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May IS OVER!!!!
If you’re interested in seeing how my blog has grown in past months, I’d highly recommend checking out my previous income posts:
My “Why” For Starting Momblah.com
1. I want to stay at home with my kids
You’ve read this in each of my monthly income posts, and it’s still true today. I am officially halfway through my maternity leave pay at the end of June. We got the big girl registered for preschool. The little guy is 4 months old this month. It’s crazy.
The thought of having to cart these two kids to school and daycare (multiple times a day) while holding down even a part-time job is overwhelming. It will turn me into a stressed out mess! Though we can afford to live on my husband’s income, we have big financial goals. We’d love to finish our basement, build a deck and pay off our mortgage early. That’s why I’d like to earn an income from home.
2. I want to help moms.
I really do! Though I’m no extrovert, I really love connecting with other moms, troubleshooting problems, and sharing hacks! It’s so wonderful that we all exist in a special sisterhood that is being a mom. Every mom, child, and home are different, but the experience is universal.
We all want a little more sleep, a little less crying, and a house that is clean (but without having to spend the whole day cleaning). I’m hoping that the daily interactions that I have with moms on my blog and through social media help in some small way each time!
3. I want to have an outlet and a voice of influence on the internet
Are You Thinking About Blogging?
To start my blog, I went with a cheap host, so as not to sink too much cost into this little adventure (I’ll inject more cash once I make more!). I decided to go with BlueHost and have had a very seamless experience.
If you’re interested in starting a blog, I’d definitely recommend trying a cheaper host over a free platform if you’re just getting your feet wet. I decided to use Bluehost, and so far, it’s been great.
If you are a mom and want to start a blog in the mom blogosphere, I’d highly recommend reading this ebook. Suzi is an awesome fellow blogger who helps moms figure out this whole blogging thing. Her book is a literal step-by-step guide to getting your blog up, running and bringing in some cash!
It was my first stepping stone back into blogging and has saved me from making countless mistakes. It’s so good that a few months in, I will go back to it to see if I can glean anything else and apply it as I understand more. If you’re looking to grow a blog from the ground up, BUY THIS BOOK!
So Now… Month 5’s report!
So last month, I talked about my new tagline and narrowing down my niche for momblah.com. My new tagline is “sanity through birth and babyhood.” This blog is aimed at first-time and overwhelmed moms. The articles I write (except for these monthly reports) are to help moms figure out how to make their lives simpler and stress-free. It’s every mom’s dream to enjoy every stage of motherhood, but in my experience, pregnancy and the first 18 months are the most challenging.
How I’m Growing As A Blogger
Blogging for business is really about serving other people
It’s not about creating a gathering of adoring fans and sponsors. Check out Suzi’s awesome Facebook post about this topic. (And like her page if you haven’t yet! She has awesome nuggets of info for mom bloggers of all stages!)
Know Your Pull
I read a fantastic post at Pinch of Yum about their decision to stop writing monthly traffic and income reports. They outline a list of 20 things they’ve learned about blogging over several years. It rocked my world. The biggest takeaway for me was point 4: know your pull. Write and serve in the area that you’re always thinking and daydreaming about.
I am quite passionate about baby sleep. In my quest to monetize this blog, I think I’ve uncovered a desire to get some education and offer sleep consulting services to new moms. I’ve been checking out courses and certifications and am pondering how I could integrate this blog and that service, or whether this blog would become a hobby, and I would pursue that business.
Are there any service bloggers out there that could shed some light on this topic? Please leave a comment- I respond to each one!
The most difficult aspect of blogging for me lately is getting ideas from my head onto the page. All you fellow bloggers reading this can probably agree that you have a million small ideas, but getting them written in a way that serves your niche well and also converts into sales and page views is challenging.
That’s when blogging requires daily discipline. I think this is just growing pains for me–I should probably get into the routine of writing every day to get through this hump instead of cramming every Sunday or Monday to get a post up by Tuesday.
Building a blog takes time. Each post is a building block to success if they are all focused and pointed in the same direction while simultaneously helping and serving your target audience. I am not seeing any meteoric rise in page views and monetization, so I have to keep focused on the daily hustle and grind as I build this empire block by block!
Page Views and Stats
You can’t celebrate and improve on what you don’t measure. And that’s really why I keep track of my page views, stats, and income each month.
Here’s my lovely assortment of statistics that I think are relevant:
- Pageviews: 4,864 (+525)
- Pinterest Followers: 521 (+9) Pinterest had that weird follower dump last month. From what I can tell, lots of people had a dip. I lost about 20 and gained 29 for a net gain of 9. Follow Me on Pinterest!
- Facebook Page Followers: 80 (+8) Follow me on Facebook
- Email List: 15 (+6)
- Instagram: 550 (+114) Instagram is definitely where I’m growing these days (as of today’s posting, I officially have over 750 followers!). I’m trying to grow this account to 2,000 followers to gain some traction in getting sponsored posts. Follow me on Instagram!
Posts in May:
- Mentally Preparing for the Witching Hour
- Mentally Preparing for Maternity Leave (guest post)
- April 2017 Income and Traffic Report
- Choosing Mental Health: Choosing Formula (guest post)
- Mentally Preparing for Sleep Training
May Goal Review
- Post 4 excellent, long-form posts (1500+ words) ACCOMPLISHED
- Create a “start here” menu with my most popular posts for new readers to check out NOPE
- Figure out how to monetize my biggest traffic post, or at least point it to helpful content for my target market to get my bounce rate down. NOPE
- Take budgeting out of my branding. I think this is something I may touch on later as a blogger, but I have no interest in being a financial writer. I think it will become part of my Choosing Mental Health series. For me, budgeting is something that we do to have financial peace and sanity in our home. Even with 2 kids, becoming debt free has made our lives so peaceful. ACCOMPLISHED!
- Create a 4 email welcome series that I can include as an opt-in freebie. NOPE!
- Double my email list to 18 subscribers (yikes! this looks small but seems impossible to me). CLOSE!
- Send 3 emails to the list. NOPE! Didn’t even send 1. Disappointing!
- Brainstorm and explore 3 eproducts that I could possibly sell (please hold me accountable, fellow bloggers!). NOPE! However, I do believe I will be focusing more on becoming a sleep consultant, so this new direction may pull me in a different direction than writing eproducts for a while.
- Figure out where pregnant and new moms are hanging and promo myself. I am so very bad at this. KINDA ACCOMPLISHED! I shared my blog posts with some friends on my birth board and sleep boards at Babycenter, but they don’t allow for straight up promo for a blog.
Monetizing My Blog
All of the advice I’ve read about monetizing a blog talk about creating little seeds that need to be watered and nurtured into income. With that in mind, here’s what’s on my list to nurture!
- Google Adsense: $4.97 ($32.33 since January)
- Amazon Affiliates: NOTHING
- Other affiliate products that I use: Bluehost, Blogbynumber & Boardbooster (haven’t made any sales yet!)
Total: $4.97 BLEH
This isn’t a big surprise. I haven’t written or pushed or gotten much traffic on affiliate-type posts. I just don’t think it’s in me to do that! So, as the months dwindle by, I’m fine with making a few measly dollars here and there. As I continue to write and serve my audience, I’m hoping an idea or service will come to light and help boost my earnings. It’s kind of like a midlife crisis- I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. And I don’t know how to make money when this blog grows up. It shows in the income side of my report ;P
Looking Ahead to June
Here are some goals I’ve set for the next 30 days:
- Continue to grow my Instagram account
- Try writing every day for a week. I am usually a night owl, but I’ve noticed that by 7:30 I’m spent. My two kids take a lot of my energy. I’m considering waking up at 6:00 am to write some, but I am no morning person. Yikes.
- Get my ideas down on paper and create a focus board.
Another month is in the books, fellow bloggers. Tell me, what was your big win this month? Are you stuck like I am? Do you have any advice to share with everyone?
Leave your link in the comments, and we can become blogging BFFs!