Hi, I am Brandie – And I Have Been Writing Blogs Since I Was Fourteen Years Old
It feels weird for me to be writing an introduction post as a new blogger since I have been blogging since I was a teen. In fact, my first ever blog was more of a diary where I shared antidotes from my life and my “deep” adolescent thoughts. I maintained that blog until I went to college in Red Deer and one of my classmates discovered it and I felt embarrassed. In a moment I deleted it permanently. and to this day I regret that decision. I would like to have that blog to look back on now – although, it likely would still embarrass me.
This blog was really the only personal blog that I ever had after that blogging became more about business. When I graduated from college in 2011 ( with my Degree in Motion Picture Arts Production ) I started working online part time as a freelance content writer. Initially, I focused on freelance script-writing because I had my portfolio of scripts from film school and it just seemed to make sense. I also started writing film reviews and other film related articles because at the time I thought it suited my educational background, and I really wanted to put my degree to work.
However, it wasn’t long before I discovered that the real money was in SEO copywriting for commercial websites. An SEO firm who had hired me to write explainer video scripts for a Youtube strategy asked if I blogged also, I said yes and the rest was history. They trained me up and it wasn’t long before I was able to go full time into content writing.
Between 2012 and 2016 I wrote hundreds of SEO commercial blogs. I often joke that I have written blogs about everything, including the kitchen sink. ( One of the regular clients that I wrote for was a plumbing franchise, so yes, quite literally, hundreds of words on sinks and clogs ) –
The knowledge and training that I received as a content writer also allowed me to launch two other projects that revolved around blogging. One was an online bra fitting blog where I reviewed plus sized bras and then later sold them in a small e-commerce store. The other was a “just for fun” local music zine, where I blogged about the music scene here in Medicine Hat and Southern Alberta. Both of these projects were fantastic experiences and provided me with a creative outlet, as I often found SEO writing to be rather mechanical.
Eventually, my work led to consulting gigs, where I trained other people on how to blog for business and develop content strategies for their websites. In 2016 this became the premise for my current business BP Creative Marketing Strategies. I continue to work with people who want to increase their online visibility and market their business online using content and blogs.
As you can see, blogging has been a big part of my life so far! – However, despite this fact it has been awhile since I have blogged for the joy of it – or shared my own story via a blog.
This is partially why I decided to launch The Ultimate Blogging Challenge for my Facebook community. I wanted to inspire others to finally start blogging and give them a framework to do that, but selfishly I also wanted to see if I could re-spark my own passion for the medium.
So here we are, blog number one of the 12 blog challenge that I developed and will be working through with my From Invisible to Unstoppable friends! It is exciting to be writing for myself again and going back to the basics. It feels great to just sit down and write from the heart rather than obsess about the greater strategy. Although, “just writing sincerely” is an excellent blogging strategy when you are just getting started.
What I Wish I’d Known About Blogging Before I Started Blogging…
As an experienced blogger I know I have a bit of a leg up on the newbies who are writing for the first time. So, I guess I’ll wrap this up by sharing some of the pointers that I have learned over the years. ( or should I say the things I wish I would have known when I first started out… )
Writing the content is just the first step, networking and sharing your blog is JUST AS ( if not more ) important. For every post that you write you want to put a good amount of time into networking that post! Take the time to share and promote one post before you write another.
Less is more. I used to get into blogging mode and go blog crazy, publishing tons of posts in a short period of time. If you do this, it is only a matter of time before you get burnt out. Instead, try pacing yourself. Remember quality over quantity. Write one great post at a time, share it – sit on it for a few days. Write again when inspiration strikes. – You also don’t want to overwhelm your readers. Yes, people do want to hear from you… but please, publish in moderation.
“If you want attention give attention!” This applies to a lot of areas of life and online networking. However, when it comes to blogging this is one of the best pieces of advice I can offer. Many people get into the “me! me! me!” depths of blogging, however successful blogging is about having a community. If you would like people to take an interest in your content you need to take an interest in them. Join blogging communities, connect with other writers, make an effort to focus on content sharing and participate fully in the blogging experience. ( leave comments, share other people’s posts etc. ) –
Your blog can be a vessel of opportunity, stick with it. One of my biggest regrets is that I let that first blog ( that I maintained for many years ) go. I have also allowed my bra blog and my music zine to fall to the wayside, partially due to “outgrowing it” and partially because the pace of my life did not leave room for “hobby projects” like those. Both blogs, looking back, provided me with tons of amazing experiences and opportunities ( although they were never profitable financially ).
With the bra blog, I was sent free bras to review ( for over two years I never paid for lingerie ) – and with the music blog, I was able to attend shows, music festivals and even meet performing artists.
Anyways, what I am saying here is that a blog can be a fantastic way to create opportunities for yourself! If you have a blog, and people actually read it – not only can it benefit your business ( or career ) but it can help to improve the overall quality of your life and take you on all sorts of adventures.
Alright, so there you have it, my personal re-introduction to the world of blogging, in well over the suggested 500-word count. One thing you will find about me if you read my blogs is that I am notoriously wordy…. I hope you don’t mind.
Going forward I am excited to lead the way with this challenge and share my passion for blog writing… and maybe, just maybe – it’ll be contagious and others will join in.
Read other posts by participants in The Ultimate Blog Challenge
Daniela Galvez Nelson :
Amanda Tessman :
Crystal Chen :