17/10/2018

Blogging Tips and Tricks

Are you wanting to start a blog? But you’re a little lost on how to start? I have decided to write out a few things that I have learned so far. I am not a professional and I just started blogging this past April 2018. But, I have already learned a couple things that have been extremely helpful.

I started blogging by making a wordpress.com site and buying a premium plan. I quickly realized how limited I felt when it came to creative reign. This frustrated me as I saw other people’s websites and I couldn’t figure out how to get my premium theme to look like it was supposed to.

I bought my domain tayruth.com through godaddy, and sort of just did my best to figure out how to connect it from one site to the other, and thankfully the sites usually have a live chat where they can coach you through it.

Well- fast forward to now, and I am so much happier since I made a wordpress.org site. I have way more creative freedom, and my site feels so much more easy to navigate.

Web Hosting/ Theme

I ended up getting my blog hosted by siteground. They have been SO helpful in transferring my old websites information to my new one. The only issues I’ve had so far are a few photo links being broken which just means I have to go back through and re-insert some images.

All together I realized I am saving $20 a year, and I have so much more freedom with siteground/ wordpress.org.    *(affiliated link)

With wordpress.org you are able to pick any theme (design) that you want! There are so many good ones out there, so definitely do your research.

Writing Tips

What I have learned so far about writing is that it takes discipline. But if you truly enjoy writing, it can be so rewarding and healing too. My biggest tip with this would be to be consistent. If you struggle with consistency then don’t worry! I would just suggest that you stock up on some solid blogs that way you have about ten to twenty blogs on hand so you can pump them out weekly without worrying about having to write a new one each week. But while you’re putting out blogs you wrote a couple weeks ago, be writing ones for later dates.

Ask a family member or friend to edit your posts before you put them up. Fresh eyes can help catch a spelling error, or grammatical oopsie daisy.

I took a creative writing class in college and they suggested for people to sit in the same place when they write so that your brain knows it’s time for creativity. This does NOT work for me. I have to move my locations because my environment can spark new creativity. If I am ever stuck in my brain and can’t think of what to write, I try to ground myself by writing out what I sense with my 5 senses. What do I see? What do I hear? What do I feel? Smell? Taste? This helps my brain think about what is going on around me. This doesn’t mean I will post a blog about those things, haha! It just means that will help me get my brain to wake up.

Social Media Following

A lot of people have messaged me asking me what my tips would be for them to grow engagement/ a following on instagram. Honestly, the way that many people say to do it is by following a large amount of people and then gaining their follow, and then unfollowing. This seems to be awkward and not natural to me. The only thing that I have personally done to try to “gain” followers is hashtags to get my post seen by others.

Other than that, getting connected with other bloggers or people who are in the same “niche” as you joining together to write a post can also cause you to gain new followers.

This part of blogging is very weird for me and not natural.

I think that gaining a loyal following is more important than numbers. To me, I much rather have a solid group of girls that I can encourage, talk to, and pray for than thousands and thousands of people just liking my photos and not really interacting with the message of my blogs, etc.

Social Media Theme

You know how there are some people who have a very clean insta feed and it’s just very appealing looking? Yeah, they probably work pretty hard to make sure that everything they post is cohesive.

Some tips on having a more cohesive theme is by using the same photo edit on VSCO or buying a preset that can help your photos look more edited and themed.

Your bio is important. That is what people first see/ read when they click on your profile. You will want it to make sense for what you are writing/ who you are.

Your captions can make an average photo, great- ha!

If you want to see what your theme will look like and practice by making a “fake” feed, you can use different apps. I use UN UM. (This is not an ad or sponsored- just sharing what I use)

RESEARCH

Pinterest is SUCH a helpful tool. Seriously, anything that I have learned is most likely through pinterest, (aside from studying Strategic Communications at University).

Do you follow a friend on social media that is great at blogging? Ask them what their tips would be! Or- you can always ask me. I am not professional, but I do enjoy blogging and doing research.

Competition

So this is just something I have noticed from the short amount of time that I have been blogging…people are competitive. There are so many bloggers out there and so much “noise” so a lot of people become competitive. This means that many bloggers don’t want to share their tricks or tips. A lot of people want to be different and stand out, which causes there to also be some weirdness and people trying to keep their “secret to success” private. Which is sometimes why people don’t share the photo edits they use, or how they designed their website, or how they started monetizing their blog, or how they grew their following organically.

This competition can almost take away from the message that some people are trying to share. What I have learned is that my main goal is to encourage others. So if they want to also write a blog or start a website, why not share what I have learned? God has a special calling on our lives and all of us are different, so let’s recognize that even if we share our photo edits that there is still a uniqueness to each of us. (I’ll step off my soap box now, haha!)

What if no one cares about what I write, or what if I get lost in the noise?

This question is one that I see a lot, and one that I have been asked. It’s also something that I asked myself. But then I had to realize that I was looking at it all wrong. God put a stirring in my heart to write, so I will obey that. Even if the only person who reads it is my mom, God, and myself, I still will obey that stirring in my heart.

But then I also switched my perspective from “what if I don’t have an audience?” to “I am writing for Jesus and to encourage one person.” Once I thought like that, I have yet to look at the stats or views as a discouraging thing, but rather WOW, Jesus and one person who I prayed for were encouraged plus so many more bonuses.

If you are writing to encourage one person, guaranteed you will succeed every time.

Well, those are the Blogging, tips/tricks that I have for you today. If you liked this, let me know! I will continue to share things that I have learned. 

Thanks for reading,
Tay Ruth

2 responses to “Blogging Tips and Tricks”

  1. Becca says:

    I’ve read lots of posts from bloggers about hosting and tips and tricks and all that jazz, but this is the best I’ve read yet. And this is why: your open and genuine writing leads to the heart of Christ, even when you’re writing about something as basic as blogging itself. Thank you so much for sharing!❤

    • tayruth says:

      Becca,
      Wow! Thank you. That is so sweet of you to say. I really appreciate your encouragement. 🙂

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