The evolution of a blogger

scrabble blog

 

I know it doesn’t happen the same way for everyone – I am part of several Facebook groups and I regularly read people coming to the forum as newbies – I mean up and running from scratch for about a month – saying “I am currently getting 1000 page views per month, have 500 followers on Twitter – how do I build my following?” to which the rest of us go “bloody hell, I’ve been up and running for two years and I don’t have a flipping clue how you’ve managed that – can you give *me* some tips?!”.

However, for a lot of us we come to the blogosphere on a bit of a whim – it seems like a nice idea to have your own URL and a space to play about with words and images and that’s about it. Then you begin to discover that you are not blogging in isolataion, there is a community out there – people like you who are writing recognisable stuff and who are actually interested in what you have to say…

…Which leads you to discovering linkies and blog hops…

…At which point you realise that you should probably set up some more social media networks so that people can connect with you more easily and you can up your…

…Stats – yes once the whole Tots100 (other blogger networks are available) hoves into view there is no getting off the mad rankings carousel.

Then one day you realise that other people might be working with brands and hey, wouldn’t it be nice to work with some brands and get to experience some of those “blogger opportunities” that you’ve been hearing so much about?

Which leads to a strategic re-think – maybe you should start a linky to up your page views? But to start a linky (and indeed to get noticed by brands) you need to go self-hosted…

After which it becomes apparent that pro or semi-pro bloggers get a lot out of being members of groups on the social networks, so you join some groups and think about the necessity of networking in real life, so you attend your first Blogger Conference…

…Which it turns out is inspiring and demoralising in equal parts as other peoples’ brilliance leaves you feeling like the runt of a bunny litter caught in the headlights of an oncoming juggernaut (or is that just me?)…

…At about which point you write a post about the way in which you intend to join less linkies, write less often, not write for anyone but yourself, tuck and roll out of the speeding blogger bus which you have somehow found yourself riding…

…But then again less isn’t always more…

What part of the journey are you on?

 

And then the fun began...

16 thoughts on “The evolution of a blogger

  1. I can definitely relate to bits of this lovely. I often wonder whether some people are just making their stats sound like they’re much better than they actually are tbh. As for my own journey, I’m well and truly in the thick of trying to make enough money through blogging that will mean not having to go back to work in the traditional sense. Not sure I’ll make it happen though, it’s bloody hard to achieve any semblance of a regular income. Another thought provoking post that will strike a chord with many 🙂 xx
    Mummy Tries recently posted…A Whole Day OffMy Profile

  2. Ha ha Sam I’m right at the very end of the journey – I’m writing for me and to hell with the stats! Seriously, mine are SO bad that I don’t even look at them anymore. I make next to nothing and am ok with that. I don’t want to blog for that reason. I’m often caught up in a wave of what everyone else is doing but always come back to your last point eventually. It’s just not me. Great post 🙂 x
    Suzanne recently posted…Photo of the Week 42 / Celebrating AchievementsMy Profile

  3. I’m pretty much where Suzanne is – I blog for me, and to hell with the stats – although my situation is perhaps a bit more complicated because I blog in different guises.

    My parenting blog is the one where I do more than just write: I participate in the community as much as I can (although I’m not on any of the Facebook groups which seems to be where all the gossip’s at …), I network a bit (although BritMums proved to me that I’m more interested in ‘social’ than ‘professional’ networking) and I couldn’t care less about my numbers – never really have, probably never will. It’s also where I’m at my most creative, trying out new things like the podcast.

    But then there’s my collaborative cycling blog (7 writers, 3 time zones), which I do because I love the sport and it’s as close as I’ll ever get to being a ‘real’ journalist. There the stats do matter, but it’s mostly about the fun of getting together with a group of friends online to just do stuff.

    And then there’s my TV blogging gig for Metro, which is all about stats – but only because I get a bonus every time a post achieves more than X unique visitors. (I should point out that, while this gig helps keep me topped up on gadgets, I’m not going to be making a living this way any time soon …)

    Overall, this gives me quite a nice balance of stuff to keep me busy. A little bit too busy at times!
    Tim recently posted…My Sunday Photo: The princess and the skeleton pirateMy Profile

  4. You’ve really got it. I couldn’t have written that any better, sweetie. I have no idea how bloggers who have just started manage to get big numbers and can be so clued up. I had 14 page views in my first month, and didn’t have a Twitter account, Facebook page or even Instagram.
    I’ve also been bitten by the ‘Linky fatigue’ bug. It’s been a few months actually… I’ve enjoyed blogging a lot more since I started reading only what I really wanted to read and wasting less time faffing and trying to find meaningful comments when all I wanted was go to bed 🙂
    Mel recently posted…My Dream Craft RoomMy Profile

  5. Good read as always!! I think I chop and change but at the mo am really into my blogging. I love writing, love my Linky and have had a few opportunities so that’s great! Nothing like some though. Funnily since moving to self hosted I’m not as bothered with stats which is odd! I’m off to Brit mums next year though. Hope you are xx thanks for hosting x
    Sarah Howe recently posted…How to deal with Cold Callers – the Chris way….My Profile

  6. I agree with a lot of what you’ve written Sam. When I started my food blog it was entirely for me and woever happened to ask me for a recipe was directed to it rather than me bothering to write the recipe down tens of times 🙂 Seven years on, I get more views than I used to but it is still mostly for me, friends and family.
    Three Sons Later is more about sharing my life and I join up to linkies I enjoy (like yours!), as and when I feel like it and have something relevant to link. I write what I feel like sharing. In a way I would to be able to live off it but I have yet to earn a penny from blogging and I didn’t get into it for the money or stuff. I do enjoy it more than my real job though.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I really enjoy reading your perspective on things each week.
    Fionnuala recently posted…This is Motherhood #014My Profile

  7. I’m about to attend my first conference/s imminently, so I guess I’m about to feel inspired and demotivated next. Haha! I guess it is a bit of a roller-coaster, I have been blogging for about 10 months and it’s been a bit of a whirl wind. My blog isn’t what I intended it to be but I am going to reign it in and write more for myself now.

    • It is a whirlwind isn’t it? It can definitely go from exciting to demoralising in a short space of time but on the whole it’s a fantastic thing to do in my opinion 🙂

  8. Oh, this made me smile! I’ve just finished writing a post about the fact that I can’t seem to write at the moment… Maybe I should link it up too, but linked my tween post up first thing… Anyway, I think we all go round in circles on this one. Linkys are killing me at the moment, there are really only a handful that I actually want to join in with, I’ve cut back massively, but they still take way too much time and then people just aren’t commenting. But, isn’t it funny how many posts have been popping up about this subject 😉
    Sara | mumturnedmom recently posted…On Writing: or notMy Profile

  9. Oh I can definitely relate to this Sam – have been through all of these stages and whilst in some ways I have taken a step back, I’m still blogging almost as frequently as I was but have taken the pressure off with regards to joining linkies and am writing more because I want to rather than because I feel I ought to. My stats are always quite up and down but I’m much less hung up on them these days. It always amazes me when people who have only been blogging a very short amount of time have such amazing stats – it took me a good few months before I really started discovering the blogging community. Brilliant post and such a great summary of the evolution of a blogger.
    Louise recently posted…Two Important Ways to Give Your Baby’s Heart a Better StartMy Profile

  10. This!!!! OMG…this is exactly how I’ve been feeling lately. I’ve been pulling back a bit and re-evaluating why I blog and what I want to get out of it. It seems like utter insanity sometimes with all the linkies and groups and whatnot…on top of trying to write worthwhile posts! There’s only so many hours in the day, and with a job and a family, I just can’t put that much pressure on myself anymore.

    #thetruthabout

  11. I’m always amazed by how on the ball many new bloggers are. When I started I had no idea there were mummy bloggers out there, let alone a community, or that anyone other than my mum would read the blog.

    I’m still a bit of a mix, but I am essentially writing to record what we’re up to with a bit of brand stuff included. I make a bit of pocket money but would never be able to make it worth leaving work for it, and maintaining the choice of sponsored posts I want.

    Great post.
    Emma T recently posted…The freedom of dance – digging out my modern jive dancing shoesMy Profile

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