blogging

6 things I wish I knew before I started blogging


Even though this blog is only one and a half years old, I am not a newbie in the blogging world. I started my first blog in 2008. Back then, there weren’t many websites teaching how to blog.
I kind of just started because I was bored. From time to time, I go back and read my old posts and see how far I have come. Today, I wanted to do a little heart to heart with you about a few things I wish I knew before I started blogging.

Engagement is more important than the # of followers:
Am not going to lie, I smile everytime I get a new follower whether it’s on twitter, Instagram or bloglovin. It’s nice to know that there are some people out there that care about what I do.Your number of followers really means nothing if you do not interact with your readers. I have stopped reading many blogs because they hardly answer any questions. If you have millions of followers chances are you cannot answers or interact with everyone, but you can try.
I know this blog is still very small, however I love interacting with my readers. When someone takes the time to leave a comment on my blog, the least I can do is to thank them for stopping by. I wish I knew that when I started my first blog.
By the time I started this blog I had learned a lot. I have landed some jobs in my early days on this blog not because of my number of followers, but thanks to my engagement with my readers. If you ever thought that sponsors do not care about engagement, think again.
Blogging takes an incredible amount of time:
Blogging takes an incredible amount of time. Seriously, by the time I finish taking pictures, editing them, writing the post and keeping up with my social media, I am exhausted. I get a little annoyed when people think that blogging is just for fun and not a job. It is fun but it, does take an incredible amount of time to put out good content.
Supporting other bloggers is a must:
I really love the blogging community because of the kind of support we give each other. There is no reason to blog about anything if you want to stay in your little corner.
I am sad to say that there isn’t much support  between Canadian bloggers (a story for another post). You can easily support other bloggers by featuring them on your blog, leaving genuine comments on their posts, link to their blogs, take each other’s picture if you live in the same city and much more…………
Brands will try to take advantage of you:
Yes, they will, especially when you first start your blog. When I first started blogging I did a lot of work for free, because I did not know any better, and I was just excited to be approached by a brand. Working for free is a topic that has been debated for years in the blogging community. I say use your own discretion as to the kind of work you want to do for free.
When a brand tells you “There is no budget for this project or “We are going to give you exposure”, you better run for your life. There is always a budget ,but they just do not want you to get your cut. Keep in my mind that there is nothing wrong about saying ‘No’ to a brand’s offer. Remember this is your blog, your voice. You are not obligated to do anything if you don’t want to. It’s never a good idea to compromise your voice for a  shout-out or a few dollars.
It’s ok to take a break:
One thing I have learned over my years of blogging is that it is ok to take a break and not to blog when you have nothing to blog about. I used to be obsessed about my blog’s traffic. I really thought that taking a break meant losing readers and page views. I realized later on that when you have good content on your blog, there is nothing wrong about taking a few days off. The traffic will still come by.
You do not need a perfect life:
You may not know this about my blogging process, but my kids are usually next to me while I shoot my pictures. Unless stated otherwise my husband shoots all my pictures, and we are always with the kids. You may not see them, but they are there. Before I started this blog, I used to also think that I am nothing like all these perfect bloggers with perfect rooms and lives. The truth is what you see on this blog or any other blog is what we can call “an edited life“. You only see what I want you to see. I choose not to share my not so pinterest ready kitchen, or messy dining table right after dinner because honestly, I don’t think you are interested in that. My life is far from perfect.
These are only a few things I wish I knew before I started blogging. Do you have any ? Please share.

 

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  • melissa ward
    May 5, 2014 at 1:57 am

    Great great post ….

    • ciaa
      May 5, 2014 at 12:36 pm

      Thank you !

  • AJOKE
    May 5, 2014 at 10:21 am

    awwwww! This is truly from the heart well done dear. I hope you will be there to support me when I need an expertise advice. lovely post.x

    • ciaa
      May 5, 2014 at 12:37 pm

      Thank you so much. If you ever need anything please send me an email.

  • Who is that Girl Mo?
    May 5, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    Great great tips and suggestions.

    Mo

    • ciaa
      May 7, 2014 at 2:24 am

      Thank you !

  • Natasha Lindo
    May 6, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    Thanks for sharing. This is really helpful. I've been wanting to start a blog for quite some time (it's just in my heart)…But for now…I am gathering information and taking my time. #teamcanada

    • ciaa
      May 7, 2014 at 2:25 am

      There is room for everyone. Take your time.

  • TheBantuGirl
    May 7, 2014 at 12:12 am

    This was such a wonderful blog post that I have been meaning to comment on. Firstly, thank you for sharing honestly, it is always refreshing. 1) Like you, I did not realize how much time blogging takes and specifically photo and video editing – and while it is something creative taking place amid rather busy lives. 2) There is room for all of us. We are all unique and therefore have different points of view. I wish we could embrace each other in such a capacity, and be happy for and cheer each other onwards.

    • ciaa
      May 7, 2014 at 2:26 am

      You are welcome love. I really miss your posts.

  • Mwanaidi Nuhu
    May 8, 2014 at 9:37 am

    what an amazing knowledge i got thanks
    http://www.middysfashionsite.blospot.com

    • ciaa
      May 13, 2014 at 8:31 pm

      You are welcome.

  • Jeniese Hosey
    May 13, 2014 at 3:21 am

    Amazing post! I wish I knew all of these when I first started but the learning process has been one of my best rewards! Thank you for sharing!

    • ciaa
      May 13, 2014 at 8:30 pm

      You are very welcome Luv !

  • princessofee
    May 17, 2014 at 11:34 pm

    I'm a new blogger and I'm so so glad I found this post, thanks for your advice. Loving your blog 🙂

  • Rosie D.
    May 30, 2014 at 7:53 pm

    Wow, I just stumbled across your blog because it came up on a super random pinterest search. I thought your outfit was cute, so I clicked through the link, I'm so glad I did! You are beautiful! And your blog content is really good! I like that it feels very natural, not too slick or constructed. But your photos are flawless! I have so much to say, I apologize, this may be a long comment!

    I super struggle with the perfect home/ perfect blogger thing. I crave a bit more reality than this gives. Don't get me wrong, I love looking at pretty pictures and perfection. But I would also like to see your messy dining room!

    Also, OMG you are a lucky woman to have a husband that takes all your great photos! Was he naturally good at photography, or did he learn good tricks through photographing you? I wish my husband had the patience to photograph me while I tried on 20 outfits!

    Thank you for sharing these truths with the world, as a blogger I was so excited to see these posts and am go belting up all the tips I can.

    • ciaa
      May 31, 2014 at 1:18 am

      Hello Rosie,
      Thank you so much. I am so happy that you loved my blog. One of these days I might just share pictures of my messy dining table lol. Yes, my husband does take most of my pictures and no he is not a professional photographer. Believe me he is learning something new everyday and he is patient a times but he has his bad days. The days he is not available I just use my little tripod. I enjoyed reading your comment and I really hope to read you soon.

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