Today marks the one year anniversary of starting my blog. I remember when I signed up for my free wordpress account I had no idea what I was doing! I didn’t tell anyone (in real life) that I was starting a blog (except my husband) until this past June, so in the beginning I had zero readers.
I continued to comment on the blogs I had already been reading, and eventually I began connecting with other bloggers and gained some readers. I’ll never forget how exciting it was the first few times people commented on my blog! I still get a happy feeling each time I get a new notification about a comment.
It took a loong time to get the hang of the whole blogging thing- and it is definitely still a work in progress. But I thought I would share a few things I have learned along the way.
Find your passion and then write about it
If I didn’t love running, there is no way I could carry on a blog about it. I knew going into blogging that it would be focused on running, but it took me awhile to figure out more of a focus. I realized that I love to talk about my training and workouts, nutrition, and life! I find inspiration for my posts from what has been going on with my running as well as from reading other blogs.
Make meaningful connections with other bloggers/readers
I don’t think I realized how important this was until I already had my blog up and running. It’s the part that makes you want to keep writing, in my opinion. Getting feedback from readers helps me to figure out the direction to take future posts in. I have found so many other blogs that may or may not be like mine. Yes, the majority of blogs I read are about running but not all of them. And each and every one is a little different from the other. I feel like I know alot of the bloggers who I have met, and that is simply because we take the time to read each others posts, comment, and reply to comments.
Join in on the link ups
It wasn’t until a few months ago that I discovered link ups. Not only do they help to give a little framework to how my week in blogging will look, but they have connected me with other bloggers who I may not have found otherwise. If you want people to find and read your blog, you have to put yourself out there!
Decide if self-hosting is for you
I made the switch about 9 months after I started blogging. I love having more options now with all the plug-ins that can be used, but its not something you would want to do if you aren’t planning to utilize the extra stuff or aren’t sure if you will continue blogging. I remember being so scared when I began the process, but it wasn’t that bad! And so many people offered to help if I had problems. Lots of bloggers have done posts about how to make the switch, which I found really helpful.
Don’t force it
Lately I have been in a rhythm of posting almost every day. But some of my posts don’t take alot of thinking- like my weekly recap and my meal planning/prep posts. Others I like to put more thought into, and I never want to post something because I feel like I have to. I believe that if I feel that way, it will come across in my post. I hope to continue coming up with original content a few days a week, while also continuing with my normal weekly posts and the occasional recipe.
Use social media
It took me awhile but I eventually made twitter, instagram, pinterest and facebook accounts for my blog. My favorite is definitely instagram. I never tweet, except auto-posts from my blog, links to instagram posts, or interacting with others. I am still figuring out how to best utilize my facebook page, but for now I just auto-post from by blog and occasionally add instagram posts there. And I love Pinterest for saving recipes that I want to try!
When in doubt, remember why you do it
Occasionally I will get overwhelmed and think to myself that I could just stop blogging. But when I think about that, I know it doesn’t feel right. It is something that I enjoy and that I want to continue doing. It’s not always easy- there may be technical issues or writers block or days when you have zero time to blog or read other blogs. But for me, its not a job, its a hobby, and I do it because its fun and gives me a place to talk about the things I love. If that part of it starts to go away, I’ll know I need to make some changes.
So that’s about it! I’m sure there are a million other little details of things I have learned along the way- but too many to remember! I’m excited to have made it to one year- Thank you all for reading!
How long have you been blogging for?
What have you learned since you began blogging?
What would you like to see more of on Running Out Of Wine?