Welcome to the April edition of Reader’s Q & A. Spring has finally sprung and I am so glad that snow is finally gone for good and bright, sunny days are back. I just LOVE natural vitamin D, don’t you? 🙂
As you know, I am very grateful to be considered as a resourceful, trustworthy and knowledgeable person. That is why I am flattered when I receive messages from readers around the globe telling me how they enjoyed reading a certain post or how I inspired them to go to a place I recommended and that truly makes what I do worthwhile.
Now I recently received an email this week that grabbed my attention and knew that I needed to reply in a long form instead of a short reply via social media.
The reader asked:
I love your blog and I’ve been following you for a few months now. I started blogging earlier this year but on some days I just feel like giving up. My numbers are not improving as fast as I would like them to and they are nowhere near as yours. Sometimes I feel as if no one reads or is interested in what I write.
I would love your advice or opinion on the following…
I sure could use some tips or pointers. Thank you so much for your time and help.
Here is my answer:
First of all I would like to thank YOU for taking the time to visit and read my blog! It is greatly appreciated. I am happy to read that you find it useful and entertaining which is what I am for!
Please know that I know EXACTLY how you feel because I too have been there before and it is not a pleasant feeling or a good place to be!
The good news is that it is only a matter of time before you see things turn around in your favor and notice changes take place.
Remember that in life there are times when there are periods where you think that everything comes to a standstill, nothing moves or improves.
What you must do in the mean time is to keep yourself busy and press forward. Learn as much as you can, work on your growing your network, establish honest relationships with other bloggers and keep writing!
As far as your blogging is concerned, let me ask you a few questions.
Do you have a plan set in place or do you just go with the flow?
Do you use your blog as a diary or do you want to become an expert in a particular destination or area by writing great and original content about it?
What is your ultimate goal of the blog?
What do you want to accomplish?
I am asking this because it is truly important and it helps you know where you stand, what you need to plan, execute and monitor all your efforts to get where you want to.
Can I be honest with you?
When I first started blogging 4 years ago, I did it to keep my family, relatives and friends back home updated on my many (mis)adventures and trust me I wrote for myself at the beginning (first couple of months) but little did I know that people in other countries (my first follower is Eira from England!) started reading my stories and became interested in what I did in the land of the not so calm (South Korea).
I have always written because that’s what I love to do, even though I kind of hold back a bit since I know that the time span on the internet is pretty short!
Fortunately, by the end of the first year I had been seen in over 100 countries and that’s when I realized that I needed to take blogging seriously and give it a new direction! That changed everything.
I started learning more about how to be more active on major social networks (Twitter is by far my favorite) Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram etc.) as well as marketing, networking and SEO (it plays a major role in your rankings).
Since I am a passionate teacher and student, I always say: “never stop learning” That is why the best tip or suggestion I could possibly give you is to read and learn something new Every. Single. Day!
I have signed up to various sites regarding technology, blogging, social media and receive almost every day powerful, informative and inspiring content which makes me want to improve my skills and knowledge on a consistent basis.
Here are a few examples:
And many, many more!
The invaluable and useful information provided is just amazing and best of all? It is absolutely FREE!
I also sign up to as many free webinars offered by these great social media influencers but also by sites such as:
Among many great sites, you can always research on Google and you will find lots to choose from 🙂
Now you mentioned that you are a travel blogger as well. These tips apply to anyone in any niche!
I invite you to read some of my previous posts about
They include more details that will help you on growing your followers.
I just believe that if you write awesome, fun, educating, entertaining and original content, accompanied by high quality photos or video and if you promote it actively (and help others in return), it will help you get more recognition and people will notice you.
People (readers) are very smart, intuitive and know when writing is very good. If they like it they will gladly share it and follow you because:
- No one is begging or forcing them to do so
- No one twists their arm or pay them to share or visit your site
- You provide valuable information which is always appreciated and being authentic is what you project!
I am forgetting something very important that you mentioned in your email. Please, do me a favor…NEVER EVER compare yourself to anyone because that is like putting yourself down and will doubt yourself, your abilities and your talents!
You are special; you can do something that we simply can’t, so don’t ever under-estimate who you are as you’ve something unique to offer!
Instead of focusing on numbers and impressions or thousands of website hits, concentrate on being the very best you can be! You are in a race against yourself, not someone else who has impressive numbers (who knows maybe they have purchased likes, followers, website visits or all, trust me that is something you should never do).
Do what makes YOU happy and feel proud of what you accomplish one day at a time! Always keep in mind why you started, why you are doing this and keep your goal in sight (Add that to your résumé 😉
Supporting others going through the same situations is ok but never let anyone take advantage of you. I’m just being honest here.
Ah, also don’t just focus on one group in particular. Be diverse and reach other groups or audience that are completely different from what you do. As I mentioned earlier, I LOVE learning and trust me I have thanks to DIY, foodie, lifestyle and social media marketing bloggers 🙂
There are some very brilliant minds out there and it is great to connect with people who infuse you with great humor, enthusiasm and who know how to make you see some things you otherwise would not have been able to see on your own!
In summary, be a great learner, disciplined, never give up and just have fun! You have built your blog and they will come. Just have patience and keep pressing forward.
I hope you found my reply useful and put it to practice!
I wish you all the best and many happy travels!
P.S: Did I miss something? What would you add or suggest?
We’re all eyes and ears!