Today we’re wishing a happy book birthday to Natasha Courtenay-Smith, as The Million Dollar Blog is published today! As part of the blog tour for this really useful guide to making your blog as successful as you wish it to be, I’ve been asked to share something that might help steer new bloggers in the right direction. I’d like to talk about something that I think is really important, and something I think all bloggers have been guilty of at one time or another – Envy!
I started my blog five years ago and initially had the mantra ‘if you build it, they will come’ – and they didn’t. I published the blog, started wittering away with no real focus and my page stats reflected this. I saw myself as a mummy blogger and began to put myself about in that community and things did start to get better, but as I did so, I fell into the trap of seeing what other mummy bloggers were reviewing and having the opportunity to experience (Disneyland Paris!!!) and I did wonder why they were getting these opportunities and I wasn’t. Of course if I’d’ve thought about it at the time as I do now, I’d’ve realised that there is only one reason that those lovely ladies got those opportunities – they worked bloody hard for it!
It’s really easy to look at a blog and skim past the hours spent designing the template, producing really great photographs, and then finding relevant and engaging content to tempt time-poor readers to stop. There are the hours of publicising posts and building relationships on Twitter and Facebook and – for the most successful bloggers – answering dozens of emails, deciding which opportunities and products are going to enhance their blog, which ones they have to, regretfully, decline and also the constant worry that they’re putting in all this hard work but no-one seems to be commenting…
The best thing you can do, as a new blogger, is actually learn from these established bloggers – build relationships with other bloggers, spend time not only on your own blog, but also commenting on others. Get to know other bloggers through social media, and you’re guaranteed to find either bloggers at the same stage as you, or those who are further down the road – no matter which – I’ve found other bloggers to be hugely supportive and giving of their time and advice, so even though it is so very easy to get swept up on a wave of envy (it really, really is!) if you invest the time and energy in your own blog, improving the quality of your own product, you’ll find opportunities coming your way.
Now, I’ve found a niche in which I am happy to blog – books. I don’t really think of myself as a ‘mummy blogger’ anymore, nor do I tend to have a specific genre of books that I cover – I review the books that I like to read and this suits me. Who knows what I might want to do in future? I might want to try and monetise the blog more fully, perhaps refine the reviews to a single genre or start something completely new, but my experience over the past five years has given me a strong foundation and a healthy respect for the hard work that goes in to making any blog a real success.
About the Book
In a world where everyone wants to blog and blog posts are ubiquitous, how do you stand out? How do you blog your way from nobody to somebody? How do you, as a business owner, use content to build your brand and drive your success?
Blogging has become the ‘it’ career of the modern world and every business knows that blogging should be an integral part of their marketing and success, but it’s actually never been tougher to be shine in the digital storytelling landscape.
No matter who are you – a mum at home, a budding fashion blogger or a small business owner –The Million Dollar Blog will be your ultimate guide to starting a successful blog or taking your existing blog to the next level.
Through a combination of practical advice and interviews with some of the world’s most famous and successful bloggers, vloggers and content strategists, including Seth Godin, Lily Pebbles, Vicky Psarias (aka Honestmum.com), Grant Cardone and Madeleine Shaw, entrepreneur and digital strategist Natasha Courtenay Smith shows you how to build a blog that will increase your profile, create new opportunities, earn money and change your life.
About the Author
Natasha Courtenay-Smith is a British entrepreneur and media expert. She is the founder and former director of press and publicity agency Talk to the Press, one of the UK’s first online press agencies, which helps individuals sell their real-life stories to newspapers and magazines. The business won numerous awards under Natasha’s guidance. In 2014, Talk to the Press and its online associated membership website Case Study Link were acquired by the UK’s largest newswire operator, SWNS, and Natasha left the business following a handover period.
Natasha now works with talented and high profile individuals on their websites, digital strategy, google search conversion, profile and publicity. She is pioneering at method that allows celebrities to create and publish their own news stories.