It’s been one year of blogging for me. Doubt. Insecurity. Comparison. Fear. Failure.
Fun. Creativity. Connections. Freedom. Confidence. Dedication.
All of these have filled my mind and life while blogging. I’m to going to start off by saying that if you are coming for a blogging report and expect a ton of $$$, then I’m not that yet. This month has actually been amazing and I’ve made a lot of progress towards income and getting my blogging schedule down. I’m pretty proud of myself.
But let me give you a realistic view of one year of blogging.
What One Year of Blogging Really Looks Like
1. You will not become rich overnight.
Okay, maybe you will be lucky and the Pinterest algorithm will pick your pins and give you tons of views. But realistically, you will not make money that quickly with blogging. This is a sprint and not a marathon. I must say that Google SEO has given me more income than using Pinterest. I think that since people are actually searching for items to buy that organic traffic benefits me more.
2. Treating this as a business than a hobby if you want to advance.
If I could do anything more than ever, is to treat my blog more like a business. Just recently I really got serious and started calling my blog a business, but that wasn’t until I made some money. I mean, I’m making enough to cover summer gas prices. I also use more terminology related to business, such as scaling, profit, and ROI.
3. Finally hitting a huge goal.
At the end of July, I finally reached 5k views a month. My ultimate goal is to reach 50k views each month. I’m waiting for Pinterest to finally love me and promote my pins and place them higher in search. By the end of the year, I really want 10k monthly views.
4. Flopping…a lot.
When I tell you I had to redo my whole blog in November, I really had to. I’ve learned so much. Then I kicked off of Amazon’s affiliates in January. Then I finally added ads with Media.net to my blog in May and barely making enough to get a tank of gas for the 1st two months.
Finally, I made enough money to fill my car for the MONTH up in July through affiliate marketing.
5. Learning patience.
As one of my favorite mentors or social media experts, Gary Vee says, “Patience is key.” I realized once I stop worrying about if I’ll reach my monthly views goal, I had more fun blogging.
I learned to love the process. When I say in my other blogging posts that you have to absolutely love blogging and writing, I’m not kidding. I love analyzing my Google Analytics and Google Search Console data and writing 1.5k-3k word blogs. As Gary said in one of his many videos, don’t expect anything for 3 years. I’ve mentally trained myself to not expect anything.
6. Thinking about quitting.
In the two months after graduating college (basically July), I was worried about content ideas, my lack of interest, why my Pinterest wasn’t growing as fast, and if I should sell my blog. I invested so much money into blogging and haven’t gotten much back.
My friends kept encouraging me to continue because it’s a smart idea; I know everything about college and now am considered an expert. Plus, I also can blog about post-grad life, more lifestyle/Pinterest-esque topics, and still work on social media.
However, there are days where I want to sell my blog. I’m waiting until I get a full-time job and launch my next blog, which is something more geared towards my personal branding jobs and hobbies aka music, travelling, self-improvement, and productivity.
7. Writing until you can’t anymore.
I only have around 35 blog posts on my blog right now, but I have written so many blog posts. I had to delete a sh*t ton of my early ones due to them being so bad and having no chance of ranking on Google.
I also do a content clean-up/check-up every season. A big reason of my blog’s lack of traffic is that nearly 1/3 of them don’t rank as high. Again, I recommend learning about SEO. I got a lot of help taking SEO courses.
This Facebook community answers any questions you have about anything. I’m now at the point where I’m writing almost every day to make up the lost content.
8. Comparing yourself to others.
Don’t you hate logging onto Pinterest and seeing people announce that they made $10k this month alone from blogging?
It went from being inspirational to disheartening. I also see some bloggers say that they went viral on Pinterest and was able to get 50k views after a few months of blogging.
Meanwhile, I was hit with a Pinterest spam block for God knows how long. I just learned about it after asking about it in a Pinterest marketing Facebook Group.
I was never one to really compare myself to others, especially with social media because of my background in it. I know most of it is to get clicks, likes, and involves a lot of work for one piece of content.
But putting in all this work makes me feel like I’m flopping/failing hard. Again, I had to learn patience.
Social media has made it seem like everything comes quickly for my generation when in reality it takes years to run a successful business. We only see the highlights.
9. Learning SEO & Pinterest.
Y’all know in every blog post I mention SEO because it’s truly the reason to how I make money. No other social media platform has brought me so much traffic even if it’s only 900 views a month.
I must admit that I just added my blog to LinkedIn and people are clicking on it…LOL. But I had no intention to start posting on Twitter or even Instagram at this point for the blog.
As a social media marketer, I plan strategies all the time and believe that Instagram isn’t right for my time of blogging and Twitter is just memes at this point (for my demographic at least.) I’ll do TikToks soon, but I always say that but still working on the strategy. Video content is a new realm for me.
10. Still like doing this.
Again, I love blogging. It takes me no more than 3 hours to write a blog post and that is better than me scrolling through Twitter and TikTok.
I love giving information and helping others. I do not need to make six figures from blogging and have a massive following to continue blogging.
I genuinely like doing it. I also see things in a business mindset already and know that I can make $5k a month from blogging and be fine.
If you know anything about Gary Vee, you obviously tell that I watch a lot of his videos. I mean, honestly, everyone aims for one million dollars when you can live comfortably or be in the one percent in the US for way less.
I’m going to be honest. I’ve probably made close to $200 this year. I know that some people would have quit and I don’t blame them. The expectations that many people make with blogging in under a year is that you’ll make six figures and spend every day in the Bahamas.
I’m not going to list out everything I spent on blogging because a lot of it overlaps with my other/older blog and I’ll cry if I see the real amount of money I spent. I mean this “L” isn’t for losing but for learning. If I could start all over, I would have done things way differently.
It was my first year of blogging anyhow; I was going to make tons of mistakes anyhow.
Blogging Goals for the remainder of 2021:
1. Create digital products.
Since I’m out of school and use Canva pretty much every day, I want to start making digital products for students. I want to eventually have a stationary business so this will fit perfectly.
2. Publish a blog post each week & schedule Pinterest content bi-weekly.
So far, I’ve been doing well with my weekly blog post. I’d love to get it done earlier in the week instead of on Thursday afternoon (Friday is publishing day), but that’s the college student still in me. Literally, I was writing my last blog post up until 10:30pm on Friday. Finding afflilate links and products takes so much time. It makes the writing process even longer.
3. Write all four blog posts within 3-4 days.
This may sound ambitious but each blog post that I write is around 1.5k words to 2k words. Pillar content posts, which I don’t plan on having any time soon. Those are anywhere from 3k or more words. I used to write essays and album reviews and news articles on shorter deadlines. I can do this.
No seriously, I used to have to write 2 articles a week for my school’s newspaper and sometimes 3 if I volunteered.
I also used to write 1.5k+ chapters almost every other day or week when I was on Wattpad. What I’m talking about? I definitely can handle four blog posts.
4. Start planning for my second blog & re-branding my digital portfolio to be more marketable.
So my digital portfolio needs to be retouched due to my shift in wanting to do social media consulting and start my own digital agency, which is what I got my degree in.
Don’t get me wrong, but I would love to honestly write about more than college life and random lifestyle ideas that don’t really interest me.
I don’t care for decorating or cooking, which is a super popular topic on Pinterest.
I did research and some deep self-reflecting and realized the directioner/fangirl in me can do a music/self-care blog. I can see myself doing that for five more years versus college content. (I mean, I do plan to go study abroad and get my masters when things get back to normal.)
This blog honestly has given me the tools and knowledge for both my career and next blog.
5. Start a YouTube channel & more video content.
This is more relatable to my second blog. Video content is in and to continue to stay on top of social media, I have to get over my fear of posting myself online. This is more of a growth mindset and self goal more than anything.
6. Figure out 6 months of content for this blog and bulk create.
Bulk creating content is how so many of these influencers and content creators stay on top of things. My dream would to have content so ahead of my schedule.
7. Monetize better.
Amazon Affiliates is my main source of blog income right now. But the commissions are so low. I’ve made an 1/8 of my Amazon Affiliate income from only one link from Skimlinks. I think at the end of the month, I’ll redo some links from my most popular posts.
8. Write tons of seasonal content.
So May through September are my peak months. I have to figure out how to maintain my pageviews during the other parts of the year. I started on fall content, but I’m a little late, so I’ll move onto Christmas and winter content.
9. Let go.
I see that some bloggers spend no more than 10 hours weekly on their content. I wish! I love doing this and get caught up in writing, making pins, or keyword research. Keyword research is the main thing that distracts me because I can spend hours looking up different words.
10. Keep blogging.
I really love blogging and believe that blogging will make a comeback eventually. Video content is great for some things, such as how-tos, cooking, etc., but sometimes you just want to read an article. There are people who don’t use social media or hate watching long YouTube video intros for a simple task.
Blogging is always going to be relevant. The internet isn’t going anywhere. Blogging is just as relevant as video content but it’s not as popular. It’s become part of our norm. You don’t realize that half of the websites you look up recipes, instructions, reviews, etc. on are or once blogs.
Anyway, my next blogging update will be maybe 1.5 years. I’ll probably do more blogging course reviews and tips.
This blog post was my one-year blogging update post.
Read my other post about my blogging journey before you go: