If you’ve just started blogging in last few months, get ready, because you’re going to crash.
You began blogging full of enthusiasm, and what a rush it was to see your words on the internet! You’re leaving comments on other blogs, you’ve created social media profiles on what seems like ten different services, you’re reading feeds like mad, checking your visitor stats and AdSense reports every day (probably more than once per day), writing post after post and then…
You crash. Your blogger’s euphoria is whipped away like mist in a strong gust of wind. You feel disappointed and disillusioned in the idea and ideals of blogging.
And that’s a good thing!
Your First Moment of Blogging Truth
When you experience your blogging crash, you have reached your first real moment of truth with blogging. You will ask yourself if it’s worth it to continue. You will re-examine your actions for clues about what you can do better. Without this, you cannot advance to the next level of blogging skill and competency, so that’s why I say it’s a good thing. It is a test, a problem that contains within it the seed of a greater benefit down the road. You will be stronger and better when you get through this (not that it’s a big tragedy, but I remember feeling pretty down when it happened to me and I’ve seen people take it kind of hard).
So how do you get over your blogging crash and get back on track? By following these steps:
1. Accept that you feel this way
Okay, so you feel down. I wasn’t exaggerating when I called it a blogging crash. Everything in life is defined partly by its opposite. You can’t feel blogging bliss all the time, although you certainly feel it when you first get into it. Eventually, you’re going to feel down. To constantly feel the same way is like stretching a rubber band — it snaps.
When people first get into blogging, they are often tremendously excited about it. But reality sets in and they just can’t maintain that constantly high level of excitement. It’s a lot like being in a relationship with someone and experiencing that moment when the infatuation wears off and you have to seriously ask yourself if you’re in the relationship for the long term.
2. Understand this happens to just about every blogger
As I said in the previous point, you’re going through a natural cycle of highs and lows. The more excited and enthusiastic we feel about something, the more intense our disappointment is when reality sets in. This has happened to so many bloggers that I think it’s safe to say it happens to nearly every blogger. In other words, you’re not alone.
3. Don’t blog about how you feel
What? That’s what I said. Don’t. For two reasons. First, nobody wants to hear from you when you’re feeling down and disillusioned. This is partly why you feel alone in this — nobody hardly ever talks about it, because their readers wouldn’t want to read it. Imagine going into work and having a coworker say to you, “I’m really having doubts about myself, right now! Would you like to hear all about it?” You wouldn’t, so your readers don’t want to hear about yours. Keep them to yourself. The second reason not to blog about how you feel during your blogging crash is that it would likely take your blog off-topic, and that would make this one mistake compound into two mistakes.
4. Assess your expectations — were they realistic?
Although this happens to just about every blogger, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use this as an opportunity for a bit of self-reflection. People often begin blogging with stars and dollar signs in their eyes. Their expectations aren’t realistic. They think things are going to happen faster. They think they’re going to make oodles of money a day in ad revenue, not barely enough pocket change to buy a candy bar.
Some blogs really do take off quickly, but the vast majority do not. Some questions to give yourself a reality check:
- Did you do keyword research into your blogging niche? If so, and you feel you’ve chosen a strong niche, then this is something you can feel good about as you examine your other assumptions. If you didn’t do any real research into your niche’s keywords, then, I’m sorry to say, you have no reason to hold high expectations. Come back to earth and take a sober look at your blog niche. Maybe you’re in the wrong niche, but it’s more likely you just need to get smarter and change your game up.
- How unique and original is your niche and content? Did you start another blogging tips bog? Another money blog? Good luck with that! If your blog is another “me too” blog, don’t expect much. Originality is surprisingly difficult, but it’s the biggest differentiator. Can you put a twist on a saturated, popular topic? Can you be controversial, or “zig” when everyone else is “zagging”?
- Why would anyone what to read your blog? Ooh… that’s a tough one, I know. Are you providing value that makes people want to subscribe and stick around for more? Are you providing valuable resources to your readers in the form of content and links?
5. Assess your blogging goals — you do have goals, don’t you?
If you don’t have goals, then your blog has no direction. Choose goals that are percentage-based, rather than number-based. What I mean by that is to pick a growth rate instead of a target number. This is because once you reach your target fixed number, then you have to keep making up higher numbers. If you say your goal is $100 a month in ad revenue, then when you hit that you have to crank it up to $200. Instead, create a goal of, say, 10% growth in revenue every month.
6. Compile a list of best practices and steps to move you closer to your blogging goals
Figure out what you need to do to hit your goals. If you have traffic-growth goals, do some research on tips for growing traffic and make yourself a list of tips and methods to try. If you want to increase your subscriber count, read up on how to do that. If your goal is to write better content, learn how to do that.
7. Understand that every blogger’s timeline is different
You may feel you’re moving too slowly, but you might be moving along much faster than many others. We often have a warped perspective of our own experiences. It may seem like “everyone else” blogging is doing better than you. The truth is only a few other bloggers are in this position. A great many more are probably doing worse than you, not better.
Don’t worry about comparing yourself to other bloggers. If you create rate-based goals for yourself, you can effectively compete against yourself. As long as you’re doing better this month than you were last month according to your goals, who cares what another blogger is doing? You are on your own timeline, and no one else’s.
8. Create a blogging plan that matches up your goals to the best practices you listed in the previous steps
Take the best practices list you made in step 6 and use it as the basis of your blogging plan. Make a task list from them that you can check off. Put it in a to-do list on NetVibes or Remember the Milk or something like that. Or write it on a good ol’ sticky note and slap it on your monitor.
9. Do the first step in that plan — nothing overcomes depression like action
Do the first thing in your plan NOW. Physical action clears emotional cobwebs in a flash. You will feel a million times better by your accomplishment. If you make a plan and put it aside and tell yourself you will start it later, chances are you will never start it. Start it immediately upon creating it. Give yourself no excuses. By giving yourself a kickstart to begin, you will help generate the momentum you need to keep going.
10. Keep going
Don’t stop executing your plan. Use your momentum to propel you forward through the steps of your plan. Before you know it, you will be on the other side of your blog crash, and you will be a better blogger than you were before!
The Blogger’s Guide to Launching an eBook
eBook marketing is a powerful way to build your personal brand, optin list and even some income (if you do your job right!)
Therefore many bloggers write eBooks in an effort to come up with alternative and self-serving blog monetization method.
However writing an eBook is only first part of the task, arguably the easiest one.
What happens next?
It is time to start preparing your ebook launch… yay! Is there anything more exciting or nerve wracking? The excitement of what could be on the horizon for you. Will the book sell well? Will people like it? Could this be the beginning of something incredible for you?
All of these questions are probably filling your head, and you have every reason to be giddy by the prospect.
But don’t let that giddiness stop you from taking advantage of the moment. There is a lot to consider when preparing for a book to launch. You can improve your visibility, which is turn will improve sales and hype, weeks before your book hits shelves (or ebook databases).
Here are some tips for your pre-launch, which are just as important as the launch itself.
Be prepared for disappointment
It is sad but true: first time authors are rarely given a leg up. Sure, you hear about these writers who publish a novel and explode onto the scene. But they were writing well before that point and already had a foot in the door. Their publishers, whom they had gained before hand, took care of a lot of the work in the PR category.
Besides, the landscape of publishing has changed a lot, thanks to the Internet. If you are publishing digitally, don’t expect a sudden rush of fame and recognition. That has to be worked diligently towards.
Set realistic goals
This goes along with the above tip. When you are preparing to launch, you should have a clear set of goals in mind.
What do you want to accomplish? What are you hoping for, in terms of readership? Profits? Eventual payoff in the long term?
Keep your goals manageable and small (especially if this is your first ebook), and then build on those successes later.
This will keep you from getting discouraged and will motivate you to keep moving forward.
After all, the Internet has given everyone an ability to become a published author, so it is not easy to stand out. It will take a lot of time, work and possibly investments.
Create a powerful landing page
This is crucial. Everything else you do to market your eBook needs to start and end here. You need an ultimate resource talking about you, your book and which problems it solves.
The page needs to be compelling enough for your future readers to optin to receive a free chapter (or to buy/download the book right away).
It is a good idea to get the page ranked in Google for it to become a traffic sources of its own. For that, you will need to identify keywords and optimize its copy.
Use Text Optimizer to build your landing page copy. Text Optimizer is the semantic analysis and search intent optimization tool helping you write content that matches Google (or Bing) users’ expectations. It’s also a great way to optimize your content for it to rank higher in Google:
Get hype started early
The earlier buzz begins to build for your book, the better. Whether you are a blogger launching an ebook, or an author publishing a novel, you want people talking about it.
A couple of months is a good starting point, but a couple of weeks can make a lot of difference, as well. Use social media platforms.
- Share with Facebook followers little excerpts.
- Brand a hashtag. Hold a tweetchat.
- Have giveaways so a few people can get free, advanced copies of the book.
- Share a free chapter.
- Set up an email newsletter to build a community of your loyal readers
- Ask for people to share your updates, and remind them regularly about the coming book.
Get your readers excited.
Remember that gaining readers is more important than profits
This is especially true for first time writers. If your book is good, it will sell. But in the beginning, it is a lot more important to get your work out there and build an audience first.
For example, 1000vultures was a Reddit user who began a long term story on the subreddit NoSleep. He gained a large following and buzz continued to build about his story.
One day, he announced that he would be selling a more complete version in novel format on Amazon, under the name Dan Auberbach. His novel, Penpal, has become quite popular and exists in a physical format.
But he gained his readers before he ever made a profit. That is why so many Amazon ebook writers will allow their works to be lended out as part of the Prime library, or sell for $0.99
Focus on building community and your optin list (while keeping GDPR regulations in mind) rather than getting rich overnight.
Take advantage of connections
Do you know some other bloggers or social media influencers? Start cashing in those favors, because they are going to be important to getting the word out about your work.
Ask bloggers to read and review the book ahead of its release. Offer to write blog posts and include information about the book in your byline. Ask pages to promote it on Facebook, Twitter and other social networks.
Do something quirky
When Random House was promoting the book Zone One by Colson Whitehead, they began to post Twitter updates featuring the hashtag #RHZombies that had to do with the undead.
This quirky little bit of promotion was popular, and led to thousands of favorites and retweets.
Likewise, don’t try to get published. You can start selling your ebook without ever publishing it. There’s no need to follow a traditional route. You can come up with your own!
Think outside the box, and you will be more memorable, and successful.
Have you ever tried to write an (e)book? Do you have you got a tip or two for an ebook pre-launch? Let us know in the comments!
What Bloggers Can Learn from Advanced Dish Washing Machines
Blogging can be compared to a lot of different things, such as writers, authors, newspapers, and even media outlets. However, have you ever considered blogging quite similar to that of a dishwashing machine?
If not, you aren’t alone.
Just like a dishwashing machine, there are many different components to having a sucessful website, blog, and content on your site. All of which are also influenced by how well your writing is, and the type of audience you are attracting. But there are also many little tools, components, features, and levels of expertise factored in along the way.
With all of these little elements in mind and working all together, blogging can also be quite similar to the way advanced appliances and dish washing machines work and improve our lives on a daily basis.
How Blogging is a Lot Like a Dishwasher
Sure, it might seem funny at first to compare something like a home appliance that does cleaning, to the extremely vast and complex world of blogging — however, when it comes to creating content and coming up with new ideas on how to get more creative with content than ever before… this is just a perfect example!
To bring this concept and mentallity altogether, let’s take a look at the Bosch 500 Series Dishwasher, which is quickly making headlines and gaining attention for it’s ease of use and advanced technhology.
Below you will find a listing of each of it’s features, and then how one could apply such a feature or setting into that of a blog as well.
A little fresh air equals a lot more dry.
The Bosch 500 Series Dishwasher claims AutoAir™ automatically opens the door at the end of the drying cycle to let moisture escape and fresh air circulate for better drying results.* (*Compared to Bosch Dishwashers with PureDry.)
— A fresh breath of air can do a lot for a dish washing machine when it comes to cleanliness and drying. However, the same definitely applies to that of a website, blog, or content creation as well. It’s never easy to come up with new content all the time for your sites, so every once in a while, be sure to take a fresh breath of air and see what type of new content or topics you might want to start writing about.
There’s room for up to 16 place settings. Plus, 5 wash cycles including five-level wash, 5 options like Extra Dry, and a concealed heating element.
— Much like a website or blog, there is always room for additional content, plugins, settings and theme. Just like a dishwasher, you don’t want to load it up so it’s jam packed and hard to clean everything thats inside. So with this in mind, think about how you can better organize the content on your site and the tools that allow it to run at it’s best performance, while also eliminating the junk.
Flexible 3rd rack
Accommodate the odd one out. Adding the 3rd rack with its adjustable tines can create the right fit for deep, tall, or uniquely-shaped items.
Load and unload smoothly. It’s easy to adjust and move the racks, even while they’re full of dishes.
Fit it all, every time. With 3 different height levels and up to 9 possible rack positions, you can customize each load for your needs.
— Just like how a dishwashing machine has additional rack for better storage and management, the web hosting associated with your site likely can do the same. However, it’s not always about getting as much space as possible, but instead knowing how to best optimize the space and resources you are working with. After all, you don’t want to throw all of your utensil (site articles) on the top rack and have them fall out of place. You would instead use the utensil rack to make sure they are all in one place and maximizing the performance of cleaning throughout your washing. In blogging terms, this can also be associated as having one powerful web hosting solution that is optimized for WordPress, so it’s running at peak peformance at all times.
Protect your floors. This 4-part leak prevention system uses sensors to detect and stop leaks, and can even turn on by itself.
— One of the worst things that can happen with a dishwasher, is to have it leak water all over your kitchen. With an Aquastop in place, this can help stop leaks before they start. The best way to compare such a feature to a blog, would be to have an anti-virus and hack security solution in place. This can often be done by adding a security WordPress plugin, or going with a higher end hosting solution that offers 24/7 backup and advanced security of their own.
44-dBA noise level rating
Wash dishes in peace. Bosch dishwashers are so quiet, you have to check the exterior Infolight® to know they’re on.
— Dishwashing machines come in all different shapes and sizes. No matter how big it is, you are going to want to make sure it’s night and quiet. When a dishwasher is made by Bosch, they are made by a name and brand that is known for excellence and superior products. The same type of mindset needs to be applied when choosing a web hosting or monetization platform for your blog as well. Go with a hosting solution that is reliable and has a well-branded name. And when it comes to choosing a propert monetization method for your site, go with one that has a proven track record and success as well.
How Bloggers and Like Top of the Line Dishwashing Machines
Yes, the idea that bloggers are like dishwashing machines might have seemed a little silly at the beginning, but after reading through the article, you might have a bit more of a clear picture on why it’s true.
Bloggers and dish washing machines will each continue to develop over time, while also learning how to adapt to the changing enviornments around them and impriving over time.
So the next time you see your dishwashing machine… you might just think about blogging as well!
Is Creating or Connecting More Important in Blogging?
Creating and connecting are equally important elements in becoming a successful blogger. Creating content without building friendships means nobody knows about your content. Imagine publishing posts in a cyber cave. No one finds you and no one finds and reads your content. Connecting without creating content means nobody trusts you because you did not prove you know your stuff through creating helpful, valuable content. Imagine a high volume of traffic finds your blog through your friend network. What do people see? Nothing. Or, thin content, weakly created. You can be friends with 10,000 bloggers but if you share little valuable content you cannot gain trust or earn credibility.
This is why you need to create helpful content and build strong connections with leaders in your blogging niche.
Create helpful content solving reader content through blog posts, guest post, videos and podcasts. Give readers value to become valuable in their eyes. I publish 7 to 10 or more pieces of helpful content daily to display I know what I talk about, blogging-wise. People come across my content – through my friend network – and trust my advice because I’ve been helping people through free content for years.
People dig the free-mium and buy the premium. Make money blogging by creating oodles of helpful, free content to improve your skills and to gain credibility.
If you do not create content people will not trust you. Try succeeding online with zero credibility; not gonna happen. Prove you know your stuff. Create helpful free content to prove you know your niche and to inspire readers to trust you.
Connect with top bloggers in your niche. Help them. Ask for nothing. Expect nothing. Bonds form. Friendships develop. Top bloggers promote you, endorse you, hire you and buy your stuff, amplifying your reach and multiplying your success.
Comment genuinely on top blogs from your niche. Promote top bloggers on your blog and through social media. Be generous. Ask for nothing in return. Prove you are interested in the blogger, NOT solely in what the blogger can do for you. Bonds form. Sweet blogging success flows your way.
Watch me explain how to grow your blogging network here:
Imagine trying to blog without connecting, as thousands of bloggers do. Write a post. Publish the post. Share to Facebook. Retweet on Twitter. Sit there. See what happens. Wait. No traffic. No profits. Why? Literally, you publish content for your eyes only until you network generously and make friends. Nobody knows you or trusts you because you blog solo, all day long. Nobody trusts someone who is a lone wolf, who is not a team player, because you do not listen to other people and generously serve people and help people and do all the things successful bloggers do, to prove they listen, they process and they help.
Connect. Expand your reach by growing your friend network. Make blogging easier. Have fun making friends. Prosper.
Begin creating and connecting from day 1 as a blogger. Begin creating helpful content solving reader needs and connect by commenting genuinely on blogs and by promoting fellow bloggers. Success will be yours if you follow these 2 basic blogging fundamentals.
Be patient. Good things require both generous service and time.
Are you having a difficult time making money with your blog?
You have an energy problem.
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