Encouragement for Creating a Blog

Last year there was a buzz in the blogging world about: blogs. Will they continue? Are they losing traction? Is video the way to go? Do people care if they don't comment?

I do see a shift toward blogs as a brand and not just the blog/website itself. Social media has a powerful influence. With that said: blogs and websites are still vital: they are the home base. The place people visit to learn more information, see a full recipe, and learn about the writer. They are where you store your parenting tips, recipes, or marketing strategy. In short it has the potential to be your online portfolio!

have you ever thought of starting a blog? 5 tips for creating a blog and sticking with it!

When I hosted my first Facebook live video a few weeks ago, I received several blog start-up questions. I am here today to give some answers! And if you have more questions I would love to answer those too.

Below are 5 encouraging tips for creating a blog! 

1. Do What You Love

If you are going to write a site dedicated to renovation projects or recipes or marketing tips--make sure you feel a passion for it. And plan to stick with it for a while! It is natural for creativity to evolve into other outlets, but one thing I have definitely noticed in the blogging world is the drop off after a year or two.

Don't drop out!

Consistency is important both to your readers and to Google. So even if that means 1 new, high quality, blog post a week, plan for that! And if you love what you are writing about--that will be easy to accomplish.

2. It Takes Time To Grow

Are you friends with a blogging celebrity? If so your site will likely grow fast! But if you are like most of us, the regular people, it takes TIME and hard work. I recommend jotting down your stats and checking in every month or quarter. Chances are your social stats + analytics will show the site growing! Join some blogging facebook groups related to your interests. Make friends at local blogger meetups. Friends in the industry can give wonderful advice and encouragement.

have you ever thought of starting a blog? 5 tips for creating a blog and sticking with it!

3. Be Bold

If you are a blogger: you are your own PR agent, marketing professional, and designer. In your personal life--absolutely be humble. But, when it comes to the brand you are trying to grow, be bold! Make your social icons large and easy to connect. People will get lost on subtly, especially if they are quickly clicking over from Pinterest.

Want your favorite blog post to get seen on Facebook? Spend $5 to boost the post. it will be worth it. In short: a nicely designed site might get famous on its own, but more likely it has a partnership with a strong marketer who knows what people want. Put on your business hat, read up on trends, and apply them to your site branding.

And don't be afraid to reshare, relevant old content on social media. Consider breaking down content by seasons, for example I reshare lemonade and picnic basket blog posts at the beginning of summer.

4. Be Authentic

Whether you share your sweet parenting stories on your site, or choose to look at your blog as strictly business: being authentic in your voice and writing goes a really long way. It takes practice, but you will find your voice as you continue to write!

Reflecting about your personal life can be a beautiful thing, but beyond your close friends and family you need to think "outward." Consider telling a personal story first, then ask: have you experienced this? How can you relate? And maybe give some tips to people going through a similar situation.

5. Engage your Audience

If your site is dedicated to social media tips, you will do well on Twitter. If you are design focused with awesome photography--you'll grow on Instagram. Marketers generally do well on Facebook and Pinterest. Use your strength to drive traffic to your blog.

For me, I connect the most personally through Snapchat and Instagram. They aren't the biggest traffic drivers, but I consider them my "friends" audience. Most of my site traffic comes from Facebook and Pinterest and I see those visitors as newer friends: I don't know them as well, and accordingly try to be more professional with my captions and text.

5 Tips for Making a Family Photo Album

five simple tips for creating a family photo album

I have thousands. Thousands of digital photos on my computer and 2,085 on my Iphone camera roll (just checked!). And until last year I have not been great at making photo albums. But you know what? They are really special to our kids. And I love to look back at pictures too.

So below I am sharing a few tips for how to translate all those digital photos to a little book without loosing your mind!

1. Skip the text

I spent years working on the yearbook staff in high school. Text is SO time consuming, both with writing and proofing. Just skip it and let the pictures do the talking!

2. Organize the photos in a way that makes sense to you

For this photo album I simply went through the seasons. Pictures of snow came before the beach pictures, but I didn't stress about dates or being overly specific. But organize in a way that makes sense to you and simplifies going through all the old iPhone photos.

five simple tips for creating a family photo album

3. Mix in a few still life photos

Family picture after family picture can make the album feel busy, so consider throwing in a few still life shots. If you were in the mountains: share a photo of the sunrise that morning. It adds some style to the album and you will still have plenty of room to share family pictures too!

4. Don't skip the mundane days

Life is made up of a lot of non-vacation days. Last summer we didn't do anything particuarly exciting but we did do a lot of "stay-cation" activities like mini golf and laser tag. Moments like a lemonade stand are really special, even though they are in your front yard.

five simple tips for creating a family photo album

5. Share with others!

When I printed this album I printed 3 copies, and shared two with the grandparents. The books are small (5.5x5.5") so they can keep them in their purse or put it on their mantle.

Do you have any family album tips?