So you’ve done your research, and you’ve decided that blogging will be at least a part of your new digital business. Fantastic! Congratulations for finally making the decision. But before you go thinking that this ‘blogging thing’ will be a breeze, I should let you in on 8 Straight Up Truths About Starting A Blog.
According to Hubspot, there are 600 million active blogs on the ‘www’ as of 2020.
I’m not trying to talk you out of starting a blog or digital business with this post. I’m simply being 100% straight with you. So many bloggers will blow smoke to get you to click that “get your hosting here” affiliate button. Only after you’ve done that, do you find out just how difficult blogging really is, and you feel like you got duped.
This is your reality check.
8 Straight Up Truths About Starting A Blog
It Looks Like Easy Money. It’s Anything But.
You read about these ‘big money making’ bloggers all the time! They started a blog, and the next thing they knew, they were making $5k a month. Before long, they’re making $50k a month!
Not so fast.
Yes. A successful blog can make a ridiculous amount of money. But you could fill a series of novels with the information that ‘big money making’ bloggers leave out. For one, blogging is a TON of work that you don’t see. There are dozens of moving parts, especially getting those first sets of eyeballs on your work. You’re going to write your heart out, and get excited every time you finish and publish something new, in anticipation of that all-important traffic.
But it won’t come.
You should know first of all, that those big money bloggers are working on their posts day and night. They’re writing long form content of 2000 words or more that’s search engine optimized, which takes forever. And they’re doing this for every single post! They’re trying to create the best, most informative content for their audiences, and in the beginning, they have no clue whether or not it will get any traffic at all. They’re writing, re-writing and editing their work (or supervising a VA). They have to be networking with other bloggers, and posting on social media, etc.
There are a jillion moving parts to blogging, and those moving parts have to be tended to every single day. Starting a blog is anything BUT ‘easy money’.
2. It’s Super Frustrating in the Beginning
Even though you’ll have writing tools to help you get the job done, it can be super frustrating to do what those tools are telling you need to be done for each post.
Take Yoast for instance. This tool gives you signals as to when your post is ‘web worthy’. It tells you when your SEO is good, and when your readability is good. Yoast is a great tool. But if you’re not used to writing for the human eye AND for SEO, it can be super frustrating figuring out where you went wrong.
3. Creating Compelling Posts Can Take Hours
No one will tell you that creating compelling content for your readers can take hours. You think those bloggers just sit down at their laptops and whip up a post that gets zillions of eyeballs in a few minutes?
According to Hubspot, in 2019, bloggers spent 65% more time writing blog posts, with the average post taking three hours and 57 minutes to write (which sounds about right. This post that you’re reading right now took 3 hours and 59 minutes to write).
4. WordPress is Soul Crushing to Learn…But It’s Worth It
The forth ‘straight up truth’ about starting a blog, is that WordPress is difficult to learn.
Even though ‘those bloggers’ will tell you that “WordPress is super simple to set up!” it’s not. I mean, it’s simple to install once you’ve done it a time or two, but getting your blog to look like the theme you chose, IS NOT EASY.
It will actually make you feel like you’re stupid.
I started using WordPress back in 2013. It’s a completely different animal now because it’s much more user friendly, but it’s STILL a beast! WordPress will confuse a new user to their breaking point. But once you’re used to the basics of WordPress, you’ll be fine. You’ll probably love using it. I do!
You’ve been warned.
5. You’ll Get Absolutely No Traffic at First
There’s not much to explain here. You won’t get traffic. Period. It’s not unusual, and it will pass. But it’s still discouraging.
6. You’ll Want to Quit…Everyday
Your lack of traffic will make you feel like you’re doing all that work for nothing. Keep working. It WILL pay off.
7. Use Social Media to Get Free Organic Traffic!
This is the biggest fallacy of them all.
This used to be true back in the day…like 2012. But it’s so far from the truth now, it’s crazy. Because all of the platforms have moved to a ‘pay to play’ system, if you’re not paying for ads, no one is seeing your content. Period. They’ve all changed their algorithms to severely limit how much (or how little) of your content your own followers are seeing.
The amount of traffic that you get from your social media efforts depends on your niche, and the platform you use. You STILL however, will have to pay for that traffic.
You’ve heard that you can use Pinterest to drive traffic, but that’s not entirely true. Pinterest USED to be a crazy driver of ‘organic’ traffic, but not anymore. Don’t get me wrong, it’s helpful. But the days of Pinterest driving traffic by the hundreds or thousands a day to a new(ish) blog, are long gone. That is, unless you’re paying for the promotion.
8. Those “Easy Peasy” Ways of Getting Traffic are Outdated
Can you still get traffic from platforms like Pinterest? Meh. Sort of.
I still use Pinterest to get traffic, but that’s because I also use Tailwind tribes to help further distribute my posts. As a new blog, if I set up a Pinterest account and load those posts to that new account, I get zip for traffic.
On the flip, if I load those posts to Pinterest, then share those same posts to Tailwind Tribes, I’ll see traffic within a couple of hours. I’m not saying that you’ll get a flood of traffic, but you’ll definitely start to see that people are coming to your blog, if you use Tailwind Tribes.
Tailwind comes with a free 14 day trial, which is a great way to see if you like it. Trust me, you won’t want to give it up when the trial is over.
*BONUS to 8 Straight Up Truths About Starting a Blog
This one’s a bonus, but instead of re-writing the whole thing, I’m going to get you to CLICK HERE to read it.