I asked 10 bloggers how they learn about blogging. This is what they told me…
Eva is the founder of the Glamazon blog.
Her Instagram account has over 67,000 Followers:
She is based is London. In many of her posts, she uses the city to great effect:
Her answer surprised me. She told me that she was a “self-learner” and her learning process was “basically trial and error”:
I am an old school blogger and back then people did not share their information much… I wish I had the information back then but there was not much
I heard similar stories from other bloggers.
Fleur blogs at Words by Fleur.
Her Facebook Page has 6,582 Likes:
Fleur is also self-taught:
podcasts didn’t exist when I started blogging, don’t know if many, if any books existed at the time… I started a blog without reading any others at all and pretty much carved my own niche. Landscape was very different in 2009!
Another long-time blogger elaborated on this.
You will find David at The Grey Fox Blog.
David’s Instagram has 25,000+ followers:
I’m a big fan of this blog. David’s style is simple but striking:
Finally, somebody recommended something – David told me:
For the new-ish and even more experienced blogger I found Natasha Courtenay-Smith’s The Million Dollar Blog a good read.
A lot of people agree with David – the book has very favourable reviews on Amazon:
I asked David if he felt the blogging landscape had changed – was it more competitive now?
I wouldn’t say blogging per se is more competitive now. The landscape has been broadened and made more complicated by the many other media that a blogger may want to use, spreading from one medium to many alternatives. The traditional blog now has to earn attention from a following that has an increasingly short attention span. Encouraged by image heavy media like Instagram and Pinterest, there’s a move away from the written word. The traditional blogger needs to embrace that change.
David said that, apart from the book he recommended, there is a lack of good advice out there:
The problem is that it’s such a new field that we are all feeling our way
Not everyone agreed with him.
Laura blogs at Laura Lily.
She has 160,000 Instagram followers:
Laura recently wrote her own article about starting a blog. I asked her if she felt there was a lack of good advice out there:
I completely disagree. There is so much valuable information out there available to anyone who is willing to look for it. I started my blog 6 years ago and there was nothing. Now there is so much advice it’s hard to miss it! It’s a new-ish industry, but it’s becoming more and more established every day. Of course, every person will have a different experience and build their business their own way, but the basics of building a blog/social following and a blogging business are quite standardized at this point.
I myself learned from the following among hundreds of other avenues:
-blog + media outlet articles about the business of blogging
Laura recommends the following podcasts:
- The Goaldigger by Jenna Kutcher
- A Drink with James by James Nord
- The Influencer Podcast by Julie Solomon
- The GaryVee Audio Experience by Gary Vaynerchuck
She also suggested Crushing It by Gary Vaynerchuck. This book was a #1 New York Times Bestseller and has stellar reviews on Amazon:
Lastly, Laura mentioned conferences by:
Our next blogger has something in common with Laura.
Dianna is Editor-in-Chief of The Budget Babe.
The Budget Babe has over 35,000 Instagram followers:
Dianna is another veteran blogger:
I started blogging in 2007 so I’d say I was largely self taught and learned a lot through trial and error and just following my gut
She also listens to A Drink With James. I asked Dianna if bloggers need to focus more on images and less on the written word:
Yes and no, I think there’s still room for both. You actually reminded me of a podcast I watched recently from the founder of [Fohr] – A Drink with James – and he argued that telling your story on Instagram via long comments can be a hugely valuable way to connect with readers and increase engagement. I see some influencers rely solely on imagery and incredible photography and others who combine that with great storytelling and inspirational messaging. I guess the really successful ones do both!
Dianna says she benefited from joining a blogging community:
my friend Jennine Jacob started something called IFB (independent fashion bloggers) and that was a valuable resource for me over the years. They provide inspiration and articles for fashion bloggers and influencers specifically with great SEO tips, how to grow your social media and more
You can learn more about IFB at https://heartifb.com. I spoke to the co-founder of a similar blogging community.
Jessica blogs at My Style Vita.
Her Instagram has 35,000+ followers:
The Blog Societies is a “cultivated community for influencers to unlock the resources, connections and tools necessary to grow their blogs”. Their website offers free advice on various topics, from pitching your blog for a travel collaboration to interpreting Google Analytics data.
In 2018, they held their 6th annual conference:
Of course, Jessica recommends her blogging community. She also recommends the blog at https://empressthemes.com/. EmPress Themes is a company that makes wordpress themes. So, naturally, their blog focuses heavily on web design:
Another blogger offered a similar recommendation – a blog written by a company, not a blogger.
Mammypi was born in Cameroon. Her birth name is Hilda but she blogs at https://mammypi.com because that’s what her friends call her.
She now lives in London. Like Eva, she uses the city to add vibrancy to her Instagram posts:
Mammypi offered this advice:
Pick a few sites you love and look at what they are doing. There really is no one size fits all when it comes to blogging. The important thing is to find your voice and be as organic as possible.
She said she learned a lot by reading the blogs at:
The next blogger in our list also gets inspiration from other blogs.
Rachel is a design blogger – she is the Sparkle Priestess.
Her blog looks amazing. The typeface is beautiful, the colours are vivid, and the images are ornate:
Rachel looks up to one blog above all others:
Oh man, I read a LOT of blogs and books, as well as listen to many podcasts. There are so many good ones – but I’d have to say the one that speaks to me the most is the Made Vibrant blog by Caroline Zook. She and her husband Jason do a lot of business, productivity, and mindset blogging and I like them both very much. However, as a female creative, Caroline’s voice is just so aligned with my values. She’s helpful, bright, cheerful, and positive. I head over there and read a few articles whenever I’m in a rut or just have time in the morning. I always find something deeply motivational and inspiring.
Made Vibrant deals with big overarching ideas – like how to deal with your fear of failure. But, if you’re more interested in the nuts-and-bolts of blogging, our next blogger’s recommendations will help you.
9.Megan Ray Nichols
Megan is a science blogger. She writes at Schooled by Science.
Megan takes complex ideas and makes them easier to understand:
She recommended the following blogs:
These blogs teach you how to write better, how to advertise on social media, and how to organise your day. The recommendations so far have covered pretty much everything you need to succeed in blogging. There is one notable exception though – nobody has recommended photography resources. Luckily, our last blogger has some suggestions.
Penelope blogs at Penelope’s Oasis.
Her Twitter account has over 34,000 followers:
Penelope wrote her own ebook on how to master blogging. She is another largely self-taught blogger:
I actually didn’t have any resources for blogging… I really had to learn as I went, as I started in 2008 and there wasn’t much information around – I would learn about different templates to use, hosts that are great, etc by word of mouth
However, she does speak highly of a few photography resources:
I did have wonderful resources for helping me learn photography, because images are important, so I took photography courses and learned how to use Lightroom
Lightroom is software that helps you edit photos. Penelope learned how to use this software at The Lightroom Queen website. She learned how to use Photoshop by watching videos at www.lynda.com. Her final recommendation is a book:
I also read the book Plate to Pixel to learn about food styling, so anyone who is interested in the food niche would really learn a great deal from that.
This book has excellent reviews on Amazon:
Do you have any recommendations to add? Let us know in the comments!