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Wherever you are in your blogging journey, blogging can be hard and I bet there are days you don’t enjoy it and wonder what on earth made you decide to start a blog in the first place! By its very nature, blogging means sharing your heart and soul with the online world while also putting yourself out there alongside blogs and bloggers of all audience sizes, niches and stages. Add to that, a lot of markers in the industry are numbers based – how many followers you have, how many clicks you get each month, how many comments you receive, and it’s no wonder it can be easy to compare yourself to others.
As a new blogger, it can be hard to stay motivated and keep going when you’re caught up in comparison-itus, looking at where everyone else is, seeing their numbers and then making comparisons. In the FTB Community, we see lots of posts and conversations asking for advice on staying motivated, looking for support and a shoulder to lean on when the blogging gets tough. So, I have put together some suggestions and tips for when you’re feeling the urge to let your blog die a slow and painful death 😉
- 1 1. Connect with similar bloggers
- 2 2. Put a Game Plan in place
- 3 3. Choose the bits you want to do and do them well
- 4 4. Be authentic
- 5 5. Have fun
- 6 6. Find what works for you and your audience
- 7 7. Network online and in real life
- 8 8. Tell people about your blog
1. Connect with similar bloggers
Don’t compare your beginnings to someone else’s middle. This is SO important! With the travel blogging community being such an active and engaging space and given the fact that many travel bloggers actively follow others for moral support (in addition to awesome travel content!) it’s easy to find yourself looking at the bloggers around you and making comparisons. But, everyone started somewhere, just as you are. And, unless you’re following a blogger who very openly talks about the personal side of their blog, you may not have any idea what goes on behind the scenes, how much time or work it’s taken to get them where they are right now.
Avoiding making comparisons goes for cross niche comparisons too – a very niche blogger is going to have a different experience with different numbers and stats to a blogger that writes for a large, non-specific audience.
Stay motivated by:
Finding other bloggers in your niche as well as bloggers who are at a similar stage in their journey as you so you can bounce ideas off each other, give feedback, brainstorm, make connections and support each other in growing and developing your blogs.
2. Put a Game Plan in place
Yes, you can just post content and wing it – that counts as blogging and is totally fine to do! But, if you’re going into blogging with a bigger vision of getting your content out there for the masses and/or to monetize your blog, you need to have a Game Plan in place. Get strategic with it but also think about what you enjoy doing, why you’re blogging in the first place and how you want to connect with your audience. Start by determining who you’re writing for and how they might find your content. Work out where your audience is hanging out and specifically target them there rather than randomly posting on every social media account you have whenever you remember.
Stay motivated by: Putting a plan in place to keep you focussed and moving forward so that even when you‘re feeling lost and unsure of what to do, you have something to fall back on
3. Choose the bits you want to do and do them well
There’s a lot to do when it comes to blogging: social media, editing photos, writing content, SEO, developing your website – the list goes on! Some of these tasks you do have to do, I mean you can’t have a blog without a website. But, you know what they say it’s better to do one or two things well than to do everything half-assedly. So, choose the things you a) enjoy and that b) will be beneficial to your blogging strategy. For example, if you love being on Facebook and hate Instagram, make building a Facebook following your priority. Or if you love writing long blog posts and don’t enjoy social media, up your SEO game and make that your main source of traffic.
Stay motivated by
Eliminating as many tasks that you dislike or that bore the life out of you and spend your time doing the fun stuff!
Side note: Of course, there will still be things you have to do that you don’t want to, that’s life not just blogging. So for those, use the mantra “done is better than perfect”. Get your website up there, get your content out, share photos. The more you do things, the better you will get at them
4. Be authentic
Your blog is yours, it’s your content, your ideas, your travels, your passion and it was your idea to start it in the first place. Don’t let your identity get lost in your quest for traffic and followers. The more you write about places you genuinely love, experiences you want to share and topics that light you up, the more genuine and authentic your content will be and the better connections you’ll make with your audience. For many bloggers, their blog is an extension of them, a personal brand that readers engage with because of the way they relate to the blogger themselves. This is a great post about building a personal brand as a blogger.
Stay motivated by:
Getting your creative juices flowing again by looking for relevant collaborative posts or guest posting opportunities. Often, having a prompt to write about combined with the writing for a slightly different audience will kickstart your creativity again
5. Have fun
Yes, blogging is tough but that doesn’t mean it can’t, and shouldn’t be, fun! Ask any blogger at any stage in their journey and they’ll say one of the reasons they do it is because ultimately they enjoy blogging – the networking, the travels, the engagements. Even when you’re blogging as a business, it’s ok to relax and enjoy the ride remembering that it’s not all about numbers and stats!
Remember, nothing is set in stone. Yes, you have a game plan in place but I’m willing to bet it’s not written in blood and even a Google Doc can be edited easily 🙂 So if you find that focussing on Facebook and Instagram is making you lose the will to open your laptop, try something else.
Stay motivated by:
Making time to celebrate your wins and successes (we love hearing about them in the FTB Community), taking time to enjoy your travels, the writing process. And remind yourself why you started your blog in the first place!
6. Find what works for you and your audience
Along the lines of avoiding making comparisons between the results you and others are getting, it’s equally important not to get caught up in the trap of doing what everyone else is doing. Forcing yourself to do ‘all the things’ just because everyone else seems to be doing them is soon going to be overwhelming and unproductive. Make sure you take your writing style, preferences and audience behaviour into account when putting together a strategy Promoting Disney focused content to families planning their vacations is going to be very different to a strategy to drive traffic to a blog focussing on backpacker travel in Asia.
Don’t make it about anyone else. It’s easy to look around you and see that this Blogger is doing A and B, that blogger is doing C and D and you then suddenly end up trying to do A, B, C and D under the presumption that that’s what you need to do to be successful.
Stay motivated by:
Getting playful and adventurous; try new things, work out what you enjoy doing, see what works for you then stick to that without giving in to ‘shiny object syndrome’ of jumping into all the tactics and strategies bloggers around you are using just because it works for them.
7. Network online and in real life
Join Facebook groups (ahem Female Travel Bloggers!), talk to other bloggers, offer help, ask for advice, comment on and engage with other blogger’s content. It’s really just one big family and the more active you are within it, the more supported you will be making the days when you want to throw your laptop out the window and immerse yourself in wine, easier to bear. Or at least there’ll be other people around you who get it 🙂
Stay motivated by:
Attending an event and making real-life connections – yes, virtual connections are fab but making time for in-person networking is a game changer
8. Tell people about your blog
Having a social media presence is key and having consistent branding with channels using your blog name is great for brand awareness. However, it’s important that you still share and show up as you – tell your friends and family that you’re blogging, talk about it on your personal page. We bet they won’t 100% get the frustrations (see point 7!) but I’m also willing to bet they want to read your content and hear about your adventures – your biggest fans might be in your personal network already.
Stay motivated by:
Telling your friends and family about your blog, asking them to read and share it with their networks too!
I hope these tips are helpful and I would love to hear from you – what do you do to stay motivated to keep on blogging?
Admin & Facebook Manager
Originally from the UK, Lottie has traveled extensively across 6 continents & lived in Australia, Canada & South Africa.
She ditched the bright lights of primary classrooms to embark on an adventure exploring South Africa in a caravan as a location independent freelancer. Her next adventure is taking her, temporarily, back to the UK where she will be living in a narrowboat and bobbing around on the waterways.
A self-proclaimed princess who loves all things pink and sparkly; connect with Lottie at her site Princess In A Caravan.
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