Blogging Myths series. If you're a new reader, this series explored the common misconceptions that many bloggers and readers have about blogging. You can start from the beginning of the series here, but today I'm going to do a recap with the highlights from each week and also include some resources for bloggers.
Here is a quick highlight of each week. You can click on the links to read more about each Myth.
Myth #1: If You Blog It, They Will Come
Good content is most important for a blog, but it doesn't help you if no one knows your blog is out there! Networking, social media, guest posting, blog parties (in moderation!) are great ways to make your presence known. Most of all, remember that building a following of loyal readers takes time...sometimes over the course of months or several years. Be patient!
Myth #2: Blogging is an Easy Money Maker
Most writers start up blogs as a creative outlet, but there are people out there who open Blogger accounts thinking it will only be a matter of time before sponsorship money, product reviews, and paid endorsements come pouring in. This is simply not the case. Blogging requires a lot of behind-the-scenes work, and you often find yourself paying for design work, link and photo hosting sites, etc. Making full-time income from blogging requires a massive investment of time and effort.
Myth #3: The Words Aren't Important
I find that particularly within the craft/home decor niche, bloggers focus so much on their projects and photos that they forget to focus on their words. Taking the time to focus on your words, edit posts, and read what others have to say shows respect for those in the blogging community. No one expects perfection, but effort is nice.
Myth #4: Any Old Photo Will Do
I spend time each week scouring the 'net for blogs to feature for The Best of the Blogosphere series at Centsational Girl. I can't tell you how many times I have come across an amazing project, but had to turn down the submission because the photos were too dark, too small, too grainy, or too much flash. Readers tend to scan posts for a few good photos before moving on, so having decent pictures is crucial!
Myth #5: Blog Design Doesn't Matter
We all do it...judge a book by its cover. If your blog is difficult to navigate, if the font is too small, if you have distracting blinking buttons everywhere...it is not user friendly. Make interaction easy for your readers and you'll see an increase in traffic!
Myth #6: Everyone Loves Controversy
If readers come to your blog expecting good recipes, fun crafts, DIY projects, or sewing tutorials, then choosing to blog about your political preferences could be a bit of a shock. It's your blog, your choice...but don't be surprised if you are the recipient of angry comments or lost Followers.
Myth #7: Snarky Anonymous Comments are Okay
Words can hurt. Think twice before you publish comments on someone's blog. And think three times before you do it anonymously.
Myth #8: Linking Back Isn't a Big Deal
Copying another blogger's work or using their photos (even as a feature) without giving credit is akin to plagiarism. It doesn't generally go over well in the blogosphere. When it comes to blog parties, the hostess is sending traffic your way indefinitely...the least you can do is link back to her specific party url within your post. Not linking back to a blog party is not plagiarism, but it is using another site for your own personal gain without acknowledging where your traffic is coming from. Gracious bloggers endear themselves to others by kindly linking back when they mention another blogger's work or join a blog party.
Myth #9: "Big" Bloggers Are So Cliquey
Most of the "big" bloggers I've interacted with are willing to answer questions, feature others, or support the little guy...sometimes more than other little guys! Most people with larger blogs have been around for awhile...they know what it's like to grow a blog, and many of the friends they've made have been from networking over the years. It doesn't make them cliquey--just experienced!
Myth #10: Blogging is Never a Distraction
Blogging can and will take over your spare moments if you let it. It's a huge temptation to spend time networking through social media, focusing on new posts, and sending off blog swaps. But you'll find that you can't blog about life if you aren't living it! Work out a schedule and stick to it!
Here are a few Blogging Resources that I thought you might find helpful:
-Blogging as a Career from Little Green Notebook
-How to Get Sponsors for Your Blog from Little Miss Momma
-The Business of Blogging from Southern Hospitality
-Money Maker from Thrifty Decor Chick
-On Balancing Blogging from Centsational Girl
-31 Days of Photo Tips from My 3 Boybarians
-Commenting 101 (a series with everything you'll ever want to know about Commenting)
I have an idea for a new series: a how-to on blog parties (hosting them, joining them, etc), but I'm frankly a little scared to start it up. Blog parties (linking back, new parties, how many parties, etc) can be a hot topic in the blogosphere. I'm still thinking about it...
I hope this series on Blogging Myths was helpful for you! Thanks for taking the time to read.
*I'm guesting posting today with a Mini Keyring Photo Album Christmas gift idea at Positively Splendid. I hope you'll stop by to see it!*
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