Wednesday

Five Blogging Mistakes (and how to avoid them)



Jennifer DAlessandro


When I started my first blog I was excited. I dreamed up topics all day long and imagined that I'd one day have loads of readers. I posted some ads and expected I'd be getting checks for hundreds of dollars in no time.  I wrote, edited, published, and waited.  Not much happened. In fact, I gave up within a few months. 

I am not alone. There are countless abandoned blogs cluttering up the internet. Why do so many bloggers give up?  Here are the top five reasons, along with some suggestions to help get past these problems. 


#5 No immediate results

You worked hard on your layout. You wrote some amazing posts with great pictures placed correctly.  You ended your posts with tantalizing questions to incite comments.  Sadly, no one came.  Your analytics show less than 20 visits and you're pretty sure your mom and grandma make up a few of those hits.  It's discouraging. 

Solution: MARKETING.  No one will read your blog if they don't know it's there. Promote your posts on your Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking pages. Find sites about similar topics and leave comments on their posts while logged into your blogger ID.  (Make sure your ID profile is not private so people can click it and find your blog.)  


#4 Lost interest

Be careful when selecting your topic for a blog. I once had this idea that I could write a book featuring the funny things customers reveal to their hair stylists. My own stylist had shared a few funny stories about her customers revealing private secrets about their sex lives, health, and other personal things. I created a blog to start collecting these stories. In my head, it seemed like a total win, but in execution I quickly realized that many of the stories where the same. (Infidelity was a major theme.)  I lost interest and gave up. 

Solution: VARIETY. Don't box yourself in with a single topic. You might like writing about college basketball but it's a better idea to write a blog about college sports and leave your options open. Don't select a finite topic that will quickly run dry. 


#3 It's harder than expected

Successful bloggers spend a great deal of time creating content. Your content needs to be fresh, interesting and relevant. One post a week is probably not going to get you the results you were hoping for.  

Solution:  This one has a few possible options. 

  • Set aside an hour a day to create content and make sure you keep yourself disciplined.  
  • Ask other bloggers to provide guest blog posts
  • Ask other bloggers to join with you to create content on an ongoing basis
  • Re-blog existing content from other sites (with proper credit given)



#2 Where's the money?

If you are blogging to make money, you'll quickly find that it's not easy to get a paycheck. I started with Google Adsense and within a year I had accumulated $70 in my account.  Unfortunately, they won't send a check until it reaches $100. I have no idea when that might happen so I'm not banking on it. To make money you'll need to generate traffic and pray for click-throughs on your ads.  

Solution:  I don't recommend blogging to make money.  If that is your goal, do you research, and work very hard.  You can find other companies who will allow you to place ads and will pay either per view or for click. Just keep in mind that it's rare to make a million dollars by blogging. 


#1 It lost its fun

When it becomes a drudge then it will be easy to give up. Why do something that has little reward and you are not enjoying it?   

Solution:  Change it up!  Take some time and look at other blogs. What's working for other people? Maybe it's time to have a contest or post on a controversial topic. Do something to shake things up. It's your blog and you can change the rules any time you like. It's a great way to have fun, so if you're not having fun, you are doing it wrong. Sometimes I change my template just for fun. Press through and don't allow it to become a drag. 

HAPPY BLOGGING!

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