So I thought I would write this while it's still fresh on my mind..... So last week I went to a little pow-wow in Provo called Creative Collaborative with my dear friend Sarah Savage (fellow design mate) where we learned a little sumpin' sumpin' about being a successful design blogger! And don't you worry friends and neighbors... I took notes!
Melanie Burk, (whom i found out was related to another interior design friend, Arica Young) is a graphic designer who taught one of the many "lessons/classes" at the pow-wow, who was full of good info. Her website is called Fifth and Hazel, she designs websites, blogs, logos, advertising and cool stationary. Anyway, here are a few things she thought should be considered when it comes to blogs.
1. Be prepared to spend some cash dollars for a well designed blog or website, OR buy a template, check out Theme Forest or Square Space.
2. Don't use flash on your website or blog, more than half of blog viewers are using either an iPhone or iPad
3. Buy a URL, take out the ".blogspot" with blogger most ".com's" are only $10 a year! (anticipate duckworthdesigns.com in the near future folks)
4. Make sure your website/blog have easy navigation, less than 6 pages is easiest
5. Always be updating, try to post at least one a week. shoot for 3 times a week.
6. Get your self some Google Analytics so you can track your website traffic data. This way you know who your target audience is.
7. Be digitally present. Use multiple forms of social media, like facebook and twitter, and make them accessible from your blog and/or website
8. A website is professional, a blog can be more personal.
8. Be willing to do free work to get your name out there "SMART FREE WORK" also try to give the fam a "family discount" they may be the only ones willing to pay you at first! don't let them take advantage of your abilities just because you share the same blood.
8. Do giveaways, or do trade, or favors for a blogger you admire and they will most likely blog about you...if you did a good job of course.
9. Don't be afraid to blog a little about your personal life. Show your personality. Someone may love your work but they will most likely follow your for at least a year before they will actually hire you, because at that point they feel like they know you. (thus my Harry Potter post, now you all know my obsession!)
10. Lastly, do what makes you happy.
Try these things and you will be awesome. (yet to be determined)
After pondering all that I learned at the Creative Collaborative I thought it was time to learn where people begin when considering monetizing (aka making cash dollars) from your blog. And luckily someone posted on utah bloggers meet up (find me on facebook and I'll invite you to the group) "Ten things to consider before monetizing your Blog" How convenient!
Here are some of the highlights....
- Is making money really your goal? It could be that you blog as an emotional outlet, to make friends or to become recognized as an authority. Make sure that the work involved with monetization is worth it to you, because it will take a significant amount of time.
- There is more than one way to monetize your blog Think beyond the banner and sidebar ad and consider spreading your income generation across several streams. Today, bloggers are making MORE money by offering subscription services, classes, patterns, video how-to’s and e-books. Take time to consider your talents and ensure that you select the method that is best for you.
- Monetization will only work if you understand your community and what they will respond to. Understand your community’s interests and needs will help you select the best monetization methods. What types of products are your readers likely to buy? Are they looking for deals, or do they have money to spend? Even simple demographic information can really help. Try offering a reader survey to learn more.
- Most people do not make a full-time income off their blog and the money will not be there overnight. Though you can begin monetizing your site as soon as you feel ready. It’s difficult to do before you have built some steady traffic.
Check out the full article on snaptheconference.com
I hope this was helpful for my fellow bloggers trying to get their name out there. We blogger friends need to "Focus on collaboration instead of competition!"