This weekend I took Neely’s It Starts with Blogging course. It’s sort of a beginners course, but I learned SO MUCH and took a ton of notes. It reitterated a lot of new technology I needed to implement around here and have been too lazy or intimiated to do. It also helped bring me back to the basics of blogging. You should never forget your fundamentals! So, two months after attending BlogPodium and 6 days after that e-course, I wanted to share my top 5 blogging regrets.
1) I regret not starting on WordPress, but only a little
I started blogging over 10 years ago now on sites like Live Journal. Then, 5 years ago, I started a blog on Blogger to chronicle the end of law school and the “start” of my life. At some point during the life span of that blog, sponsored posts and professional blogging came to be. You can be much more successful on a self-hosted WordPress site than Blogger.
However, Blogger was very easy to use and learn on. Also, the switch to WordPress forced me to consider changing blogs entirely. When I switched, I went through an entire rebranding and that was really, really great for me. So I regret not always being here on WordPress, but I am very grateful for the lessons I learned elsewhere.
2) I regret not downloading IFTTT sooner
On Sunday, I downloaded If This, Then That, on the suggestion of Victoria (a fellow ISWB classmate). On Monday, I added a bunch of “recipes.” On Tuesday-Friday and for eternity I wondered why I didn’t download this app sooner. It’s amazing!!!
3) I regret not buying 3 years of hosting at once
I signed up for SiteGround when I purchased hosting for WMSB. It’s been a good service and was a great deal for the first year. But now it’s gotten more expensive and because I didn’t lock in my rate, the “sales” for renewing customers are basically worthless. I plan to rectify this error by switching to BlueHost and buying three years there to maximize my savings. I can get three years on that deal for cheaper than a year at the “current customer” SiteGround rate. I’d still suggest SiteGround to people but since one of the main missions is making frugal choices, I had to shop around. Lesson to be learned: Lock in those prices, baby!
4) I regret taking a year off
In 2014 my life was all kinds of busy. I’d started a new job in a role that had me in Court 3-5 days a week. I LOVED it, but it was exhausting. As much as I enjoy litigation, I am still an introvert and that kind of output every single day really depleted me. I would go straight home from work, put on PJs, and drink a glass of wine, even if it was like 6:00 PM. Then, because I was in Court and meeting with clients almost every single day, I would snooze until the last possible minute, then spent my whole morning getting dressed up and doing my hair and makeup.
Long story short, there was just no brain space for blogging. Every time I’d try to hop back on the wagon, I’d end up in a trial and even more exhausted than normal. Then, at the end of 2014 I changed jobs again. It took me a few months to recover from the exhaustion of new job #1 (which again, I LOVED, but couldn’t sustain), but once I did I was able to come back to this space. And I really do love being here with you guys.
While I was gone a lot of things changed around the blogging world. I also had to start from scratch to re-create the community engagement that I was so happy WMSB had. It’s been a lot of work to get back into the swing of things and catch up on new technology (ie, IFTTT). I regret not figuring out a way to make more time when I felt too busy. I think spending time on my own hobbies probably would have helped the exhaustion I was feeling.
5) I regret not investing in more advertising/courses
In my professional career I really enjoy going to CLE (continuing legal education) courses. I learn a lot that I can take back to my practice. I’ve been to several in person blogging conferences, but hadn’t considered the HUGE value of e-courses until last weekend. If you’re trying to figure out how to do something specific on your blog, there might be a webinar out there to help you. If you’re trying to figure out how to use Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, SEO or amazing content to grow your blog, then I assure you there are courses out there that you can take from the comfort of your own couch, or even in person if you live in areas where they are offered.
I have taken free webinars by Melyssa at The Nectar Collective and Helene at Helene in Between. They were wonderful. For 2016 I plan to invest in more courses. Yes, some of these things can be found by a google search, but I’d rather someone TEACH me the right way than spend 10 hours googling it and then leaving my laptop too tired to implement the strategy. I always leave a course inspired and motivated to improve my blogging game.
How about you? What are you blogging regrets? What do you wish you would have done sooner on social media? Let’s talk about it in the comments!
linked with: Five on Friday