Should You Start a Blog in 2020
The answer is 50%, yes, and 50% no. Should you start a blog? If you’re asking yourself this – you’ve come to the right place because I’m going to be completely honest. If you have a desire to start a blog- you most likely have the ability to do it. But does this mean you should?
For most people, I’m going to say the answer is no. Most people will not want to put in the time and effort to make it something worthwhile. It will be a waste of money, and they could focus on other things they have a passion for, like photography and visual storytelling through Instagram.
If you have a story to tell and a genuine interest in helping others though, you absolutely should start a blog. Blogs are places where the Internet goes to find answers, and they’re a great way to make money if you’re dedicated. Passion for whatever your subject comes through and translates to a following of people whose own passions you can ignite. Whether it be travel, home decor, or health and wellness – you absolutely CAN do it.
Hasn’t It Already Been Done?
The answer is yes- if you’re trying to be like someone else. If you’re OK just being you – you have something to offer because your perspectives are unique. One of my favorite perspectives to write from is of a person who didn’t think travel was possible. My parents always told me only ‘rich people travel.’ While this is certainly not true – it’s made me love traveling even more to find the deals! My goal is to make everyone feel that they can explore confidently. I don’t know that I’ve ever stumbled on a blog that made me feel like I could do it before I started traveling. So clearly there’s a need to fill!
Do You Need A Niche?
If you want a more targeted audience and you’re marketing a product – you most likely need a niche. Typically one person isn’t passionate about everything? Bouncing all over the place will be reflected in your writing, and that’s not a good thing. When asking ‘should you start a blog in 2020?’ – the real question needs to be, ‘What do I bring to the table?‘ A realistic perspective on traveling is what I aim to bring to the table with my blog, along with resources on how to make it happen! Having a niche allows you to write about many different specific topics from big to small – that your readers will want to read.
While I know there are blogs out there that have a diverse readership with diverse interests – having a blog with a specific interest may keep your readers coming back more frequently. I may find an article I need here or there from Cosmo, or Elle or the Every Girl- but those aren’t my main focuses in life. Instead, I have a few sources that I consistently rely on for travel advice and travel guides. I’m a devoted reader/listener to the Nomadic Matt Blog, the Amateur Traveler Podcast, and a few others!
Don’t Be Afraid to Fail
At some point, some of your articles are going to flop. You’ll get rejected for a guest post. Someone will make fun of your blog. When I very first started blogging, I had no idea what Google Analytics were or how to use them. Nor did I understand the importance of SEO. Some of my articles on this blog right now are not my best work or the best writing. That doesn’t mean I quit.
I’ve realized throughout my time blogging that I have been so scared to put myself out there. I was scared to be a ‘blogger’ and have people look at me the way that they do sometimes still. I was nervous to have it flop, without recognizing that you have to start to get where you want to be.
The first time an article went viral on Pinterest for me, I almost cried. I had worked so hard to understand what to do to promote my blog, and it’s finally starting to pay off! (See here: Remote US Destinations: Travel Again After Quarantine )
Should you start a blog? I don’t know – you need to decide and do what you’re called to do. There are so many crappy jobs you can have in life but, if you chose to start a blog and it lights your soul on fire – then it’s what you’re meant to do.
PIN FOR LATER!
Be Committed to Learning + Let Go of Perfectionism
The internet is a fast-evolving place. It wastes no time on people places and things that aren’t working hard and keeping up to date. While I’ve definitely taken my sweet time getting things rolling- I’ve realized that there are so many things I thought were scary, that are now a breeze to me. You wanna know why these things are a breeze to me now?
I took the time to learn.
I watched over 120 hours of classes on web design + photography. Read 50+ articles from Pro-Blogger, and I watched what other bloggers do. What worked or what I liked and didn’t like filled up my notebooks. I made sure my site was functional and clean because having it not function is pretty much a blog killer. It’s taken me almost one and a half years to be able to write this and tell you that you can do it. You just have to be committed to wandering your own personal uncharted territories.
My hubs is probably one of my favorite examples of a person who just goes for it. Evan has never been to a woodworking class in his life. BUT HE BUILT OUR ENTIRE KITCHEN – and it’s beautiful. It saved us thousands of dollars that we can now put towards our other passions. But when I say the man is self-taught – I mean that. He attended good ol’ YouTube University and decided he was going to do it.
If you’re asking ‘should I start a blog?’.. ask yourself… ‘Am I willing to do what it takes to be successful?‘
Why Are you Blogging?
What are your goals? Make money? Create a valuable resource? Mine are all of the above – but creating a valuable resource is first. I want to become a resource that people come back to without even a destination in mind. I want people who have never traveled before to leave my site and think – I can do this. Because I never felt that way until about five years ago. It’s a fantastic privilege that makes me a better person.
If you don’t have the same kind of deep-seated passions for helping others: Your blog will not survive. People only read for pleasure or to learn a skill themselves. Give them both and listen to what your audience needs – you can’t fail.
Make Yourself An Authority on a Subject
When I think about what I need as a traveler – it’s realistic advice on the ‘How-Tos.’ I know some of these locations are gorgeous – but if I can’t figure out to afford it or get there – I’m not interested. There are a few places I’ve seen online in Indonesia that look like something out of another world. Do you want to know what always follows my thoughts of how beautiful the place is?
Is it even worth it to get there?
Time, money, and the headaches of planning.. are they worth it? I need to BELIEVE in these locations. Some bloggers do it better than others. Belief in your writing is what you need to cultivate. (AKA authority). That is what will make your posts stand out. Someone else needs to hardheartedly believe in what you have to say so they recommend what you recommended. You’ll gain a committed readership which is essential to blogging!
My Biggest Advice: Be Professional Upfront
From having a professional site (free from grammatical errors) to a professional-looking Instagram – these things matter. We live in a very visual world and people have millions of options. You have to create a place that your readers want to come back to! Posts that are hard to read and text that’s in an illegible font are not going to keep your readers coming back. For resources on how to start out professionally as a blogger, click here.
You also want to have fully integrated social media and be connecting with other bloggers in your sphere! (Click here to join my Pinterest Travel Group Boards!)
Being professional upfront is not just visual. It’s also in how you discipline yourself to work on your site. It’s every day kinda thinking. You can do something 30 minutes out of every day that will further your goals. That may require discipline? But you can make it happen!
All in all, if you’re asking if you should start a blog, consider a few things: Why you want to and how you’re going to dedicate your time.
PIN FOR LATER!