How changing my Instagram attitude has changed everything!

You upload an image, apply some hashtags you’ve spent a solid 20 minutes researching and you watch the likes, follows and comments roll in. Or not. You don’t understand why your reach is a mere 10% of your following, and how or why your following fluctuates by 30 daily. All you do is comment and engage with others and the results don’t seem to improve. You just want to give up all together.

Welcome to my world when it comes to Instagram.

Or a world I used to live in when being a blogger on the social media platform you are eager to be successful on. A channel that is based on follower count, engagement rates and the posts you share daily. Not forgetting stories that really should update and show your every move hourly!

It wasn’t until I hit a real low with the site, that I decided it was far tooo silly to be dictated by a social media channel.

I am a lover of social media. I use it personally and professionally and do believe it holds great positivity within our community. It’s a place to meet new, like minded people. We can converse, seek guidance and support and share our stories. Basically it’s ruddy fantastic. Although, as mentioned above, it’s also rather toxic. It’s easy to succumb to the numbers. And judge success based on those entirely.

I had become far more confident in myself. I was prepared to take pictures in public that were staged. I was comfortable discussing openly the fact I was a blogger and I often created chatty stories. For the person who used to hate being in the camera and chatting for radio shows at uni this was huge.

Despite clearing those personal hurdles, I was feeling deflated and a complete under achiever. Why? Because I hadn’t grown, I hadn’t gained traction on my numbers and I wasn’t what I believed success was.

But what is success? How do we judge and monitor it? What do we class as success in social media?

Over 5k, 10k or even 15k followers? Every other upload a brand collaboration? A stream of initiatives, blog posts, podcasts, newsletters? It’s hard to really establish what I truly believe is ‘success’ all I know is that judging and monitoring social media success is not how to thrive online.

Over the last week or so, I have really started to disconnect myself mentally from the app. I have been limiting the time I spend scrolling and ultimately, disconnected from the numerical value I seemed to have associated with Instagram in particular.

I’ve basically applied a filter in my mind to where it blocks the numbers, and it’s working swimmingly. I no longer feel the pressure. The desperate need to post something every day. The worry as to why my follower count has dropped despite posting similar content to all the rest.

There’s a real sense of relief. Empowerment. And I just bloody enjoy using the app like everyone else seems to. I comment where I please, unfollow those that don’t really resonate with me, and overall I’m not judging myself against others. My creation is mine. I’m not copying, mimicking or shadowing ‘successful’ others.

Wanna feel the same? Want to enjoy the creative app for what it is rather than feeling an overwhelming amount of pressure to conform to success?

Here’s some of my new mantras.

  • Keep plugging, in my own way. I won’t get where I want if I follow the crowd. I have to be me, do what I want and create the things that inspire and spur me on.
  • Take the audience out of the equation. I’m no longer creating content that got me likes, only if I bloody want to. Having a social media full of content I dislike, or find a chore isn’t going to create a success.
  • Ignore the numbers. Because it really means diddly squit. Having loads of followers doesn’t mean an engaging audience nor does having a low follower amount mean a small audience.

I’m so excited to banish the cape of social media conformity and just do what the heck I want. Whilst I can’t control the amount of reach my posts achieve, how many likes they gain, or how rapidly I grow ( or not grow ), I’m excited to get working with my social media on a more literal, healthy level.

Will you be changing how you view and use Instagram? What’s you opinion on social media, and in particular Instagram? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Posting a blog post every day for a year – What I learnt

There was a time, not too long ago in fact, that I was publishing content, like full blog posts, once a day. It didn’t feel like I was achieving if I hadn’t and many a time I would publish multiple posts on one day to ‘catch up’.

At the time, I was feeling like I was a success. I was publishing regular content and that was key right?

Late last year, after almost 365 posts, I decided to take the gas off the pedal. And whilst it felt against the grain to slow down and stop posting content regularly, I had good reason and felt a sense of relief once I let myself off the daily task.

So why did I stop? Why didn’t I carry on creating content all day every day? Surely it would help with SEO and blog growth?

The truth of the matter is, you need not to create content every day in order to grow, create a brand and engage with new and current followers.

Forcing yourself to create sub-standard posts in order to keep your post up to date daily may be adding content, but can damage your site rather than aid it.

And that’s what I was doing. I was forcing myself to brainstorm and think of content for every day of the year. And damn it was exhausting. I would open up my laptop with a sense of dread – what in hell was I going to conjure up now in order to publish something for the day?

This was all whilst I was under the illusion that this regular, fairly monotomus content was stabilizing my site into a hub of useful, damn good content that EVERYONE would want to read.

I was going to be successful by creating this daily content.

Errrrrr, no. Unless I was unemployed and contentiously wrote post after post, fiddling and editing 20 odd posts before I found one I was proud of. And I certainly wasn’t doing that.

I was creating content that was below par. It was neither terrible or fantastic, just average and I myself now, wouldn’t be too happy to post. I was also publishing pre-generated content from other providers too, just to keep up with my new regime.

And whilst at the time I wasn’t completely happy with the content I was producing and publishing, nor was I happy with the pre-generated crap that I was constantly editing to my style, and to make bloody sense, again I was blinded by the idea this is what was needed to be successful.

So what did I learn?

After those 365 posts or a whole year of posting daily, I learnt that my content is worth a whole lot more than a shoddy post every day. I take my imaginary hat off to anyone that manages to produce stunning, creditworthy content every bloody day. It takes a huge amount of work, dedication and skill to consistently produce great content. Creating content every day, in general, is hard work besides it being good or not!

Ive come to realise that I need to forget, to some degree, what makes good SEO and what might work for some, doesn’t work for me. I want to produce content for me more so than anyone else. It has to be something I am proud to have my name against, and worthy of being front page of my site.

Gone are the schedules and from now on, I’m putting my content first.

I urge anyone who is thinking more about keeping a steady stream of content, rather than the content itself, it’s not worth it. My blog is not a chore, nor a get rich scheme, its a place to spend my creativity, start a conversation and hopefully share some wisdom, big or small.

Why not read these posts too –

Blog Post necessities – Do your posts have them?
Social media scheduling – My top tips
Creating your own bank of engaging Instagram hashtags

Stop being Unrelatable – An open letter to Bloggers, Influencers and Instagrammers

BEFORE anyone claims this is a jealous ridden post – piss off, and read before you claim judgement. This is just a very honest and true representation on how I feel being a blogger, in the ever growing, changing and evolving world of bloggers, influencers and instagrammers.

www.twitter.com/charlonichole

Hi Hello, it me, that blogger that tweeted ‘the realest tweet yet‘. Excuse me whilst I roll around in my five minute twitter fame.

Only joking.

Honestly I am shook that I got as many likes, RTs and support for this random tweet that I discussed with myself Sunday evening.

Because whilst the like and RT count continues to grow hourly, there seems to be this silent agreement, that whilst may of us believe this statement to be true, we continue to involve, engage and ultimately buy into the lives of those very bloggers and influencers that do these things.

All the whilst they built their little empire off being a relatable, honest and just an all round average person, like you and me.

So where did it go so wrong?
How is it impacting the current blogging sphere?
Why do we feel we should be silent on these things and continue to follow and support those that promote completely unrelatable products, ideals and lifestyles?

https://twitter.com/sarahsolomon__/status/1115018042558287872

Because we feel we have to. We feel like we should be supportive because after all, they started off just like us and built what they have from their own hard work and dedication. We as a community like to support one another as much as possible, even if it means buying their over priced, below average products! ( Aren’t we all so kind ).

And yes, all this is true. There is no taking away from the fact they have worked hard and created a huge pool of loyal followers. We all know too well how hard it is to create a following online.

But, hard work aside, their evolving persona is far from the one we all enjoyed enough in the first place to click that follow button. And whilst we do enjoy being nosey, I can’t help but feel their space within my online bubble is disappearing. And many others as the replies I have received from that tweet.

Do I like that image featuring a £2000 watch which has been tagged and mentioned in the caption because I want that watch, I need that watch and it’s within budget? Or do I just like it because its ascetically pleasing and been put together, by no doubt, a paid photographer on a rather expensive camera?

All in all, I’m rather disappointed with the way things go when influencers/ bloggers and those alike reach the 100k follower mark ( or so it seems atleast ).

They have completely lost their integrity. They have valiantly climbed the ladder to success and along the way sacrificed everything they built it on in the first place. Gone are the advice panels, the genuine nature of content and low quality basic iPhone snaps and stories.

Whilst we love watching our favorites gain success from something we have always seen and admired before, but do we at the cost of that content? I don’t think so.

It’s damaging our community

My mum made a comment not too long ago that blogging is basically a place for bloggers. Only bloggers engage with content. And unfortunately that is pretty true. Whilst I would like to believe a non blogger who is searching for online advise, or looking to spruce up their home may stumble onto my blog, the majority of those that do are bloggers themselves.

Most BLOGGERS read and engage with the ‘huge’ ones. Watch them, look up to them, thrive to create content like theirs. So where does that lead us?

To a community that believes success is driven by high end products, studio worthy equipment and multiple press trips and/or exotic holidays. Not forgetting the six figure bank balance needed to purchase the pinterest worthy home of course.

But was their following built on that basis?

NO! Whilst the success has grown, the target audience hasn’t.

Be more Mrs Hinch

In a world full of Zoella’s there are exceptions. We all know of Mrs Hinch, and love her or hate her, she has been bloody brilliant at showcasing a positive impact on social media channels, and being true to who you are.

Growing a hinch army of over 2million, she has shown that even with a influx of followers and a growing audience, your true self doesn’t have to alter, nor does that of your target audience.

To this day, I haven’t been influenced by Mrs Hinch to purchase expensive, high end products. And for someone who has built her empire and undoubtedly experienced hefty offers to promote products to her now huge fan base, she has stayed true to everything she has stood for since the beginning. There’s still plenty of eBay bargains and Zoflora updates to be found even after 2million new followers.

So what’s my point?

Don’t be ashamed, nor guilty at now clicking that unfollow button. Content is contentiously changing, and so is what you want to engage with! We as a community have no obligation to like every post that lands on our feed by that top blogger. Nor do we have to agree with their change in standards and what they are prepared to promote and put their name against in aid for more cash.

I for one have de-cluttered my social media channels from the unrealistic ideals of the elite bloggers / instagrammers and influencers. Never would I ever spend a months worth of mortgage payments on skincare, and even if I did, I wouldn’t expect my tens of thousands of followers to relate to it neither.

Everyone is entitled to spend their cash however they please. Heck many would probably roll their eyes at the amount of money I spend on Chocolate. But, at the expense of a following and target audience who themselves cannot live a lifestyle of is utterly ridiculous.

And I finally feel, with over 800 likes and climbing, we have gained the courage to distance ourselves from those that are no longer relevant, relatable or honestly of any interest.

To those elite bloggers, influencers and instagrammers,
Remember who you are reaching. Remember who helped you to the top of your ladder. Not everything is about the price tag attached to them, and neither is the unlimited access to opportunities. Integrity and relatability goes a long way in this business.

What’s your thoughts? Do you agree? Disagree? Start some natter or join the discussion on my Twitter page now.

ps. thanks for sticking with me on this pretty lengthy post – I’ve been dying to post this one and the surge in support from the tweet has helped hugely!

How long should my blog post be?

What is the ideal post length? Am I rambling on? Is it too short? These are all questions you have probably asked yourself as a blog content creator. Truth is, there is no dead set answer I am afraid. It all comes down to what you want to achieve with the post, and what you want your readers to do with it.

Still a little confused? Have no fear, I’m going to break it down on how many words you should aim for, depending on the content type you are creating and what you ideally want to achieve from it.

Get your note pad ready….

Read : Why you should be using headings in your post – and how to!

So, the perfect length of a blog post? Well, the question is, what do you want to achieve from it? The ideal word count all depends on what you want your readers to do with it and engage. Answer these questions and you’ll find your answer.

Wanting more comments?

You’re better of creating a shorter, more engaging piece. Especially if you are generating discussion and asking questions.

But bear in mind that short posts can be bad for your SEO as they have a tough time ranking within search engines. Plus, short posts very rarely get shared on social media. If you want to build an audience, try and avoid posting short posts regularly.

Tip : If you want to grab more comments, write short, discussion based pieces that are no longer than 275 words.

Looking for more shares on social media?

Aside from having banging content good enough to share, it’s pretty vital it’s the ideal length to be worthy . Medium length posts are ideal for sharing on social media, as well as engaging an audience. They are also fantastic for SEO too.

Be sure to have a compelling, even problem solving premise to your post of the ideal length and the social shares will come reeling in.

Tip : Aim for your post to have between 700 to 1250 words.

Eager for more traffic from google?

Who isn’t! SEO is a tricky thing to master.In aiding better SEO for your blog, and enhance your traffic from google, you need to create and publish long form content that’s been heavily researched. Search engines loveeeee long, informed posts, so create them.

Tip : Create long, heavily researched posts around 2,450 words long.

Remember, create what feels best for you. Focusing on word count isn’t something to monitor every post, but certainly helps when wanting to improve SEO or engagement.

Do you keep an eye on word count? Do you have any tips when it comes to blog post length? As always, share your thoughts in the comment section below!

You should also read :

Social media Scheduling : My top tips
Blog Post necessities – How many are you missing?
Social media : How Often should I be posting?

Blog Post necessities – How many are you missing?

As we blog more and more, we all find things that we cannot do without when it comes to creating our content. Whether it be an engaging image, the killer format that makes readers stay on the page, or related content peppered throughout. There are things we all make sure we are doing to create success.

But along the way, many of us may have forgot some of the most simple and fundamental aspects of creating and publishing a blog post. And whilst we many not think it matters, it most certainly does!

Time and time again I see blog posts lacking some of the most simple, and impacting aspects, and it’s upsetting to see.

Here’s some of the simple, and effective checkpoints we should all be doing just before we hit publish.

Categorise

I have read so many posts which DON’T include a category! And it’s a huge bug bear of mine.

We all have menus which include main categories, so make use of that feature. Be sure to categorise your posts effectively so new readers can find relevant posts.

Edit the post link

If you’re like me, chances are you’ve changed and adapted your blog post title NUMEROUS times, and most of the time, this doesn’t change the link.

Be sure to check and even change that link. Making them short and punchy will make it much easier to locate and will boost SEO.

Tip : Make sure your keyword is in the link!

Link to your other posts too

Do you know how important it is to link to your other, super relevant posts? Keep your readers on your blog as long as possible and direct them to other posts that they’ll be interested in too.

Having that ‘you may like…’ tab at the bottom isn’t enough.

Tag as much as possible

Tags may not seem that important, but many readers will search via keyword. Ensuring all your posts have relevant tags will help you blogs search-ability.

Plus, that lil tab below your post with the ‘you may like’ runs via tags and categories. Keep your reader via relative content being mentioned at the end.

Format the page

We all know blogging is about the content, but not if you haven’t formatted the page to support your banging content!

It’s well worth spending time just before hitting publish to format your post effectively. Use different widgets to make it easy to read and engaging.

Tip : Use formats similar to this if creating a tip based post. WordPress now gives you so much creative freedom to play around with format. Take some time trying new blog post layouts to find the best to suit you, your audience and your content.

Include images

This may seem a little obvious but many only include imagery for the purpose of their home page.

But it’s super important to include imagery through your post. It creates relevance and can break up what may seem a very wordy piece.

Many readers will take one look at a long arse post and avoid. Deceive them, break up their attention with aesthetically pleasing imagery.

Remember, there are lots of places to find stock free imagery if you struggle to create your own.

Read : Stock free imagery to use on your blog right now

Use Headings

Headings are pillars in your blog post. They are lines of information telling the reader, and search engines, what the next paragraph of the post is about. Essentially, they are titles for each part of your blog post.

You really should be using these as much as possible. They create a structure to your post, make it easy to read and boost seo. Luckily for you, I’ve written a whole blog post about headings. Read it below.

Read : Why you should be using headings in your blog posts

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Why you should be using headings in your posts, and how to!

You may not consider it, but using headings is one of the most useful things you can use throughout a blog post. It offers a lot to your readers, as well as search engines too. We all know how important SEO ranking is, as well as enticing and maintaining readership, so this tip based post is not to be missed.

Read : Social media : How often should I be posting?

So, what are headings?

Headings are pillars in your blog post. They are lines of information telling the reader, and search engines, what the next paragraph of the post is about. Essentially, they are titles for each part of your blog post.

As a potential reader, many of us will skim and browse posts often. We will, without consciously realizing, look out for important and highlighted aspects to understand whether this information is relevant to us. Hence, titles being pretty important in a post as they are true indicators of your post content.

Why should I be using them?

You really should be using headings in every post possible. They will help you create easy to read, engaging and well organised content that will be easily recognised by search engines. Here’s some of the main reasons you should be incorporating headings into every content piece you publish,

Help divide your post in easy, bite sized chunks of info

No one likes looking at one, undivided chunk of writing. It’s boring and not enticing what so ever. Even if the subject is mega interesting orrr informative.

As a reader, If you are looking for informative pieces of content, one that is well divided with helpful headings and paragraphs is much more appealing.

Do your readers a favour and use headings throughout posts to guide readers to the most important factors of the post and entice them to posts that look useful and worth the read.

Using headings simplifies the reading process as much as possible. Remember, readers are usually lazy!

They’re super helpful for you as the author

Just like writing an essay, headings are a great nudge on topic and what YOU should be covering. Using headings throughout the blog drafting stage is a great way to keep on topic and will ensure you cover all the basics.

How do I use headings properly?

You’ve realised how bloody vital headings should be so you want to use them in every post? GREAT! But wait, there are do’s and don’ts with everything, including headings in blog posts.

Make sure your post supports headings

A good heading makes sense in the blog post. Using headings un-necessarily and willy nilly will just make the overall appearance and flow of your post clunky and un-readable.

Try and use headings in blog posts, but if the content and nature of the post doesn’t support them, than it’s okay.

Keep it varied

In the works and phrases used within headings and at the start of new paragraphs. There is nothing worse, as a reader, to read repetitive phrases and words when looking for nuggets of information.

Use keywords

I have been rambling on about keywords fairly recently and with good reason. Keywords are vital to boosting SEO, so make sure those all important keywords are used in your headings too.

Hopefully, this information packed post has helped you realise, or at least nudge you into using and utilizing headings for your own blog posts.

Do you use headings in your blog posts? Has this post helped you? As always, share your thoughts in the comment section below!

Dear Diary – I started a Podcast

Hi Hello and welcome to the second installment of 2019. I of course mean, welcome to the much anticipated, longingly awaited February. Shamefully this is only my second dear diary post and we are nearing March! oops. It’s been a long one right?
I still find it hard to believe we are edging towards Spring and yet excited to ditch the jumpers and embrace shorter sleeves!

Enough about the weather, in true brit form, I’m here to chat podcasts. My podcast!

Yes, encase you’re not part of my exclusive newsletter blog blast club, or haven’t been involved in some of my other posts, I have my very own podcast.

Millennial Conversations

I challenge some of the perspectives and embrace true millennial views towards life. Essentially, I’m chatting most of the stuff that can be found on my blog in a really informal way and without spell check.

Millennial conversations is everything I want to chat with being a current young being. I cover everything from dieting to mental health, to buying your own property. I tend to have some really in depth conversations with lots of my friends about some of our struggles and often wonder how this would come across in a podcast and whether we are alone in some of our views.

We are not, and whilst my current episodes have no one else but me present, I do have some guests up and coming who share or contradict my view.

So, if you like my blog ( which I hope you do ) then be sure to check in, listen and cast your view over on my podcast. I really want to get some conversations going, and use the space as a talking point.

Fancy being involved?

Want to chat with me? Have a convo you think should be shared across a podcast?

GET IN TOUCH.

Drop me an email and let’s get recording.

I am on the look out for anyone who wants to guest appear and chat ANYTHING millennial, conversational or even blogger related.

You can find me on my Instagram stories chatting the topic every week, including some of your own answers and opinions on the topic.

And for godsake, listen and leave your comments below!

Listen to Millennial Conversations on Spotify, Apple podcasts and more.

2019 : My Year

HELLO 2019 — Happy New Year!!! I start my first post of 2019 ( whatttttt ), with a very quick thank you! Whether you have followed me for numerous years, or become a new, friendly face, thank you for sticking by. I won’t ramble on, but last year saw me really push my passion. I love this space, growing it and grabbing more attention ( where possible ). We all know how tough it can get, especially when we just want our hard work and vision to be shared and experienced with others. Alas, I will be pushing harder, stronger and frequently throughout 2019, so be prepared. Butttt, before I start cracking on with the new year, let’s de-brief on 2018 shall we?


Well, 2018 was a pretty banging year to say the least! I achieved so much, had some life changing events and grew as a women personally and professionally.

As mentioned, it was the year, like a full year, where I pushed my passion as much as I could. I reached out, strove for better and expanded where possible. I lost a little steam, but since having 2 weeks break( Charlotte, you lazy cow, how dare you take some time off! ), I have returned with a spring in my step and ready to tackle the blogging world and make it my own.

Stepping back and having looked over 2018, I am stunned we are looking at another year already. They do say, when you have lots planned and to look forward to, you begin to wish the years away.

And often I wonder, how in hell are we going to top 2018? 

So what’s in store for me, and what do I plan to do in 2019?

Professionally speaking of course, there are lots of ideas buzzing around. There have been several avenues that I brainstormed, and didn’t quiet deliver last year. I launched a very swift newsletter, and never really found time to let it flourish. Much to the same pattern, I started a podcast, recorded several episodes and struggled to get them live.

2019 will be the year that I do hone in on those couple of other avenues, aside from my blog and Instagram profile. I also hope to explore other media forms too, including IGTV.

It’s something I wanted to do last year, but with a wedding, and the other two forms of media, I was a little bit too busy.

So hang around for the journey. You’ve made it this far and hey, it’s just the beginning. If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to my newsletter. I will be including some pretty nifty hints and tips to some of the blogging world, as well as the password to some of my protected posts ( the really valuable blogging ones ).

My podcast, Millennial conversations, will be re-appearing within the next couple of weeks, once again covering all topics relevant to we millennial’s.

Have something you wanna suggest or say? Be sure to leave me your comments and thoughts below. I love reading every single one.

Thanks once again for continuing to support me on this journey and sticking by. Here’s to the next 12 months and making this year, the year!

5 Blogging New Years Resolutions

Whilst we have all been running around like headless chickens to get Christmas prepared, we can tend to forget there’s just a couple of weeks left of the year too!

It’s around about now we do all start thinking of the new year, what it may have to hold for us and what we should aim to achieve. Or better, the habits we should be kicking – ayy! 

I used to be very particular on what I wanted to achieve every year, but recently my mind set has changed. Having goals and targets is all good, but for me, New year resolutions are more about changing habits rather than reaching peak numbers, stats or achievements. 

Call me crazy, but mental health for me can get pretty frantic when I don’t feel like I am achieving, especially when I have targeted myself to a particular goal, rather than a idea. Make sense? 

So why are you setting resolutions Charlotte?

There is always a good reason to set yourself targets, it’s just knowing what’s achievable for you. This year, I am setting myself new mindsets and habits, rather than outright goals. 

I wanted to achieve 3000 Instagram followers in 2018 and since I’m still a great deal off, I could and have felt like a failure for it. What I should have set myself is a new mindset for Instagram that in the long run would get me that goal – like posting every day! 

Bearing that in mind, I have set myself manyyyy new mindsets for 2019 and these are just the first 5 I want to adopt for my blog and the whole of 2019. 

Use IG-TV

2018 saw the start of a new aspect of Instagram that I am ever so happy about.

Youtube for me is’t something I have been involved within. I started for one whole upload and stopped. It was hard to compete with expensive technology and great content. IGTV allowed those with an already established audience to share more long-form content (like videos) to that already there audience. 

2019 I vow to use it. I’m not setting myself on a figure of videos, but I do aim to produce and publish some content to share on there. 

Be more active on social media

I am endlessly scrolling through social media, I am aware of that, but I have most defiantly become a spectator. I often like, but not comment, watch but not feedback and read and leave. 

In 2019, I would love to become more active, responding to comments and leaving my own thoughts and views where possible. Even feeding back on something I love with a quick comment. 

Create a content plan for all of my platforms 

Spoiler : This is something I started a week or so ago, but I want to utilise it, plan on it and reflect on it where possible. I have many avenues I have started with my blog ( Newsletter and podcast ) and I haven’t been utilising it when I could. 

I want to, in 2019, plan to use it and structure my content through the use of a content plan. I want to actually use those little avenues I’ve already started and possibly create it as a steady content flow besides my blog and instagram.

Show abit more of my face

I have always been a little shy sharing my face on social media. I tend to over analyse and compare myself physically ( doesn’t everyone? ) so I steer clear. Although, I have worked with some fabulous brands over the last couple of months and my stats suggest I get better engagement from images featuring me in them.

With the aim of expanding in 2019, I vow to work on my confidence and put myself out there. I have started to be more consious on the content I am creating and show the true side of me, without the thrills. I will be posting more content with me within it, and storying as much as possible, even if it’s the mundane boring side of my life.

Be true to myself

It’s pretty easy to slip into a persona, especially within the online world. And whilst I haven’t quiet done that myself, there have been times I have been shy to share my true self. Whether that be my voice on an opinion, or whether I am shying away from the camera.

In 2019, I want to be a little more raw. Let you guys in and see the true me. When I am sharing the content I want, showcasing the true me, I feel much happier with my space that I have created and I want that to be true throughout 2019.

Black boots from HiddenFashion.

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Holy Grail tips for new bloggers

I have been blogging for a good couple of years now and feel like I have become some what part of the furniture. However, I have had my fair share of changes, decision making and ultimately mistakes along the way. I have swapped and changed not only my blog domain, but my platform many a time, and I have FINALLY settled on a resting place that is here.

In the duration of my years as a blogger, I have certainly tried every trick in the book, and kept up to date on the trends. Whether that be on social media, content or even style. I have read countless blogs, including the ones many would call my competitors. I have copied styles, analysed what gets the likes and engagement and changed everything I do to try and get my further in my blogging career – even if I didn’t really like the content I was producing.

After all of that experimenting, I have finally found a style, presence and type of content I am happy producing, flaunting and really promoting – even to friends!

But along that bumpy road, I have learnt a fair few lessons. So without further ado, here are my own holy grail tips for starter bloggers ( the ones I would have wanted to know right from the beginning).

Use WordPress

I know wordpress is a little hit and miss for some. It’s a bit like Marmite and not everyone likes it, I get it. Butttt, if I had my time again, I would start on wordpress and stick to it. There is sooo much creative freedom when it comes to designing your site and you can avoid a whole lotta faff when you realise you really should be on wordpress and now you’ve gotta make the move! Since my migration, I have found blog themes are much more versatile and you really do have creative freedom on your content and your appearance.

Buy a domain

Another nugget of info I wish I had — buy your domain straight out! Once again it can save you a whole lot of faff later down the line, and you can get to work on your domain authority straight out! It doesn’t have to cost much for your domain and it will be well worth the pennies later on.

Something to really consider when starting out, your blog name and domain. Remember that this may be with you a long time, and if wanting to change it later on, you will lose that precious domain authority you built up. I have had several names and domains across the years  ( including ‘Travel the world with me’ and A life of a Charlotte’). It was only 2 years ago I realised that the best option was my name and so sought a new domain. Some times the simpliest of domains is worth more than anything else.

Read : How to support fellow bloggers

Be social

On every social media account you can. Having multiple platforms can help gain traffic and will look great when reaching out to brands. Be sure to keep them updated and personal. I find the social media profiles I enjoy the most embark on their personality and pepper in their blog and professionalism. Stay true to yourself and you will build a strong social presence. My BIGGEST advice would be to forget the follower count. Yes, that does matter, however solely focusing on your followers can influence the content you produce and publish, and sometimes not for good reason. Be true to yourself, produce content you love and want to publish and the rest will follow.

Be open and true

Be open to the fact that you will probably make mistakes. Be open to the idea that you will chop and change your writing style and content until you find something you are truly happy and proud of. It’s natural. Do not get yourself down for changing things along the way, or being uncertain on the exact direction you are heading. If you’re unsure of something with a brand, be honest and ask questions. Not every blogger knows everything that comes with creating and publishing good content, so why should you.

Know your own value

I have posted something in relation to this before because I truly believe, only you know your value. Only you know how much is not enough for the work and effort you are putting into a collaboration post. Many bloggers advise on guidelines on what to charge which is great on giving you a ball park figure to work around, but that is all it is. What you may consider as valuable time may be considered by others as just part and parcel of the industry. To get some more detail on what I’m going on about here, Read my post  to know more on how you should charge companies for your time.

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