It’s true. When you get older, you start thinking about the past. I am, more now than ever before, thinking of what life used to be like, and what I would have done differently if I had the chance to start all over again. I don’t regret much, but I have discovered things that I would have done differently if I was going to start all over again. That’s things I keep talking to my kids about, and things I want to teach them as they grow older.
But, they’re not old enough to understand what blogging is. They see the picture of me on my blog, and it makes them smile every time. That’s how much they understand about blogging. I can hardly wait to tell them all about blogging adventure, and all about the various mistakes I have made. I have been blogging for many years, and I have done all the mistakes it’s possible to make. I started up without a plan, and most of what I have learned is based upon my own experience.
When it’s time to tell my kids about my blogging adventure, I will start telling them about the top three things I would do differently if I started blogging today.
1. Combining passion with a goal
The most important part of blogging is to write about something you’re truly passionate about. If you don’t, you’ll end up having a hard time to write, and you’ll need to hustle to keep up. I had no idea how important passion was to blogging. I have created many different blogs, and all, but one, are now history. And it’s all because I didn’t have the passion to keep it alive and kicking.
When I finally discovered my passion, and started blogging about my experience with marketing, I didn’t have a goal. I was just writing, and having a lot of fun doing it, but in the end, I needed progress in order to be happy. Progress is difficult to define. For some, progress is about earning money, and more money each month, for others, progress is about readership and comments on their blogs. But, in order to be a happy blogger, you need to combine your passion with a goal. The goal(s) should include progress, because in the end, without progress, you’ll never become a happy blogger.
2. Relationships and trust
I still remember how happy I was when I wrote my first blog post. I don’t remember what it was about, but I remember the feeling, and me smiling, after I pushed the publish button. That first blog post didn’t get any comments, and not a single person read it, not even my wife. I still remember the feeling after I published my second blog post. I was still smiling, but it was a different feeling. I started to think about traffic, and how to get people to read what I was writing. I started to think about how important readers are to a blog.
I kept writing too many blog posts without talking to a single person. My blog was completely invisible, even for the search engines. I got my big break after I started communicating with other bloggers (in the same niche). I started to read their blogs, I commented, and many of them started commenting on my blog. I didn’t ask them to visit my blog, it was just a natural part of getting to know me.
It took me a long time to understand that connecting with people, and becoming friends with fellow bloggers, are a lot more important than what you write. Strong relationships create trust. And trust is one of the most important assets in blogging.
3. Connect with Mentors and people with success
I connected with people, and I started to feel progress, even though I didn’t have a specific goal. But, I remember that I didn’t really listen to what people said, and I wasn’t looking for the experienced and the successful people. To me, connecting with a person who was interested in blogging and marketing (and me), made me the luckiest person on earth, and I got to know so many interesting people. But, what really made a huge difference was when I started connecting with experienced bloggers, people who are having real success. That’s when I learned exactly what I should be doing.
Now, when I blog, I base what I do on the success of other people. Blogging is a science, and you shouldn’t try to make it on your own. There is always someone who is successful and knows exactly what you should be doing in order to become successful too. Look for mentors, and create relationships with them, and ask them questions. When you do act on the advice of successful people, that’s when you’ll experience true success.
That’s it. That’s the three things I would do differently if I had the chance to start blogging all over again. And, that’s what I will tell my kids when it’s time for them to learn about blogging.
What would you have done differently?