Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Blogging Goals? How to create a better blog?

So do you guys have any blogging goals? I mean do you set goals for yourself as a blogger and then try to reach them?  Do you just blog for fun, or to relieve stress? Do you blog for work, are you a career blogger? Is that the real term?

I was just talking with my husband last night about how much this blog means to me and goals that I want to achieve.  F.Y.I. I have a lot of them.  I'll share a few of the "blog" ones with you.

I would love to get a sponsor, any takers?
I would love to reach 200 followers by June. Refer your friends.
I would love to have a professional design my blog. Someday when I can afford it.
I would love to find my niche. Sometimes I feel like my blog doesn't fit in with all the other blogs.  Too mommy-ish, not mommy-ish enough. Too crafty, not crafty enough. Too nerdy, way too nerdy.
I would love to host a giveaway.  I've had giveaways sure, but hosting one is different.  They aren't self-funded ;)
I would love for this blog to encourage others, brighten their day, or be a place they look forward to visiting.

It might sound silly, but I love this blog.  I love you guys for reading this blog of mine.  I love when I get feedback from you, and I love giving feedback to you guys.  And because I love this blog and you guys, I work my butt off to make this blog better each day. 

No, really I do.  I don't know how the bigger blogs do it. Can I get me a blog mentor please?

These are just a few of the tips I've learned about blogging in the past few months.

1. Put yourself out there. Comment on others blogs, comment on others facebook pages, link up to different linky parties. If someone leaves you a comment respond.
I really try to comment back to everyone. I read somewhere that you should comment on your blog, and in a direct message to that person, but I usually only do one.  I will first try to go to their blog and leave a comment (everyone loves comments and blog traffic), if they don't have a blog or it's not listed in their profile/comment I will then try to email them. If their email and their blog aren't listed on their profile or in their comment I will then comment back to them on my post.

2. Join different social media networks, twitter, facebook, stumble upon, pinterest, networking groups for moms/women/crafters (see the buttons on my sidebar?)....

3. Be consistent with your postings.
I sometimes have a hard time with this one, sometimes I'll post 3 times in a day, and then go a few days without posting. I obviously don't get a gold star in this area.

4. Try to connect with your readers on a personal level. 
I think I try to do this...I mean I blog for me, but I also blog keeping in mind that someone is reading what I am writing, and whoever that person is doesn't want to read a boring word for word recap of how I nursed my baby for the 1,000th time while I was watching General Hospital. They want to read about how she had a blowout while I was holding her in Target and didn't have a diaper bag with me, and a lady next to me swore she would never have kids after seeing all that poop dripping down my hand.

5. Go to your blog without signing in.  Browse through it.  Is it easy to read?  Does it load quickly?  Does your blinding background distract readers from your posts?  Is it easy for readers to leave comments? Take elements that you like from other blogs and incorporate them into your blog, but make them your own, don't copy that persons exact theme/colors/design.

And for me, it's hard work tweeting, facebooking, and staying up to date with all of your guys' wonderful posts, comments, and ideas.  There are so many amazing posts I want to share, projects I want to do, and people I want to befriend.  I feel like I can't keep up sometimes, and it gives me a major case of the worries.  And when I do manage to stay on top of things during the day I feel like everything else in my little world is being neglected.  My littles, my husband, my housecleaning...

Do you guys feel the same way?  Do you get just as overwhelmed as I do? Are there any apps to help with these issues?

I really want to know how you all manage to keep everything balanced, so any tips or suggestions would be great. Or if you're like me and things are always unbalanced, share and unload some of your stress in the comment area.


Tiffany said...

I know exactly how you feel!! I seriously could have written this myself, I struggle with the consistent posting. I'm horrible at expressing myself through writing and feel like my personality just isn't coming through the way I want it to.
When I first started out I realized I was comparing myself to other bloggers but not in the good way. I was letting it affect how I felt about myself, I had to stop doing that and get back to why I started blogging in the first place. I want to share things that I made or saw that gave me inspiration, I wanted to find creative people like myself to toss ideas back and forth with. So I let the comparisons go and just relaxed, I post about what I want and like, I participate in linky parties that I like.

divinepainter said...

Hi there... saw that you left a comment on my page and came to check you out. Glad that SITS connected us. Was thrilled to find the above advice. I'm new to blogging and got off to a bangin' start... but have been feeling uninspired lately. Especially when I feel like no one is reading and I'm talking to myself. We can be each other's mentors! :)

beliefinus said...

Sometimes it is easy to start to compare your blogs to others. But just as we are in person (comparing) we can learn the same for blogging. We are each unique and have our own talents and gifts! Keep blogging the way you want to. You will get the followers you want. Keep going!!! I get up 30 minutes earlier every morning to blog. Sometimes if I am really on top of it I blog the day before and put it in my documents to cut and paste the next morning. :) HEck I am still trying to figure out how to get the twitter, facebook and google follower apps on my blog. LOL We each have our own thing. I have huge goals for my blog and website too. Just take it one day at a time, keep doing the actions you wish to see and it will come.
Much love to you,
found you on Bloggy Moms

AD-venture in HEELS said...

I feel the same way you feel. It's been really hard for me to gain followers and readers. I am not really good about posting everyday and I don't always have something to share. I have a party/crafting blog and so its even more difficult as I feel what people want to see is projects and inspiration and the competition is tough. It makes it hard becasue I don't always have time to craft and I am not always doing parties. My schedule is very crazy so I only have the weekends to really work on projects. And well on the weekends I need to tend to my family. I started to get some traffic by posting on other blogs. I try and join blog hops for crafters but they are usually mid week and that is hard. I am also trying to do linky parties that will drive traffic. As for your blog I thinks its cool and a blog should represent who you are not someone else. You are doing a great job and keep doing what you love.

I am now a follower!


KDC Events said...

I feel ya too!! I have been blogging for a few years and I too have the SAME goals as you! I think I've got it down, and then I go weeks with no comments etc. I am like Melissa I have a party, event blog and it's really hard to blog everyday- especially with life happening!

A few tips I can offer:
1) send out pitch letters to companies to gain product reviews/hosting giveaways
2)try on a free template design untill you can afford one. I got mine from April Showers, I think there is a link at the bottom of my blog to her.
3) Reach out to bloggers that comment on your site. Gain a foundation with them and promote each other. I try to do this =)

Hope that helps a little! You have a new follower/reader in me, thanks to SITS =)


Kimberly said...

I could have written this myself! I'm new too and find myself struggling with the same worries. I was having a really hard time trying to keep up with Twitter/FB/other blogs. I'm trying to do better now, and as time goes on it seems to get easier.

I think the consistent commenting definitely helps build reader foundations. Also just jumping in on Twitter has seemed to help me too.

I'd love to have a mentor too! Sometimes I feel like I need help also. Maybe we can help each other out??

Sherri said...

I love blogging too, I have never thought of putting goals down...good idea!

Saretta said...

I have the same questions and issues myself. Especially about how to budget time between my passion/obsession with blogging and all my "real life" obligations. It's not always easy to find balance!
I'm following you on GFC now!

Ginny Marie said...

Those are exactly the same things I've learned over three years of blogging! It's really hard work. I don't know how the bigger bloggers grow so much! I think they must be everywhere.

Thanks for stopping by my blog last night for cocktail hour! :)

bellyquestions said...

Just like everyone else, I have the same questions! I have really enjoyed your blog and it DOES brighten my day! I'm not linked in with the social media yet because our family doesn't know we are trying yet...but I think we will tell them soon.

Jayme said...

I've been blogging for ages and I still don't have a niche.

Have you tried contacting companies you'd like to work with as far as giveaways and hosting goes?

Katie @ Newcomb Home said...

Hi Jennifer! I just stumbled on this post and wanted to say congrats! You said that one of your goals was to reach 200 followers by June and I see you're there! Wahoo!

I'm new to the blogging world and have similar goals but have trouble balancing my 40-hr job and my blog. Thanks for the tips, they'll keep me motivated!