What I have learnt about blogging?
As many of my readers know I generally don’t write about blogging partly because I don’t really feel that I had anything more to add on the subject. As there are some very successful parent bloggers out there that have great articles on every aspect and I am after all still trying to find my way and learning in the process. However with Mudpie Fridays turning one on Wednesday this week I thought I would share a few things I have learnt over the last 12 months. Little did I know when I wrote this post about Dinosaur Small World Play that I would still be writing a year later!
It started as an outlet for creativity I needed something to focus on other than work and family, something for me. We had been through a string of miscarriages and although I didn’t plan and still really haven’t written about my experiences with regards to these I suppose in some ways they were the catalyst for starting Mudpie Fridays. Incidentally if you are wondering how the name came about, I was hanging out the washing at the time! I wanted to include the word Friday as its my day off with Monkey each week and was watching him playing in the mud and it seemed to fit. The rest as they say is history.
When I first started I wrote for about a month and a half before joining any social media as Mudpie Fridays. In hindsight this was probably a mistake as even if I had only opened up an account and shared the odd post or tweet I could have started to grow a following. This is by far the thing I spend most of my time on, as any blogger will tell you post promotion is very time consuming but vital if you want your articles to be read.
Achievements to Date:
So what have I achieved to date? This is not a blow your own trumpet session, after all there are some amazing bloggers out there that have achieved far more than me in less time. But I guess it will hopefully give you a feel of what is possible if you can only dedicate a few hours in the evenings and weekends to growing a hobby.
- I have met some lovely people – in every post you read about blogging you will hear about the parent blogger community and how nice and friendly everyone is, this is so true. If you are thinking of starting a blog yourself then there are many groups you can join to ask questions and share ideas
- Ive entered the world of Linkys with Becky from Cuddle Fairy, we host #BloggerClubUK every week on a Wednesday, you can find out more on our #BloggerClubUK Community Facebook Page. It has only been running for a few weeks yet last week we had 103 posts linked up. I am completely astounded by the take up we have had and the community everyone is creating.
- Stats – now some bloggers are driven by these others are not. I would be lying if I said they weren’t important for me (I work in a sales environment during the day its hard wired into my make up), on average Mudpie Fridays gets around 12,500 views a month. My personal target is 60,000 so I am along way off, but I do know its possible! Around 11.500 follow Mudpie Fridays over all social media channels including blog followers, this is something I am hoping to continue to grow.
- Tots100 is a parent blogger leader board formed of around 8000 blogs. Each month they rank blogs according to a scoring mechanism, I had a wonderful surprise this month staying in the top 250 and being ranked 146. I’m wondering if top 100 is a little ambitious but it gives me something to aim at!
- Im still enjoying it – which is the most important thing. Although its all encompassing and time consuming and I need to keep myself in check constantly that I am not missing opportunities with Monkey because I am on social media. I still love it. I am also hoping it will keep me sane while on maternity leave so expect lots of baby spam from May onwards!
Things I have learnt:
- Attend a blogging conference early on if you can – I was lucky enough to attend two last year one only 3 months in from starting. It was a real eye opener and I learnt so much I would definitely recommend going if you can.
- Become a social media manager – its hard work but there are loads of Facebook groups which will help you get your content shared. I have yet to schedule tweets but its on my to do list this month – wish me luck.
- Make friends – build yourself a support network so when you are having a dry spell or have a question you have somewhere to go with it
- Join in with linkys – this will help you grow that network and you will get to read some great posts.
- Be true to yourself – write about things which are important to you, regardless of what they are, if you are not passionate about it people can tell in your writing. Also bare this in mind when agreeing on sponsored content or product reviews
- Try and get organised – with so much to do if you can build a weekly plan which revolves around your commitments and stick to it, it makes life a lot easier. A journal will help you do this.
- Decide your motivations – I have not monetised Mudpie Fridays, I am not sure if I ever will. However if this is one of your motivations (it shouldn’t be your only one) then do it from day one.
- Google is your friend – if you are trying to do something with coding, want to know how to grow a specific social media platform or are looking for ideas for articles then google can help you on all aspects.
I am so glad I took the leap a year ago to set this up, as a Thank you to everyone who follows me I am hosting a competition over on Mudpie Fridays Facebook Page to win a £50 Amazon voucher. I do hope you can enter, if you are new to blogging and have any questions please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below and I will try and help xx.