Going from amateur to hopeful pro has been the focus of this last couple of weeks, and boy have I done some reading and research! I approached my learning with the same gusto and planning that I approach everything, including triage on the huge number of pins, email subscriptions and bookmarked pages I’d gathered over the course of my first 3 months in the blogging world. I divided each of them into categories and decided what I needed to know now, and what could wait on my learning journey.
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The categories I chose help me to figure out where I am and to see through the fog of information that is available to new bloggers. I’ve had to be ruthless and might have missed some important stuff! This is where I’m hoping you guys will come in and shout out! Before considering most of these I must stress that you totally need a planner of some description to organise all the things that need to be done and reduce overwhelm!
I chose categories that loosely fit around the stages that I plan to cover during my relaunch exercise. These suited my needs best:
- Business startup- this topic covered everything in online business basics from web page design (and optimising to make money later on) to business plans and branding. This is certainly the biggest category, covering the most areas in my learning. But saying that, I suppose to be prepared I should really know as much as possible before I start. Right? My problem here was finding the right balance between knowing enough to get me started and not feeling too overwhelmed! (Which I spoke about in my last post.)
- Making money – this was anything relating to monetising the blog including affiliates, advertising, PPC, reaching out to brands and sponsored content.
- Traffic – I figured once I’d got the basics down pat, it was time to start learning more about getting traffic to the site. Obviously I know some stuff from the basics of building an online business that I learnt during section one, but this is the bit where I’d delve that bit deeper. The aim with this topic is to understand analytics better, more advanced SEO techniques, social media and further marketing strategies.
- Included as part of the traffic category is to compile a comprehensive editorial calendar, which would incorporate all the information I’ve picked up along the way about the best hashtags to use, social media peak posting times and when is best to write and release blog posts. There’s so much to include in an editorial calendar that really it should have a category of its own! I’ve started to compile this and I promise to share it when it’s done! (Plus, one of the brilliant parts of that particular aspect is that I get a new planner! Cue giddy smiles and psychotic sticker hoarding!)
- Development- this category is reserved for the bits of learning and development that are more advanced and that I can start delving into once the traffic has started to look after itself. The traffic element, including the editorial calendar, will help me to stay on track each day while I take on and implement this additional learning (or at least, that’s the plan!)
So, my share for today is all the articles I’ve read in the last couple of weeks and the many courses, tutorials, and subscriptions I’ve signed up to. I have literally only listed (and saved on the Pinterest Board) the ones that have been useful and provided me with important titbits of info that I’m taking forward. Some have overlapped into different catagories, but where that’s happened, I’ve made notes of the important stuff, or pinned it for later. I suggest you do the same.
Of course, it goes without mentioning, that I have also invested time in completing and making notes on the amazing Abby Lawson’s Building a Framework which has been invaluable at giving me direction when I needed it most! (For those interested in purchasing this course, and I would recommend it, it has recently been updated! Eek exciting times ahead!)
- The Work at Home Woman– A huge list of free resources to help you run your online business
- I cannot stress just how much of Side Hustle Nation‘s stuff I have used over the course of the last few weeks! Brilliant site, super helpful, down-to-earth and easy to read, watch and listen to! The same applies to Word Stream who I’m sure I’ll be back to time and time again 🙂
- I banged on about Wonderlass in my last post, but here I go again! By subscribing to her mailing list, I’ve got access, (and you can too!) to a brilliant library of practical resources including brilliant tick lists, business plan templates and productivity stuff that’s just plain awesome!
- Goals are a real problem for me, I struggle to know what is a SMART goal and how to go about setting helpful and realistic goals for my work! Help for me came in the form of Lisa Villaume, Sprout Social, and Unbounce.
- The Marketing Agents provided some absolutely awesome insights into the world of Facebook. I’ve read this and it’s in my “to-do” pile along with Breanna Rose’s amazing article.
- Moms Make Money helped out with understanding branding, traffic and customers – all super important in the blogging world! Breakfast at Lilly’s, and Define Your Hustle provided lots of info that is headed straight for my editorial calendar!
- The Collective Mill provided the absolute foundation of my new “about me” page and another amazing post on productivity when working from home
- Gorgeous web design tips were all over Olyvia‘s post and are scheduled into my planned changes along with starting points from Everything But the Posts and “what not to do!” provided by The Soccer Mom.
- Disclosure Policy made sure I was in the right legal spot for writing my policies page along with Building a Framework of course!
- Finally, Smart and Simplistic laid down some ground rules for me to follow on my rebuild and Brilliant Business Moms helped me out with amazing value courses (they have planners too!!!).
I really hope that some of the resources I’ve used and shared are helpful. I love that in the blogging world there are so many people creating success through helping other people to become successful too! I like to write, I wouldn’t be here otherwise, but blogging is certainly not in my niche (that’s also under review! eeeekk!!!) or in my bigger plan! The idea behind these posts is because I know how inundated we can get, as new bloggers, with all the info out there. My idea was to cut through the noise and share what I have found and what has been useful to me.
I’m sure there’s loads out there that I’ve missed! Please share those with me in the comments or on Social Media. I’d love to hear your blogging stories too!