Online Business

How to Know If You Are a Successful Blogger

It is inevitable that a blogger will eventually blog about blogging.  I have been resisting the urge for a few weeks now.  The fact is, though, I spend a lot of time thinking about the next blog post.  Or, little things here and there that I’d like to change on the website.  This is in addition to the hours of blogging podcasts that I listen to every week on my way to and from work and while working out.

I spend a lot of time thinking about the blog, but that pales in comparison to how much time and effort goes into the J-O-B.

I decided that I wanted to apply some of the same principles that I use at work towards the blog. For a project to be successful, you need to track progress of each task along the way.  If you don’t, there’s really no way to predict if the overall project will be successful.

There are a couple of different reasons why I want to track our progress on Busy Finding Time:

  1. It is motivating to see your metrics go up!
  2. To understand the relationship between the actions you do as the writer and how much that benefits your site

The first task I had to do was to define what success is.  Yes, it would be great to make some money off the blog, but that is likely years away.  Writing this blog has probably the lowest $/hr return compared to any other side job I can think of.  And this will hold true for many months or years.  But, the allure of being a travel blogger is so exciting:

  • Interacting with other travel bloggers taking amazing adventures and pictures!
  • Using travel blogging as an excuse (and potentially tax break) to take more trips per year
  • Maybe a few discounts here and there
  • Getting to share our adventures around the house and on vacations to help others with theirs

The reality is that we are doing this because we enjoy documenting our lives to review in in the future and to help others live theirs more fully.

That all being said, I needed to create a metric to know if I was on the right track and how my actions were affecting our results.  I decided that we are successful if the number of users is increasing.  If we are continuously adding to the number of people viewing our blog, we are likely helping more and more people.

I will attempt to update this log once every other week or so as our strategies shift.

At the end of the day, I want to show you how we are progressing with our blog.  You can see what worked for us and what didn’t.  Hopefully, this will make your blog launch more successful!

Update 3/4/17:

What’s worked well:

  • Instagram seems to be progressing well.  The majority of pageviews are coming from Instagram.  And it’s fun!

What hasn’t worked well:

  • Pinterest takes longer to get followers, I guess, than Instagram.

Plan for this week:

  • Continue working IG and Pinterest
  • Write at least 2 posts!


Fri, 2/17/17:

I’ve been working on Pinterest and Instagram.  I think that these are going to be my social media bread and butter.  Both are very visual platforms, which makes sense for our content.

For both, I have been focusing on posting quality content on a regular basis.  I have already seen the traffic to our website jump a bit.  I hear this might not be the best traffic source for blogs, but it’s a good start.

Every week, I will take a look at Pinterest and Instagram followers as well as Busy Finding Time’s users per week.  I expect to learn a few different things.  A few scenarios that could happen:

  • Social media follows keeps going up but blog users plateaus or declines.  This would be a sign that either social media isn’t as helpful as we hoped or we messed something up on the blog
  • Blog users go up but not as much as social media followers.  That might be a sign that we are doing something good on the blog and it is turning into a community.
  • Really, there’s many possibilities.  I’ll just have to figure them out as we go!

That’s the update for this week.  As I get more data, there could be some more interesting trends.