This Is A Passion Project
I am SO excited about this post. The idea for it suddenly popped into my head a couple of weeks ago, and at first I thought I was crazy, but then I realised it was exactly what I wanted to do.
More and more, I’m approached by people who want my advice about how to start a blog, or who want me to take a look at their website and suggest how it could be improved. Although I do my best to help the people I know personally, I simply don’t have the time to reply to emails that come in asking me to look over other blogs. However, that certainly doesn’t mean I don’t want to help!
In My First Year of Blogging, I Had Questions Like These:
++ How can I create a consistent brand? Why is branding so important?
++ How can I create a pretty logo without hiring a photographer, graphic designer or illustrator?
++ How can I make my blog aesthetic stand out from all the other lifestyle websites?
++ How can I use photoshop to create images that match my branding?
++ How do you create watercolour backdrops? How can I use pretty illustrations that won’t cost the earth? Where can I find unusual fonts? Could I make my own screen-savers easily?
++ I want to diversify my brand: what’s the best way for me to go about doing this?
++ Which social media platforms are best for me to use? Do I focus on all, or only some?
++ Should I start a newsletter? How do I do this? Mail Chimp or Convert Kit?
++ How can I create downloadable PDF booklets I can send out to my readers?
It’s these questions I’d now like to help you to answer.
I still have a lot of questions, by the way, and I’m still figuring it out as I go along, but I definitely know a lot more than I did two years ago, and this experience is what led me to being able to brand, create, and launch a new podcast and website (Tea & Tattle) relatively smoothly, in a short amount of time. It’s that experience that also enabled me to sign on guests for the podcast before it even launched, and that helped get Tea & Tattle on the New & Noteworthy list on iTunes.
When I Started Blogging, I Had No One To Help Me
And I couldn’t afford to pay for expensive courses that wouldn’t guarantee success anyway. My initial blogging experience was a frustrating one: the person I hired (and paid a lot of money) to build my website turned out to know next to nothing about website creation, leaving me completely in the lurch. I knew no other bloggers and didn’t have anyone to turn to for advice. Everything I’ve learnt about blogging I’ve gained through trial and error and through ingesting as much free information as I could.
I always felt a little resentful that a lot of information offered by bloggers was not free, or that the free information given often promised a lot but was in fact extremely watered down and very general. Now, I completely agree that investing time and money into learning from experienced professionals with a proven success record is extremely beneficial. However, rents are high in London; it’s very hard to justify an expensive photoshop course on your ‘hobby.’ Also, I was sometimes doubtful about the quality of the courses I saw offered; after my initial website disaster, I didn’t want to get burnt again.
I Vowed That One Day I Would Share My Knowledge For Free
As soon as I know anything about blogging, I would say to myself, I’ll share it for free. And that’s exactly what I still want to do. The question I’ve been struggling a little bit with is how. I don’t want Miranda’s Notebook to become another blogger advice blog, and the largest proportion of my readers aren’t fellow bloggers anyway. Also: the more specific the advice, generally the most useful.
This Is My Idea
I am starting the hashtag #askmiranda for you to ask me all your blog related questions. They don’t have to be just blog questions, by the way, feel free to ask me anything you’d like to know about me, or for any advice or tips on a particular subject. I’ll create regular videos answering the questions, but I’ll also pick ONE person a month (starting December) for a 45 minute Skype session where we’ll discuss their blog’s branding, whether the blog is brand new, still a pipe-dream or needing a bit of a refresh. I’ll be happy to have a thorough look through your blog and offer any advice or tips I’m able to give. This will be your chance to really pick my brain! I’m choosing branding as my topic, because I truly believe getting a clear idea of your brand is what helps everything else: suddenly you’ll know how to style your pics, the kinds of connections you should be trying to make and the ways in which you can make your blog stand out.
I am by no means an expert, and I still have a lot to learn; however, I do honestly feel that I can be of value in this area. Also, if there’s interest, I will potentially offer free Skype sessions unrelated to blogging, but on other topics such as: productivity & how to get more time for creativity into your everyday, setting up a morning routine that will transform your day and personal style advice. Just let me know what topics you’d like help and / or advice on!
If you’d like a chance to get a Skype session with me to discuss your blog and branding, then comment on this post with the questions you’d like to ask me, or reach out on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, tagging me and using the hashtag #askmiranda.
As I said, even if you’re not interested in a Skype session, but would still like to ask me some questions, then please do ask away, and I’ll do my best to answer them in future videos.
I’m so excited about this new project and hope you will enjoy it too! If you have a friend who you think would be interested in some blogging advice, please let them know about #askmiranda too. I’d so appreciate you helping to spread the word!