Struggles of A New Blogger: What To Avoid
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Hustling with a blog and a full time job is not always easy. Especially, as a new blogger the struggle is real. My goal is to post twice a week, so I am always serving my readers new, inspiring content. I am still trying to figure out how to keep up with that goal when I am having a super busy week or even month. This post will be a little bit of a venting session, but I promise if you keep reading until the end there will be that dose of inspiration you came for.
I know I’m doing a few things right, but I also know there is much room for improvement. I have a editorial calendar on google calendar set up for posts for the next month, so I know what I’m going to write about. In addition, I have Pinterest scheduled so my content is still circulating even if I don’t post something new.
Yet, I still struggle with writing new content when I’m super busy AND keeping up my page views when I don’t submit new content. I was doing so well with putting out 2 posts a week and scheduling my content on Pinterest, and I saw a spike in my traffic.
And honestly my pageviews are not where I would like them to be. I would love at least 500-1,000 pageviews a day. BUT I am happy that I am making progress and as long as I am progressing I am happy. I know I am not the only new blogger juggling a lot, and there are many that are super busy and still turn out great statistics. I think that’s great and shout outs to them for making it happen. But for me I can’t compare myself to them, and I know in time people will start coming to my site everyday in the boatloads and I’ll look back at these first few months like work look where I came from.
3 Reasons This Week Was Rough
1. No new post
2. Page views dropped
3. Slowed down social media engagement
As a new blogger, I get frustrated because I don’t think I can take those chances of not keeping my part of the bargain and creating great content each week. I’m not at the place where I can go MIA for a week, and my pageviews not take a toll. But you know what it’s okay, it means this side hustle is real and if you don’t put in the work, you won’t see results. (That’s my note to self)
Why this week was so busy for me?
My full time commitment besides blogging is being a dancer, a student in college, and working full time. This week my dancer duties dominated my life and made blogging a little difficult.
This past Wednesday I was invited to work at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s opening
night gala. (Wednesday is usually my new blog post day) Instead of publishing a new post I was running from a school lecture to the gala. The event was absolutely amazing; there were over 1,000 people there! I love to dress up and look nice, and I was pooped by the time I came home at 1:30am.
Usually, I write posts on Monday for Wednesday but this week I had a revelation. Many bloggers say to define your niche and be an expert in your topic of choice; for now my overarching niche is a lifestyle blog catered to Millennials, college students, and young artists. I know I can and probably will make my mission more specific, but I think it’s too early to box myself in.
This Wednesday I had it set in my editorial calendar to write about how to study for finals, and when I started to write it I realized I don’t want to write about that. I believe moments like those help define your niche. Now, I know even though I am writing to college students, I don’t want to talk about studying and school work. I can, but I rather write empowering posts to help young people make better financial decisions or to follow through with their goals.
So, even though I’m bummed I didn’t write a new post, I think this revelation was an important step in my journey. I won’t make ideas like that again in my content calendar. Because it really sucks to have a post planned out, and then not what to write about it.
Snapshot of My Busy Week
Besides the gala, I also have my own performances this weekend. As a dancer we rehearse for weeks and months, which usually culminates in a performance.
Stepping out on a stage full with lights and feeling the excitement and energy of the gleaming faces of the audience is one of the best feelings of a dancer. I love to perform because it is so refreshing to separate myself from the world for a moment and leave my heart out on the stage. (That was a bit corny but it’s so true) It is a gift I was given and to be able to exercise it everyday is such a privilege.
I knew performance week was coming, but it still took me off of my blogging game. I not only didn’t post a new post, I slowed down engaging with Facebook groups and social media. Which, took a toll on my pageviews. I am trying to create a theme and an aesthetic for my Instagram, and I didn’t continue with my theme this week because I got sidetracked.
To make things slightly more crazy, I had to prioritize school assignments this week as the end of the year approaches. I am at the point in my undergraduate career that I know what I want to do when I graduate and I have found the things that truly make me happy. So I rather work everyday towards becoming a better dancer and cultivating my blog and business than doing mindless school work. With that being said, not going to class everyday and not doing homework is not an option. Instead, I’m trying to find ways in which what I learn in school helps me become a better blogger because I’m paying too much money to not take full advantage of it.
What To Avoid
Originally, I wanted to write about my weekend of performances(hence the portion about my weekend), but this post morphed into the struggles of a new blogger. Because this weekend they went hand in hand, and I realized some things I should avoid. It also became a slight venting session as I explained why my hecitic life makes blogging hard sometimes. I want to be honest with my readers because things aren’t always peachy and easy, but I don’t want to end on a negative note, mindlessly complaining about my life. I know we all have crazy lives so why read about someone else’s?
I get it, so I hope you beared with me through this post for the little bit of motivation at the end. For any new bloggers out there juggling a lot of things while trying to cultivate your amazing new business, remember you’re not alone. There will be hiccups along the way that help us realize how to better streamline our process and make better choices in the future. Because if you’re like me, my other passions that require full time commitment aren’t changing anytime soon, so I need to figure out how to balance them and blogging if I want to be successful in both. And when there is a will there is a way. So, it is completely possible, to do it all. You can work full time and have a successful blog. But, it definitely takes lots of planning and preparation.
If you are looking for a book to read to help you balance your hustles, look into Streamline Your Side Hustle by Erin.
What Did I Learn To Avoid?
- Not Planning Ahead Efficiently
- Planning ahead is so important, especially if you are a super busy person. If you know you are going to have a busy week or month, plan your blog posts ahead of time and stick to them. This was my biggest issue, I changed my mind on a post I planned for, and it took me off my game.
- Comparing Yourself To Other Bloggers
- It can be so frustrating to see a drop in traffic the moment you take a few days off from your blog. So, naturally, you are already feeling a little down about that, and you go on Pinterest, and see how someone got 5k page views in their first month of blogging. I’ve learned to avoid comparing myself at all costs because my journey is different.
- Not Using A Scheduling Tool
- Or not using a scheduling tool properly. I am still trying to figure out which tools work best for me, but they truly are a big help. You want to have things scheduled for social media and Pinterest, so even if you do not generate new content your old content will be circulating. I started pinning 70 pins a day using BoardBooster scheduler, and it has helped greatly.
Hopefully next time I have a super hectic dance week, I will have better planned out my posts and this won’t happen again.
I know I’m not alone on this, so I would love to hear how other bloggers deal with their hectic schedules and busy lives.
Check out my favorite blogging resources and what I used to start and grow my blog.
One of my favorite resources and what has helped me really jump start my blogging career is this eBook by Abby Lawson called Building A Framework: The Ultimate Blogging Handbook. This eBook can help new and old bloggers reach the next step towards earning an income from blogging.
Before you start a blog, make sure you have the best site to host it!
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