I started to blog to simply record the memories of our daughter, like an online, pimped up baby book. Over two years on my blog is so much more than that. Primarily, it is still a space for me and my daughter, a treasure chest of memories for us to look back on.
However, my blog now has other functions as well. It is a space for me to, well, do what I want. I find it therapeutic to write things down sometimes and I also enjoy taking part in projects, the odd competition and other opportunities. We now get to review products and I also write sponsored posts for companies, act as a brand ambassador and we occasionally get invited to cool events.
All these things are wonderful and I am very grateful. Over the years I have lost track of the amount of times that someone has said ‘you got that for free’ or ‘you just had to write a post’. Some people seem keen to write their own blog, as the ‘stuff’ seems to be appealing. I encourage everyone who feels they want to blog to go ahead, jump in, the blogging community is so friendly and welcoming. Starting my blog is one of the best things I have ever done.
This all got me thinking, did I get that product for free? I don’t think I did, I wrote a piece in return. I tried it out, I spent time photographing it, I edited the photos and pulled together a post, which would benefit the readers and show the product in an accurate light. I spent a few hours on it one way or another.
So do people think blogging is an easy life? I LOVE blogging, I wish I had started sooner, but I think there is a massive misconception about the time bloggers put into their work. I am sure this varies massively from blogger to blogger, but I thought I would just give a snapshot of my blogging week. For one reason or another I feel a pressure to post daily and if I post a review I will also write another post too, just in case people aren’t interested in reviews! Making a rod for my own back?… quite possibly.
Anyway, here is a summary of what I do each week;
Commenting – I spend most of my blogging time commenting. There was a time when I first started blogging that I would comment on over 500 posts a week. Now I do less than this but I also now run 3 linkys, which mean I have to comment on the linked posts. I also comment on a lot of other blogger’s post, those linked to the same linkys. I also respond to blog comments, Facebook and Twitter ones and all comments on my Instagram images. That is A LOT of comments.
Writing – I post every day between one and four times, so on average I post 16 times a week (roughly). Therefore, I have to write 14 posts or at least take half decent photo’s for the 2 posts a week that are photography based. Oh and the stress when you get to the end of the week without a good shot, never mind…
Projects/Sponsored – I also join in with projects, so I may have to find time to do something, which I then blog about, maybe a DIY project, baking or even a day out.
Promotion – I use Social Oomph* to schedule my tweets, this takes approx 5 minutes to load them the night before. I also schedule my Instagram in Buffergram and my Facebook in Facebook itself, so add in another 30 minutes. I also have to link my posts to the relevant linkys each day.
Interaction – Blogging is a social activity and so I need to find time to interact with other bloggers, tweet and try to respond to every one who tweets or retweets me.
Ideas – brain storm new ideas, ways of keeping things fresh.
Building Social Networks – build profiles and increase followers on other social networks. Uploading photo’s to Instagram, pinning things or building boards in Pinterest.
Opportunities– look for and respond to shout outs for bloggers on Twitter and Facebook. Contact PR’s and deal with emails from people that contact me, there are a LOT of daily emails.
Our Hashtag Community – I co-created #LittleFierceOnes on Instagram which means I have to find time to like all the pictures tagged.
Additional writing – I am the Newbies Round-up Editor for BritMums, which means I have to read posts, respond to emails and write a monthly post for BritMums. I also co-edit a online magazine for bloggers.
At the moment, every single Baby free second goes into blogging. If she is asleep in the car, I will be on my tablet blogging. When she is playing on her own for 5 minutes, I will be blogging. When I should be cooking, cleaning, washing, you’ve guessed it I will be blogging. I regularly stay up until gone midnight working and I work every single night, without fail. Often failing asleep at my laptop.
So do you think I got it for free?