all my thoughts in the way I know how to do it, which maybe isn’t the exact right one or more organized, but I hope it can leave you something, be of help and that you understand each of my points. 😊 So today I bring you the 5 things that I would have liked to know when I first started blogging almost 4 years ago, which is crazy! With this discussion I hope to be able to share with you each of these 5 points that I think are essential and very important to keep in mind when deciding to have a blog, also to be able to give you something that may be of help to you if you’re just beginning or even if you’ve been blogging for a while, it’s never bad to remember the things that really matter again. So you can take each point that we’ll discuss today as a tip since I think they’re the basis for blogging to be the best experience for you and not become stressful, you know? I’ll tell you a little more about my approach to this topic below and I hope you can enjoy it, I’m excited!! and you know, it’s always a pleasure to be able to share all my thoughts with you and exchange our ideas to grow and help each other.❤️
If you want to check more of my discussion posts, here they are: The first is all about Book Reviews, the second is all about The Meaning of being an International Book Blogger, the third one is all about Rating Systems, in the fourth one we talk about The Pressure of Blogging & las but not least we talked about the terrifying Reading Slumps.
I LOVE you, THANK YOU SO SO MUCH, for the support 😊, I don’t want to stop saying it, I feel honored to you to be in my life and that you allow me to be in a piece of yours. So without further ado, let’s get started! & I hope you enjoy it ⚡️
Well, before starting fully into the post and each of the 5 points I want to touch today, I wanted to be clear about my intention with this post and my personal approach.
I’m not the owner of any absolute truth nor will I be, what I share here are things that I really know that would have helped me to know them before because I think they’re very good tips to remember in order to have the best possible experience as a blogger. So you know, I create it, I write it and I’ve been planning it with the best intentions and everything that I shared with you has been helpful for me before, so I think it could be useful and helpful for many of you now or at least I hope so & also, I know I have a lot to learn from each of you, so I invite you to let me know everything in the comments, so we can talk about it.
On the other hand, my approach on the subject of giving “advice” or Tips on this type of thing like blogging and others, is always from the mental rather than the technical aspect of the matter, with this I mean that I’ll not be talking about everything technical about blogs, or about technical tools to use or graphics, you know? My approach is more from the mental side, I want to share with you something that helps you when it comes to feeling somewhat overwhelmed or anxious and that you can handle yourself better knowing where you should put your energy on and where not.
I hope this has been clear and now you can go into the post having a base of my intentions first, which is super important for me.
📝 #1 – Be Yourself & Socialize
This may be, in my point of view, the key to having a successful blog and having fun in the process. I really would have loved to know when I started blogging that I needed to be myself in order to finally reach my highest potential with the blog. When I started and really committed to my blog, then when I realized that it was something that I loved to do, I start to have those feelings and thoughts that may be being myself wasn’t enough or there’s something I was doing wrong because I didn’t get my goals as fast as I wanted and today having passed all that, I have to tell you that the key is to be yourself and it doesn’t matter that this is different from the others because THAT is the key, that’s exactly what I’m talking about. Only you can express yourself as you, no one has your scene or your way of creating or your thoughts, so don’t be afraid to follow your intuition and be 100% you, because if you try to change, in the end, you’ll not feel comfortable with yourself and you’ll not know where to continue.
When I talk about socializing, I know it might sound silly, but in the beginning when you join the blogging world and are “the new girl” it can be intimidating to see so many people who have already make bonds sharing ideas and commenting on others blogs, and in the case of us book bloggers, buddy reading, you know? And you just came and it can be overwhelming, I totally get it. But I think that another very important thing is creating connections with people who love to do the same as you, not for convenience or because you have to do it, but to make the experience something much more didactic and fun. Over time you’ll see how something as simple as reading someone else’s content and showing your support will mean everything, I think it amplifies the experience for the better, makes you wiser in many ways and maybe even achieve a stable audience that will be there for you because they want to do it not because they should. I don’t agree with socializing and comment on someone’s blog like “please, visit my post” or “if I comment here then you have to comment on my post” you know? I like it when is more organic and natural. Show your support from the most honest and sincere part of yourself, because who knows? Maybe those people later have to do with your own growth and help you in thousands of ways. Socialize, don’t be afraid of being 100% you, there are thousands of people in the world with your same insecurities and same fears, but who also share your same passions so jump into the world and get yourself out there, be visible, because you’re worth it.
📝 #2 – Have an Action Plan & Be Organized
Oh, this point is SUPER IMPORTANT, but one that I found difficult at the begging. When I started blogging it was a bit disastrous, especially since I always created my posts the same day I was going to upload them, I really had no prior idea and I also think that I partly lacked ambition, I mean the desire to create something new and be proud of it, so I chose to make tags or memes or things that were already created. But after time passes your blog begins to grow and start being a more important part of your life that you dedicate time to, so if you don’t have anything planned as an organized structure it can be quite overwhelming and cause some dramatic moments.
I really recommend that you have a type of organization that feels good to you, we all have different types of organization and system of creating ideas and all that, so your job will be to find what method or system feels best for you.
In my case, and maybe it serves you in some way, I have all my ideas written in Trello, I use the app for everything, from taking notes while I read, to creating new posts and organizing my ARCs and future readings. I’m still learning myself to be a little more organized every day, I think it’s something that you learn over time, but I still know some incredible cases of bloggers who only write what comes to them at the moment and it works wonderfully for them, which I admire and respect as well. So I think that you’ll have to try and find what’s best for you, which will always be what makes you feel good and safe.
I upload posts 3 to 4 times a week, but I don’t see it as an obligation, in fact, I upload more times somedays, but I do like to think that my blog is like a TV show, you know? lol, where episodes are broadcast every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. But, for you, it may work best once a week or twice a week, and having that kind of schedule planned can give you a lot of security and your audience will know better what to expect and when to expect it.
So, what I mean here basically is that I recommend that you be organized about your blog and have an action plan for it, either in terms of content or ideas, it’s good to have a system that makes you feel safe so that you don’t have than despair at the last moment, something as simple as a notebook can be used to start, but always remember that the right thing is what makes you feel comfortable and that will always be different for each of us.
📝 #3 – Don’t Limit Yourself & Dare to More
I think that sometimes as book bloggers especially, maybe it also happens in other blogs, but I’ll speak from my experience, as always, sometimes we have a structure already established with what it’s expected of us, you know? You become a book blogger and suddenly you know that you have to do reviews, book tags, book memes, blog tours, and all those things, which I really LOVE to do and there’s nothing wrong with them, my point is that people always expect that kind of content from us, and suddenly when we start wanting to create new things on our own we feel intimidated or insecure about it, which is super normal. When I started blogging I was super happy doing just that, in fact, in the beginning, my blog was 100% reviews, who will always be my first love and I still love writing them today, but my content was pure and just the same every time, and I was fine with doing the usual posts for several years because I enjoy them a lot, but I’d never thought that I could do more, you know? I thought, erroneously now I know, that I should only do things related to books because that’s expected of a book blogger, right? but one day I realized that much more can be done as well and that’s fine.
I really feel that I’ve been limiting myself for a long time, that’s why I want to share this with you because I really want you to know that you don’t have to limit yourself or lock yourself within the “stereotype” of what is expected of you for being a certain type of bloggers. Then I started doing original things, something I wanted to see in other blogs but it didn’t exist, so what do you do in that case? YOU CREAT IT. You have the power to create anything from scratch, and not because other people haven’t done it yet does it mean that it’s wrong or that it’s not the way because that’s not the case. It’s so AMAZING that we came to the blogging world and break the molds and mix things that we’re passionate about with other things that we’re also passionate about and create something new and fun to express ourselves on another level.
This year, as an example, I started to make my discussion posts, which I know are nothing new, but they are for me and I understood with them that I could openly express myself and talk about blogging about the meaning of being international and many other things. Things that are related to the bookish world, but at the same time are universal, to discuss with anyone. I also have a series that I must return to life soon, where I choose a reading nook and the recommend a book that I really liked and I love doing it, although I’ve never seen anyone do it before & also I do recommendation posts of anything comes to my mind, cause that’s just myself.
My point is, be daring, be creative, don’t limit yourself just because you’re afraid that it will not work, try, let’s be honest, what would be the worst that could happen … that no one sees it? well, in that case we start over. Give your 100%, everything that’s in your crazy creative mind put it on your blog, don’t be afraid, it’s your safe place and you do what you want with it, because that way you’ll also stand out from others, even doing crazy challenges, mixed posts about things you love, discuss about a topic that you’re passionate about, the possibilities are unlimited and the limits are only set by you.
📝 #4 – Self-promo is your Best Friend
This is one that makes me laugh right now because I’ve been failing a bit myself, but hey, I think it’s pretty self-explanatory, I think no one else is going to promote your content as amazingly as you can do it yourself. And I’ll tell you one thing: don’t be sorry for promoting your content in any social network because it’s like showing your baby, because it’s your creation and you put all your love on it, so it’s INCREDIBLE that you want to show it and share it, so, obviously, more people visit you and thus make your content known.
I know that there are some people who don’t agree about self-promotion or get annoying about that sometimes it’s done in an excessive way, which may be true, but promoting your post a few times over a week, for example, is great, I don’t think there’s anything bad at it and even more so when you’re proud of your content and want to share it with others. I think sometimes people get a little defensive about self-promotion, but I honestly don’t see the harm in wanting to share your content, which you worked so hard on, with the world, so don’t listen to them, sometimes there also some envious people who may want to be hurtful, but I’m sure they’re the minority, so you’ll be fine. Don’t be ashamed to put all your amazing content out there because it deserves to be recognized, loved, and respected.
📝 #5 – Don’t let Statistics Define you
This is such an easy mistake to make, especially when you’re just starting out and want to grow, maybe you focus too much on your blog statistics and end up feeling depressed or disappointed, and that could make you give up something that you really love to do and that’s not worth it. When you just start blogging you may not even think about this, but there will be a moment when someone or something makes you focus on it, it will happen, it’s absolutely human to want to improve and want to be successful and recognized, there’s nothing wrong with that, but don’t let it the power of a number takes away your own power because it doesn’t make any sense.
When you learn to focus on the quality of your content and enjoy sharing your own voice and style then the stats will improve on their own, but if you get obsessed with them, then you’ll surely start to neglect how important your blog content actually is.
I’m not here like thinking I’m a superior being and that I don’t care about my statistics because I do care, and I think they’re a great tool if you know how to use them to your advantage, but don’t let the numbers define you and make you feel less, or make you feel that your content isn’t good enough, because you’re fooling yourself, that isn’t real and I could swear it to you. I myself have seen, follow and love many blogs that don’t have even the number of visits or subscribers or simply the recognition that they really deserve, however they have INCREDIBLE quality content, beautiful graphics, and a wonderful personality. So the numbers, at the end of the day, are just that, what matters is that you know what to focus on, that you give your energy to what really matters and when you feel lost, go back to your roots, why did you start blogging? what made you feel? evaluate your mind, be aware, but don’t lose your head with this kind of thing, I’ve been there and I know it’s not worth it. In my experience, I think that the months when I don’t care how I’m doing when I’m focused on my content and my relationship with my reading family and bloggers that I love is when… OMG, my stats blow up, it’s just incredible for me. So focus on what matters and don’t get defeated by things as trivial as statistics are.