10 Things I’d Do Differently If I Were To Start Blogging in 2021

Every writer has at some point thought of starting a blog, and the monetary possibilities that’d bring them.

Having been blogging and writing for more than 5 years, I know the pain of monetizing a blog, and monetizing your words online. This is why I’d recommend you to write online if you want to earn money, and create a blog if you want to own a blog.

Here’s what I’d do differently if I was to start blogging in 2021:

 

I would Write and Experiment Online, Instead of Owning a dot WordPress Blog

While my dot WordPress blog helped me hone my writing and I got to meet and interact with other writers, it was not worth it in the long run. I would have been more successful writing on an platform like Quora.

When you create a new blog, you are writing for a void as no one knows your blog exist, especially if not hosted. On Quora, you can easily get visibility and this will motivate you to keep writing.

I answered questions on Quora and I got 1,000 views in a month, which is more than you’ll ever get in a new blog.

 

Less Journal Entries

My dot WordPress blog read like an online journal.

Truthfully, unless you’re Kim Kardashian, no one wants to read journal entries. Readers are more interested in what they stand to gain from your articles, and knowing what you had for supper is not one of them.

 

Experiment with Different Writing Niches

Instead of writing articles that sounded like journal entries, I would experiment with different niches.

Here are writing niches that you can pick from:

  1. Technical writing
  2. Health.
  3. Marketing Technology (MarTech).
  4. Ghost writing ebooks for clients.
  5. Lifestyle and Parenting.
  6. White Papers.
  7. Case studies.
  8. Copywriting and Email Writing.
  9. Digital Marketing
  10. Finance and Personal Finance.
  11. Cryptocurrency.
  12. Education.
  13. Real Estate
  14. Animals and pets.

Eventually, I did explore health, lifestyle, email writing, digital marketing and technical but I wasted 2 years in doing so. You don’t have to. Pick 1 to 3 niches in the above list and experiment with them.

With YMYH (Your Money Your Health) niches, Google might take long to rank a blog that’s focused on these niches. Make sure you are credible, or the articles are authored by credible sources for your blog to be able to rank.

If you choose to write online, Quora allows you to add credentials to your answers to make sure readers are getting quality content.

 

My Quora Views, and I’ve not been consistent or serious about it. (Image Courtesy of the author).

I Would Start a Blog only when I was Sure of my Niche(s)

As I mentioned before, I would write on online platforms such as Quora and Medium before creating a hosted blog. I did not do this in the past and ended up with categories I had no interest in such as Faith and Fashion on my blog.

Had I experimented with different niches, I’d have settled on MarTech and Travel as my only categories.

 

I’d not Pay for Tailwind for Pinterest Marketing

In the beginning of my blogging journey, I read too many posts on Pinterest on the benefits of Tailwind and I used it to market my Pinterest pins.

Shortly after, Pinterest started trading publicly and throttling reach for Pins. They also started focusing on ads and video content rendering Tailwind usage useless. For Pinterest Marketing, I’d use the the scheduling tool within Pinterest’s environment or platform.

 

I’d Pitch to other Sites and Companies

Because I was late in choosing a niche, I was late in earning from my writing and collaborating with other writer. Eventually, I did settle on the MarTech and Technical writing niches and collaborated with writers such as Lisa Tanner Writing and Flowium.

Pitching to other sites helps you build a portfolio of work which you can then use to apply for work, go freelance or collaborate with writers or brands. I have signed up for a newsletter called Freedom with writing and they have sent me details of companies and editors looking for writers in different niches.

 

I’d Equip Myself with Skills and Tools

Tools such as Google Analytics, Canva, Google Search Console and email and marketing tools are really important in a writer’s and a blogger’s journey. Knowing how they work will help you with the analytical and reporting end of writing.

It would also help with the business aspect of writing and help you to transform these numbers into money.

 

I’d Start a Complementary YouTube Channel

In retrospect, I was a student living far away from my parents. I was broke and could not afford to buy the bare equipment to shoot videos and promote them not to mention living in a student hostel.

However, If you can, create a YouTube channel to complement your blog posts. For example, this post will be posted on my blog in article format, and then the YouTube video will be embedded in this blog post.

I’d look for Successful black and African bloggers

Most of the content I consumed was written through a Western pen and offered a western perspective of doing things that was not available here in Kenya.

For example travel, had I met Rioba sooner or travel curators like her who offer budget friendly travel for girls, I’d have started earlier. Accessibility for African content creators is still a huge issue and seeing other African and Kenyan girls and boys succeeding is encouraging and uplifting.

 

If I were to Start Blogging in 2021, I’d Start Today

When bloggers reach out to me for advice, they want to start writing but don’t know where or how to start. Most of them are ACP writers and face accessibility problems and bottlenecks with regards to writing and writing platforms.


My advise is to start with what you have, ideate and iterate as you go. If I was to start writing today, I’d answer Quora posts and use Quora as my learning ground, instead of writing for crickets on a dot WordPress blog.

 

This article first appeared on Medium.

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3 Comments

  1. JamieAdstories October 6, 2021 at 6:15 pm

    This is definitely relevant advice for new bloggers like me. I didn’t get tailwind.

    Reply
    1. Nderi Sarah October 7, 2021 at 2:04 pm

      With Pinterest changing, I’d not recommend it.

      Reply
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