Blogging becomes increasingly popular. Not only as a means to give content for brand marketing an outlet but also in blogging as a business and a lifestyle. But only a fraction of the blogs that are started ever make it to success. The reasons why bloggers fail are manifold. One reason for bloggers to fail is that there is so much information about blogging floating around – and a lot of that information is misleading at best and plain wrong in other cases.
Image Source: Fevered Mutterings
So, let’s take a closer look at some „truth“ about blogging that you can find online and clear up some of the most disastrous blogging myths that can lead to disappointment, frustration, and blogging failure.
1. Good Content Is Enough
I thought this advice would finally have found its way to the advice cemetery but just a couple of weeks ago I had to read it again as an answer to a blogger’s questions what he should do to attract a larger audience: Simply write awesome content and your audience will grow.
Oh man, don’t fall for that! Creating awesome content and then sit back and wait for a huge audience to magically find your content is one of the easiest ways to get into blogging frustration. Because it is not going to happen.
If you are looking for an audience, you have to actively pursue it. The better your content the easier this will become. But you have to take action!
2. It is about writing
When it comes to blogging I often hear something along the line of „I would love to become a blogger but I am not much of a writer.“ And that is really sad.
For one, blogging does not necessarily have to do much with writing at all, you could tell your stories with videos, images, podcasts, or some other awesome type of content.
And last, but not least, the best blogger is not necessarily the best writer. Most bloggers have not started out as avid writers at all. They all learned and became better at creating blog posts along the way.
How can you learn to become a better writer? Read a lot and write a lot: So, get started!
3. Build it and they will come
What do you think does it take to run a successful blog? A beautiful „blog“ and a couple of interesting blog posts?
And that is it?
In truth, that is just the foundation or starting point. Once you have a blog in place and published a couple of posts your work really starts.
You need a distribution strategy.
You need to learn a lot about reading and interpreting analytics and deriving tasks, changes, and adjustments from it.
In fact, you have to learn marketing!
Image Source: Orbit Media
4. Facebook ads are going to turn your blog into a business
I had subscribed to a newsletter a while ago. It was about traffic generation. And then the day came when I got an email from them saying: All poking around social media and learning marketing and traffic generation had been such a hustle and waste of time and Facebook advertising made everything so much easier: set it up and cash it in.
Don’t fall for crap like that! You can waste thousands or 10th of thousands of dollars on Facebook ads without ever making money from it.
Don’t get me wrong: Facebook ads can be a game changer – but only once your complete blogging strategy is in place and your sales funnel already tested and working. Only then should you turn to advertising (if you still want and need to) to scale up your blogging.
But… if your pockets are overflowing with too much cash and you want to fool yourself into blogging success by throwing money down the drain, feel free to start your blogging journey with Facebook advertising.
(Do I need to say that the above-mentioned newsletter was trying to sell a course on Facebook advertising?)
5. Every blog uses the same traffic sources
I have seen it again and again: People read a success story about a blog and believe they can copy step by step what the blog owner did and will see the same kind of success.
That can work, true.
In most cases, it does not work.
Because every situation is different, your niche may be acting totally different. Or you are addressing a different country. Or you are communicating in a different way. Or the other blogger already had a social media following in a network that since became overcrowded and much harder to grow an audience in?
Never forget that your blogging journey will be a unique journey. And most blogging success stories that you can read about today started years ago. Just think about the changes in the social media landscape in this past couple of years. So much has changed. How can you expect a journey you start today to look the same as a journey that started a couple of years ago?
6. Blogging is easy
So you are a blogger? That means you publish a couple of posts and then you cash in big time.
Sounds easy enough!
Well, the truth is, blogging is hard. It is hard to come up with new interesting topics week after week. It is hard to find new ways to promote all that content. It is hard to figure out how to make money from your blog. It is hard to stay motivated day after day, week after week.
If it would be easy: Everybody would and could do it. And not so many blogs would fail!
7. You have to find an empty niche
You would love to blog, but all niches that you would like to blog about are already taken?
You will have a hard time to find a niche that is not already crowded. But that does not mean that you cannot start a successful blog in a niche that is already crowded.
You only have to create good content (no, not necessarily does your content have to be 10 times better than all the existing content.) And then you have to learn how to distribute or market your blog.
In most niches, there is enough of an audience for more than one (or a couple of ) blogs. And in the end, the blog will win, that succeeds in spreading the word about the content!
8. You don’t need to invest a lot of work into your blog
Why do you want to become a blogger? Because a blogger’s job is done with creating a new blog post once in a while and otherwise you have a ton of free time?
That may hold true for a successful blogger with a loyal audience and growing revenues. But for a young blogger, blogging means: Hustle like hell. And do all the work yourself!
As a new blogger, you will learn about web development, about marketing, about networking, about monitoring, about sales, about content creation, and a lot more.
If you are willing to put in the work, you will have a lot of fun doing so. But the work still needs to be done!
9. The best bloggers are the best writers
This one kind of depends on the definition of „best blogger.“ But success in blogging is not very closely related to good writing. The most successful blogger will be a great (blog-) marketer, a networker, a flexible person who can adjust to new situations fast, a person that is willing to work hard and learn.
10. Blogging is dead
Some people have been saying for years that blogging is dead (or at least dying) because there is simply too much content online and the amount of content is already growing so much faster than the amount of content that we as the people can possibly consume (something Mark Schaefer refers to as content shock.)
But that does not „kill“ blogging. It may lead to the percentage of blogs that don’t make it to success to increase even further. But we do still consume content online and people love blogs. And that does mean that there is still a lot of opportunity in blogging.
11. Blogging is only about written content
Most people think about written content when they think about blogging. But in truth, there is a lot more you can do. And with today’s cool technology for most content, you don’t need much more than your mobile phone to get started. If you are not a writer but want to start a blog? Just think about:
Be creative. There are no limits when it comes to types of content that you can use in blogging!
12. Bloggers have to be extroverts
Talking to friends and acquaintances, I realized that a lot of people are afraid that they have to give away so much of their privacy if they want to blog. But while it is true that your blog needs a personal touch, blogging (or social media) is by far not about letting people in on every detail of your personal life.
In fact, I have already heard it a couple of times from very successful bloggers that in real life they are more of an introvert.
How much of your personality you add to your blog and social media is totally up to you!
13. I have to be famous before I tell everybody about my blog
Even when people already have a blog, they often get the feeling they should wait until they are famous and can go brag about the blog until they actively promote it.
But that means you are lost in a blogger’s death trap before you even got started.
If you don’t tell people about your blog, how can your blog become famous? You don’t have to tell everybody that your blog is already the best it could be. Simply start with asking for feedback.
(Don’t be afraid of feedback when you are new to the game: Feedback can help you find the flaws in your blogging early on and help you get on the path to success!)
14. Email marketing is dead
Ok, this post is not about email marketing myths, so I am not going to explain a lot about email marketing here. But I have seen by far too many bloggers who are neglecting email marketing early in their blogging days.
When you start a blog, you should also start building your email list – from day one. Because your email list will quickly become your highest converting traffic channel.
And no, email marketing is not dead. Email marketing is actually the one secret key to monetizing your blog!
15. Traffic only comes from Google
Google obviously does a great job by making people believe that they are the only, best, or easiest to use traffic source.
As a blogger, it is more than dangerous to forget about all the other traffic sources that you can access. Because in most cases, Google traffic will take a while to build up and in order to build your search traffic your life gets a lot easier if you get your content to an audience long before Google sends traffic your way.
In truth, there are many blogs that get by far more traffic from social media sources like Pinterest, Twitter or even Facebook than they get from Google. And often the Google traffic only comes as a side effect to their prominence on social media.
So, if you think about blogging: Don’t underestimate the power of social media!
Image Source: Orbit Media
16. Traffic only comes from social media
Now, I said that you should not underestimate the power of social media for your blog traffic. I have to remind you now, that there is more than social media for your traffic. And, I am not talking solely about Google search traffic here.
As said before: Your highest converting traffic source will be your email list…
Final words on blogging myths
There are so many half-truths about blogging that it is really hard to know which advice is good and sound and what is actually more of a blogging myth! I hope this post helps to clear up some of the „wrong“ tips and helps you to get on your path to blogging success.
Have you identified some more blogging myths? I would love to read about them!