Back in February I attended a really wonderful event hosted by Kay of Kinship Creative (tickets for October’s event are here). It really was such an uplifting morning full to the brim of gorgeous creative folk, sharing stories and swapping details and generally cheering each other on. I learnt so much from the morning but one thing I took away was a fear that people had about writing a blog – always on the “should” list it really surprised me that it was a stumbling block for so many.
I adore writing my blog, whilst I generally run it as a hobby it has lead to so many wonderful opportunities like running a Christmas crafting workshop with Katy at Liberty’s (yes, that Liberty’s), writing book proposals and developing some skills that I would never have done otherwise. I think we can all agree that my photography has improved greatly since my very first post!
When I started blogging there was no Pinterest and no Instagram, I would greedily devour posts from my favourite bloggers every morning when I got into work. As soon as I discovered blogs there was no going back, I bravely signed up to Blogger and began writing my own. I started my blog when I was really lost – I was so unhappy in various admin jobs that did nothing for me. having a place where I could, learn, share and grow was incredibly important for my mental wellbeing. After a bad day I would rush home make something and share it, my colleagues at the time couldn’t understand why I’d want to skip cheap cocktails but I needed to have something else that fulfilled me outside work. I never regret missing those drinks.
Whilst blogging has in some respects given way to the fast world of Instagram and other platforms that I’m far too slow to keep up with, I still believe there is definite value in having a blog for yourself or one that connects in with your business. Here are a few key pointers to get you started.
Voice and Tone
My blog is called Lotts and Lots because I’m called Charlotte but my friends call me Lotts, I write as if I’m speaking to them – open, chatty, upbeat and I hope inspiring. Visualise your reader (you could pull a moodboard together) or just have someone you know in mind and write to them.
Creativity has always been at the heart of this blog, whether thats my journey into finding ways to be more creative or sharing projects that spark my readers imagination. The second Lots in Lotts and Lots is all about the range of subjects I write about, its allowed me to grow throughout the years without being restrictive – I love how it’s been a personal record of my life from getting married to having children.
If you’re thinking of setting up a blog write about what you are passionate about and you will never be short of ideas. If you’re writing a blog to go with your business don’t be afraid to share behind the scenes, the highs and lows (as long as theres a positive learning), different ways to style a product or even your reasons for getting started. Whichever path your blog is on, have a good brainstorm and let those posts out! Which brings me onto my next point…
It’s terrifying publishing that first post but keep going, sure, not many people will be reading but just keep writing. I’ve written 871 during the lifespan of my blog along with many others for other sites and it’s only now that I’m at my highest readership.
The more you write the better you will become, some ideas will work, some won’t but don’t be afraid to try. A low readership is great at the beginning for experimenting and finding your voice.
Images and storytelling
For me the right images are so important to a post (I realise the irony with these slightly unrelated images*). I love how a blog post is a collection of images that tell a whole story rather than an algorithm friendly version that is in constant competition with the post before and after. I try to keep my images and words manageable – I generally post a maximum of seven images and stick to a few paragraphs that can be read quickly. I only got to this by listing what I loved about some of my favourite blogs and finding my own formula.
Do what feels right for you but try not to waffle. My advice with anything is just to go for it, keep practicing, keep learning and you will find your way. This post has really made me remember how much I love blogging , if you’re ever in need of some help with sparking content ideas or would like some original photography – email me – firstname.lastname@example.org and I would love to chat.
*these images aren’t totally unrelated, they do feature the business cards I made for the Kinship Creative morning.