Lovelli mentors copywriters and ad agency practitioners. She has been studying startup entrepreneurship and social psychology on the side.
1. You Live 'Off the Radar'
Some people escape the 9 to 5 life to live a nomad lifestyle, but not you. You are not part of the whole hype. You're just off the grid.
You're either living in a secluded area where there is no fiber optic internet yet, and no 4G. You're on the mountains or near the beaches, and you've never touched a Mac your entire life. (Why would you want to?)
Naturally, you don't sit around at some cafe tinkering about long-form contents on how to produce your own food; you just go out and start ploughing the garden. When you eat out, you go to non-chain restaurants and you pay for everything in cash, so there's basically no need for any fancy mobile wallet either.
Heck, you probably don't even keep a mobile phone, so why would you even need a blog?
2. You Don't Have the Ideas
Well, what CAN you write about without any idea? Yet sometimes this happens. But it's not like you don't have any idea at all. You just don't have an idea that you can actually write about.
People sometimes have no idea what to have for breakfast, so they just don't cook it. You have no idea what to write about, so you just don't write. Simple as that.
3. You Have No Time to Blog
It doesn't matter if it's just 10 minutes before breakfast, a 25-minute writing exercise, or 2 hours before breakfast, you just don't have the time. There's not enough time in a day to do it, so how on Earth are you going to do something that you've got no time for? The answer: you don't.
Sometimes blogging experts start off their guides with the impossible reality of being able to blog when they actually haven't got time. But not you. You're not going to do anything that risky. Nobody can bend time but the Chinese monks, and even for them that practice has officially been banned by the government.
So how do you expect a normal person living a 24-hour day to be able to stretch the sands of time to make way for the practice of blogging?
4. You Got Stuck Learning SEO
And who hasn't? Search Engine Optimisation is not only a mouthful to pronounce, it also demands a lot of time to master. First you've got to learn how the engine works, and then you need to come up with an SEO plan, which requires you to identify the most effective keywords and measurement tools.
Basically, you've got to at least look at three different places: Google Search, AdWords, and Analytics. Each with their own set of rules NOT put together in one searchable place, but scattered all over the help section, the forums, the groups, and other places on the internet. And then you have to select a few core ones to use, a few supporting keywords for your content, and figure out the trends for popular search intents.
By the end of the day, you no longer can tell how many is a few and how much is some. When you're done with the SEO planning, and you're never really done, you realize that you've got only a few minutes a day to write your blog post.
5. You Can't Do Keyword Research
You can't come up with these keywords without doing a bit of research. Keyword planning takes all sorts of trial-and-errors and experimentation to get right. Some people go as far as keyword research spreadsheet with keyword ideas and their scores. Not only do you need to generate keyword ideas, but you also need to go through a massive list of relevant keyword ideas to understand what your audience is actually searching for.
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You don't really know how to do that. So it doesn't make any difference to you, or if it did, it's not something you'd pursue even is you had the time. So you just leave it at that. You stick with your "no can do" attitude.
6. You Have No Web Skills
If you can’t tell a web browser from a duck, and your only way of searching online is to summon Siri and Alexa, then you can safely say that you have no web skills whatsoever to support a blogger lifestyle. It’s not a personal choice; it’s just who you are as a person. It might change in the future, but for now you’re just not the blogging kind.
7. You Don't Know Analytics
You can't be blogging effectively without at least some knowledge of Google Analytics. If you're just blogging without an idea of how to measure your progress, how would you even know if anybody is reading your stuff? Analytics lets you in on all the hard details about who visited your site, what their interest are, and when they read your posts.
You know that in order to create a successful blog you also need to know how people are interacting with your content. And so you are certain that with your current knowledge of analytics it's quite pointless to do any more blogging.
8. You're Broke
Bloggers are reporting huge amounts of income from their blogging, but to start a blog you need money. How much money exactly? At least to cover the hosting for your site, your domain name, and your premium theme (if you’re not starting off with free). These are all usually paid upfront for an entire year or a couple of years.
If you’re planning to write about lifestyle, fashion, or even business, you’re going to have to find some money to invest in expanding your blog. At least to build a newsletter and maybe finding clients.
It is true that if you want to begin, just begin. But if you don’t have something set aside, in addition to struggling on how to blog, you’ll be struggling with being poor, too. And that’s no fun.
9. You’re Not Branded Yet
I’m not saying that you should buy branded clothes and start wearing them on a day-to-day basis as soon as you start thinking about starting a blog. Although there’s nothing wrong with dressing to impress, to have a blog is to brand yourself. So not only will you be learning about your own qualities as a person, you will have to package that into something that distinguishes you from just another blogger.
I’m also not saying that you need to start your own company first before you can blog. Although there's a probability that you would start a business soon after, it's only an option if you’re successful.
Your brand is a compilation of your best, most established qualities. So naturally, by establishing your personal brand, you’re already putting out the best of yourself through your blogs. Without a personal brand, what are you even doing with your life?
10. Your Personal Brand Doesn’t Have a Style Guide
That’s why it’s so hard to choose a theme for the blog, or select the right banner to accompany your first blog post. You don’t have a style guide to refer to. With a brand style guide, you’ll have an idea of what set of colours you should try to aim for, a logo that you can use on your blog, the types of fonts that perfectly match your writing style, and some ideas of what kind of images you want included in your post. Without a style guide everything can go to “meh” real fast.
11. You Don’t Speak English
This is a tough one. A blog is like a conversation you have with your followers. And even though there are at least 7,000 languages spoken in the world today, English is the language of the internet. You don’t really need to be a linguist to be writing in English, but you do need to understand some lingo in order to learn about the things you’re about to do.
The instructions and guides on WordPress, for example, are in English, so you need some basic knowledge of English to use the platform for blogging. At least 55% of the most visited websites in 2015 were written in English. Not speaking English is going to prevent you from accessing many opportunities.
So if you’re not speaking any English at all, you’re going to have to start speaking some English. At least in forums where you’re interacting with other people, when you’re promoting your content online, and you’re probably going to have to translate your non-English posts into English or vice versa.
12. Other Bloggers Tell You Not To
Have you seen the number of blog posts online telling people "not to start a blog"? Try and read a few of them. You'll find out that in certain situations, not blogging is actually a good blogging move.
13. You've Got No Blogging Friends
Because you're really, really new at this, you've got no friends who are also blogging. So oftentimes you feel like it's just not going to be enough to do this on your own. Without friends, you can't go on. You've decided that you're not going to have a blog until you make yourself some blogging friends.
14. You Can’t Write (for Other People)
It’s not that you can’t write. It’s just that you can’t write for other people. You don’t know that many people, and you don’t feel comfortable writing for people you don’t really know. So every single post you share on social media is a note to self, and every single thing you write online are things straight out of your dear diary entries. You’re convinced that blogging is not for you. At least, for the time being, it's not.
15. You Don’t Have an Audience
Even after blogging for quite some time you might still not have an audience yet, because you have to build your own audience to be successful in blogging. It may seem like it's the other way around: you won’t have an audience if you don’t blog.
But no, that’s not how it is. It's true that if you build it they will come, but they won’t stay if you don’t give them a reason.
16. You’re Struggling With Loneliness
Perhaps you’re not a people person, but you realize that you don’t really work well in isolation. You’ve tried it and it seemed to work at first, but after a short while, you just need to go out and meet people. Working in the freelance arena is knowing the nature of today’s remote work. Remote work and the nomad lifestyle can really get the best of you.
I’m a millennial and I’ve been reading about how post-millennials are struggling with loneliness. But loneliness is like the toothache of the soul. You can’t blog your way out of loneliness. Without a real cure, it’s more like a distraction. For you, it’s just something to keep you off thinking about the problem.
17. You Don’t Have a Decent Camera
Bloggers need a decent camera to take decent pictures. Your blog post cannot just be words. That’d put people off and things can become too boring, even for you as the writer.
So because you don’t have a camera, no blogging for you. However, a good camera is no guarantee that you’ll be a great photographer.
18. You Can’t Edit Photos
Without a decent camera, you’ve survived by using free images from your online searches. But then you realize that good photographs alone are not enough. You need additional skills to help you create images that attract attention, images that are fit for Pinterest, images that are fashionable and crisp with colours that pop. And you can’t be doing that editing, because you don’t know how to.
19. You Don’t Know How to Have an Opinion
Having an opinion is not natural for everyone. In many cultures, people are not encouraged to speak up. Or if they speak up, it is not encouraged to voice their concerns about things like politics, government policies, or even a sports team. Some people don’t want to voice their opinions openly about certain issues when they feel like it’s not going to make a difference.
You need trust to be able to share an opinion with a community. And in some cultural groups, this trust may be absent. There are people who are not comfortable sharing their opinions with a group of people they don’t trust. And when you’re blogging you’re practically sharing your thoughts with a bunch of strangers.
20. You’re Not Good at Bragging
I don’t mean bad bragging. I mean good bragging. You’re just too shy to be talking about your accomplishments, which you have every damn right to be proud of. But you won’t, because bragging is really not your thing. Bragging is really, really hard for you. You don’t really know how to talk about your accomplishments without sounding like an insensitive jerk. So you quit trying.
21. You Don’t Have Your Own Platform
No, no, no. Not a social media platform. A writer’s platform. All bloggers must have a platform to start off with. A writer’s platform is a system you develop to help you grow your blogging career. Your platform should contain all the business planning for you as a blogger and the strategies you need to consider on every stage of your blogging career. Without your own platform, you won’t even bother.
22. You Don’t Know How to Ask for Tips
It’s a problem for you. Many others who are in the creative field are way better at this than you, and so you worry that you might not be able to reach out to people for tips. You might be able to make a living after a year of blogging, but in the meantime, you’re not getting anything as you set aside all your time to focus on your blog. No time for anything else. You’re not going to make it with an empty jar.
23. You Can’t Take Criticism
You’ve heard it all too well: criticism is good. Yeah, it can be. You have no problem taking criticism if it’s constructive criticism. But you’ve read other bloggers and saw how they are attacked for their reviews and opinions. Apparently, not everyone knows how to give out the good kind of criticism. And you know there’s no way you’ll be able to not take things personally because . . . it is your personal brand that is going to be the foundation of your blog. So you’re just not going to risk your sanity for some stranger’s premature attempt at practicing criticism.
24. You Suck at Time Management
And it’s not something you can fix any time soon. You can’t distinguish a time-waster from a time-saver; they all feel the same to you. You’re not even sure if by blogging you’ll be wasting time or actually saving time for yourself. This is your excuse for now.
25. You Have Insufficient Social Skills
Everybody knows that social skills are a key to a successful business. This is true even for an online business. So you sort of have the feeling that without insufficient social skills you’re not going to make it as a blogger. The fact that it’s a blog and not a face-to-face meeting makes no difference to you, because your social skill is so, so bad that you haven’t even had one office meeting in the last 20 years.
26. You Don’t Talk to Strangers
Yup. And you intend to keep it that way. It’s not that you are shy or anything, just a personal choice you have chosen to stick to since forever. It’s kept you safe all this while, so why give anything away? You know you won’t like it.
27. You Can’t Read Online Webpages
Of course, it’s not just you. In case you haven’t heard, people don’t read anymore. We just don’t know how to read online webpages. And that is also partly why videos are increasingly a popular type of content now.
You don’t need to struggle with small fonts on your mobile. You don't even need to search and search and search for reliable sources online as you would for writing. With video, you just go to YouTube.
You’ve survived by not reading online webpages unless you really, really have to. And even then, you usually print it out before you read the whole piece. Naturally, blogging is too much of a lifestyle change for you.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2018 Lovelli Fuad
Lovelli Fuad (author) from Southeast Asia and the Pacific on December 13, 2018:
Thanks Margaret. I for sure will. Thank you for the thought. I hope your bulletin produces more "exposure magnets."
Margaret Minnicks from Richmond, VA on December 11, 2018:
Lovelli, Feel free to continue to post on "Bulletin Board for Writers" at any time. Hopefully, you will get more exposure for your articles.
Lovelli Fuad (author) from Southeast Asia and the Pacific on December 11, 2018:
I'm super happy you had the chance to take a look at my articles, Margaret. I am also proud to be the first hubber to take advantage of your writer's group!
I can just imagine a digital badge to come along with that milestone: "the exposure magnet". This badge is for people with a penchant for online opportunities. (I knew that gamification skill would come in handy on days like these.)
Margaret Minnicks from Richmond, VA on December 04, 2018:
Lovelli Fuad, I was delighted to see that you promoted this article in my Bulletin Board for Writers group I started to help fellow writers get exposure for their articles.
You are the first hubber to take advantage of posting in my group. Feel free to post other articles and to check out some of my articles as well.
Your article has a lot of good advice. Thank you for sharing. I am glad I saw it.