10 reasons you shouldn’t start a blog, the misconceptions behind blogging, & how to overcome & avoid common blogging mistakes.
I’m a full-time blogger sharing a post about why you should not start a blog. Feel the irony?
Haha! Don’t worry, I’m not abandoning my day job or trying to discourage you from your dream of starting a blog. This was more of a catchy title than me trying to tell you that you shouldn’t start a blog.
My purpose for writing this post is to give you a little look into the reality of blogging because it is better to be prepared than to be smacked in the face once reality comes knocking on your door.
Some bloggers only want to share the shiny & sparkly side of blogging. Which means when new bloggers hit obstacles they often feel alone & too often they quit.
So while I share these 10 truths about blogging that might make some people not want to start a blog, I am also sharing the positives & how to navigate the negatives. Because like any job there will be some downsides.
But hey, every cloud has a silver lining, right? Which is why I’m sharing how you can overcome & even avoid some of these problems.
And if you decide that blogging is for you, because the truth is, if you have real dedication you can be a blogger, then you might want to check out this post about How to Start a Successful Blog from Day 1.
This post also includes helpful information for new bloggers like, hosting platforms, hosting providers, blogging terms, & a step-by-step tutorial on how to start a blog. Oh, & you might also like this post about 25 Blogging Mistakes to Avoid.
And as always, if you ever have any questions or need any help please feel free to message me!
1. The Work
Every once in a blue moon someone will start a blog, write a few posts, & then instantly go viral. The rest of us work hard to continually create content that is relevant, helpful, & beneficial to our audience.
While it can be a steep learning curve at the beginning, it is totally worth it! One of the things I wish I had done prior to going public with my blog is already having a month’s worth of posts scheduled. This way I could continue creating content while learning the in’s & outs of blogging without ever feeling behind.
The truth is, you learn as you go. Even after 4 years of blogging, I am still learning new things, which makes this a fun job because things are always growing & changing.
You don’t need to be an expert at computers or the internet to start a blog, there are people who can help you with that. What you really need us to have a passion for what you write & share.
2. Thinking it’s About You
Once upon a time, what feels like a long time ago, your blog could be your journal. People use to have favorite bloggers & they consistently read their everyday life journey. And while there are still some dedicated readers out there the majority of people prefer posts that benefit themselves.
For example, when you get on Pinterest (which is my biggest traffic driver), you aren’t looking to read about someone else life you are looking for something for yourself, whether it’s a new recipe, DIY project, or fashion trend.
I should note, however, that when I write my faith based posts (which are more personal in nature) they often do their best on Facebook, which is geared more towards people who are looking to relate & connect on a more personal level.
Finding a balance is key. If you love to share personal anecdotes or a little life lately you should totally do it! Creating a lifestyle blog is a great way to have a little bit of everything you love.
For example, I am a lifestyle blogger with an emphasis on Food, Home, & Travel. While at the same time I have a Confessions category where I share the occasional fashion, faith, blogging tips, & other lifestyle centered posts. I mainly create content that benefits others, such as a recipe, but within the recipe post, I will share details from our weekend adventures & daily life.
This way I am able to be personable while still providing quality evergreen content that my readers want.
3. Social Media is Your Frenemy
I loved social media & Pinterest before I started blogging. Now, these networks sometimes feel like a frenemy. I greatly dislike how much time they take & the ever changing algorithms, but I love the connection & traffic it drives to my blog.
It is definitely a love hate relationship.
One important step to making social media less of a frenemy & more of a friend is to restrict the amount of time you spending on social media.
I use to spend an insane amount of time on Pinterest (the leading driver of traffic to my blog) until I learned about Pinterest scheduling. I wrote a post about it that you can read here, & let me tell you, it’s been a huge time saver!!
You could also higher a virtual assistant to manage your social media accounts, which will save you even more time. You can learn how to higher one here. And if you are interested in starting a blog, but want to get your toes wet first, you can also learn how to become a virtual assistant here.
It’s also important to be careful on social media. It’s one thing to critique your own work while admiring & learning from other’s work, it’s another to compare your work to someone else’s who has been working longer than you. Definitely not a road you want to go down.
4. The Crazies
The first time you get a negative/ hateful comment you will probably feel devastated.
Being a people pleaser & having someone lash out at you for something you wrote can be difficult, especial the first dozen times it happens.
The best way to guard yourself against this is to have your comments monitored so that anytime anyone comments on your blog their comment has to be approved by you before it shows up on your blog.
The last thing you want to do is engage with an online bully. My theory is if it doesn’t add something positive to the conversation it doesn’t need to be a part of the conversation.
Also, it’s important to remember that bullies (online or IRL) are probably being bullied or hurt themselves. Delete the comment, say a prayer, let go, & move on.
I should also note that while there are a lot of crazies out there, you will make way more friends than you will encounter crazies. Often you will make deep friendships with other bloggers you have never met IRL. Hold on to these!
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it can be a difficult one.
If you don’t have accountability you don’t have to accomplish anything because no one will know.
When you share a goal you have with your readers you suddenly have accountability partners. People who are watching & waiting to see if you do it & how you do it so that they too can accomplish the same or similar goal.
This is great because you will have people encouraging you & even giving you advice on how to help you reach your goal.
6. Influencing People
Whether you mean to or not, you will influence others in one way or another.
Even food bloggers have influence, such as influence in diet & influence in trying new foods or products.
Even if you aren’t an expert at what you blog about, you will be sharing your experience, your project, your new favorite outfit, your recipe & others will see you as an expert.
Influence is a type of power & definitely not one that should be taken lightly.
I often pray that God will bless my blog & my interactions with the people I connect with through my blog. I am an influencer & I want to make sure that my influence is used to bless & help others.
This one can be so dangerous.
Sharing your location (Instagram), your personal thoughts, your relationships, other people’s pictures, etc. can lead to big problems.
It’s pretty obvious what problems can arise from oversharing, but I’ll share anyway.
While I almost always tag my location on Instagram, I rarely tag my exact location. For example, the closest city to my house is Chattanooga, TN. So anytime I am within an approximately 25-mile radius of Chattanooga I will tag Chattanooga, both on Instagram & Instagram Stories.
In regards to relationships, anytime I write or mention my husband I have him read the post or approve the picture. My relationship with my husband is the most important one that I have on earth & I want to maintain a healthy relationship with him.
If he doesn’t feel comfortable sharing a personal detail about our life I don’t share it, even if it is a whole post. It’s about partnership & accountability. And I greatly appreciate his feedback.
Pictures are a big one. I try very hard not to get strangers in the pictures I share. That’s pretty much impossible if you are in a big crowd, so some of my Disney posts do have pictures of other people in them. But for the most part, I don’t share pictures of other people outside of family & close friends (who I have permission from to share the picture).
8. IRL People Won’t Understand
I use to hesitate & stumble over my words when I tried to explain my job because I knew people wouldn’t & didn’t understand.
They hear blog & they immediately think that I have nothing to do with my life but to share my feelings on the internet.
Over time, I have gotten better at expressing myself, even in a 5 second passing at the grocery store. I’m still not perfect because let’s face it, bloggers don’t get out of the house much so I don’t get a ton of practice.
These days I say something like this “I am a professional blogger & I create content for different brands & businesses.” If they inquire further I explain that I have a lifestyle blog (while handing them a business card) where I share recipes, projects for your home, & travel tips.
If they ask how I make money (understandably a question) & how much I make (which is so awkward because I don’t walk up to strangers or people I haven’t spoken to in ages & ask them how much money they are making) I try my best to explain. I share that I am paid through ads, affiliate marketing, & work directly & indirectly with different clients, such as (& then I list a few recent). And that the pay varies depending on the work & the client.
9. It’s a Job
While some people blog as a hobby, if you are serious about blogging you will treat it like a job.
You will have business hours set aside for working & you will work hard to grow your blog & your income.
It often surprises people, even family members, that I have set work hours & that I work from 8am-4pm Monday-Thursday.
Some will have a hard time understanding why you can’t just drop everything to go help them or do something with them, but if you kindly stand firm people will learn that blogging is your job & not something you can simply drop at any time.
That said, now that we live in our hometown again I am learning to be more flexible with my hours. Blogging as a job & being able to create my own hours is a blessing. If a family member, friend, or our church needs something I will rearrange things to make time for them. I believe God has guided & blessed me with a job of flexibility so that I can then, in turn, be a blessing to others when they need help.
10. The Cost
Truthfully, the longer you blog the more expensive blogging becomes.
But honestly, you don’t have to spend much at the beginning. I recently shared a post about Blog Investments for Success & how to wisely invest in your blog to make it grow. And in it, I shared how inexpensive it is to start a blog & what I did to stay on budget & keep the costs low.
You can start a blog for as little as $3.95 a month. That’s the cost of one small cup of fancy coffee!
What advice do you have about starting a new blog?
I’d love to hear from you!
Feel free to comment below, email me, or tweet me on Twitter.
With love, Giustina
Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up.
Romans 15:2 NIV
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