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I am a quadruple amputee! If you’ve read any of my other posts, you already know that. However, why did I want to start a new blogging career and what have I learned from this process?
Why a blogging career?
For the last 7 years, people have suggested many things. You should write a book, or be a motivational speaker. When I think about writing a book I always replied with, “but I can’t write!” I always wanted to be a motivational speaker, though. Whatever would I talk about? I know that my story about how I developed a flesh-eating bacteria that changed my life forever and resulted in the amputation of my hands and feet, is what people want to hear about, but I still can’t tell my story without getting teary. I’ve always had the mindset of goal setting, inspiration, and motivation but when you put this introvert in front of a group of people I felt overly anxious. Someday, maybe.
I found a Facebook group called Start a Money Making Blog, and they had a 5-day course for getting started. I followed the steps and soon my blog was created. I thought that a blog was about writing. I still believe that I’m not a writer, but I can surely tell my story. So I started writing. I had several posts written before my blog went live so that people had a variety of things to look at. Then, on August 21, 2018, One Exceptional Life was born.
I learned some interesting things from my blogging beginnings. The biggest one is the 80/20 rule. What this means is that I should be spending only 20% of my time creating new content but 80% of my time promoting my work. This was mind-blowing! I had absolutely no idea that this 80% was so time-consuming. It makes sense, though. I want people to read my blog and other than friends and family, where would those people come from? They come from the world wide web, of course.
That meant I had to learn how to promote. I had to learn more about Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. Then there’s YouTube and Google+ and so many more. Naturally, I was overwhelmed. Rather than take the smart approach and learn one method at a time, I learned a little bit about the major four and jumped right in. The problem that created was chaos and confusion. My goal right now is to backtrack and dig deeper into each method and learn them properly. You’d think I’m home all day, I have plenty of time. I’m telling you, there are not enough hours in the day.
Oh, the confusion!
All of this learning is doing two things. It’s teaching me social media and confusing me more than ever. I had no idea it was so complicated. You can do this here, but not there. Don’t post your link here, and make sure you reciprocate there. Holy smokes! However, I am committed and I will prevail. There’s no point in starting a blogging career if I wasn’t going to do it right.
Another interesting part is that I needed to create a pretty cool looking website. Did you know if you need help with your website, you can’t just call tech support on the phone? It’s all done by chat or email. That means waiting, in the case of email. It’s interesting to note that my website guys are in a whole different part of the world and are likely in a 12 hour difference time zone. That holds true for my logo design. This truly is a worldwide project.
Code and learning how to build a website is so new and unnatural for me. My “Start a Money Making Blog” friends have a really awesome support aspect of their group. This man addressed any technical question I had, thankfully. So with his support, and with the support of the team at my web design company, I was able to create what I think is a really nice website.
In order to build a following, I had to promote my website. I created a One Exceptional Life Facebook page This is my little community and I enjoyed posting everyday snippets about my life and when new blog posts were released.
I learned about Instagram which is a visual social media. With each post, it required a picture. However, I could not put any old picture up there. I had to be creative and specific. When you look at my Instagram page the look had to be cohesive and visually appealing. So what I did was alternate pictures of my life with my brand and my blog post material. You can check out My Instagram feed here to see what I mean. Make sure you “follow” me. The other thing about Instagram is that my daily posts that went along with my pictures had to be cohesive as well. I couldn’t put any links in my updates, however. Instead, I always directed traffic back to my bio page.
Twitter is totally different. It’s a shorter, smaller picture version of Instagram. My Twitter link here A big part of the Twitter game is to retweet posts from other people and just chat. I like to talk about daily stuff and fun snippets about me. The whole idea from all of social media is to follow others and then learn to build a relationship with these folks. When they know, like and trust you, they will follow your blog adventures and also buy from you. I’ll get to the buying part later.
Pinterest is supposedly the big daddy. My Pinterest link is here. If you do it right, most traffic to your blog will come from Pinterest. You see, Pinterest is not just a visual recipe provider. It’s a search engine, like Google, only with pictures. For every blog post, I created 3 different “pins” that I could share on Pinterest that would be connected to and would redirect traffic back to my blog.
When you share your own pins on Pinterest, then you must share other pins as well. This method goes by the 80/20 rule also. In this case, however, you share 80% of other people’s pins and 20% of your own. I will admit that even though Pinterest has so much ability to help me grow the most, it also has intimidated me the most. I have a lot to learn and I really haven’t been good at utilizing this method yet. It’s definitely a priority, though.
As you can imagine, I have been consumed with learning about the whole blog operation. Of course, I wanted to create something that people would want to read. My husband, Mike, thought it was important for me to create something to help me heal. I also wanted a means to create another source of income for my family. If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that I haven’t ventured into that aspect just yet. At this point, I have a few ideas but I have a lot more to learn about that aspect of blogging first.
I know I’ve merely touched the surface of my whole blogging career journey here. Right now 80% of all my time is spent reading and learning. The clouds are finally moving away from my eyes but they aren’t completely gone. My plan is to share more info on blogging with you as I learn it. Blogging has really been a great new adventure for me and I hope and pray that I’ve blessed your life with my stories so far. You definitely have been a blessing to me. The response I have had has been truly wonderful and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. In fact, I have been nominated for numerous awards. I’ve only written about two, but you can read more at The Sunshine Blogger Award 2018 and More Blogger Awards.
Please consider subscribing if you haven’t already done so. I have a lot more adventures to share with you. By subscribing, you will learn about them first hand. However, first, I have to accomplish them. I have a whole big exciting list of things I want to do.
I know I’ve missed a lot of the details about what it takes to start and run a blog. My goal here was simply to scratch the surface. If you have any questions I would be happy to answer them and as always, I appreciate your comments. I’d also appreciate it if you share this post or follow me on any or all of my social media sites. Thank you for your love and loyalty. I truly appreciate it more than you know.