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Wanna be a blogger?
So you have all this creativity over flowing from within you, all these ideas racing around your head and a strong desire to let it all out. You feel like Instagram isn’t enough and YouTube is just too intimidating, but you still want to take content-creating to a whole new level, and maybe have a little corner of the internet to call your own, where you make your own rules? I know those feelings all too well!
I started this blog on May 2016, I was fascinated by the idea of having my own website, a place where I could document my style, lifestyle, trips, etc. A place where, 10 or 20 years from now I can look back to and see how much I’ve done over time! An online-journal if you will!
If you can resonate with these feelings, maybe its time you started your own blog, or business site! And here are some tips I can give you from personal experience!
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The very first thing you need to think about is your motive behind wanting to start a blog! For me, I went through a period of time where I was very tired of just… taking from the world and not putting anything out, if that makes sense. I had this urge to create something and I wanted release very badly! Some people think blogging is just freebies and fancy trips, and yes for some individuals it is, but guess what? For most it isn’t! You have to have a real passion for it, and be able to stay consistent, and be willing to basically “work” for free, AND NO i’m NOT talking about working with brands for free, I am 100% for people getting paid for their time and content no matter how big or small their following is, I’m talking more about knowing that you’ll be blogging for a while without seeing any money in return from traffic, clicks, ads, etc. To put it simply, do it out of passion, money will come later! Otherwise you’ll just get discouraged, stop, and abandon your site by not seeing any financial return…
Once you’ve decided this is what you really want, the second thing you need to do is brain storm! What will be my main focus or underlying theme for my blog? Will I have categories, weekly news letters, when am I going to take pictures and write? Don’t worry so much about the blog layout, that’ll just give you anxiety, I guarantee you, EVERY blogging platform there is will have a vast variety of “themes” or “templates” for your blog! Now-a-days you don’t really need to be an expert on HTML coding (omg remember in myspace how you’d inject a code to hide your music player so people could not pause the song on your page? I’m in tears LOL), mostly every platform is “drag and drop”. So basically the post is already laid-out for you and you just fill in the text portion and upload your pictures, then you can drag and move things around as you please! And of course, if you have the coin, you can always pay a web-designer for a custom site design, that is also an option.
Speaking of platforms, Wordpress, Blogger, Wix, Squarespace? Where do you start? That is entirely up to you! I’ve heard and met different people that have experienced all of those and there’s always pros and cons. I personally host this website through Squarespace, and I absolutely love it. As I mentioned before, you can pick from many templates, and they’re even categorized on the type of content you will be covering! You can look at their templates here and that’ll give you an idea of how your website could look.
4.Putting everything together
I’m not gonna tell you what to do on this one, I’m sure you can look at youtube videos and do it step by step, I’m just going to tell you the route I took when putting this blog together. I paid a friend of mine with a Web-Design degree and called it a day. He did everything for me, from getting my domain “www dot andres ricardo dot com” from GoDaddy.com to recommending squarespace then building the actual site from a template that I picked. So that’s that, I’m not saying you need to do that but thats what I did.
Disclaimer: There IS annual fees for websites and domains! I think I pay about $140 for both, annually.
So obviously, if you’ve put lots of time and effort towards something you’d want people to see it. There’s many ways to get traffic, but again, you have to be willing to put in the time and have patience. The more you post and if you stay consistent, people will come to your site! Stay true to yourself and you’ll attract people that share the same passions you have.
Bellow are some ways someone could find your site:
Search Engines (Google, Yahoo etc.) someone could google “how to style a black shirt” and if you’ve covered this on your blog you might just get traffic, so always keep your content interesting and relevant.
Directed from your Social Accounts (Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter etc.) Every time I post something on here I announce it on EVERY SINGLE ONE PLATFORM I’m a part of, even snapchat! The one platform aside from Instagram I see the most traffic being directed from is actually Pinterest! Because, on the contrary to all social platforms, once you post a picture on Pinterest it actually starts circulating through the site and gets shown to users who Pinterest think might want to “pin” the type of content you’ve uploaded, where as with other platforms, other than the Discovery tap, you’d have to go on someones page to see it.
Engaging with other bloggers. Wether you leave comments on well-established blogs and leave your site’s address at the end, or you collaborate with another blogger of the same niche as you, thats a way to attract readers to your page.
Once you’ve completed the previous steps and you have a constant stream of readers you can begin to monetize your site! Just like with traffic, theres many ways to go about when it comes to making money off your blog, but again, patience is key!
Affiliate links/programs (RewardStyle, ShopStyleCollective, Amazon). This is probably the number one source to monetize anything online in this day and age honestly, blog, Instagram, YouTube, and also the one method I use the most. By posting affiliate links to products you recommend or wear/use. Basically you apply to become a member of these programs (they review your follower count, traffic, website etc.) once you get approved they provide you with special links that contain “cookies”, once the reader clicks the link you earn a small amount, and if they buy the item, you earn a commission. Obviously, the more people click and or buy, the more you make. Once you accumulate a certain amount (it varies per program, for some some it is $25, some $100) they pay you out.
Paid partnerships with brands, paid posts! This is probably the second most common way to make money, talk about a product or a brand and charge for it!
Website advertisement. I don’t really have ads around my website because I want to keep it aesthetically pleasing, but some people see some revenue off of advertisements!
Sell stuff. Bloggers sell all kinds of things, photo presets, eBooks, unwanted clothes, you name it. You can even charge to shoot other bloggers, or weddings, anything, just charge for your services and knowledge!
7.START START START!
The last tip I can give you is just, START!