8 Blogging Rules I’m Ignoring
Starting out in the blogging world, there are TONS of articles telling you what to do and what not to do. Going against the flow is one of the things that has consistently benefited me in my career, and I don’t expect blogging to be any different.
I realize I might be 100% wrong, and that’s okay. I realize that 2 months from now, I might realize want to slap myself in the face about how wrong I was. I could be completely eating my words in the future, and that is entirely okay.
1. Set a schedule so your readers know what to expect
When I’m on a roll of writing, I’m just going to run with it. I’m never going to wait for Wednesday to post something.
That idea is really the opposite of what I like to do – just start DOING. Stop planning it, stop reading about it, stop building schedule.
I’m the kind of person who can easily get caught up in creating a strategy, creating a schedule, and planning out months and months in advance. By the time I do that, I’m tired, and I don’t feel like sitting down and adding 15 links into my blog posts – something actually valuable.
2. Spend lots of time reading and learning
One reason I didn’t completely double down on my blog for two years was that there was always something I still had to learn…there was always some blog post I still wanted to read to learn how to do XYZ.
Gary Vee talks a lot about this. Learn on the go. Stop spending time reading about it and DO IT.
Stop reading about ways to drive Pinterest traffic, and spend five hours yourself creating pinnable images, following other people, learning how to use Tailwind, sending emails to get accepted to group boards, etc.
It’s easy to not do stuff when you say, “Oh, I’m still learning about it.”
Now, I’m reading a lot less and doing a lot more.
3. Stick to a narrow niche
I 100% realize this might not work out for me in the long run. But the reason I started Slightly Savvy is that I wanted a full, encompassing readable experience – a girl my age who did Pilates, and tried to eat Paleo, and experimented with skin care, and told me how she dealt with having a bad boss.
I wanted to read that whole experience.
So that’s what I’m sticking to. I want to write some blog post about my Paleo experience, some about my acne story, some about my interview tips – I can’t niche it right now.
4. 600-word posts
I read that 600 words is the perfect balance between your audience not getting bored and providing them enough content. So take my “10 Ways to Stay Healthy While Working at a Desk All Day” – by far, my most clicked on pin via Pinterest. But then, I saw that the drop off rate was also super high.
So, I literally put myself in a user’s shoes + I asked myself these questions. I actually found this little practice so valuable I built an entire case study around it – you can read it here. I HIGHLY recommend it if you feel a little stagnant or like your numbers aren’t adding up.
♡ is this a blog I would come back?
♡ is this information new?
♡ is it completely thorough?
♡ is this eye catching?
♡ do I see a clear next step?
Basically, my conclusion was that I needed every single blog post to be over thousand words. It was going to be over thousand words without being stupid, repetitive or just dumb information. So, if I don’t have enough information to go over thousand words, I need to do some more research.
My new rule: over 1000 words, or it waits to get published.
I’ve read enough income reports that I know this isn’t true. This might seem harsh, but I’m tired of people telling me to wait six months and then, I should start seeing money from my blog. I know for a fact that people see money after a month or two, and that is my goal.
I just fully believe that if I commit all the time it takes and go the extra mile every single time, I can do it. Basically, my only goal for 2017 is to be making a strong side income from my blog by the end of the year. Lofty, I know.
♡ great resources on how to monetize your blog immediately without being spammy
Krista Aioki’s Feb 2017 Income Report, “How I earned $74.62 My First Month Blogging“
The Frugal Millionaire’s,”How I Made My First $100 From Blogging“
6. Use your family and friends as a kick off audience for your blog
I am actually choosing not to tell anyone about this blog. Yes, I realize that I missing out on a few hundred people who would absolutely read my stuff. Yes, I’m a little bit afraid that people are going to make fun of me and I’m going to be that washed up, post grad girl who is now a blogger. I really don’t think I am a stereotype, but it’s just not something I want to worry about right now while my blog is beginning.
So for now, I am going to build an entire organic audience.
♡ great resources for starting from ground zero
Krista Aioki’s “3 Ways to Boost Traffic From Pinterest” – SO helpful. Pinterest is where 80% of my traffic comes from now.
25 Smart Strategies to Increase Your Blog Traffic – unique tips on strategically building traffic from 0
Arts and Budget’s, “10 Pinterest Tips That SkyRocketed My Blog Traffic” – LOVE this one
Blonde Roast by the Coast’s Guide to Pinterest Growth – you’re seeing a trend here as using Pinterest to grow from nothing
Coming soon…my own story on how I used Pinterest to drive 80-90% of my blog traffic – from literally 0 pageviews to 200 in a few days.
7. Install Google AdSense
Being in the advertising world, I know how Google AdSense might not be worth it for what I’m trying to do. I’ve seen the research on how low the CTRs are, and I’ve seen the research on what users think of it.
I might be passing up on money, but right now it’s something I want to stick with. To counteract this, I discovered Amazon Native Ads – which pleasantly surprised me on how great of an ad experience they work. You can see them below this article – let me know what you think ??
Eventually, I’m going to do an entire review on how they work out for me.
For now, Amazon Native Ads + affiliate links to products I already love will be the only advertising on my site.
8. Do sponsored posts
I know I might be passing up money here, but I see a lot of bloggers who I think are too early along to do sponsored posts. Again, just my opinion.
So, I don’t want to be doing any sponsored posts until I have gained a nice sized audience + I’m engaging with them on a daily basis.
For all the advice I HAVE ignored, here’s what I’ve found invaluable:
always add value – readers have no reason to come to you if you aren’t giving them something first
join Pinterest group boards
CONNECT with other bloggers – join Facebook groups, comments on blogs, follow people on Instagram, etc.
be authentic – people smells BS from a mile away
be patient – it kills me sometimes to only see a few new clicks a day. But then I think about what would happen if I just doubled that same number every day ? Amazing things.
I would LOVE to know what blogging rules you guys love/hate. What are you listening to and what are you ignoring – how is it working out??
I’m still doing my week of strict Paleo eating…follow me on Instagram to see how that works out :/
Thank you all so much for reading!