This is a guest post by published author Danielle Bernock. In this post Danielle explains how you can improve your blogging experience by reaching out to others for help and encouragement.
Dear Newbie Blogger,
This post will save you time and frustration as you go about the daunting task of building a blog. It doesn’t matter how smart you are or how long you’ve been writing – you can’t do it alone, so don’t try to. I’ll show you how to get blogging help and encouragement. You’ll need massive amounts, so it’s good to know where to find it from the get-go!
Blogging is challenging.
As you pour your heart and soul into words for others, know that it’s not a matter of if, but of when you will run into disappointments. The internet is a crowded place but those massive numbers won’t encourage you, they’ll make you feel alone in the ocean. The great news is that you’re not alone out there on the information highway.
Solution: Join Facebook writing and blogging groups.
How do you find them? Google is your best friend. Search for the groups that interest you. I just found one today called Blogger Boost. Others including the Blog Zone on LinkedIn and the Tribe Writers Group by Jeff Goins. Join a bunch of them and engage with others. Get to know your peers and you’ll feel the camaraderie community provides. Before you know it you won’t even need blogging help – you’ll be helping others!
Have fun! Share your wins and challenges. The result will be help and encouragement from other writers and bloggers. Do this now, or you may get discouraged and quit later.
Gather a ton of blogging help resources.
Whether you’ve been writing all your life or just started, there’s a lot to learn. Blogging is more than just writing. There is a whole new language to understand, especially if you are using WordPress. Words like: permalinks, plug-ins, widgets, favicon, dashboard, SEO, themes, sliders, backlinks and many more. It can be overwhelming without the proper information or resources.
Things to keep in mind:
- It doesn’t have to cost you any money.
- Read other blogs. This one is an excellent (and free!) resource especially for beginner bloggers. Search around the site for things you need to learn and subscribe. They have a getting started section.
- Another valuable resource is Lynda.com which is an online education company. You can get a ten-day membership. It helped me a lot.
- Go to the library or online and get books. Whatever format works for you, paperback, eBook or audio. Read about writing or read for enjoyment, but read.
- Podcasts are a valuable resource. Here is one for beginners by Michael Hyatt called My Advice to Beginning Bloggers.
- You can also find a plethora of instructional videos on YouTube but not every video will be a good resource.
Guidance: There’s so much data available it’s easy to get lost in it and receive bad information. Not everyone who gives advice knows what they’re talking about. It’s always better if you don’t have to unlearn things.
You need a mentor for blogging help.
A mentor is someone who’s further along into the journey you’re on. A person who you want to learn from and follow.
I had a voracious learning appetite when I started blogging. I subscribed to many good sites. Eventually it became overwhelming.
It was like sitting in a classroom with multiple teachers all talking at once. I chose one to be my primary mentor. This has been a wise decision. The wisdom came by following the guidance of my mentor Jeff Goins. His mentor is Michael Hyatt.
You might not know it, but nearly all big bloggers you see and read have mentors of their own who they turn to when they need to get blogging help, even if it seems like they know everything in their niche.
Growing an audience.
You can’t just write an article, publish it to the internet and expect anyone to read it. If you don’t manage to keep them interested they’re gone. Here’s a few ideas on how you can develop a growing blog audience of loyal readers.
Ideas for growing an audience:
- Build an email list to successfully gather your audience.
- Network in the communities you’ve joined.
- Utilize some form of social media to connect with people.
The social media networks suitable for you depends on the focus of your blog. I use Twitter and Facebook the most. If your blog is about food or photography it might be wise to add Instagram or Pinterest. Remember, social media is for being social, not repetitively telling people what you want from them. A good resource on this is the book ‘Return on Relationship’ by Ted Rubin. Social connections is how you will find your readers and they will find you.
You’ll need to grow an email list. You may be asking ‘why do I need to grow an email list?’ The answer is too long for this article so read this. You shouldn’t use your personal email for building an email list. You’ll need an email service provider aka ESP to help you. Mail Chimp is free up to 2,500 subscribers. Paid options are widely available. They’re many email service providers to choose from. I started with MailChimp. Later I switched to ConvertKit.
Using an ESP you’ll need to provide a physical address. All your questions about that can be answered here. If you want to succeed at blogging remember to reach out for help.
You’ll need encouragement, information, a mentor and a growing audience. Without them you’ll make mistakes you could’ve avoided. This article contains resource and links for you to begin getting the help you need for a better blogging experience.
We’d love to hear from you in the comments below: What are some of the blogging help resources you’ve discovered? Which have been the most helpful and encouraging to you?
I love making a difference in people’s lives with my words. It’s why I write and publish. Growing up I wrote songs, poems, and stories but it wasn’t until I released my book Emerging With Wings: A True Story of Lies, Pain, And The LOVE that Heals that I saw the impact I could make. My purpose is to build people up on the inside, so they can be their true self and live their dreams. When I’m not writing I love spending time with my family and friends.