So You Think You Can Blog Success

Left to right Laura Kate, Javacia, Rachel, and JenLeft to right Laura Kate, Javacia, Rachel, and Jen

See Jane Write, a networking group for Birmingham Women Writers, hosted an amazing seminar entitled “So You Think You Can Blog”. See Jane Write’s founder, Javacia Harris-Bowser rounded up a wonderful panel of women – who have all conquered the art of blogging, to offer advice and tips on become a blogging star.

The seminar opened up with a brief discussion about selling ads from Trish Bogdanchik of BirminghamMommy.com. I was a little tardy for the party, so unfortunately I missed out on the awesome advice Trish gave to the attendees. However, all is not lost if you head over to Javacia’s blog on georgiamae.com, she has graciously shared that information!

The second presentation of the night was from three lovely ladies, Jen West of The Jen West Quest, Rachel Callahan of Grasping for Objectivity & Alabama Bloggers and Laura Kate Whitney of Magic City Manifesto who have all managed to maintain very successful local blogs that update content frequently.

Several attendees were interested in finding out what topics to blog about. Jen West told a funny story about how she started her blog from a random conversation she had with her husband one night in bed.  The conversation came about as she and her husband were discussing what they had for dinner, and she felt compelled to go on a weight-loss journey. Jen’s husband jokingly told her she should take a picture of her in a bikini at her current weight, and post one every week until she reached her goal weight. Jen quickly gained success with her blog due to her originality, personal feel, motivational advice, and her persistence to blog at east once everyday.

Rachel Callahan, explained the practice to generate traffic to your blog, is to consistently post relevant content every week. If you make a monthly calendar of what days you are going to post specific topics, it helps you stay on a schedule. Rachel also stated that networking is the key to blogging, commenting on blogs that share similar interest to topics you offer is a way to bring readers to your website. All ladies agreed social media has played a big roll in the success of their blogs, but be careful not to pimp your readers for traffic only. Post a variety of content you feel may peak the interest of your readers,  and be sure engage in conversations on a regular basis via Facebook or Twitter.

As  questions arose about what blogging platform to choose Rachel explained she preferably uses WordPress, and she advises to purchase VaultPress, a database backup service, to ensure you never lose your blog’s information. There were several individuals who wanted to know whether to choose wordpress.com or wordpress.org and we all agreed wordpress.org is the best solution.

Overall, So You Think You Can Blog, was a big success. Kudos to Javacia for organizing such an amazing seminar. A special thanks to Jen, Rachel, Laura Kate, and Trish for offering their support and wonderful advice. To keep up with more See Jane Write events be sure to check out http://www.seejanewritebham.com/.

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