I’ve been looking through some of the questions I get lately to try to come up with some useful content for you and the most frequent questions I get are, Why and how did you start your blog? So today’s post is going to be answering those two questions. First, I will briefly go over on how I started my blog. So many people think you have to be a computer nerd to know how to start-up a blog, this is not true. Coming from someone who has no experience with coding/layouts and all that confusing malarkey, I must be doing something right, right!? To those who know me well, will know I can be a ‘little’ ditzy and it can take me a while to figure things out, but I do get there in the end haha! So, I’m going to talk you through on how I started a simple blog and how I still get some kind of income coming in.
When first starting out my blog I had used a website called Weebly.com (which I do not recommend). This was a couple of years ago when I had no clue about any blogging sites. Anyway I made up a website and never actually went back to it, which led me to Blogger.com a year later, this just confused the hell out of me so I decided to try out WordPress.com. WordPress I found super easy to use, It’s free and there are so many free themes you can pick and tweak if needed. I set up my blog within a couple of hours and had my first post up the next day! I had to have a play around with plugins etc to get used to how WordPress works but after a while I just stuck with a really basic theme, with my just my posts, social channels and contact details. When I decided that Blogging is something I really wanted to focus on I decided to buy my Domain name from WordPress. WordPress domain names are super cheap and they also have affordable plans you can buy for extra storage space, removing ads and lots more features and themes etc. I’m still using the free plan at the minute but upgrading ASAP! Because I need all the storage space pls. The storage space on the free plan is really handy when starting out, bearing in mind I’ve had my blog for over a year now and have over 60 posts with around 20 images in each post.
Moving on to the money-making part, a part I really struggled with for a while. I found myself asking other bloggers for advice. I was working for free for almost a year, I would never mention money in collaborations for various reasons. I thought they wouldn’t pay me because my followers weren’t sky-high. I thought they wouldn’t pay me because I didn’t have a professional camera to take my images on. I never knew what to charge, I didn’t want to under charge or over charge and most of all I was scared of being rejected. But now I realise I am worthy, I should be paid for all the hard work and effort I put into creating content. Would someone in an office work for free? Most definitely not, so why should I? Blogging is a job and I think people don’t see it as that. So many bloggers make a living from their income. When starting out with the whole blogging thing I was really naive, I buzzing when I was having brands emailing me. I thought wow, I’m getting all these clothes and products for free I could do this forever. I was working with everyone and anyone, even if I didn’t really like the brand and I’m glad I did that because that’s where I learned all my mistakes from. The brand has chosen you because of your followers and engagement, they are wanting YOU to promote THEIR products so why should you work for free? I began to ask brands for a payment that I thought was reasonable for my following and engagement. Some of them never reply, some of them have budgets and some of them offer more, It’s different with every brand. The only time I will work for free is if I truly love the brand. If I love the brand and it fits with my style I will usually be happy with gifted items with a social repost from the brand in return, that way we still are helping each other. Everything I post on my blog and Instagram is my honest opinion, I would never post something I don’t like/agree with just for a few followers or a payment because I would be then losing trust with my readers and basically giving false advertisement.
So, now moving onto why I started my blog. I started my blog because I was getting a lot of comments on my outfit images on Instagram. People were asking me where I buy my clothes from and how to style a certain piece of clothing. After a while I thought that starting up a blog would be an easier way to help my followers shop my outfits and take some style inspiration from me. I add a lot about my lifestyle too so that my bloggers can get to know me personally and a lot of the time my lifestyle posts are the ones that get the most feedback and views. When I get people messaging me from all around the world telling me how much my posts help them and how much they can relate to them is so rewarding. It really is an amazing feeling, I was going through a really shitty time when I first started my blog so it was kind of escapism too, something to keep me busy. It’s like a little diary to me, I can write about anything to what I’m feeling, what I’m eating, where I’m going and what I’m wearing. I never started a blog thinking I was going to be collaborating with top brands such as L’oreal, Illasmasqua and Boohoo. I NEVER in a million years thought I would be making an income from my blog. This was all a bonus to me and motivated me more to work hard on my blog. No, I don’t post 3 times a week or sometimes I don’t even post for a month and that’s what I love about blogging, the freedom of it. I would love to become a full time blogger but not just yet, I want to keep working hard and set myself goals. I go back to uni in September so I wouldn’t have the time to go full time either but lets just see how it goes! I hope this post helps anyone who is new to blogging or is wanting to start a blog. I’ve tried to write everything that I wanted to know about when I first started my blog, so I hope this gives you some advice and confidence, you can do this!