8 Huge Blogging Mistakes I've Made | The Gossip Darling

8 Huge Blogging Mistakes I've Made

10:00:00 AM




So I've renamed this post about a million times already! The original titled was "5 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started a Blog". Then it changed it to "5 Huge Blogging Mistakes I've Made. Then I realized that I've made a whole lot more than 5 blogging mistakes. Lol. If my blog were a journal, you'll see many things crossed out! Then I figured...screw the title... I'm just going to write! So here we go. (Warning: SUPER long post ahead! Sorry!)

This is my second attempt of creating a successful blog. I use the word successful loosely because we all have different ideas of what success is. For me, it's finding something that I'm truly happy writing about and maybe having a few readers following and supporting my journey. I have been running my wedding blog for many years and I'm truly so happy with that blog and have no regrets. It has taught me soooo much and the lessons have been immeasurable. I always wonder when I discover a new "successful" blogger what stories they have to share and what their journey has been like. Like not knowing how to make a change in Wordpress and literally spending 2.5 hours googling and searching Pinterest for the answer. Or working on something and the images refuse to upload. Or a million other stressful things that have happened to me while blogging! The stressful events always occur in the middle of the night too! Despite how many blog posts you'll read, nothing is like going through it yourself. It's stressful, frustrating but an important lesson. No regrets coming from me! So many of my friends have asked me about blogging and whether they should start a blog. They ask me for advice and step by step instructions and it's sooo hard explaining to someone who is totally new to blogging. (We have allll been there!! And I'll be writing a separate post soon about how to start your own blog!) How do you explain the highs and lows of being a blogger? How do you not sound like a crazy person when you start sharing all of your stories? I promise I'll try to make sense with this post! 



Here are 8 Huge Blogging Mistakes I've Made (so far!):

1. I was only focused on looking good! I think it's normal that you'll always want to look your best. When I first started blogging, I knew absolutely nothing about blogging. I just knew that I wanted to write and share all of my thoughts with others. (For better or for worse you get to read what I'm thinking! Ha!) I was getting all this information from a friend who knew all about blogging and she kept saying...you have to market yourself and be consistent and make sure you look the part and the list goes on. I was thinking to myself, "How can I market my blog when I haven't even written one blog post?" She kept talking design and how I have to look professional and this is how top bloggers do things. In all honesty, it all became way too much for me. I had never even written a blog post and didn't even know what SEO meant and yet I was dropping $800 on a brand new blog? Yes, I was that girl. It's like being the best dressed skier and yet I've never skied before in my life!! I was so focused on marketing, business cards, media kits, blog design, email must be mel@domainname.com, and everything must match that I totally got so stressed and spent so much time researching that I didn't even...write. It's important and very good to research, but not to the point of overwhelming yourself. It's like only being book smart and not having any street sense. Do your research and ask questions but don't spend 90% of your time doing it. Take most things that you read with a grain of salt. Every blogger is different and the amazing thing in this blogging world is that everyone can do things differently and still be successful. 

2. Not commenting on other blog posts. I totally didn't realize how important it is to reach out to other bloggers, help to grow and build  the blogging community, and show some love! I read over 40 blog posts daily and I mostly read them while I'm taking the subway to and from work. Even though I was always reading, I never commented! It's not that I had nothing to say. Most of the time it was down to the fact that I didn't have an Internet connection while on the subway. Well to put it mildly...huge mistake! Blogging is all about building a community and the blogging community is very large and supportive. Don't be a one-way street. If you want people to support your blog by reading new content and commenting, then you must do the same. Definitely don't do anything in a spammy or fake way and just comment because you want traffic to your own blog. The key is to be authentic and build dialogue. Commenting is a way to start a conversation and for you to get to know others. How can we know you exist if we never hear from you? Speak up!

3. Wrong Blog Platform. This may be a controversial one but I'm just going to say it. Yup, I'm going there! I hate Wordpress and I much more prefer Blogger. In the future, I may regret writing this but at the moment it's 100% true. When I first started blogging I used Blogger as my platform. I was told by so many people that this was wrong and I had to switch to Wordpress. And I did. For me, this was a huge mistake! I just wanted to write and I had absolutely no idea what SEO was or widgets or editing photo sizes. I just thought I could upload a photo and insert into my post. When I switched to Wordpress, I ended up spending soooo much time and money just trying to figure things out! Widgets not working and not knowing how to fix it or widgets having a bug and causing the site to not run properly. The hosting going down and people not being able to access by blog for an entire weekend. The list goes on and on. Now granted, I had no idea what I was doing and all of this stuff was probably 100% my fault, but all I wanted to do was blog and not deal with all the tech side of things. It was enormously frustrating and honestly there were quite a number of times when I just wanted to quit. It wasn't because I didn't like blogging. It was just because I had a full-time and part-time job and I just wanted to do something as a hobby and have fun! Trying to figure out Wordpress wasn't fun to me. Personally, Blogger is super easy and user friendly. It's awesome for people who aren't tech savvy or are brand new bloggers. For my friends just starting out and want to blog for fun, I always recommend Blogger. I'm sure many people will disagree with me but there are just as many successful bloggers using blogger as their platform as there are bloggers using Wordpress. I'm sure there are many who will disagree with me but for me...Blogger all the way. So far it's been 5 months and we haven't had one disagreement!



4. Comparing Myself to Others. I'm the Queen of comparing myself to other bloggers. It's such an evil thing that I do to myself. I have to keep reminding myself that I can't compare my blog to blogs that have been around for years! With my wedding blog, I was trying to compete with huge bloggers in the industry who also blogged full-time. I was blogging 2 to 3x daily for 2 years. I was extremely overwhelmed and burnt out. I was coming home from work at 9pm and blogging until the early morning hours. I wasn't happy and it really didn't make a difference in my stats. If you're able to blog happily 1x per week, then do it. If you can blog more then great! Don't try to keep up with the Joneses! 

5. No Plan. Not sure if this is a good thing or bad thing but I entered the blogging world blindly! Lol. I had no idea what I was doing or how hard it was going to be. Blogging is soooo much work. It's totally worth it but a crap load of work nonetheless. I was trying to do everything at once and I was getting nothing done. Planning is your best friend. Even though you may not have a niche or know where you want your blog to go, just write down your purpose for blogging and what you want to accomplish. Also write down your goals and your dreams! It helps to have a vision and it definitely helps to have it written somewhere.  

6. No Passion. After blogging about weddings 2 to 3x daily for 2 years, of course I lost my passion. I should have totally paced myself better and planned things out more but I totally just hit the ground running. It's so important to be passionate about your blog and truly believe in what you're writing. The readers will be able to tell how authentic your words are. If you're not feeling it, it'll reflect in your writing and in turn, your readers won't be feeling it. Write from the heart and the readers will believe. 

7. Listening to Others. Oh goodness. Maybe I should have written this as my first mistake. People love offering advice! It's great to support one another and encourage the other person but there's a difference when you're on the receiving end of bad advice. (At least I think it was bad advice) Do what's best for you and what's in your heart. What should I have done? I should have stuck with using Blogger as my blogging platform because it's what I was more comfortable with. Since I was brand new to blogging, I could have saved so much money and used the extra money on sponsoring other blogs and marketing my baby! I also shouldn't have listened to people about blogging multiple times per day! As a side note, I truly don't want to seem ungrateful for those trying to help me. I just feel like everyone can relate to the situation of receiving what you interpret as bad advice. I should have listened to my gut! When I was offered new advice everyday, my reply was...."thank you....I think".

8. Doing Everything Myself. Lastly, another huge blogging mistake I have made is trying to do every single thing myself. Dude, you totally have to outsource some things. Unless you are doing this full-time, I think it's so difficult to do everything on your own. For me, I totally outsourced blog design and maintenance, social media scheduling and SEO updates. Once I had someone join my team, it made life so much more easier. I then had time to focus on super important things like writing great and valuable content!

What blogging mistakes have you made?

PS: before you go....I was also told by loads of people that you had to choose a blog niche in order to be successful. One of my favorite bloggers is proving those people wrong. Helene in Between wrote Is It Okay to NOT Have a Niche Blog? and it's just way too perfect not to share. Please let me know what you think.

xoxo

12 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed reading this post, and you're right that the most stressful blog-related things always happen in the middle of the night! Right now I'm sticking with Blogger as well and I tend to agree with what you said, everyone should just stick with what they feel comfortable with. I don't think you have to have a wordpress blog to be 'successful' either, I mean- who decided that?

    www.thesundaymode.blogspot.com.au

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    1. Thank you so much! I totally can't deal with Wordpress! The easier the better for me. Thanks for the support! xx

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  2. Such a great post, such relevant points. Lovely to discover your blog. :)

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    1. Thank you so much Erica for stopping by! So sweet of you! xo

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  3. Thanks for sharing this post. When I first started blogging I was worried about the appearance way too much as well, instead of the content. Your blog is amazing and a pleasure to read!

    http://anythingandeverything.weebly.com/

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    1. Thanks so much Arya!! I was obsessed about the design of my blog. Always wanting to make changes. It's important but it's not the whole story. Content will always be key and the main reason readers come back. xo

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  4. I love this post! A lot of really good points :) I am a relatively new blogger and this post helped me out a lot!

    www.sowendyso.blogspot.com

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    1. Awww thanks so much! I'm so happy I can help! I'm working on a few more posts like this. :)

      xx

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  5. Thank you so much for this post. I am new to blogging and trying to figure it all out. I can totally relate to a lot of this post especially trying to look perfect and comparing myself to other bloggers. This actually made me feel more confident and reminded me that I need to blog for me!

    Thanks again!

    Sarah
    http://mysimplemomblog.com/

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    1. Awwww thanks so much! I appreciate you stopping by! Oh trust me..I've spent thousands of dollars on blogging mistakes! You're not alone! Just blog for you and keep going. I promise good things will come! xo

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  6. i love this post! I have just started my blogging journey and I have taken notes from this! thank you!! i love your blog!
    please check out mine :) www.catwalkgossip.com

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    1. Thank you so much for stopping by! You're so sweet! xo

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