Hey, gorgeous people – it’s your friendly neighbourhood Mia, back at it again to hit you with some of that inspiration! I’ve been wanting to write this post for absolutely ages, but not had the right way to frame it. Long story short, I think blogging is a fucking amazing tool that I wish more people would utilise. It’s accessible, the barrier entry is non-existent and the opportunities it brings are . . . well, they’re life-changing.
Take it from me; I’m the least successful “blogger” you’ll meet; I don’t have any kind of social media following and even my blog following is considered pretty low. But my blog has taken me all over the world; my blog has landed me my first string of jobs; my blog earned me enough to allow me to stop working full-time and move to part-time.
Hell, my blog is part of the reason I’m in Australia!
However, as much as I want to share my passion and excitement about blogging (the cringe.), I don’t want to sound like some peppy Mormon recruiter making you a bunch of empty promises and offering you up a bunch of meaningless platitudes. I wanted to actually explain WHY I think this. So welcome to the first of a three-part series.
1. (This post) My Blogging Journey – I’m going to be explaining how blogging has effected my life, the milestones and opportunities I’ve gained from it.
2. Why blogging is a great skill on your CV & How To Use It To Your Advantage – some of you may already know that I work in Content Marketing (which can basically be explained as blogging for businesses) and that gives me a somewhat unique look into all the REAL marketable skills that blogging gives you that businesses WILL want to hire you for
3. Why Blogging Is The Best Hobby You Can Have. And the last part of this series is just an overview of all the benefits that blogging has and why I overall think it’s probably the best hobby you can have – especially in this digital world.
Now that you know what we’ve got coming up . . . let’s get into my blogging journey!
A fundamental part of my blogging journey began long before I ever knew what a blog was. From the time I was old enough to read, I was obsessed with reading and writing. My mother and I used to go to the library at least once a week, max out our library cards and come home with massive piles of books . . . only to finish them within a few days and need to go back. I made best friends in primary school that also loved reading and we used to do massive group reads and spent our weekends running to the library and reading books about werewolves and demons. (If you aren’t familiar with Darren Shan, you’re missing out, just saying,)
I’ve always loved writing stories and my laptop was FILLED with “Chapter 1″s, but it was at this point that I thought it would be good to start sharing my writing and trying to get feedback. So I started looking into ways to publish my work online and connect with other writers. This is where I first found blogging!
Throughout these years, I started a string of abandoned-after-a-few-posts blogs. Highlights: MyPersonalBookshelf, where I shared writing tips and some of my old writing! My first real blog, Okaaythen, actually started out like these blogs – I wrote some posts and then abandoned it!
I came back to my WordPress in an effort to make a blog I would actually stick to . . . Only to discover that Okaaythen had like 300,000 views – and it was all on one page: Over 100 Gift Ideas For Teen Girls. A shitty post with no images or links; just 100 bullet points with things like “USBs” and “Headphones”. Capitalism kicked in (aw, even fetus Mia was a soulless sellout) and I realised . . . I mean, I could so make some money off that traffic. And so I started blogging again.
Still sporadically posting, I researched into affiliate marketing and signed up for the Amazon UK affiliate program, earning myself £200 that year (which I was massively proud of!) To recreate that post’s success, I start researching SEO and publish more gift guides! This is when I start taking my blog more seriously.
Learning to look more at my stats and discovering that all of my traffic comes from the US, I move over to Amazon US affiliate network and earn £3000! During this year, as I spend more time falling in love with blogging, I realise that this is what I want to do with my future. Instead of returning to college after my AS year, I find a Digital Marketing Apprenticeship (focus on content marketing), land the role due to my previous blogging experience and start “professionally” blogging on behalf of a small business.
Still working in my content marketing apprenticeship, I learn more and more about blogging and SEO every day – and take my blog self-hosted. (I also, using my blog earnings and my apprenticeship earnings, go on to have the best summer of my life.) At this point, Amazon also slash their affiliate rates essentially by half so my blog income is set to drop. At the end of summer, someone approaches me and offers to BUY my website for £8k! I sell and start my new blog Beautiful, Inspiring, Creative Life.
My new blog is far more professional and successful (audience and engagement wise) than Okaaythen and I love it! Through researching a travel post idea, I find travel buddies that want to move to Australia and . . . I move to Australia!
And that’s where we’re at, kids! My blogging journey so far. It’s actually really funny to look back over the past few years and all the weird series of events (and episodes of good luck) that have led me to here. I just wanted to show you some of the opportunities blogging has brought me – and what it can do for you too!
Hopefully you guys got . . . well, something from this post. Did you like my infographic? What are some key moments in your blogging journey? Do we have a similar one? Let me know your thoughts down below!