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It May Seem Glamorous, But Blogging Ain’t Easy!

It May Seem Glamorous, But Blogging Ain’t Easy!

The Glitz, the Glamour, the Perks; being a blogger seems like such a fun and attractive pathway, however don’t mistake the hustle because there’s more to it than meets the eye. I’ve been hitting the ground running for seven months with my blog, and I can honestly say “Blogging Ain’t Easy”. Certainly you’ve seen many people hit big in the blogosphere like Necole Bitchie, Claire Sulmers from ‘Fashion Bomb Daily’, Perez Hilton, and more, but it wasn’t a quick and easy come up for them, and not everyone will make it to the upper echelon of blogging. Moreover, turning your blogging into a business is very much the road less traveled, and you may not see a dime for some time; therefore you must have a flaming desire that carries you through when the going gets tough. So, if you think blogging will pave the way to instant success, think again!

Success in blogging is not for the swift, but for those who can endure, and I’m surely enduring the grind. I know my viewers may see photos of me here or there like a socialite, but what they don’t see are the late nights up at 3 am working, writing, and researching. Yes, when you’re sleeping, I’m up like a mad scientist in a lab. Blogging takes hard work and commitment, and I don’t say this to discourage anyone, but to let you know that you must have a burning passion for what you do. Whichever topics you choose to write about you have to love it wholeheartedly to the point where you can write about it consistently without getting bored or exhausted. Furthermore, when you have to consistently create content on a daily basis sometimes you can suffer from burn out. The first 4 months of BlissedOutBelle.com, I blogged five days a week almost to the point of burn out, and that’s when I had to reassess my work/ life balance. Currently, I have managed to work out a balance that is best for my personal life and the blog, so I’m able push out great content without comprising my well-being.

Not only do a newbie like myself has to hustle hard, but even the well-known blogging trailblazers have to hustle even harder. This past weekend, I attended the Blogging While Brown conference, and on the keynote panel were some digital media heavy hitters like Necole Kane of Necole Bitchie, Claire Sulmers of Fashion Bomb Daily, Karen Civil, and Angel Laws of ‘Concrete Loop‘, and they had tons of insight. You might see these ladies in photos with celebrities and traveling the world, but people often forget how much it really takes to run a site and post at least 6 days a week with several posts daily. One thing that struck me was that even though many people view their life as a blogger to be glamorous, it can be far from it.

Me with Claire Sulmers of FashionBombDaily.com
Me with Claire Sulmers of FashionBombDaily.com

During the discussion, Claire Sulmers even mentioned how most of her days are spent sitting in front of her laptop cranking out content; and I must admit, this how I spend most of my days as well. Necole Bitchie, who is a celebrity news blogger, stated that she’s always on call, because any breaking news with a major celebrity she has to be on the ball to cover it. Necole even recalled how she even had to cut a date short just report on a breaking story. Angel Laws of Concrete Loop also mentioned how she had to temporarily shut down the site for a short time to rejuvenate from feelings of burn out. Karen Civil, also revealed that she wasn’t in a relationship for years up until recently, due being busy and devoting time to building her brand. I applaud these women for their hard work, and I just love how they were able to get candid about their experience, because I can definitely relate. As you can tell, these are just some of the sacrifices that are made in order to be successful in digital media.

Did I mention, you all also have to take into consideration the business model of your brand. If you’re just blogging for fun that’s a whole other story, but if you’re trying to monetize your blog there needs to be a strategy. The one thing that gets people lost in the blogging hustle is that they haven’t defined any clear objectives for their brand. Having an objective gives you a sense of direction, and as you go along you can change your approach and fine-tune the branding. In fact, my objectives and brand has evolved over the course of 7 months, and I couldn’t be any clearer about my goals. In addition, I’ve also come to realize that it’s up to me to define what success as a blogger means, and to not base it off of the success of others. Many people make the mistake of doing this only to be disappointed or upset down the line.

At any rate, another insight I walked away with from the Blogging While Brown conference was that, as you grow you need to build a legal and financial team; this advice came from Alfred A. Edmond Jr. the Multimedia Editor-At-Large of Black Enterprise. Edmonds also had this to say when asked how to quickly bypass all the beginning hurdles of blogging, “Shortcuts can have you arriving prematurely and unprepared.” His statement really struck a chord in me, there is no fast track to stardom in the blogging world, and where I am is exactly where I need to be. This was very comforting to a newbie like myself

Now, don’t get it twisted there are some wonderful benefits with blogging, and it can actual be a lucrative career if you have the commitment level to do so. There are endless possibilities that may come from blogging, and it can even open doors for other extraordinary opportunities. Indeed there might be freebies involved, and you may get to attended special events, but let this not be the motivating factor. Personally, it’s very fulfilling to produce material that awakens, inspires, and empowers the readers, and encompasses my personal journey. I’m here to shake things up, and make a huge mark in this world; this is my motivating force.

In any case, let it be known that this is not an attempt to shut down anyone’s dreams, but I’m here to inform you that it takes more than a wish and a laptop to be successful. It takes a tenacious spirit, a passion like no other for your topic, and a mogul mindset to accomplish a rewarding livelihood in digital media. As long as you keep this tidbit in mind you will go far!

If you’re interested in blogging, are you guilty of thinking that it’s glamorous or you’ll achieve over night success? Why? If you’re a blogger, what made you decide to launch a blog, and what would you like to accomplish with it?  Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

Love,

Shawna Kay ( Blissed Out Belle )

Kay is a Lifestyle & Empowerment Enthusiast, and the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Blissed Out Belle™. Connect with her on Facebook here, and follow her on Twitter @BlissedOutBelle .

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  • Jennifer Ray

    Truth!!

  • Nika

    I think this is a good message to anyone trying to achieve any dream. It can be a long hard road, but stay the course. Life rewards resilience

    • I definitely agree “Life Rewards Resilience”. It’s been said that many people give up after 3 months of blogging. So, once I hit my 3 month mark I was excited, but I knew I had to keep pushing through.

  • Ariel Says Now

    I’m a blogger and I agree, it is hard! Success doesn’t come overnight; this I’ve learned personally. But I get excited just thinking that my words are inspiring other women. That alone keeps me going. Your words are very real and true and should be considered by anyone interested in blogging.

    • Thank you Ariel. Everyone sees results but don’t realize the blood, sweat, and tears it takes to blog. People have to go into blogging knowing that it will take some time before they may receive any perks. Personally, what holds me over when the going gets tough, is my message that motivates others, and being able to have an impact on someone else’s life.

  • Nicole DeVaughn

    Thank you for sharing! I think I will take a step back to make some solid decisions on what direction I’m taking with my blog.

  • Even though I’ve heard you should monetize early, I believe you shouldn’t necessarily rush to do it. There are tons of resources out there to help you with the monetization of your blog, so the best thing to do is learn as much as you can that when you’re ready, you can go ahead do it.

  • I just started blogging and I already realize that it’s not easy! Of course, I never thought it was easy so I knew what I was getting into. I started mine for a number of reasons but primarily to build my personal brand. I love tech and social media and would love a career in these one day. Now if my blog evolves into a business on its own, that would be cool too 🙂

    • I agree with you; your blog can be used as a platform to gain other opportunities. Not to mention, it seems like nowadays you must have an online presence to be taken seriously.

  • I love it and put myself on a schedule because my family comes first no matter what. I think because I don’t focus on “trends” and celebrity stuff I can really take everything at my own pace and not have to keep up with what’s on up and up…KWIM? But it is def work and I love blogging about what I love and sharing that love with others.

    • It’s great that you have a schedule, because most importantly family comes first. I lacked structure for a while up until recently. And you’re right about the trend & celebrity blogs; since my site is a lifestyle blog I don’t have to be concerned about keeping up with the latest trends, this takes the weight off of my shoulders.

  • guyanesesista

    I just restarted blogging after stopping in October 2012. I lost my inspiration because I wanted more out of my blog but didn’t know how to get it. I also started a business and got really side tracked. Three weeks ago I restarted, redesigned my blog and literally a couple of hours after finishing I got a message about being a paid brand ambassador for a company which was along the lines of what I was aiming for. I was very tired running around attending all those events but the experience was well worth it. Now I have a schedule which I’m still working on but things are definitely getting better. Slowly but better.

    So yea. Blogging ain’t easy.

  • Lex Chappelle

    Loved this article! I love the statement “Shortcuts can have you arriving prematurely and unprepared” everyone wants everything to happen over night, I started my blog http://www.thewalkinmannequin.com in January and I have met some wonderful people and learned a lot! Definitely ready to take my brand to the next level.

  • Robin Hardeman

    Great message. My favorite point was your comments about considering the legal and financial aspects of blogging. I am approaching year one with my blog and it’s the hardest thing I ever loved! My goal for year two is to focus on building a brand. Thanks for sharing your insight!

    http://www.robincharmagne.com/blog

    • Robin, you’re on the right track! The first few months to a year should be spent getting the word out and building your traffic, and in the mean time you’re fine-tuning your brand.

  • HarlemLoveBirds

    Great post and wonderful seeing you at BWB! Yes, blogging is really hard work even if you’re doing it for fun. I’m almost 4 years into it and had no clue about monetization when I first started which I think was actually a good thing because it was pure passion without worrying about all the technicalities. I’ve slowly slipped into monetization and it’s important for me to continue to keep the fun in it. The minute it becomes “work” I’m out!

    • It was great seeing you too! I love your statement “The minute it becomes “work” I’m out!” I totally agree, you have to keep the fun in it, or else you’ll be resentfully spinning your wheels. When it comes monetization, I’ve been doing my research, and like yourself slowing slipping into it. Right now, I’m working on my monetization strategy.

  • April D. Byrd

    Nice Post! I started blogging because I got started with facebook and I was writing a lot of “Notes”. I always kept a journal before then, so blogging was inevitable. All my notes always had an inspirational or empowering ending so I wanted to inspire at a greater level and a bigger platform. The site is http://www.breathoflifedaily.com its an online journal dedicated to empower, educate, and engage. I think its important for people to be empowered spiritually and to get what they need to achieve their positively productive dreams. I wanna be a resource for that!

    • April D. Byrd

      i guess you know what keeps you going until you comment on someone elses page! lol love this ive shared it everywhere. Thanks for the inquiry!

      • Thank you April! I love the message behind your blog “Empower, educate, and engage”, my blog is along the same lines as well. You definitely have a passionate worthwhile motive, which is your driving force. I’ll definitely check out your site.

        • April D. Byrd

          Thanks! hope to hear more from you! and much success to you!!

  • Cocoa Nina

    Very nice! I started blogging because I always had an opinion on style especially if someone had a lack of it (in my opinion). So instead of pretending like I was on Fashion Police, I decided to start my own blog toward style, image, and etiquette. Thank you so much for this post! #BLMGirls
    http://www.cocoanina.com

  • Tiffany Upchurch-Rivera

    Wow…I absolutely loved your post about blogging and everything stuck out to me! I started writing when I was 15 years old in diary / journal from just thoughts in my head to inspirational poetry therapy for myself. Now years later, I’m interested in blogging to inspire, encourage, motivate, and empower other women. My ultimate through blogging is to be a magazine editor at a magazine company 🙂 Right now I am a newbie with writing blogs but I have learned so much just by reading this post! Thank you for posting this and I look forward to achieving higher success in my writings! 🙂 God Bless!

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