Two Years of Blogging – What We Learned
Two years ago today we published our first post on Midwest Bliss. Today’s post will be titled Two Years of Blogging – What We Learned. We will also say a special few Thank Yous.
Seems hard to believe that we’ve been here for two years already. We’ve had a successful two years – maybe not as successful as we would hope to have been at this point in our blogging tenure, however, no less grateful.
Two years of blogging brings with it lots of triumphs and lots of failures. We’ve also learned a lot in the last two years, so let’s talk about that first.
Blogging is not easy
If any of you out there in the blogosphere can relate, like us, you probably thought to yourself “I’ll start a blog”.
Well, starting the blog is the easy part. Actually doing the work of finding your niche, conceptualizing posts, writing posts, proofing your posts (which people need to do more of), and then promoting your posts. This all takes time and effort.
Below are some quick lessons we learned here at Midwest Bliss and would like to share with others.
Narrow down your niche. Being too broad means too much content may already be out there and your posts will never be seen. An example, rather than blogging about ALL things Midwest, pick a smaller focus, say Midwest state parks within a geographical area.
This was a hard learned lesson here at Midwest Bliss. We started off doing park reviews with a focus on the Midwest when in actuality, we do not visit that many parks out of our geographical area.
Post regularly. If you aren’t posting at least weekly, you will likely fail. Not true in all cases but in most.
Now, we are not Search Engine experts by any means, but more activity on from your blog definitely helps with the ranking of your posts later.
Having more content means more pages, posts, links, text, and/or images that will be seen, clicked, or read from your page. This equates to views, which equates to search engine rank.
Write, write, write. Unless you are a college professor or writing/composition education major, you will likely not be all that good at composing blog posts at first.
Keep writing, AND, edit and proof your posts. We all occasionally make some grammatical or spelling errors, however, a blog post with more than three or four errors is not good. You may still get some readers but likely will not see much success.
Every chance you get to create an interesting or helpful post, do so. It may not be great, but you are practicing your skill, and you are generating more views with each post.
Make sure to proof and edit your posts. At least a little.
I recommend using Grammarly – Free edition of course. Works right in the browser and is very reliable to catch spelling, punctuation, and most grammatical errors.
Good quality images on your posts. This is where we have seen the most success at Midwest Biss.
We committed to improving our images on our posts and we have been rewarded tenfold. If you are using all phone images, please at least edit those and practice.
Countless times we have viewed other content and seen images that were out of focus, crooked, or just plain poor quality. Needless to say, those blog pages did not get viewed for long and certainly not a “Like” or a comment.
If you just cannot create better images yourself, or you just do not have the time, then, by all means, consider using some stock photos for purchase. There are really good deals out there with lots of photographers eager to sell their work, so there is little excuse for having poor images on your posts.
Promote your blog posts. This lesson has taken us and continues to take us, the longest to develop and master.
We have said it before and will say it again, just because you start a blog doesn’t mean readers just show up. You have to promote your blog and posts.
Midwest Bliss generates most reader traffic using Pinterest. Second is Facebook, which we use to post to groups – Since Facebook changed its policy on posting to pages about a year ago, we do not see as much traffic from Facebook.
Share, Share, Share. Find other bloggers to share with. Facebook groups and any other social media you are routinely visiting or have a following.
Part of using Pinterest to promote Midwest Bliss has been learning how to create really good, sharable pins. We use Photoshop to create vertical pins and have really seen a huge return on investment by developing this skill.
Watch for a future post on Creating A Sharable Pinterest Pin Using Photoshop.
Midwest Bliss has developed some really kind and loyal readers in the two years since our very first post went public.
We want to thank all of our readers. Without you, of course, we would not have any success at all, moreover, we enjoy hearing from you and reading all the wonderful comments you all leave us.
Being a blogger is as much about relationships as it is about publishing content. Make certain to always be mindful that without your readers, your blog is just meaningless jumbles of text on the web. Cultivate relationships with readers, other bloggers, digital specialists, and pretty much anyone out there that can help you succeed.
The reward really is when you see your posts being read by more and more readers as your site grows. Sure, some people want to create some revenue from their site, just like Midwest Bliss, but that revenue will only come AFTER there are plenty of readers and visitors.
Thank you to all readers and visitors of Midwest Bliss. We are grateful you are here and grateful for everything you do.
And, to all other Bloggers out there, here’s to you and to the effort you put in each day to bring good content to readers just like us here at Midwest Bliss.
Here’s to Two Years Blogging and hopefully many more.
Thank you all again.
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If you like any of our photography, please send us an email to requests prints or other artwork. We’re happy to share our work.
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