When I first started blogging 3 years ago, I had no experience and didn't completely know what I was doing! Sometimes I felt a little lost. If you're in the beginning stages of blogging, I imagine you feel the same way. I'd like to share three things I wish I had known when I started blogging plus one thing I did right from the beginning which has really helped me.
Number One. I wish I had known that I would succeed with hard work and consistency. I doubted myself so much in the beginning and sometimes I was afraid to give it my all because I was afraid of failure. I think I would have done a better job if I had know that I would eventually succeed. I thought it took something “special” to make a good income online, and I probably didn't have whatever that “special” thing was. (Newsflash: It does take something special. You have to be willing to get started and work hard, but there's nothing mysterious about it.) I would highly recommend that you work as if you knew you wouldn't fail. Even if you don't meet all of your goals completely, I promise you'll be a lot farther along than if you had worked timidly doubting yourself at every turn.
Number Two. I wish I had treated blogging like a “real job” from the very beginning. Before you've built up a readership that expects something from you and before you've actually made any money, it sometimes can feel like a hobby instead of a real job. However, you should be treating your blogging work like the type of job you hope it will turn into – not what it actually is today. If you want it to make a steady part time income, you should put in steady, focused part-time hours. If you want to earn a full time income, you should put in a solid 40 hours a week just like you would at a traditional job. I would have made progress more quickly if I had treated my blogging that way from the very beginning.
Number Three. I wish I had done fewer things. Yes, I actually wish I had done fewer different things and instead focused on doing a few things really well. It's really not possible to do a whole lot of different things really well. It's tempting to try everything, but all that really does is dilute your efforts and makes it difficult to make progress with anything. You cannot be rocking it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Stumbleupon, LinkedIn, and Periscope. You need to pick 2-3 areas, focus on those, and get really good at them. I quickly figured this out, and was able to grow a lot faster by only focusing on Pinterest and ignoring all the other social media platforms. (I'm not saying you need to focus on Pinterest, but I am saying you can't focus on everything.)
BONUS: What I Did Right. There was one thing I did well from the very beginning, and I'm so happy I did. I focused on building my e-mail list from day one. It has been the number one thing that has turned my little tiny hobby blog into a steady, full time income. I was able to grow my list from 0 to over 50,000 in less than 3 years, and I watched my income grow proportionally over that time. If you're not working on your e-mail list, you should start today. Don't worry if you don't have a clue how to do that. I'm here to help. I've created a course that will show you exactly how to start, grow, and profit from your e-mail list (even if you know absolutely nothing about it and aren't very techy). Click here if you want to check out the course and start growing your list.
Here's the Periscope I did on this topic. (If you want to catch my future broadcasts, follow me on Periscope with the handle iheartplanners)
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