In 2006, I first stepped into the world of blogging. “Leslie, that was way more than a year ago,” is what you’re thinking – I know. Eleven years ago I decided I wanted to start documenting the clothes I wore so I could see how my style evolved. I was working in tandem with my sister because at that time they’re weren’t many people blogging like that. Needless to say as much as we loved it, we knowledgable on how to make it grow, didn’t understand brand aesthetics and a host of other things. Ultimately it led to us letting it go. What I couldn’t let go of was my desire. My need to get words out and my love of sharing my life. That’s why The Hautemommie is here today. Take a look with me over what my year of blogging on my own has been like and what I’ve learned thus far.
Being a blogger isn’t easy, it also isn’t the most understood or respected job either.
People look at you and think, “what’s hard about it?” because they only see the finished product. If you’re lucky to have a great photographer (shoutout to mine – thank you R.C.), a bit of disposable income, time and something to say; then and only then will people maybe bother to read. The truth is it takes more than that to make your blog pop. It takes dedication, a thick skin, and work ethic. In an age where there are 2 million plus blog posts written daily, you have to be in it to win it. Otherwise you’re essentially setting yourself up for failure. Now before you quit before you start let me give you a few tips on making it happen.
Make A Plan –
My advice to anyone wanting to start a blog be it fashion, lifestyle, or otherwise, is to get out on paper what your blog will say. It’s easy to buy a domain, get yourself a cute theme on WordPress, and put up an about me page. The real work is creating and building engaging, interesting content consistently. When I didn’t have a blog anymore I was still always writing, thumbing through magazines for inspiration, and taking
crappy pictures of my outfits just for me. Point is I was doing what I’m doing now – anyway. I didn’t have any brands trying to send me freebies or a television show in the works, I simply wanted to inspire, create, and share. Before you go live with your blog have ten posts in the cannon ready to fire. You want to wow and capture an audience from the beginning. In those initial posts your reader should know who you are and what your blog is about – this is your introduction, make it worthwhile.
Don’t Expect Overnight Results –
I’m guilty of this in a lot of areas in my life. Which is strange for me because I don’t want to be an instant success. I want my journey to be continuous and growth never-ending but I also want to be seen – now. It’s a strange dichotomy really and I’m working on it daily. You should know that for a while it may only be your mom (
barely) and your friends who tune in. I can assure you though if you keep striving to be better, continue to work hard eventually you will be noticed. It will take work and it requires effort but it can be done. We’re all guilty of looking at other bloggers and thinking, “AHH! If I could just be THERE I’d be okay.” What we don’t see is that those same bloggers feel that way about someone else. Which means we all have to be comfortable in our trajectory. Stay on your own path to poppin.
Money Will Come –
Everyone wants to get paid. Everyone wants to be compensated for something. That said – I heard a quote once that said something to the affect of “do the job without the money and eventually the money will come.” And it’s true. As a business person and a creative I can tell you I’ve had my share of “the compensation is exposure” emails and it burns me up. Working hard on something only for someone to say there’s no budget, or you’re not worth what you’re asking can be tough. In those situations I dig my heels in harder and prove why I am worth it. If you want someone to cough up the green, make them see the value. Without value you’re just another hand begging. Make giving you the money easy. That comes from producing worthwhile content and going beyond expectation.
The Act of Shameless Promotion –
I use to work in PR, I even had a firm for a while so the idea of promoting something or someone is not lost on me, except, when it comes to promoting me. Talking about yourself can be difficult if you’re not a raging narcissist. Why do you think other people get folks to write their life stories? It’s never easy shouting from the rooftops why someone should be on your blog soaking up the goodness, but if you don’t tell them, who will? I’m learning to get over the “embarrassment” of sharing what I have going on here on The Hautemommie because I’m proud of it. Moreover I did this to share – so I’ve got to be okay with that. Becoming comfortable with your greatness is one of my goals during my 30’s, are you with me?
This past year has been full of lessons and even some days at my desk with tears but I wouldn’t give it up. I have plans on becoming a premiere voice in this space. Of being able to use my life as a testimony for others to know that your circumstance is not your story.
Going into year two I’m aiming to get better and bigger and I can only do it with you. Do me a favor and subscribe would ya? And tell a friend, you’ll be making a dream come true.
Thanks for reading!
Great post, thanks for sharing. I will definitely use some of these tips (:
All things I must keep in mind as I’ve just started blogging. Eapecially the piece about promotion. I’ve always sucked at self promotion. Ive trained myself against it in the past.
Keep up the good work Les! Your hard work shows 🙂
Loved this!! And love you!! Xoxoxo
As a new blogger reading this post all I can say is THANK YOU! 🙂
So glad I can help! Good luck!