Five years of blogging! Where has the time gone? After five years of trial and error, I have only five blogging regrets. As mentioned in my previous post, I will share experiences I have had as a blogger and the lessons I learned. I forgot that it was my five year anniversary, so I do not have a give away planned like previous years, so you will have to just settle for my words of wisdom. Below are five regrets I have after five years of blogging.
Not writing under my name
When I first started blogging, I was shy. I didn’t want anyone to know it was me writing. I toyed with the idea of writing under Lisa-Marie Pierre, but I was worried that when I applied for jobs and potential employers saw my blog posts, they wouldn’t hire me. So I formulated an anonymous persona and only told a few close friends and family my blog url.
I wish five years ago I had the courage to write under my name and not worry about what people thought of my views. It wasn’t until two years ago, I started signing off my blog posts with my name. It also wasn’t until last year I purchased the domain lisamariepierre.com and it took six months before I posted my first blog post on here. I think if I had started blogging under my name, I wouldn’t have gone through so many different blogs before I landed here and probably wouldn’t have lost readers along the way. And I actually have found employers are responsive to me blogging, so I guess I had nothing to fear back then. But you live and you learn.
Not collecting emails
I did a lot of research on blogging and creating websites and something that I picked up on was the need to collect emails. Email marketing is still a strong advertisement tool that businesses can utilize. I understood that, but didn’t have a newsletter to send every week or month, so I never collected emails and the few emails I did collect, I didn’t do much with them. Right now my email list is slowly growing, but maybe if I had collected emails from day one, I would have a somewhat large list.
Following all the blogging ‘rules’
Because I did so much research on blogging and creating websites, I felt like I had to follow all the ‘rules’ all the time. I was trying so hard to be the best blogger ever, I didn’t realize there really are no rules to blogging. For me, it just is all about being yourself. Of course there are things to be mindful of – a clear and navigable website, good content, etc. But doing every little thing in the books leaves no room for personalizing.
Blogging on topics that did not interest me
I started blogging almost as way to keep an online journal. My original theme of my blog was documenting my journey through the unknown. I didn’t know what life had in store for me and I wanted to share those thoughts. I used blogging as a way to express my feelings and also keep in touch with friends and family. After discovering blogging could be a business and platform, I started to blog about things that interested me, but I was doing it more like a job. I was no longer writing from the heart, I was writing what I thought people wanted to hear. I was blogging almost four times a week and a couple times I did daily and I got fatigued. Now, I try to blog about four to eight times a month. I blog when I have something to share and I have returned to blogging for me. If people come here, interact, and really benefit from my writing, great. But, I no longer make it my sole mission to write for others. I write for me and an added bonus is that others benefit.
Not using multiple mediums
I’m sure by now you have noticed I write a lot. I’ve been trying to cut down my word count, but I can’t help myself. I wish I was more active in making YouTube videos, podcasts, creating great graphics, and creating more eBooks. I am working on that aspect of my blogging because I know people learn in different ways. And while I am blogging for myself, I do think my skills need to evolve. I feel shy creating videos or podcasts and using other mediums. But the same way I learned to write under my name, I can learn to use other mediums and push myself out of my comfort zone.
Those are a few things I have learned while blogging and if more things come to mind, I will share!
Are you a blogger? Can you share some experiences?
An urban planning PhD student finding peace in creating a balance between the mind, body, soul, & environment.
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Photo Credit: Duncan C.