Tuesday, 9 December 2014

My Blogging Experience (How To Start Your Own Blog)

It's been just over a year since I started blogging, and probably a year since I have been blogging properly. I set up a Facebook blog page way back at the very end of August last year and then promptly put the settings on private and forgot about it for two or three months. I was a bit nervous about putting myself out there on the internet but I needn't have been worried as the experience has been 99.9% fabulous!

If you are looking to start a blog you can host it on BlogSpot or Wordpress. To be honest, I am the most untechy person when it comes to design and layout of a blog and it really takes a lot of playing around with the widths, colours, themes and dimensions to make it get to a semblance of how you want it to look.

The hardest part is coming up with a name! If I could go back I probably would change my blog name as it is a bit of a mouthful but I think I have come so far now it would only be confusing the change it.

It's important to have a Twitter presence if you want to get into blogging, be it beauty blogging, fashion blogging, food or travel blogging. An online presence on all social media networks is important it will also give you more 'traffic' or viewers to your blog. Attaching labels to your blog will also help people find your blog as it is more likely to come up in a search engine like Google, this is called 'search engine optimisation'.

I was lucky to come across a guy called Paraic Cullen who designed my blog header for me which was a big step as I believe it was then that it became a proper blog. He did a fantastic job, he has experience in digital marketing but is also a fantastic graphic designer as you can see from the job he did.

He was very professional, friendly and easy to deal with. He was so thorough and really came up with a strong visual that I think suits my blog down to the ground. He is busy at the moment doing a Masters he has informed me, but if you are interested in hiring him to create a blog header email me at bloggingitbeautiful@gmail.com and I will try and put you both in touch.

The hardest part about blogging sometimes is keeping up with it. I used to post three times a week, averaging twelve posts a month but as life has got more hectic with college and work it has been hard to keep up with the blog. That is where scheduling comes in! Unfortunately since my laptop broke I have been trying to blog on a tablet so I am only getting used to using the Blogger app and still don't know how to schedule on the iPad but I will get there.

Its also hard to know WHAT to blog about. I suppose I have always been interested in makeup, I studied an  ITEC makeup course which you can read about here  at My Makeup Artist Journey so it made sense to start up a beauty blogging. I felt a bit limited at the start so I decided to branch out a bit into health, fashion, fitness and lifestyle posts a little bit. A blog can be about anything interesting to you.

Blogging has brought me such fantastic experiences from meeting inspirational people and attending amazing launches and receiving lots of fabulous products to try out. You have to put a lot of work into it so don't just expect to start receiving free makeup!

Its important to build up a readership and gain their trust. You wouldn't want to feel like you were conned into buying a product that was actually total crap so why would you do that too your readers. Its okay to give a bad review as long as it is totally balanced and not biased. No product is going to be 100% amazing, well not many are anyway.

If I could go back I would make more of an effort to attend events that I was invited too. Yes I have to juggle two part time jobs and college and blogging but at the end of the day these events are where you will meet lovely people to network with, build contacts and break into the media/beauty industry if that's what you are interested in.

I attended the Christmas Blogger Dinner after working a ten hour shift, and then had to leave early to leg it for the last bus home and on to a 21st birthday party, its important to try and fit it all in even if it means lack of sleep once in a while. It was totally worth it, I met Chloe, Beth, Karen, Donna-Marie, Lisa, Elaine, and Emma and lots of bloggers I interact with on a daily or weekly basis that I had never met in person before. It was so nice to have a little chat about blogging but more importantly get to know the person behind the blog.

Attend all the events you get invited to, tweet your thanks to companies who send you products or who sponsor launches, build up relationships with bloggers - you can learn from each other and the whole reason I love blogging is because its like a little supportive community. So get involved! A good way to start blogging is by doing a blog challenge and writing about something new everyday.

Hope you enjoyed reading about my experience and my tips, I obviously am not an expert but I know a lot of people would like to start blogs and it is hard to find out how to do it :)

Let me know if you have any more questions and I will try my best to answer them in the comments below xx


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