Entering the world of blogging is a lot like starting your first day at secondary school, but worse. You are the smallest of fish in the biggest of seas, with thousands and thousands of other people doing the exact same as you with a lot more experience. You need to try and make friends (via a screen), make your mark and get people to like you (and your work) whilst trying to balance everything else (social life, family time, job etc). So, back in September when I created Written By H, I found myself back in year 7 putting on my school uniform for the first time… PETRIFIED.
My first thought was that it wouldn’t last and soon enough I’d get bored of writing content that nobody wanted to read, but I’m a very determined person and wasn’t going to give up without giving it my best shot.
Similarly to secondary school, after a few weeks you start to find your way round, make friends and get to know the environment in which you’ve entered. This doesn’t mean you’ve gained 1000 followers over night and you’ve become an internet sensation, but you start to understand what is required of you and how connect with some amazing bloggers.
If someone had told me back when I started that I’d be invited to blogger events and would be spending my days with the most lovely bloggers receiving freebies from my favourite stores, I would have laughed in their faces.
Written By H was anonymous up until recently, hence the slightly mysterious name. I didn’t want my name or any pictures of my face associated with my blog, and refused to tell anyone, let alone show them. It took me a while to get out of this phase, but now my confidence has grown, in myself and my blog, and I’m finally happy to let my friends/boyfriend/family see my online baby, and here’s how you do it:
1. Show it off.
Not in a bad way. Let people see it, and be proud of the work you’ve put into it. I’m fortunate enough that everyone I’ve shown it to have been impressed, and the majority of them praised me for thinking of something that made me stand out, rather than blending in to the crowds.
If you’ve done well, make sure you tell someone. My boyfriend’s drawn the short straw, and has to listen to me bang on about every little achievement- any events I get invited to, everytime I hit a milestone in terms of views or followers.. Basically everything.
2. Put yourself out there.
Don’t shy away from connecting with other bloggers and attending events. I’ve been lucky enough to attend a couple of events, one with Lan Llofft, a boutique in Cardiff and the other with Bath in Fashion, both of which have really made me feel like a blogger. Being able to interact and get to know other bloggers is the key thing to making it a success, and the incredible freebies, well they are just a massive bonus. Other bloggers are also a lot more influential than you realise, and being able to read theirs, or having them leave comments to help you improve. Either way, get you and your blog out there.
These things will help you grow your blog and make you feel like a true blogger. Mine started out as hobby, and it still is. However, I’ve now made it in to a part time job- not in terms of making money, but it’s something that has taught me a lot in a very short amount of time and is something I can put on my CV in order to help me become more successful in the future.
So, when did I start to feel like a real blogger?
You get to a point where every little thing you do links back to blogging. For me, it was every time I went for a walk and saw the perfect photograph, to the numerous occasions I justified a purchase because I thought it would make a good post, or the several days I’ve applied makeup just to be lounging around the house in order to create a tutorial.
Is there a specific day?
I’d have to say it was during the Bath in Fashion event on Sunday. It was a day full of fashion related activities, and plenty of social media use (what bloggers do best). I spent the day with the most amazing women who all shared my passion, and got to experience what it’s like working for brands.
I’m not saying that I’m a successful blogger by any means, I’m saying that I finally feel like I’m accustomed to the blogger lifestyle- scheduling posts, attending events, increasing my followers, being more active on social media and trying to juggle your online life with your real one.