Have you been thinking of starting a blog but just haven’t taken the leap yet?
Are you scared to start blogging about a topic that isn’t relevant to your readers- or that you will get bored of easily?
When I first started my homeschool blog back in 2012, I knew that I had to find a topic that I was living- every day and every moment. Because I was neck deep in the trenches with my kids and homeschooling them, I knew that I could write about this topic a lot.
I knew that I would be making a commitment to full-time blogging about this topic and that it would stay with me for years down the road. I was committed to building a blog around the topic of homeschooling.
It was going to be a major commitment. And it truly has been!
If you’ve been pondering how to start a blog with purpose and that is the reason for your hesitation, then this post will walk you through some key steps to start your blog on the right path.
The month of January I’ve been talking a LOT about starting a blog because I know how difficult it can be to get started. I just want to help you get going in the right direction.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when you don’t just want to start any ol’ blog, but start a blog with purpose and passion.
Discover what you’re good at.
Starting a blog for the sake of it (because you like to write or because your friend is blogging) isn’t going to pull you through to the business side of things. You will hobby blog and have fun doing it, but you won’t be guaranteed to build a business with it.
(I hate to be so blunt, but I thought I’d just dish it out to you anyway).
To put it more kindly, you should definitely start your business blog for reasons that will sustain you for the long haul.
If you want to build a business with your blog, the way to dive into the blogging business is to discover (not what your friend is blogging about, or what is popular at the moment) but essentially what you are good at.
Start with you- your gifts, talents, skills, and enjoyment.
What do you like to talk about? What are you good at?
And guess what? I have a free gift for you to help you do just that.
Download your free worksheets below to help guide you through your business passions.
As a blogger you will begin to see yourself more as a content creator. You will utlimately be creating content of all kinds (not just blog posts).
Think: ebooks, maybe even videos and podcasts, perhaps slides, worksheets and workbook, courses, webinars– the sky is the limit!
You’ll soon begin to see how much you actually produce as a content creator. Then you can evaluate this in light of discovering what you’re good at.
If you know how much you actually produce, how much you give to your readers (or how much you plan to give once you begin blogging), you can more clearly identify your favorite ways of delivering that awesome content!
This all begins with discovering what you’re good and passionate about.
Also, remember that blogging is a long-term journey. You won’t discover how to do everything all at once. It will take time: days, weeks, months…and yes, even years.
Be gentle on yourself as you won’t get the hang of blogging just right over night and immediately.
Neil Patel talks about things he would do if he had to start a blog from scratch. There are so many tasks to think about…but just focus on one task at a time.
Get over your fears.
Okay, okay- I know that this is easier said than done. It’s not like you can just snap your fingers and “voila!’ your fears are gone. Just like that.
Blogging can be scary. I get that.
When I first started my vlog I was scared to pieces that I would be rejected. I was scared that my videos would be lame. I was scared that by putting myself out there I would make a fool of myself to family, relatives, and close friends.
I was even ashamed of sharing my vlog with others. It took me forever to share my YouTube channel and my homeschool blog to my own homeschool community.
In fact, I never shared it, and when word got around that I had a blog I wanted to hide.
At first, that is.
But with time, I learned to embrace my blogging lifestyle and share it freely with others. I give what I give the way I give it, and I should never hide behind it. After all, I want the world to know about my blog, right?
Check out my post on(how to overcome your fear of blogging!)
Help your readers with their needs.
It’s all about sharing and giving back to our readers.
When you realize just how much you have to share and give away to help others, you’ll discover how that it’s not about you as much as it is about your reader.
I learned to get over my blogging fears when I discovered that my readers had a lot of questions about homeschooling that I could help them with. I had answers, support, and advice, and I was ready and willing to give it.
I was happiest when I was helping a reader with a question.
I think this has been the driving force to keep me going with my blogging all these years: the fact that I can help others.
Once you start to see how great it feels to be a support to your reader and begin building a list of subscribers you can connect with, blogging won’t seem like such an empty and monotonous task.
You will be resonating with your audience, reaching out to your readers, helping on a personal level.
Pick up my favorite blogging tools business toolkit below, then let me know how you enjoyed this post.
Am I helping to answer some of your blogging questions? Do you have any specific questions I can answer?
I want to help- so let me know how.
Are you a mom who has been thinking about becoming a full time blogger?
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(This blog contains affiliate links which help to support this podcast and blog. I stand by all the products I recommend.)
Today’s blog post (and podcast) are for you to get encouragement as a stay at home mom as you consider becoming a full time blogger.
When I first began blogging in 2005 I did it for fun, and not to be a full time blogger. Two years later, I blogged because I’d just had a baby and I wanted to share a few sneak peeks into my world as a new mom. I loved writing and this was a great outlet for me.
I was already working at home as a web design and social media consultant back then, so I naturally saw how great blogging would be for small businesses. I made sure to include blogging in my clients’ strategies- always. Blogging worked so well back then that websites with an accompanying blog attached always ranked higher in Google.
But for me? I just blogged for fun initially. I wasn’t even thinking about using it in any other way except for my first few podcasts (I share about that here if you want to find out more about me.)
Then it hit me: if this blogging strategy stuff really works for my clients, why not apply it to my own business? How about taking this blogging game up a notch and see if I can make this a full -time income with it?
If my clients could see their websites top ranking in Google for keywords all because of blogging and the marketing strategy we were developing together, why wasn’t I applying this to my own strategy?
That’s when I started taking blogging even more seriously.
Sure, I’d just had a baby and just started homeschooling my oldest- so my life was beginning to feel a bit overwhelming. (Just a little bit!) But I could do this.
I knew I could do it. I had already begun writing for local magazines around town and had started pitching bigger magazines, so I was serious about writing. Why not blog?
It took a few years and a cross-country move to California before I finally settled into my new home and a new blog and podcast all about homeschooling.
It took me an entire year to get my first 1,000 email subscribers, but at the end of that first year of blogging I’d also gotten my first 500 YouTube subs, and I was happy with my 800 pageviews. This was in 2012.
It may not seem like much compared to other bloggers who make it to 100,000 pageviews within a year, but I was happy with those numbers because:
- I was homeschooling, and that took a lot of my energy reserves. I gave myself a lot of grace during that season.
- I had a toddler-turned-preschooler. I chased her around constantly and watched her chase butterflies. This was my life and sometimes that meant shutting down the computer rather than blogging.
- I valued flexibility more than a devoted blogging schedule and routine at the time. After my second move within 6 months, and then a third move 3 years later, I learned quickly how to maintain a life of flexibility. This meant, blogging oftentimes took a back seat.
I am so nostalgic about those days and I am glad I did things the way I felt best at the time. I got the best of both worlds: blogging part-time while raising my beautiful girls.
Today, seven years later, I have worked myself into a full time blogger role as my children are able to handle a lot more responsibilities on their own.
I no longer have to worry so much about how to get things done: I have more help. My teen and tween daughters chip in with chores around the house and we have at-home systems that work for us while we homeschool, and I work. So far, it is working out well for us.
If you are a stay at home mom and thinking of becoming a full time blogger, here are some key things to keep in mind when it comes to balance and getting it all done.
Work around schedules and naps.
If you are a mom of littles, being a full time blogger will require that you schedule your writing times around your baby’s schedule.
I remember those days- how life centers around baby. Usually when baby naps, you nap, or when baby is hungry, you eat together.
But as a full time blogger, you’ll need to think about how to fit your blogging times into your day. This means when baby naps, that might be a great time to write your blog posts.
When their nap times change and they become toddlers, you’ll start chasing them around and everything else will change along with it! This includes your blogging routines.
My best advice is to take it one stage at a time with your little ones, observe their routines, and fit your blogging around this.
Work on time blocks.
Time blocks are so important. As I mentioned earlier, when baby sleeps, you can blog.
Suzi from Start a Mom Blog tells how that she gets up earlier than the rest of her family, doing whatever it takes, to take her blogging seriously. Today she makes a 6-figure income from her blogs, all while raising three kids as a stay at home mom.
Choose a nice block of time and be as generous with yourself as possible. (If you know it will take you two hours to write a quality blog post, count on taking a two-hour, uninterrupted time block.)
This might mean that you have to wake up earlier or go to bed later. When your family is asleep, maybe you can spare a few hours in the early AM to get in an extra two hours of writing. Or maybe you go to be a little later than everyone else.
Perhaps you cut back on Netflix binging (that’s me!) 🙋♀️
Being productive means you have to give up something in order to gain something. Rearranging your schedule will be part of the business of finding success with becoming a full time blogger.
Have an immediate plan of action.
Okay, here’s a tip that really helped me with getting things done faster:
👉🏿Do all of your thinking and strategizing before you sit down at the computer.
This way, when you sit down to actually write your posts, the outlines and general research have already been accomplished. Do you see how easy this makes things for you?
I used to write for several companies as a freelance writer a few years ago, and this is one of the key strategies I used to write up to five, well-researched, 1000-word articles per day.
I knew that writing this much content would require some type of time management strategy, and this was the best way to manage it: research first, write last.
Delegate, delegate, delegate.
You won’t get it all done by yourself. This has been the hardest lesson for me. I have been blogging for 14 years, and I have done nearly all the work on my own, until recently.
When I say all the work, I mean everything: from my blogging and writing work, podcasting and audio, video editing, graphics, email list, SEO, and social media management.
Did it keep my costs down by doing everything myself? Sure it did. I saved tons of money. I was super frugal and I kept my costs low to run my business.
Did I save time? Absolutely not. This is why it has taken me so long to grow my blogs. Without help you just grow really, really slowly. If you’re not in a hurry, then it’s okay. But if you want to see quicker or more immediate growth, you will need to get help.
Check out places like Fiverr for reasonably-priced helps, hire a VA on a project basis, and don’t get caught up in the tech if that’s just not your thing. Let someone help you past the blocks that keep you from moving forward to enjoy the parts of blogging you love.
Hopefully you do enjoy writing, though!🤣
Accept and enjoy your journey.
The main lesson I’ve learned in becoming a full time blogger is to enjoy my journey. I won’t always be a mom of littles. Today, I am a mom of a teen and a tween. I have a driver-in-training and a tween who is shockingly as tall as I am. No more littles for me. This means my blogging life has changed drastically.
What I couldn’t do seven years ago, suddenly becomes a cinch. I took my kids with me everywhere years ago. Today, I can walk out of the house to run an errand and not bat an eye as I know my kids are able to hold down their responsibilities at home. This means I have more free time to work on my blog that I didn’t have before.
Okay…maybe not “free” time. I am, after all, still responsible for their education which is a hefty job (as all homeschool moms can attest to.) But my season of life is different today than it was during the years I needed to keep one eye open at night listening out for my daughter’s cries.
Those were sweet years and I appreciate them, but they are over and I am in a different season. I have learned to embrace each season with all of its difficulties.
Today’s season is difficult in its own way- raising teen daughters with values in today’s society– but with each stage and season, as I accept it I appreciate it and I can deal with whatever is in front of me for that day.
So be encouraged, mama! You can do this. You can be a full time blogger and a stay at home mom. It’s a lot of work, but with the proper strategies in place, one step at a time, you can make an income with your blog while enjoying your kids.
Has this post and podcast been helpful to you? Check out the following posts to help you with your blogging:
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Are you experiencing writer’s block? Do you feel that you don’t have the faintest clue how to begin writing your first blog post?
When I first started blogging I had absolutely no clue where to begin or how to start. Choosing a blog topic was usually a reason to postpone blogging for the week. You know: writer’s block.
I would sit at the computer and stare at the screen, pondering one topic, then the next, and the next. I would then go on a binge search of other blogs in my topic and see what other mamas out there were blogging about.
Although this could have been a great strategy for finding a great topic, it just didn’t work for me. I didn’t have any interest at all in blogging about every moment of my life as a mom. (I tried that for a bit with my first mom blog, and soon became bored.)
“What to write about? What to write about?” Are you asking yourself what in the world to blog about? Here are a few quick tips for choosing a blog topic that will get you moving.
Write about what you know
What do you like? What are you passionate about? What are good at? What do you know?
If you write about what you know, you will seem more authentic to your readers. Never, ever feel obligated to write about subjects you don’t know well or don’t have a passion for. It will be very obvious that you are stretching to talk about a subject that doesn’t interest you.
When you share what you know, you engage your readers. You help them with your knowledge, which in many ways can be equated to virtual coaching. Even if you’re not a life coach or business coach, by sharing what you know with others you end up coaching them.
Write how-to topics
How-to topics, or tutorials, are great for sharing your knowledge and expertise when choosing a blog topic. Readers want to know how to do things. If you have the knowledge, you can show them how.
Some how-to posts I’ve done are:
The thing about how-to topics is that they never go out of style. Someone somewhere will always want to learn how to do something.
If you know how to do it, then why not share?
Write themed posts
For years I loved writing around themes. On my homeschool blog, themes work so well because parents are looking for specific types of information during certain seasons of the year.
If you find that seasonal themes will work for your niche, then you should definitely consider incorporating this into your blogging strategy. You could make a list of themes you want to cover throughout the year, and assign a new theme for each month.
Themes can consist of: the weather and seasons, goals, emotions, food- whatever it is that fits in well with your blog.
Once you determine your theme for the month (or week), write posts based on that theme and stick with it until you feel accomplished.
Answer reader questions
Answering reader questions is probably one of my easiest ways to come up with blog post ideas. Reader questions are spot-on and let me know exactly what they want. There’s no second-guessing.
Remember when choosing a blog topic, if you know what your readers are searching for and what their pain points are, you can more easily address their needs.
Answering reader questions gives you an opportunity to serve them in a tangible way- giving them more personalized attention. And you don’t have to just stop at creating a blog post. You could:
- Answer questions on Instagram
- Hop on Facebook Live
- Make a video for YouTube
- Send a newsletter broadcast
There is just so much you can do to serve your readers who have specific questions for you.
Have these ideas given you motivation to create your next blog post? Are you having less trouble choosing a blog topic? I hope so!
Go ahead and leave a comment letting me know what your next blog topic will be about.
This post on “how to find your niche” contains some affiliate links, which means if you use these links and make a purchase I receive a small commission, which helps support this blog and podcast. Know that I only promote products and services that I use and care about.
Have you been trying to figure out what to blog about and who your ideal reader is? How can you find your niche so that you really, truly enjoy blogging?
It took me a while to figure out to whom I really love blogging and writing, but once I finally figured it out it made all the difference for me. My audience is mompreneurs and stay-at-home mamas who want to earn an income with blogging.
Once I did find my niche and I figured out who my main audience is it made all the difference for me. Also, once I was clear on my niche audience, my blogging has taken off to higher heights! I now write with more clarity and focus, and blogging is a lot of fun for me.
I totally recommend you take some time to think about ways to find your niche before you start blogging away. It will make a huge difference in your authenticity as you are truly reaching the audience you really want.
You won’t waste time and you will get straight to the point of serving your reader.
These are the steps I took and that can also help you to figure out how to drill down and find your niche.
Do a braindump of everything you’re passionate about.
Before you get started with the tasks of blogging, you’ll want to make sure that you absolutely love what you blog about weekly. You should ask yourself a few key questions such as:
- What am I passionate about?
- What do I like to talk about all the time?
- What advice do I always give to my family and friends?
- Which books and magazines do I like to read the most?
- What blogs or podcasts do I follow?
I have more ideas in my book about how you can find your passion with blogging before you begin.
Take out your favorite journal or notebook and jot down all of your blogging ideas. Don’t hesitate, just go for it! Let your experiences, passions, likes and dislikes, joys in life, and favorite topics take over your thoughts and write down everything you could see yourself writing about on a weekly and monthly basis.
Here’s one of my favorite journals with weekly layout. Choose one that speaks volumes of happiness to you 🙂
I basically use it, in addition to my Typo notebook, as a place to dump ideas for the week. I’m using my Happy Planner and some digital stuff too, like Trello.
Remember- you might love the topic, but you’ll need to be able to write about it often and be happy enough with the topic that you can stick with it for the long haul.
Ask yourself “Do I really know this topic?”
If you know your topic well, you definitely have an advantage. Writing about something you’re familiar with gives you an edge in your writing because you have a familiarity with the topic. When you’re comfortable writing on a topic, it shows and your readers feel more comfortable reading your blog.
But what do you do if you don’t feel confident with your blogging topic just yet? If you don’t know your topic well, no worries. Don’t be discouraged if you’re not an expert yet. There is no need to panic and change gears if you really love a topic but don’t know everything there is to know about your topic.
We’ll never know everything there is to know. In fact, that’s one of the reasons I blog. The more I blog about a topic, the more I learn about it. Then, of course, the more I learn about a topic, the more comfortable I become at writing about it. I don’t have to know everything in the beginning, because I’ll get “on the job training” the more I write.
That said, the more you know your topic, the easier it will be for you to write regularly and consistently. Keep this in mind when thinking of how to narrow down and find your niche.
To find your niche, write regularly and consistently.
Make sure you write to your readers regularly and believe that they want to hear from you!
I’ve gone through life seasons where I couldn’t keep up with my many blogs. Because of this, I didn’t stay consistent with my content. When this happens, folks just stop reading. It’s expected and it’s normal. (This is why it’s so important to choose a topic you love and that you can write about on a regular basis.)
When your readers know when and what to expect from you, they will respond more favorably.
The best part about writing regularly to my readers is the connections I make with my readers. They always reach back out with a few words – either to thank me for the content or make suggestions on new content I can create that will help them.
This is exactly what you want your reader to do: give feedback.
Keep asking your readers what they want to hear about from you, and write about those topics. The more you blog, the more feedback you’ll receive. This is honestly the best way to shape your blogging path.
I appreciate SEO and keyword strategy and know that it’s very important to include this in your blogging, but you learn more by listening to your readers than by keyword research in my humble opinion.
I’m an advocate of listening to your niche and giving them what they need. Once you find your niche, know that they are your tribe and they want to hear from you for a reason.
Be a friend and get personal.
Lastly, make sure you are writing to your tribe as though they are your personal friend. Believe me, this is the key to building beautiful online relationships with your followers.
You never know when you’ll hop on a Skype call to chat with a reader personally (it happens to me frequently as a consultant)…so I just tend to see everyone one of my subscribers as a potential friend.
Therefore, if you’re on my mailing list- you’re my friend!
If you see your subscribers and readers this way, it won’t be hard to write to them in a more personal tone.
Remember, they’re not just a group of random subscribers, but real people with real needs who are reading your content for a specific reason: to solve their problem. They are hoping you have the answer for them.
If you want to find your niche, all you really have to do is find the people that you can most serve with your skills, talents, abilities, and knowledge, then give them all the helps you possibly can!
Has this post on finding your niche been helpful to you? I hope you are inspired to write on topics you love and that you begin to really enjoy blogging!
If this post has been helpful to you, leave a comment below and pick up your Niche Planning Guide.
One thing I’ve come to realize over my 14+ years of blogging is that these skills are transferable. Blogging is a learn-as-you-go kind of endeavor but what you learn in blogging is so invaluable!
Believe it or not, blogging can land you a great job and open up a myriad of opportunities for you. Although my main focus on this blog is to help entrepreneurs make money with an independent blogging lifestyle, you can definitely advance your career through blogging and get eyes on your resume!
If you’re working at a job and blog part-time, these skills you learn in blogging can help to boost your CV and make you more desirable in your market.
There are many bloggers who have taken this to heart and have used their blogging skills to advance in their industry.
For example, Becky from A Dose of B mentioned her blog during an interview and got a nod of approval because her tech skills made her stand out.
Jess from Jess Who landed a career in digital marketing and was offered a role on the content marketing team at AO.com because of her blog. You can read more about solopreneurs who landed gigs because of their blogging on Charlotte’s site: Blog and Beyond.
And just for some number crunching (I like numbers!), statistics show that the average person changes jobs 10-15 times in his or her career. That’s a lot of job-switching and different skills that are acquired in each job!
In fact, in today’s job market, employees are looking for transferable skills. What you learn on any job can transfer, and this includes blogging.I
If you view blogging as a career path in the following fields, you can see how closely related these transferrable skills are:
- social media management
- video production (for vloggers)
- audio production (for podcasters)
- team management
- tech training
- distribution (for those who sell physical products)
Can you see how many of these skills from each field overlap each other? Can you see how bloggers do so much of this stuff daily without even realizing it?
It’s important to see how much you actually produce as a content creator! Once you realize how much you offer, you can evaluate this in light of discovering what you’re good at and then use those skills to the max in your blogging efforts. Do what you’re good at the most and you’ll have a more meaningful, purposeful blog.
If you know how much you actually produce, how much you give to your readers (or how much you plan to give once you begin blogging), you can more clearly identify your favorite ways of delivering that awesome content.
Transferable skills bloggers have:
When you blog, you write constantly. Does this make you a professional writer? Okay, maybe not, but it definitely gives you a lot of writing practice as you perfect this skill constantly. Each time you craft and publish a blog post you are practicing writing skills.
Writing includes knowing how to craft great paragraphs and weaving together a story that draws your readers in and keeps them engaged. It also includes knowing syntax, proper spelling and how to use tools like the thesaurus (or a quick google search) to find words with similar meanings so that we can better express ourselves.
Over time, those who blog weekly will improve in writing skills. This skill can be transferred to so many different industries besides writing and is a foundational one for most jobs even beyond clerical.
Again, just like with writing, editing can take some time to become adept at. Syntax structure, punctuation and capitalization, word usage- all of these things are important to remember when proofreading what we’ve written before we hit “publish”. Thankfully, Grammarly takes care of a lot of this work, but it’s still an important skill to master and something that you can offer services for if you’re really great at it!
Plus, if you’re editing a report for your boss and you catch all of her errors before she sends to a huge client, she’ll thank you many times over. Great editing transfers well in the workforce.
Not every blogger is great at marketing in the beginning, but the longer you blog, the better you become at pushing your content out to the world.
I learned how to really get “out there” once I started my homeschool blog mainly because of my homeschool YouTube channel. Vlogging has a way of pushing you out of your comfort zone!
Content marketing is crucial in order to have a successful blog, and the skills you learn in promoting your content across social media channels are perfect to place on your CV.
If you’re looking for work while you build your blog and need to beef up your resume, just know that your skills as a blogger definitely transfer to the workplace. Don’t let a work gap scare you or hold you back from applying for a position you really want. (Mine is a pretty lengthy one as I’ve been a work at home mom for 15 years!)
Make sure you include all your marketing skills that you learned through blogging such as:
- prioritizing projects
- creating workflows
- developing brand messaging
- content distribution
Whether you manage your social media or you manage a team that manages your social media, you likely have management skills as a blogger. You will begin to acquire more experience in this area the longer you blog since your blog will grow and you will need help!
Make sure you take into account this invaluable skill. Companies are always on the lookout for individuals who can manage teams and basically keep systems running smoothly. You don’t have to do all the work or get your hands in the trenches much of the time. Many times what companies are looking for are individuals who can lead, manage, and execute huge projects, being sure that each team member is on his or her task.
If you have been managing a blogging team of any sort-a team of guest writers or virtual assistants- then you definitely have management experience.
Be sure to place this on your resume.
Social Media Marketing
Social media is such a much-desired skillset in the workforce. If you have either managed your own or another company’s social media accounts, then, hands-down, you have to count this on your CV.
I tried to include much of my blogging skills on my resume in LinkedIn because I just never know when a company (or recruiter) may take a look and reach out to me.
Planning content and scheduling out posts is both time-consuming and takes practice. You not only have to plan out the content, which is time-consuming and takes a great deal of thought, but then you need to sit down and schedule it out. For this, you have to know the right tools to use.
Since not all social media tools are alike, you’re left to figure out which of these works better with the way you think and process systems. Then once you find a great social media tool that flows well, you have to learn the tech side of things and actually learn to use the tool...which can take time!
If you are currently doing all of this yourself, you have the kind of experience that many companies-large and small- are looking for.
Social media management is one of many transferable skills that are well in demand today, so I would definitely make the most of this experience by including the details of it on my resume.
I hope this post has encouraged you that you have all the transferable skills you need as a blogger to make it in today’s workforce. If you have to work a 9-5, just know that your time as a blogger was definitely not wasted.
Read more of my posts on blogging: