How to turn blogging into a career

How to turn blogging into your job career

One of the most common questions I get regarding my blog is 'hey Steph, how the hell did you turn your silly little blog into your full-time job?!' (or words to that effect) and whilst I do often shrug it all off as a bit of good luck and good timing, a lot of it does come down to what is - quite simply - a crap ton of hard work. Just like any job - no matter how wonderful it is - there are always going to be down days, and there are always going to be days (especially at the beginning) where you just want to give up and cry into a large Dominos pizza..with extra cheese..and hot dog stuffed crust..wait what was I talking about? Oh yeah, blawgz. I won't lie and tell you it's going to be the easiest thing you'll ever do with your life - despite how things might look from the outside - but trust me, once you get there (and I know you can!) it'll be one of the best things you've ever done. Just be sure to have Dominos pizza on speed dial for those tricky times.
 

Know your blog inside out

How many readers do you get each month? How old is your average reader? What's the best time to publish your blog posts? These are all (granted, very boring) things you need to know about your site. Imagine sitting at a job interview with someone and not even knowing what the job you've applied for entailed. The employer would take one look at you and think hell to the no. If someone asks you about your bounce rate you want to be able to throw those percentages right back at them in 0.2 seconds flat. It's your business, both in a figurative and literal sense of the word, so make sure you know the ins and outs of it like the back of your hand. In fact, make sure you know it better than that because - let's face it - who actually knows what the inside of their hand looks like?! G-ross.
 

Become a jack of all trades

Sure, blogging might seem like a very simple, straight forward thing to do, but - as we all know - it's not just about posting a few words and pictures on the internet and suddenly becoming the next Zoella. If you want your blog to succeed (which I gather you do, if you're reading this post) you're going to need to excel in just about every aspect of online creativity that you can. The world is saturated with bloggers - and good ones at that. To go up against the rest you're going to need to be the best you can be at just about everything. Take the time to read up on the basics of photography, dabble in a bit of SEO when you can. If you can master every single blogger skill out there, then you're ready to take on just about job that gets thrown your way.
 

Think of it as a business

It's all well and good wanting your blog to become your career, but if you're really set out to turn your blog into a business you're going to need to think of it that way. Okay, so you might not be earning any money from it right now, but that's besides the point. Every time you post you should be doing it as if your next meal depended on it. If you keep doing that, you'll continuously churn out quality content that brands will actually want to pay you for. Don't be afraid to promote yourself, and don't shy away from talking to others about your blog. If it's what you want to do, take pride in it. You wouldn't expect a new clothing company to gain traction by keeping everything they do a secret, so why do the same for your blog? Set yourself up for success, and it'll soon follow.

Be prepared to hustle

Starting up a new business is never an easy thing to do. In fact, that's a lie. Sometimes, there will be a bunch of really easy things to do when it comes to building an online brand, but that doesn't mean you'll have the time to do it. If you're sat there thinking you'll be able to bring in the money just by hopping on your laptp for an hour or so a day, think again. If you have any other commitments in life, you're going to want to put them on the back burner when it comes to making your blog work. You'll stay up late (like, really late), your fingers will ache (from typing, that is) and sometimes the last thing you'll want to do is sit in front of a blaring computer screen for hours on end. But you know what? If that's what you've gotta do to get the work done, then that's what you've gotta do. Being a full-time blogger (or any kind of self-employed human for that matter) isn't just about working 9-5, it's about working until the jobs done. And the fun part about all of this? The work is never, ever done. Say hello to triple shot lattes - they're about to become your best friend.
 

Invest everything you have

Just like any other start up business, you're going to need to invest your heart, soul, time, money, dog (okay maybe not dog) and - let's face it - life into every single aspect of turning your blog into a business. Think of it as a new born child - you're going to want to give it everything it needs in order to set it up for success. It's not about doing the bare minimum just to get by - being a full-time blogger is all-encompassing. Writing posts will eat up all of your time, you'll spend any time off you have chasing day light in order to snap the perfect blog photo, your friends will complain at how busy you always are, you'll spend hours editing and organising photos on your computer and - if you're expecting to make a ton of money right off the bat, forget about it - you'll be investing every penny you make right back into your blog. 
 

Want to know more about how to turn blogging into a career? Well then, head on over to Twitter right now (yes, right now) and join me for the #FBLChat from 8pm - 9pm GMT. Spoiler alert: I'll be giving away one of The Blogger Journals to one lucky Twitter follower! Seriously, go there right now. Why are you even still reading this? @Cocochicblog

9 steps to becoming a more successful blogger

Oh internet, it's been a crazy few weeks, but I'm finally back with a truck load of blogging tips and tricks up my sleeve. Think of me as one of those old ladies that always seem to have a Kleenex or seven stuffed up their blouses. Only what I've got is a lot more useful. Unless you've got a cold, because if that's the case you should probably head on over to granny Kleenex. Wow I'm so out of the loop with these introductions. Let's just get straight to the tips, shall we?

 

Socialise with people in your network

This isn't about the numbers (although it certainly doesn't hurt) it's about forming like-minded friendships. Sure, blogging might not be the hardest thing in the world, but every thing in life has its downsides, so it's good to have someone to talk to. Same goes for the good stuff. When you reach a certain milestone of followers, or even when you just get a really nice blog comment, sometimes only fellow bloggers really understand how good that feels. Plus, these friends won't judge you if you take half an hour to take a picture of your food - hell, they might even snap your outfits if you're lucky!
 

Plan ahead and stay organised

The past month I've been swamped with other life commitments, and it made me fail at blogging. So. Damn. Hard. I mean, I posted three time last month. Three times! Give me all the virtual slap on the wrists you desire. But anyway, that wouldn't have happened if I managed to stay on top of my work over the holiday season because - when you stay on top of things - it gives you a chance to step away guilt-free without sacrificing your work since, you know, you've already done it. Sounds like someone should write a book about that sorta thing. Oh wait, I did. #GirlsGottaEat.
 

Know you and your blog's worth

I see this all the time on forums and Facebook groups, and that is people accepting big ass jobs for next to nothing. Now I know blogging isn't about the money what so ever, but when someone wants you to work for them - whether that's in a 9-5 job or an internet one - you need to make sure the money (or even the product) is worth your time. If something sounds too low to you, it probably is too low. Don't feel like you have to accept every job you get just because it's an offer - sometimes brands will respect you more if you say no. And sometimes - just sometimes - they might even come back with a higher offer. If you're going to be a successful blogger, brand yourself that way!
 

Be yourself, and be okay with that

Fake it til you make it? Sure, that night work for some things in life, but honey, 2016 is all about getting yourself out there. And by yourself, I mean your actual self, not the person you pretend to be on the internet because - let's face it - that person can only take you so far. If you're awkward, roll with it. If you're a selfie queen, own it. And if you're a big fat Minecraft geek with a handbag full of Haribo and an iPhone full of Candy Crush then hell, we should hang out.
 

Stay on top of your emails

This is almost a reminder for myself, since I'm so damn terrible at it. But! One thing I do know is that - on that magical Sunday afternoon that I manage to get on top of everything - it feels pretty great knowing I can start my inbox from afresh. Check that spam box, check that junk mail and make sure you never miss an important message (AKA an ASOS sale) ever again. 
 

Work with each other, not against

There such a stigma that comes with blogging, in that us bloggers all hate each other. When I first joined the community I thought I was going to be the odd one out, but oh how I was wrong. Blogging is still such a niche that us gals and guys have to stick together, not work against each other. 
 

Keep pushing yourself

Even when times get shitty it's important to always, always keep on truckin'. I think I've used that saying about five hundred times this year and - to be honest - sometimes I've felt like throwing in the towel (I'll divulge a little more into that soon) but if you want something in life you've just gotta keep on going. Think about it, when do you see brand new bloggers taking over the blogosphere? You don't - and that's because these girls (and guys) have been tapping a way for a while now. Give it time my friends, and keep on truckin'. There goes the five hundredth and one(th) time I've said that.
 

Stop comparing yourself to others

Some people are always going to appear better than you - that's just how the world works. We're insecure weirdos and nothing will ever change that. But you know what? Sometimes you're going to be that person that someone else looks up to. Either way, comparing yourself to someone else won't ever work in your favour. Let them do them, and let you do you. We're all unique in our own way, so be the best version of you that you can be. I swear there's some sort of inspirational quote here that I'm missing.

 

Give your readers what they want

If you want to give your blog that little step up in success, be sure to give your readers what they want. Now you might be thinking, bitch, I'm no mind reader, but you don't have to be! Just take a scroll through your comments to find out which blog posts are your most popular, and play around with that! You can even check out your Google Analytics to see which of your posts are performing the best. Give em what they want, and they'll keep on coming back for more. Check out my post on how to use Google Analytics to your advantage for a tip or two.
 

What are your current blogging goals? Leave them in the comments below!


The reveal of my very first book!

blog-planner-journal-cheap-blogger-book.jpg

I really don't know how to introduce this little guy without filling your screens with excalamation marks and capital letters that say something along the lines of 'WOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!' So let's just get all of that out the way.
 

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!


Hot damn did that feel good.

So, ladies and gentlemen, after months and months of sleepless nights and cramped fingers, I am very proud (and terrified) to announce the launch of my first ever book 'The Blogger Journal'! 

It seems like forever ago when the idea to create a bloggers book popped into my head. I remember typing up a Tip Tuesdays, going off on a tangent (as I do), and suddenly writing down something about making a planner just for bloggers. It was just one of those random fleeting thoughts that - realistically - weren't ever going to happen. I mean, let's be real here. I'm not a big blogger. I don't have publishers knocking on my door every five minutes / ever. And on top of all that I'm also in my third and final year of uni with over 19,000 words to write by January. Uh yeah, I should probably get started on that..

So anyway, there I was, not even a year into blogging, casually mentioning potential dreams for the (very) distant future. I didn't think anyone would even take note of what I said because, you know, small fish big pond and all that. But the next day I woke up to a biiit of surprise. Right there at the bottom of my blog post were comments from you guys, tons of 'em, all telling me how much you liked the idea of a blog planner. And from that, you guys - as always - got me thinking. What if? 

So I did my research, and - long story short - there weren't many things like this already on the market. Especially ones at a fairly reasonable price. So, I let that thought settle into my head for a little while, and - to be honest - I completely forgot about it until one Tuesday, when I was doing my first ever Twitter chat. Someone asked me about the planner (AKA the one I mentioned in my first post, that was still completely non-existent) and then a bunch of other people started getting involved. I asked if it was something you would want, and amazingly enough, it was a resounding 'yes'. So, I got to it.

And here it is! My first ever book. It's been stressful, it's been expensive, and I'm pretty sure I haven't had a proper night's sleep since I started this whole thing but whatever, seeing it in the flesh makes it all worth it. I hope you guys think so too.
 

BUY THE BLOGGER JOURNAL (I'LL LOVE YOU FOREVER)

WHAT'S INSIDE:

- Weekly blog tips x 52
- Note pages x 52
- Monthly Statistics x 12
- Income Calculator x 12
- Monthly Goals x 12
- Contacts sheets x 5

- A list of blogging terminology
- Optimum social media times
- Useful websites and apps
- 100 blog post ideas
- SEO tips and tricks
- Google Analytics FAQ

- Twitter chat times
- Popular Instagram tags
- Pull-out prints x 12
- The Yearly Planner
- The Monthly Planner x 12
- The Weekly Planner x 52

 

SHIPPING COSTS:

UK: £2.95 First Class
Int: £6.75 Standard
USA: £9.99 Standard
Elsewhere: Please contact

SIZE & MATERIALS

- A5 (148mm x 210mm)
- 324 pages in total
- 300gsm matt cover
- 100gsm b&w pages

 


The Blogger Journal retails for £15.99 and it's available worldwide!


I'm currently waiting on the big bulk of orders to land on my doorstep (any day now!), but if you order now it'll be with you in time for the new year, so you can open up your journal and get planning straight away! Think of it as my 'Tip Tuesday' posts on crack. But like, the really good, non-lethal, non-illegal type of crack. And it's pretty damn instagram-able too. Of course.

The first twenty people to buy The Blogger Journal will be receiving an extra little gift from me in their parcel. And one of you will also be chosen at random to receive a full refund (including post and packing) as a little thank you for being really, really great.

Did I mention I wrote a book? I can't wait to hear your thoughts!!
 

BUY THE BLOGGER JOURNAL 2016
 

How to get invited to blogger events

It feels like it's been ages since I posted a snap of me wearing clothes (not that I've been posting any nude shots at all - they're specifically reserved for my Snapchat fam FYI*) because of all these Christmas posts lately. Damn you Christmas, always getting in the way of my outfit posts. So selfish. But since it's been a while, and since it's Tuesday, I've decided combine all of the above (minus the n00dz) with - first of all, potentially the nicest jumpsuit in the world - and a good old fashioned Tip Tuesdays post. And this one? It's all about getting invited to those oh so covetable blogging events. You ask, I deliver, you're welcome.

*Nudes were a lie, but you can follow my Snapchat story over at 'cocochicblog'
 

Start small

We've all gotta start somewhere. You know the Drake song 'started from the bottom..'? Yeah, that's kind of how it works with events too. If you've only just started your blog the chances of you getting invited to an all expenses paid press day on the other side of the world is highly, highly unlikely. In fact, it might not even be an event for a brand you know, let alone one you love. But, you never know where these contacts could take you in the future, let alone where you (or the brand) might be in a few years time. So, when it comes to getting invited to various days out one of the main things to remember is that you're never too big or too important for for whatever pops into your inbox. If something strikes your fancy (whether you know the brand or not) then go with it and RSVP ASAP. Oh, aren't acronyms just the bomb?
 

Be a plus one

Now obviously I'm not telling you to just show up on someone's door step one day and demand they take you as their plus one, but the fact is, is that a lot of the time many events do actaully allow bloggers to take a guest with them. One way of teaming up with other bloggers is to get involved with various Twitter chats and simply ask one another about what fun things are coming up in the next few weeks. It might be a long shot, but you never know - you might end up with a bunch of new contacts, an event to pop in your diary and - most importantly - a new internet pal.
 

Sign up to event sites

Oh isn't the internet just the greatest thing in the world? How on earth did we even function without it before? Word of mouth? Pah. Anyway, these days, when it comes to finding out about some of the less exclusive blogging events all you really to know is a few handy websites that pretty much do all the hard work for you. Some of my favourites include the likes of Eventbrite and Blogging Edge, but there are loads more on the WWW. Just give em a Google and start signing up for notifications!
 

Reach out to brands

There is always an on-going debate in the blogging community about whether or not it's a good idea to reach out to brands, but when it comes to genuine introductions (as opposed to 'please can I have...' messages) I say go for it. In fact, I have it on good authority from a lot of my PR pals that they kind of like it too. So, when it comes to reaching out in regards to events, just give it a good old go. Of course, be considerate to the fact that these poor guys and gals get around five million emails a day, but if your messages are genuine enough, and if they like the sound of you enough, they might consider adding you to their next guest list.
 

Become a 'yes' person

This is something I seriously wish I could be at all times, but, what with uni and, you know, living over five hours away from London, it can be kind of tricky. Basically, what I'm trying to tell you to do here is to say yes to events as often as you possibly can - even if it's just for the practise and social aspects of things. I've met so many people from different events that have kind of become my 'event buddies' over the past few months, and that alone has provided me with more blogging opportunities than I could ever have imagined. When they say it's who you know, not what you know, they're pretty spot on (whoever 'they' are).
 

Deliver the goods

And of course, when it all comes down to it and you've been and gone to your first few events, a super important thing to remember is that you were there for a reason - not just for the free food. So, if you liked the event or if you've tested out some of the products you saw at an event, a nice gesture is to write about it somewhere on your online space, just as a little thank you/ Do things like that and you'll be sure to up the likelihood of being invited back again! Huzzah!
 

PS. Stay tuned for my book launching any day now! Woop!
 

What I'm wearing:

Boohoo leather jacket
Cameo jumpsuits from Coggles *
Public Desire 'Nikki' heels *
Forever 21 box bag *
 

Fifty Christmas blog post ideas

Christmas blog post ideas

A few months back I created a blog post all about various different blog post ideas and, well, it only seemed fitting that I do the exact same for all things festive. These particular posts seem to be some of my most popular, so I hope you guys find it useful when it comes to crackin' out those Christmas classics. If not? Well..bah humbug to you all.

1. Christmas wish list
2. Christmas gift guides
3. The best beauty advent calendars
4. The best Christmas markets in your area
5. Healthy Christmas dessert recipes
6. DIY wrapping paper tutorial
7. Christmas day makeup looks
8. The Christmas jumper edit
9. Shopping tips for Boxing Day sales
10. Secret Santa gift ideas
11. Festive party outfits
12. What's in my bag: Christmas edition
13. New Years Resolutions
14. Vegan Christmas cake recipe
15. How to decorate your home on a budget
16. DIY Christmas decorations
17. Mulled wine recipe
18. How to style: The Christmas jumper
19. Festive days out on a budget
20. Left over Christmas dinner ideas
21. Pinterest Christmas inspiration post
22. Mince pie recipe
23. How to survive Christmas with your family
24. Healthy Christmas snack ideas
25. DIY Christmas cards
26. Christmas decoration haul
27. Winter skincare must haves
28. How to get to sleep early on Christmas eve
29. Festive outfit lookbook
30. Holiday playlist
31. Gingerbread house recipe
32. Christmas day haul
33. An open letter to Santa
34. Festive nail art tutorial
35. Christmas cookies recipe
36. A yearly outfit review
37. Christmas day dinner on a budget
38. Bloggers gift swap / secret santa
39. The best Christmas movies
40. Must have stocking fillers
41. The Christmas tag
42. Winter coat shopping edit
43. DIY Christmas crackers
44. Christmas candle collection
45. Your Christmas story
46. Festive Get Ready With Me
47. The best dresses for New Years Eve
48. Christmas even pamper routine
49. The best pre-Christmas bargains
50. End of year beauty favourites
 

What are you guys going to be doing this Christmas?