If you haven’t noticed, there is A LOT of blogging advice on the Internet. Okay, I am sure you know this, BUT do you know that a good amount of it is misleading or downright untrue.
How are you supposed to know what to believe and who to trust with so many blogging myths out there?https://www.youtube.com/embed/OW6bcT9hJ8g
If you are just starting out, you probably have some preconceived ideas of what running a blogging business will be like, right?
When I first started a blogging business over three years ago, I thought I had the whole profitable blog thing figured out. Unfortunately, reality proved a lot of these ideas false, leading me to question if I could really create a profitable blogging business.
I want to be real with you. Running a blogging business has some AMAZING perks, but it is definitely not all rainbows and unicorns. In fact in the beginning it’s more like storm clouds and trolls until you start building momentum.
In this post, I am busting 5 harmful blogging myths that actually keep new bloggers stuck and second-guessing themselves.
This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure page for more info
This is possibly one of the biggest blogging myths of all.
Yes, it may be easy to set up a blog – purchase hosting, buy a domain (or get a free domain the first year when you start with Bluehost hosting), install WordPress and BOOM! You now officially have a blog.
Then all that’s left to do is write some blog posts, sell some products, and the money starts rolling in, right?
Nope. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. If it did, don’t you think everyone and their mom would be making it rain hundred dollar bills in the street by now?
While the set up might be easy, there is so much more to running a profitable blogging business than just slapping up a blog post about whatever you want, whenever you want and calling it a day.
First, you have to decide on your blogging niche. Then you need to do a good amount of market research to narrow down who your ideal customer is within this niche.
But wait, how is your ideal customer finding your blog? Are they flocking to your site the minute you hit publish on your latest blog post?
Enter blogging myth #2 on our blogging myths list.
If a super helpful blog exists out in the interwebs, but no one sees it, does it really exist?
The hard truth: No
Now I know you might be arguing that of course it exists! You put a lot of time and effort into creating those amazing blog posts and pieces of content. You know they can help so many people around the world.
Alright, so yes, it may physically exist out there on the world wide web, but if no one is reading it but your mom and best friend then it doesn’t exist in the mind of your ideal reader/customer and this is what counts.
You need a solid marketing strategy. There are a number of strategies to implement for getting traffic to your site, but the truth is they take time or money.
When you are first starting out, I don’t recommend spending money on ads. You need to make sure your messaging is on point with your audience first.
Plus if you are not selling any products or services yet, (which you shouldn’t be until you know what your audience really wants) then you won’t be able to regain that ad spend.
Search engine optimization (SEO) – the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.
Social Media Platforms – Pinterest (my favorite to drive traffic), YouTube, Facebook, Twitter
Getting in front of other people’s audiences – Building relationships with other bloggers and entrepreneurs and pitching yourself to be on their podcasts, doing guest posts, etc.
This is one of the big blogging myths that keeps people from getting started with blogging.
Yes, you need to be able to come up with very helpful content consistently and communicate this effectively, but it doesn’t have to be some perfectly polished piece of work. In fact, the simpler and straightforward your blog posts are the better.
People don’t read websites and blog posts like they do novels or other pieces of literature.
They scan them.
Blogging is about sharing your expertise with others who are seeking help and have less knowledge in a particular area than you. The goal is to deliver helpful information in a way that your ideal audience can quickly and easily understand and absorb.
This means breaking down information with …
This doesn’t mean that all your content should consist of all short, 500-word blog posts though.
Longer, more in-depth content (think 1,500-3,000 words) will get you more traffic from Google and has been shown to receive more social shares.
This more detailed and thorough content is often referred to as pillar or evergreen content. You can learn more about what type of evergreen content you should be producing here.
All in all though, focus on word value over word count. If you are adding value to your reader with helpful content, then the word count will come.
If you find it hard to sit down and write out a post, try recording yourself speaking about the topic and then use a service like Rev.com to transcribe your audio into text.
You could even record a video of yourself speaking about a topic first and embed that on your blog with some bullet points or a full transcription below it.
This is a great way to repurpose content and give your audience different options for consuming your content.
One of the great things about starting a blogging business is that there is a VERY low start-up cost.
Yes, there are free hosting platforms, but as someone who has been blogging for over six years and has tried them all, trust me when I tell you that you want a self-hosted site.
Once you get hosting you can install WordPress.org for free, which is hands down where you want to build your blog and website.
You can learn about the differences between hosted and self-hosted website platforms here.
I recommend the hosting provider Bluehost for beginners. It is who I started with and still use today for one of my blogging business websites.
Full disclosure: I am an affiliate for Bluehost, which means that I will receive a commission if you sign up through our link. This is at no additional cost to you! Please know that I would NEVER recommend anything that I didn’t use and love.
Domain: Approximately $11.99/year (Free for the first year when you sign up for Bluehost)
Hosting: Approximately $3-6/month depending on how long you sign up for hosting.
The longer you sign up for hosting, the bigger the discount. You need to commit to at least a year up front, which comes to about $70.
If you were to start a brick and mortar business it would cost 100 times this price!
Blogging definitely isn’t dead, BUT some of the old practices and strategies are indeed dying.
This just means that you need to change with the times and keep update to date with what is working. This is what every business has to do to survive.
So what is not working anymore?
You have to focus on a very specific niche and become the go-to expert in that niche. So if your passionate about cooking and you want to start a food blog, your gonna need to get a lot more specific than “Cooking.”
Do want to focus on crockpot cooking? Cooking for weight loss? Cooking for picky eaters? Vegan cooking? For more help on narrowing down your niche click here.
Do some market research to make sure there is a demand for your niche and once you choose one, strictly stick to becoming the expert on that topic.
If you decide that you are going to focus on vegan cooking, don’t go throwing in a meat recipe for fun or a blog post about parenting here and there.
Creating high quality content on a consistent schedule that works for you is better than churning out more frequent content of lesser quality.
In other words, it’s typically better to focus on two really in-depth, helpful blog posts a month than 4 or 5 unexceptional posts that provide little long-term value.
When you are first starting out, it may take some time to find your voice and create the 1,500-2,500 word blog posts that Google tends to favor.
This is okay. Focus on providing high-quality content instead of the word count. You can always go back and update/add to posts over time. In fact, it is recommended to keep your post up-to-date and relevant for search engine optimization purposes.
Yes, I know you may not like hearing this, but it’s the new reality.
People consume information in different ways. Some still like to sit and read blog posts, but more and more are choosing to learn through video or audio while doing other tasks.
I personally consume info in all three ways and I know a lot of my audience does as well, so this is something I am starting to focus on more.
You will too if you want to stay relevant and in business long-term.
There you have it. 5 blogging myths you need to stop believing to move forward and grow a profitable blogging business.
I know that hearing these truths may make you uncomfortable and a bit nervous about building a blogging business, but trust me, YOU CAN DO THIS!