First 6 months of blogging

It’s been almost 4 months since I published my first post on Whole Lotta Leads.

On 31st Nov 2017, this blog will reach 2 major milestones.
Surviving for 6 months and
Reaching the target of publishing 20 blog posts.

I am so excited for whats next to come.

The first six months of blogging are very crucial. It takes a lot of work and it’s difficult to not give up.

You have to learn new skills & form new habits so that you can hit your milestones.

Here are few things that you should do in your first six months of blogging.

  1. Set up your blog. Define what your blog is all about and how it helps people.
    Tell your story on the About Page.
    How you got started? What is your mission? And How you intend to make an impact on society?
    Create a Media Page or Portfolio Page or Media Kit – Whatever you call it. This page helps you get hired. Treat your blog like a business. Start getting clients, customers, and students.
    Optimise your blog for converting readers to subscribers. In simple words, encourage users to sign up for your newsletter
  2. Get email subscribers. Use some simple strategy that works to build your email list. Don’t try everything at a time, stick to one strategy. Free eBook or weekly roundup or book recommendations or secret tips. Use the one that works the best for your blog.
  3. Get feedback. Don’t ask complete strangers to offer feedback. First, build some trust and rapport with the person. Then ask them to give an honest feedback about – The look and feel of your website. Prepare a small questionnaire.
    Q1: Does it look interesting?
    Q2: How many pages did they visit & how long did they stay on your blog?
    Q3: Is it engaging?
    Q4: What needs to change?
    Q5: What information is missing?
    Q6: Does it encourage them to connect with you?
    Q7: Do they feel comfortable to leave a comment?
    Q8: Do they feel safe to subscribe to your newsletter?Get feedback from all kinds of people –
    Your readers, Influencers in your niche & Brands looking to hire people like you.
    Your potential customers who would like to buy your books or get a 1-1 coaching
    People outside of your industry
    People expert in conversion, monetization, etc.
  4. Try some new type of content. There are over 100 different content types that you can choose from.
  5. Establish presence on social media – Twitter, Pinterest, Stumbleupon, Linkedin, SnapChat
  6. Make friends on social media and other blogs. That’s the only way to get content engagement and guest post opportunities. Write guest posts on at least 3 authority blogs. Relationships and Mentorship are important.
  7. Collaborate with brands & write sponsored posts. Writing sponsored posts is one of the best ways to monetize a new blog.

    “Brands don’t need partners that stare in through the window. They need partners that can immerse fast to understand the complexity of their existing business and then concept, create, and deliver new experiences from within.” —Matt Lodder, R/GA EMEA

  8. Join a blogger network.
  9. Reach out to people you’d like to work with. There are various ways to find companies that might be interested in hiring you.
    Try asking other bloggers in your niche,
    Connect with recruitment managers on LinkedIn & Twitter,
    Attend industry events to develop relationships with employees. These days almost all companies have a referral system for recruitment.
  10. Start building relationships with your readers from day 1. Unless your readers trust you, they are not going to buy anything. Not even an affiliate product.
  11. Attend workshops. I prefer going to workshops that are at least 2-3 day long.  It enables me to make real friends and meet interesting people.
  12. Visit coworking spaces – Visit a new co-working space every month. Spend at least a couple of weeks at one place.
  13. Don’t hide behind your blog. Talk to people. Be everywhere. Try to get in front of as many people as you can.
  14. Find a blogging buddy. Blogging can make you feel extremely lonely. Sitting at your desk reading books, doing research and writing blog posts. It can pull your head into your shell.
    Making blogging buddies and spending time with like minded people. It’s a long journey.
  15. Set up informational interviews with influencers in your niche. Create a set of questions you’d like to ask. If possible share those questions with them. Share your intention. Respect their time.
  16. Volunteer in your free time. It’s a superb way to serve people, build your network & boost your self-esteem.
  17. Focus on creating extremely useful content. If the content is below average than nothing is going to help. Be a good content creator. Tell compelling and educational stories.
  18. Hire someone to do the stuff you don’t enjoy or you are not good at
  19. If you want to advertise – Advertise on blogs instead of Facebook or Google.
  20. Create content that users want to read.
    For example, if you are a Travel and Lifestyle blogger

    Create content that offers Budget travel tips, food recommendations, details on what to do or where to stay, photography inspiration, video entertainment, beautiful flowing narrative, humor, etc.
    Matthew Karsten

  21. Join some affiliate program – Try newer or less known networks. If your content revolves around fashion, beauty, home, family, lifestyle, travel try joining Reward Style
  22. Get your first affiliate sale. Don’t just place links and hope it will convert. Understand how everything works.
  23. Get up and start writing. Commit to writing at least 500 words before 8 AM.
  24. Find bloggers who’ve already done what you want to do.
  25. Find a way to help people and get paid for it. The way you do it is simple. Find a pain and offer a solution
  26. Create a mini-course for beginners. Teach them how you help people and get paid for it.
  27. Restrict the number of ads to 3-5. Please, please don’t place ads within content. Build your platform. Build an asset. You can turn your audience into cash flow. Monetize it like a media company does. Or try selling relevant products and services to them.
  28. Start working on your first eBook. Don’t think too much. Find out which books & courses are already selling.
    If you are a Python Developer – Create an ebook to teach Python to a complete beginner. Keep the content concise so that they can finish it in less than 7 days. Price it lower than other python courses that are currently being sold in the market. Anybody can learn python on Udacity, Udemy, Team Treehouse, Coursera, Edx, Codecademy. They can learn from free videos on YouTube or by reading free blogs. But by using your eBook they can learn it faster. As a bonus, you can also offer a free eBook that will help them to find their first client.
  29. Be part of some blogging community. Without it, you’ll be all alone, like a lost sheep. Don’t be a lost sheep. Surround yourself with like-minded people. Join multiple communities if you can. If you are a lost sheep, rescue yourself. Start interacting with people today.
  30. Make a habit of planning your day. Create daily and weekly to-do lists. Put at least 5-6 items on your daily to-do list. Discipline is very important to make your blogging goals a reality. Also maintain a not-to-do list to avoid distractions and day-dreaming.
  31. Believe in yourself. Make every day count. Set goals and targets that make you work harder every day.
    Some random goals could be:
    Publish 3 blog posts a week,
    Interact with at least 3 people every day,
    Read 1 new book every week etc.
  32. Don’t worry about new technology and fads and what other people in your industry are doing. Just keep your head down and keep working.
  33. Set strict working hours. Work for at least 8-9 hours daily without any distractions. No music, no YouTube, no TV nothing. This is the simplest way to dramatically increase your efficiency and productivity. If you do it, you’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish in 6 months. Fix your hours now. It will hardly take a couple of mins. and you will entirely transform your blogging journey.
  34. The 25 min rule. Work in chunks of 25 min. Once you sit down at your desk set a timer for 25 min. Pick a task you want to do and give it your undivided attention. Remember no eating, no drinking and no tiny little breaks till the time timer runs out.
  35. Define major and minor milestones for your business and blog. Here are 5 important milestones for entrepreneurs & 20 milestones to go from newbie to a list blogger. This will give you clarity on where you want to be in 2-3 years. Create an action plan. Write down what behaviour you will demonstrate when you hit your milestones. Celebrate every milestone your reach. Share your happiness with readers & fill them with inspiration. It’s a long journey. Don’t forget to celebrate little joys. Remember, your readers also need hope, not just content.
  36. Sharpen your writing, editing and proofreading skills. Maintain a notebook to write down everything you learn. Things like sentence structure, tenses, punctuation marks, new words.
  37. Be consistent. This whole blogging thing – it works. Believe in yourself and give your 100%. Most people give up because they are always chasing new opportunities. If you want to build something worthwhile it’s going to take time and effort.
  38. Stop worrying about the haters. Everybody has haters. Look at people you admire the most. Don’t they have haters? It’s natural. We are all human beings.
    Ignore your haters. Move confidently in the direction of your goals.

That’s it, folks. I hope you got plenty of new material to put on your to-do list.

If I’ve missed anything let me know in the comments below.

 

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