I’ve been blogging now for six months and I’ll be honest I’m feeling a little despondent. There have been no mentions of a book deal or my own line of hoodies. My job title is not professional blogger and my Facebook following is dismal. Why is writing a blog tougher than I initially thought? Will it amount to nothing?
Over the years I’ve set up numerous free WordPress blogs only to lose interest in them relatively quickly. Writing is something which I’ve always found enjoyment in but my failing has been my lack of inspiration. Becoming a parent gave me all the inspiration I could need. Suddenly I had all these stories to share and memories to record. All I needed was a platform and just like that MommyandRory was born!
What did I Expect to get out of Writing a Blog?
When I first put pen to paper – metaphorically speaking – I didn’t really have a goal in mind. As much as I was enjoying my time with Rory, I was lonely. I found it difficult to relate to people as my life was so different. Blogging felt like a way of regaining some control. It allows me to take back a little piece of my life to do with as I please It just so happens that I massively underestimated what it meant to be a blogger.
Blogging is so much more than just publishing a post. Of course you need to be able to write excellent content to get your readers hooked but how do you expect your readers to find your post in the first place? That’s where social media comes in. The best bloggers write amazing content and then the share it with thousands upon thousands of followers across numerous social media platforms. But those followers don’t just appear over night. Engagement is the key but engagement is time consuming.
One thing which I didn’t expect to get from blogging is new friends. OK so they may be virtual friends, we may never grab a cup of coffee or take our kids on a play dates but these are people who understand. They understand what it’s like to be a parent, a blogger and a partner. They offer their support with no judgment or criticism. If it wasn’t for the bloggers that I’ve met along the way I highly doubt that I’d still be writing.
So why the Face Like a Slapped Arse?
As February draws to a close I’m refreshing my Google analytics app more frequently. This month is set to be the first month – since starting my blog in August 2016 – which my stats have taken a dip. Obviously February is a shorter month but surely two-to-three days difference can’t account for much change? When I look a little deeper it’s easy to identify why I’m falling short.
In January 2017 I published a review of the Tiny Feet Bistro. Thanks to the Bistro sharing my post on Facebook, a record number of people visited my blog. In fact it was my highest number of visitors to date. Causing my stats to see a 122% increase in the number of visitors between December 2016 and January 2017. Compare this to the average 51% increase that I’ve seen since my blog started in August and I’m sure you’ll be able to appreciate the magnitude of the leap.
The dilemma which I now face is how do I replicate the success of that particular post? Or am I getting hung up on figures? Should I concentrate on writing excellent content? But is that even achievable?
But Wait That’s not Just It
One of my blogging goals for 2017 is to have a post published on the Huffington post. Last month I took the plunge and sent them a piece of my work for consideration. Half expecting to never hear anything back, I was over the moon when a couple of days later I received an email confirming they liked my post. My login details were sent through, I set up my profile and before I knew it my first post went live. It felt fantastic but it didn’t last very long.
With my Huffington debut behind me on Monday I set about submitting some new content. I chose to submit a post which had been well received on my blog and one which I was proud off. Before long a received a reply that made my heart sink. My new post had been rejected. Although it didn’t quite ‘hit the spot’ their reply was positive. They thought it was a very good post however it needed some work.
Rejection – however sugar coated – is a bitter pill to swallow. I spend 90% of my life doubting myself, asking if I’m good enough. Even though I know their intent was not malicious, it’s been a struggle to not take it personally. I was left questioning my ability. Am aiming too high? Am I trying to achieve something which is beyond my skill set?
So Where do we go From Here?
Recently I’ve become caught up in the numbers game and I’ve lost sight of the path that I’d like to follow. I didn’t start with the intention of making money or working with brands. I don’t want to be insta famous or appear on this morning. All I want is to share my baby spam with an audience who was willing to receive it. To help people who have found themselves in the same boat as me and to share with the world what it looks like to be a real mumma!
From now on I pledge to stop obsessing about numbers. To write about what ever the hell comes into my head and hope that someone out there gets it!
If you don’t love what you do then there’s no point doing it!!!
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