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Sep 12, 2014

Dear Blogger // Here's Some Advice from a Friend...




part of growing as a blogger is learning from others who are in the trenches with you.  while i've been blogging for five years, i certainly don't have it all figured out, and i love hearing about the experiences of other bloggers!  there is a lot that can be learned from your peers in this industry.  i decided to ask some of the girls from the peony project what advice they'd give to a blogger who is just starting out.  this list is long, but it's so good.  whether you've been blogging for a day or a decade, i hope you can gain something from the advice of these women!
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don't post about things that you think people want to read. post about what matters to you and what you're passionate for. the posts will be worded better, more enjoyable to read, and be more authentic. this was a lesson i learned over time and i am so glad i finally figured it out! –natalie, a tiny traveler


write when inspired. don't apologize or make a big deal out of a semi-break from blogging. write what you feel like even if you think it could be repetitive. if it's on your heart, the bottom line is to write. for him, and for your soul--write.
 -meghan, a northern belle


blogging is hard work at first. you aren't going to see tons of people coming to your blog to see what you have to say. you need to work at it, just like working at any hobby or craft. don't despair if you feel like no one "hears" you. your voice is important. your story is important. and it will be heard. it just takes time, generosity, and learning the ropes. go socialize on social media and go blog on your blog and do your thing. your community, friends, family will come. it just takes time.
-jenna, a mama collective


get to know other bloggers. don't be too shy or afraid to comment on a post you love or reach out to a blogger with an email. most of the time, it'll make their day that you care enough to say hello! as another note, develop thick skin, it'll help when you don't get a response to an email or you get a mean comment. -madison, wetherills say i do


i think it's important in whatever we do, including blogging, to pay attention first and foremost to what our "non-internet-lives" are like. sometimes it's easy for me to get lost in the blogging world, so determined to get content out, that i'll give all my time and energy to improving my blog and not my heart. when i do that, i end up feeling like i'm running on empty and i'm not able to write as genuinely, because i don't have any depth to write from. so my advice would be to care for your heart - prayer, good relationships, regular quiet time away from the computer. when i do this, my life and heart are much healthier and i have much better things to share on my blog, too! -bonnie, strong and sweet


take your time and work on your craft. make sure you're blogging for the right reasons, your working to a schedule that works for you, and that you aren't comparing yourselves to others who you deem to be successful. if you follow those steps i think you are less likely to be disappointed or frustrated by your output and more likely to enjoy it - which will shine through your work too. sherisse, nurebelle


start with creating a mission statement and determine what the purpose of your blog is. check back regularly to be sure you are staying on track! reach out to other bloggers from the start. start a list of bloggers you love and visit their posts regularly, comment and share. getting connected is key! jenna, a savory feast


take your sidebar seriously!!! it's not a place to just dump the stuff that you don't have anywhere else to put. it's a critical part of your blog and that space should be considered premium. -ashley, forever ashley


learn about your niche and people/blogs in it. it will be great to learn from bloggers in other categories but a lot of what works for them won't work for you if you are in totally different genres. it is great to connect with people in other categories but don't get stuck comparing yourself to them and feel discouraged when things that work for them don't work for you. ie: a food blog will get a lot of traffic from pinterest, a blog discussing theology or principles of education may not. do not let discouragement and comparion beat you down. write what you want to write for yourself. be you!!!! people will connect with who you are. they want to read your voice. you don't have to imitate someone else and be a copy cat. be different. there are 100s of the same blog out there. -ali, sometimes i do silly things


my advice would be to be social, and keep a proper balance in blogging. if you want other people to read what you have to say, especially when you are first starting out, you have to go read what they have to say! visit other blogs, make thoughtful comments, and make some blog friends! i takes blogging more fun too. and if you are going to last in the blogging world, through the ebb and flow of the numbers, through life changes, you need to know your limits. set up healthy boundaries for when you will blog, know why you are blogging and keep that in sight, and if you are starting to feel that "burn out" don't be afraid to take a step back until you start to feel inspired again! callie, through clouded glass


the biggest thing i have learned (along with all of the above things)? get a "tribe"! find bloggers like yourself and get to know them the community and support (like this group!) are what make blogging so rewarding for me. the friends i have made along the way have made a huge difference in my experience. use these friends for advice, tips, ideas, and overall support.  i actually wrote a post about this too. -anne, love the here and now


don't be afraid of the "publish" button! so many times i'm afraid of posting something because i think it's not interesting enough, or meaningful enough, but you never know who you're going to reach through a post! writing is also one of those things that gets better over time. sometimes i like to look back on my older writing to see how i've grown and matured. so don't be afraid of starting a blog just because you think you're not a good writer. 
-kelly, i am kelly ann


if you want to start a conversation online, be prepared to continue it offline. don't retell a story or post on a topic that you wouldn't be willing to sit down and hash out with a friend. i use my blogging as a means for processing life, but always with the awareness that it is a public forum. -lacy, lacy blaine


i would have to say two of the most important things that i have learned are 1) stay true to you! don't try and do what other people are doing, be true and provide original content! 2) become involved, so much can be gained from joining the blogging community! you get out what you put in! -laura, the suzie lou blog


respond to comments. no matter what. the best way to build community, keep your readers coming back, and encourage more comment leaving, is to show them that you're reading what they write and that they matter. because they do. -kristen, when at home


don't be afraid to dream big! -beth, oak & oats
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there you have it, folks!  i hope some of this advice helps you on your journey in the world of blogging.  i'm so blessed to call these ladies friends, and if i can give you any advice, it would be to find your niche and find a community and get engaged!  the best possible thing you can do for yourself as a blogger is to not be alone in the world of blogging.  make some friends, be authentic, and connect with bloggers that you admire!

want more blogging tips?  check out some of the other posts in my blogging series here:

42 comments:

  1. Such great advice :) I love reading this type of post because it boosts up my confidence as a beginner. You guys have inspired me in so many different ways. Thanks !


    xo
    www.colorsinmybubble.blogspot.com

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  2. Really enjoyed reading through the advice! Thanks Betsy and all who made this post awesome! :)

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  3. A ton of great advice!! Thanks so much for sharing!

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  4. This is wonderful! The girls at the Peony Project are so amazing, and so helpful, too! I've learned a lot from them.

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  5. Love this! The Peony Project is such a blessing and I am so honored to be apart of it!

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  6. All of these are great tips! Sounds like the Peony Project is doing awesome :)

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  7. Awesome list of advice. Thanks for taking the time to hit the publish button! :)

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  8. This is precisely why I love being a part of The Peony Project! The advice, the love and the support of this group is genuine. And this particular post is exactly what I needed to read, especially as I'm struggling with the process of changing my blog over to WordPress. Thanks for the pick-me-up! Love to all who contributed!

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  9. This advice is so helpful! I recently started blogging, and getting involved in groups like the Peony Project has made blogging so fun and has provided great support for me and my writing. I love that genuine help is given in this group! I especially love what Bonnie said about making sure to focus on your non-blog life and get recharged. Thanks for sharing!


    Olivia (www.vickiandlivi.com)

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  10. I feel the same way, Bree! The Peony Project feels like more than networking, it's about real connections. What a blessing!

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  11. abby - little city adventuresSeptember 12, 2014 at 8:24 PM

    Such great tips!!

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  12. These are all so beautiful and thoughtful! Thank you ladies!

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  13. Lily @ From Lily With LoveSeptember 13, 2014 at 12:16 AM

    All of these ideas are so helpful, and there are many ideas I haven't thought of before. I've been blogging for a couple of years now, but have only recently gotten serious about it. It's always great to hear advice from the successfuls to us newbies- we need the help and the inspiration! Thanks to all of you lovely ladies for sharing your thoughts and wisdom.

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  14. This is great advice. I have only been blogging for a few months. At first, I read every "blog advice" post I came across. I quickly learned that too many of them are all about driving traffic and gaining followers. I understand that this is a part of blogging, but it just isn't my main driver, and I feel like burnout would come quickly if it was. I love hearing these ladies say to write what matters to you and develop real relationships. That is what makes this whole process truly great!

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  15. Such honest and thoughtful advice. Thank you so much!

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  16. I totally agree! It's so good to be free from the obsession with site stats and just enjoy it:)

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  17. This was such a great post idea! I love that you incorporated advice from so many bloggers, and it's so cool seeing all these Peony girls joining together like this! Thanks for linking up on Snapshot Sunday! :)

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  18. I love the genuine advice offered by these bloggers. I've been blogging for almost 2 years and I love hearing advice and tips from others in the community and learning what worked and didn't work for them!

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  19. Great advice! I remember seeing this thread in the group but it's so good to have it all in a post I can bookmark and refer people back to. Thanks for putting this together Betsy!

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  20. Betsy, this post is priceless. Really. Thanks for sharing.

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  21. thanks patricia! these ladies sure have some wisdom to share :)

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  22. absolutely! there is some awesome advice here!

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  23. amen! me too....i love learning from other bloggers!

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  24. i love it so much! haha...i love the collaboration in this community and it makes me smile that these girls were all willing to share their wisdom!

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  25. thanks for stopping by and reading!!

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  26. yes!! there is so much community and friendship to be found in the blogging community! getting traffic and growing your base of followers is definitely important, but the most rewarding part of blogging is the relationships :)

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  27. i think we can all learn from one another, no matter how long you've been blogging!!

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  28. right!?! these girls are awesome, and so wise!!

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  29. amen girl! i love the encouragement and beauty of this group!

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  30. that's what its supposed to be!! so happy to hear you feel that way, olivia! that's the prayer for it :)

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  31. thanks marci! glad you stopped by! :)

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  32. amen! these girls are awesome, and so wise!

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  33. Thank you so much for this post. As a blogger who's just made (yet another) comeback to the blogging world, I needed to read a post like this to encourage me to keep blogging. Reading this really helps me to reduce stress about the coming weeks and months and hopefully years of blogging. I feel a little relieved now, to be honest. So thanks again :)

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  34. This post is so valid and so valuable! Thanks for caring enough about your readers goals and dreams as bloggers to take time to write things like this!

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  35. I found your post on pinterest, and all these tips are very helpful for me ;)
    Thank you so much ;), and now i am here on your blog , so i stay here to check all ;)
    have a good day ;)
    kitty gosia

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  36. Great Post thank you!

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Hi! Thanks for reading! I read every comment posted here. Your thoughts are valuable to me! Thanks for taking the time to contribute!

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