tips for new bloggers

Purchase your own domain name

Hypocritical coming from me, yes, however purchasing your own domain name from earlier on in your blogging career has importance. Not only does having your own web hosting come with a lot more features, you are more likely to get brand opportunities if you own the domain due to DA score statistics among other things. 

Social media will be your best friend

Get yourself a Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and whatever other social media account you can think of. Engaging with other bloggers will be your main source of traffic, to begin with. Participate in blogger chats, share your blog at all opportunities and make sure to be yourself! There is a lovely community out there who will support new bloggers, all you need is confidence in yourself and an effective social media strategy, then you're good to go. 

Take brand collaborations but know your worth

There is a lot of talk about how bloggers should not work for free, which I agree with to an extent. However, if you are a new blogger, taking brand opportunities in exchange for free products or social media coverage can be a good idea. As long as you're not doing an over-excessive amount of work, including a company in a post simply for inclusion on their Twitter will bring you more views dependent on the companies follow count. That's not a bad thing, sometimes extra social media coverage brings you bigger and better deals. Look at the brand's social presence, what they require you to write, how you may gain from it and whether or not it's right for you. If so there is no harm in taking the chance. If the brand has little followers, is barely active and wants a whole post in exchange for the smallest product it is a waste of your time and effort. Be sensible, and do what you think is right.

Money and opportunities don't always come easy

Make sure you have quite a few posts up or a lot of knowledge about the blogging community before you start actively looking for collaborations. If you have no previous business experience, writing emails selling yourself and your blog will be difficult. You will get rejected, and that is completely fine. Allow the rejection not to be a sign of failure, but a learning experience. It may teach you that your social presence needs to expand or that you need to work on your request skills, either way, see every experience as a chance to learn. If you do get opportunities, make sure you have a clear line of communication, especially if you have never done this before. If you feel as though a brand is being unprofessional or unfair, know your worth and speak up. Every bit of social coverage is important, and your platform is important, don't let yourself be used. I do recommend signing up for affiliate programs straight away if possible, especially if you plan to do a lot of reviews/include products in posts. You make a percentage of the earnings from every sale you make which can be very useful!

You don't have to fit yourself into a niché

Personally, I think there is so much pressure to confine yourself to one type of writing. If you are passionate about the topic, and you will feel proud of the post then do it. Regardless of whether or not it gets as much engagement as your other posts, your blog is personal. Write things that make you happy. Publish things that you enjoy and keep your blog open to a range of different types of posts. Sticking to a smaller amount of topics may give you more brand opportunities, however, don't be put off of writing an odd post here and there about other things. You do you.

Organisation is important

Although this slightly contradicts the next tip I am going to give, make sure you have a level of organization. Write a few extra blog posts when you have a spare day just in case you do not have time in future. Pop down some blog post ideas just in case you are having a writer's block. Use apps to automate tweets. Keeping organized and active will help your engagement to grow, as it shows you take your blog seriously. However, if you're not great at organization, you can work around it.

Have a plan, but don't fret if it fails

Make sure you know which direction you want your blog to go in, what type of posts you want to make and how you want to use your social media. If this goes wrong, don't worry about it. You don't have to have a perfect blog schedule or a really active twitter account. Find the right balance and just work with that. Sometimes things don't go to plan, don't let it put you down. 

Learn from others

Read other blogs, interact on Twitter and take constructive criticism. Everyone has been in your situation at one point, so everyone is aware of how hard getting on your feet can be. Evolve your blog from the words of others. Learn from their style of writing, from the way they manage their social accounts and how they design their blog. Never stop learning, and don't disregard adaptation. You could even take an online blogging course if needed, and there are social media courses out there if you need that little bit of extra help. If you have the money, and you really want to take on blogging as a career then you could consider purchasing a manager, however, I recommend doing this when your blog is fully up and running.

Patience is key

Don't expect the views to flood in straight away. All good things take time. Make sure you take the time to work on your blog, to carry on doing what you're doing and have patience. Your blog will grow eventually, you just have to establish a system that works. Do not feel disheartened by a lack of views or followers or brand collaborations. Nothing comes easy, and if you put in the work and stay dedicated things will look up eventually.

Be yourself

Your blog is for you. Everyone else is just an extra bonus. Write as though you are writing for a friend. Write something you would want to read. Tweet things you would want to see and post photos on Instagram you find interesting. Don't mold yourself into what you think a perfect blogger should be because there is no such thing. Stay happy, and stay doing you. Yes, there are things you can do to optimise your blog but if you want your theme to be brightly colored then do it. Don't make yourself miserable. Go with what you think is best, make your own judgments and remember that happiness and authenticity are key.