The Ashley Maria Blog: Truth Behind Blogging
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Thursday, June 12, 2014

Truth Behind Blogging

 *All opinions are my own. I am in no way an expert at blogging!

I am a twenty six year old college graduate. Yes, I have student loans (alot). Yes, I have a car payment. Yes, I pay rent and utilities. and Yes, I unfortunatly have to eat to live.

Unlike some other bloggers that are so lucky as to 'not work or work full time blogging- aka think up new posts aka take great blog photos in the best day light aka make recipes & DIY's just for the heck of it because of they have the time.  I wish I had more time to dedicate to my blog. Actually I wish I had more time in the day to devote to everything.  However, there is only 24 hours and 8 is spent working at my full time job. At least an hour is spent commuting. I guess you can add in sleeping and what am I left with?? Maybe two- three hours of just me time.  
So what is the truth behind Hearts & Stuff Blog and how do I make time?

Sponsors & advertising help.. but don't over spend- Unless noted, I do not get compensated for my posts. All reviews of products, clothes, & accessories are my own. I do however offer a guest post on my advertise page but I am willing to swap with other bloggers.  I know what my personal budget  is and know how much I want to spend on advertising my blog.  I use a site called Passionfruit Ads that does all the work in the selling part.  On this site I like to click on the Free & Swaps in the Marketplace section.  I find that swapping with other bloggers is great. I also make sure to follow them on all social media.  It helps me get to know them and vice versa.

Don't worry about STATS-  I started this blog as a  way to express my style.  Before I actually became a blogger, I would love reading and following along with some of my favorites.  I thought this would be so fun to do and to help young adults just like myself (living on a budget, small town, wanna be high fashion stylists) find ways to do it! With a little help push from friends and family I decided to take a shot at it! And let me tell you, getting 1,000 clicks in one day does NOT happen over night.  Don't get discouraged.  It will be hard, but the more work you put into it will pay off.  Always share your posts. Instrgram, Pinetrest, Twitter, Google+, everywhere!  If one person pins your post it will show up on all their friends walls and etc. etc. 

When inspiration hits.. Write it down!-  I work full time as a marketing coordinator, so while at work I may get some down time to think up post.  Sometimes, while driving to work or a meeting; I may hear an ad on the radio or a verse in a song that will serve as my inspiration. Start these posts inspirations in a word document or notes section of my Iphone.  Maybe you don't know what to write yet, but use bullet points or even just a title.

Have a great design- I used a third person to design my header and template for my blog. Even though I do designing on the side and in my store  I am just to much of a perfectinoist and would want to keep changing the design every week.  When I am looking for new blogs to follow, I will be honest and look what their template and layout looks like. If it is something simple and easy to read I will follow.  I personally don't like clicking through pictures and having to search for a link.

Keep your readers coming back- When I first started blogging, I thought I had to follow the mold. Ya know the 'Recipe Wednesday' 'Friday Fun'  'Weekend Recap' posts. Now don't get me wrong I still do these posts.. just not every week! Think of new content. Don't copy other bloggers. Use life events and happenings.

So like I mentioned before, I am in no way and expert for blogging. I don't have thousands upon thousands of followers. I don't make tons of $$ off this blog. Instead I do it for fun and hope those starter bloggers will find some help that I wish someone told me when I first started!

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