Just a quick word of warning.
I am, by no means, the “master blogger.” Oh hell no. I know half of what I think I know, and only a small portion of that knowledge is about blogging. Don’t try to quote me on this stuff because I could be wrong. With that being said, I do think me compiling these little bits of wisdom (if you can even call it that) can be helpful and offer some slivers of advice to all them new bloggies out there.
being an overnight sensation is not always plausible
Reader A is oogling over Bogger B’s tons and tons of followers. They’re popular! They’re famous! Reader A wants to be just like them. So they start a blog. And churn out five posts in an hour. Then they publish said posts, and they wait for the follows to start rolling in.
This was me, in the beginning.
Now I know better, and this is something I would tell anyone who decides to take on blogging: overnight sensation is waaaaay out there, so don’t count on it to serve as your big break. (I’m sorry I don’t mean to sound so pessimistic. I just don’t want any of y’all to get your hopes up.)
it’s not just about churning content
I feel like content and posting posting posting content is something everyone thinks will get them the 20k followers they want. And it’s true that you’ll definitely attract a crowd if you post some interesting stuff, but there’s so much more to that. Build relationships. Talk to people. Make friends and join twitter chats. Twitter chats are one of the ways to make friends. So many of my bloggie friends were found through Twitter chats. It’s awesome. The social aspect is a huge part of blogging, and I would hate for you to miss it.
the beginning part is always the loneliest
More often than not when you’re starting out, blogging feels like you’re speaking to an empty room. You’ll get a sparse amount of views, even less comments, but don’t worry. Everyone goes through this. When I started I was convinced that it’d be like that forever. But it changed. Somehow (I still have no idea how) I got more views, more clicks. It takes time and I cannot stress this enough. I know this sounds like something you hear everyday, but it bears repeating. You will get pass this phase and I promise things will start to turn up. (Well, sort of promise? I can’t tell the future so don’t hold me to it I’M JUST TRYING TO BE INSPIRATIONAL DAMMIT.)
success is not a definitive concept
Like, what does success even look like for bloggers? Tons of followers? Thousands of comments? ARCs all day, everyday?
“Success” is not some cut-and-dried result as of book blogging. Having 2k followers doesn’t necessarily make you successful, just like how having 500 followers makes you unsuccessful. It’s all relative and depends on who you’re asking. It’s all about what you’re envisioning. Maybe you’re hoping to be the Book Blogger, a household name. That’s cool. Or maybe you just want a stable platform of readers, not really aiming for Top 10 Book Blogs. That’s cool too. Just because someone has a set of requirements they need to meet to classify themselves successful” doesn’t mean you need to adhere to them too.
you can do anything differently
Sure, maybe many people do this One Thing a Specific Way. Maybe most of them do. But it doesn’t mean you have to, no? Many people don’t achieve the same achievement the exact same way. There’s variations, there’s personal twists, there’s a little bit of you added to those methods. Blogging is the same thing. There’s no Guide For All Bloggers, no one-size-fits-all method. So don’t sweat it if you’re doing things differently than other bloggers. I mean, this entire guide can be put in the trash if you think so. All of it are just suggestions. (Unless we’re talking about legal stuff. If so, please listen.) You do things your way.
(Please don’t do anything immoral though.)
17 thoughts on “Five Things All Bloggers Should Know”
I wish I knew these before I had started blogging! When I first started blogging, I had expected all those to happen; become an overnight sensation, gain loads of followers and write a shit ton of posts. I’ve thought of giving up many times but there was something that always brought me back to blogging!
I relate to this wayyyy too much! I’ve gone on so many breaks and every time I wonder if this is it. This is when I stop blogging. But I never do! Something just brings me back and I’m grateful. ^.^
Awesome and informative post! It’s so true, it’s pretty lonely when you’re a newbie blogger and don’t know anyone. Thank you for sharing! <3 I think many people will be able to relate to this.
Brittany @ Brittany’s Book Rambles
Aww, thanks for the kind words, Brittany! Yeah, I was pretty lonely at the start, being a newbie and all. But it got better. I met great people (like you! <3). And thank YOU for reading. ^.^
Haha at the very beginning of my first blog 6 years ago I was the same. I thought a lot of people would want to read what I was writing. I learnt pretty quickly that I needed to interact with other people and write content people wanted to actually read. Back then I was posting a lot of book meme posts and no original content…
All great points!
Jordon @ Simply Adrift recently posted…Dark story and dark places with the Glass Sword
Same! Boy, was I full of myself back then. >.> Wrote so many memes, thought that months full of nothing but TTT or WoW would attract a crowd… But I’m glad we learned better, yeah?
This is so important, and I wish I knew some of these things when I started out blogging! For the first 6 months +, I was uploading a new review every other day, yet not commenting on any other blogs, and was hardly active on Twitter. I see now my mistakes! I just expected to get views, but how was anyone supposed to find my blog? I now publish posts a lot less often – instead, I focus on interacting with the community, and making myself more established that way ♥
Yes, I went through that too! I was so confused, because I thought I was doing everything – content! Posting content, writing content, all about the content! But then I realized I wasn’t actually talking to people, and that really impacted how far I could reach people.
This is such great advice! Maybe not exactly advice? Just a great post, whatever you’d call it lol. Everywhere you look, it’s like the advice is always “CONTENT CONTENT CONTENT” and yeah, having interesting and original content is obviously important, but being social and friendly and getting out there is just as important. I also kept posting so often in the beginning but was, like, afraid to go out and interact with other bloggers lol, so yes, the beginning is lonely.
And I definitely agree that there’s no one formula. I think it also depends on your goals though (which you also mentioned). I mean, if you do want to be the most super popular book blogger, then you probably do need to post about the super popular books, for example. But if you just want to talk about the books you love and find readers who love them too, then that’s also great 🙂
By the way, I adore your blog design. The homepage is especially cool! You have me doubting my entire blog design now, haha. Though to be fair, I’m pretty much always doubting my blog design, so I can’t really put the blame on you for that 😛
Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight recently posted…Book Review: The Human Cure by Tracy Auerbach
Yay, I’m so glad you liked it! Yeah I guess this is a mix of advice/ramblings? I’m not even sure anymore myself haha.
Yeah, I can definitely relate to that. Before I started blogging I was looking up so many things, and the only thing I can remember was people saying “CONTENT!” and so that’s what I did. But in doing so I totally forgot about the socializing aspect! Now we know better, though.
So glad you agree with me! I’ve seen people say how so-and-so is so successful at blogging, but then I started thinking, “does that mean all other bloggers who aren’t like so-and-so aren’t as successful?” immediately followed by a “no!”. Success is whatever the blogger envisions it to be.
And thank you for your kind words! The homepage is my pride and joy – took a lot of debugging and troubleshooting to make sure it did what I wanted it to do.
Definitely! It took me a long while, but I finally had all these realisations. Especially the one about blogging not only being about churning out content. I actually stopped blogging for a while because the pressure got to me, and sometimes it felt like no one even cared what I thought, because I was getting no comments, etc. But, after a while, after I got Twitter and started interacting more with other bloggers, I realised it was honestly more about the community. Awesome post, Claudia! 🙂
Geraldine @ Corralling Books recently posted…Potterhead July | Accepting New Canon in the Harry Potter Universe
This is all really solid advice. I completely agree. Some things have to be learned the hard way, I think. Thanks for sharing 🙂
I’m so glad you agree! And yeah, that’s true. Life is the greatest teacher, no? Thank you for reading!
So true! I think lots of people start a blog and expect to me super popular over night, I know I did O_O but it’s a lot more work than it looks at first, and interacting with people is very important! Through our two and a half years blogging, we’ve made so many friends, so there are a lot of perks 🙂 Friendship and people to fan with are definitely a plus when you don’t have many bookish friends 🙂
These are so so true and I wish I knew them sooner. It can be stressful sometimes, but it’s well worth it ^_^
I’m in the newbie stages and I definitely needed to hear this (especially about the whole talking to an empty room part). I think I read enough posts before starting where I’m like, Okay, so you don’t HAVE to have people flooding in. It’s fine. Really.
But there’s that anxiety that it’ll just be me and my empty room for a good long time. I’m just scheduling my posts and hoping for the best. Thanks for the advice! It’s solid and helpful and makes me feel better! 🙂
Blogging success really isn’t something that you can define. I think it’s more like feeling happy about what you’re doing… THAT’S success in my eyes. And yes to being social. For a long time I wasn’t the most social person out there and blogging felt a lot like a popularity contest that I didn’t want to play, but then I realized that it’s not like that, it’s really just that I was being standoffish. I would talk to the people who visited my blog, but I didn’t go out of my way to talk to other bookish people. I really do think that being social is the key to it all. I see some bigger bloggers who have stopped talking to people all-together and I no longer visit those blogs. If you can’t take the time to interact w/ your audience, why would I visit you?
Michelle @ Pink Polka Dot Books recently posted…Learning to Swear in America by Katie Kennedy- More Like Learning To MATH
This is such a great post. It’s so important to remember this stuff. It’s really easy to compare ourselves to other bloggers we, at the very least, perceive as more successful than us. Thanks for writing this!