SOCIAL SATURDAY - A Bloggers Awakening

September 23rd 2014 ; the day of my first blog post. I was literally shaking as I pressed publish. I had toyed with the idea of writing a blog for a long time, constantly asking my friends if I wrote a blog would they read. Of course they said yes, but I didn't know if they were just being sound. That weekend I got sick and was bed bound for 3 days. Rather than spend my time on Facebook or Netflix I decided to start the blog. It took 2 full days to write the first post and get set up, with extensive amounts of input from my mates. It had a positive response and I couldn't sleep with the excitement. All I could think about (or talk about) was blog, bloggy, blog, blog, to the point where I knew I had to tone it down a bit. 

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A good way to channel the energy was to start spending time with other bloggers and this meant going to some blogging events. I had no idea there was such an amazing network of bloggers in the west and all over Ireland. The first event I went to was the Into The West Blogger Network winter event in the Glenlo Abbey Hotel . If I’m totally honest, I was nervous. I was showing up alone with a blog I couldn't even describe to people who knew all about the biz. With a vast majority of the bloggers being fashion and beauty, as the time drew closer notions of “The Devil Wear Prada” flashed into my mind and I felt so out of my comfort zone. Thankfully I didn't listen to that voice inside that said you don’t belong here and I’m so delighted I went. The ITWBN is a superb organisation set up by Sinead of Yummymummy and Saibh of bringing together people with a passion for blogging. As soon as I arrived I relaxed and realised that everyone there had the same concerns/dedication/motivations/aspirations as I did, maybe not about the same topics but the same overall goal. There was some great speakers and pop up shops. Got a fab bracelet from COTTON FACE.  I learnt a lot that day and there was food so I was in my element. We also got a goodie bag with some really nice stuff, some of which I have still to try.

A few weeks later another bloggers event popped up. For NeoStrata Ireland, there were lots of the same bloggers from the ITWBN event so it was another great opportunity to network. More food and goodies. I have tried the face cleanser, smells like oranges doesn't taste like them but it does leave your skin feeling really soft. I’m really looking forward to the next event coming up next month. 

Blogging is not easy. Here are a few tips to for anyone who might be considering it. 

Choose you platform – I use Blogspot which is a Google platform. It’s so easy to set up and use. All the analytics are there so it’s easy to track everything. I know lots of bloggers use WordPress which I think is great if you have a business and want it to be more websitey (if that’s a word).
Set goals – make sure you know what you want to achieve before you start. I knew I wanted friends to read for sure but I wanted people to laugh and share. So I knew I needed Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts to achieve this. You might want to re-address your goals once a month because they will change. 

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Don’t be discouraged – if a post doesn't generate as many views as you’d hoped or it’s taking a bit of time to get off the ground do not be discouraged. Keep at it.  Someone out there is going to Google exactly what you’ve written about so you’re helping someone!
Keep it up – it’s time consuming, each post in general for me takes the process of idea generation, jotting down notes, first draft, edit, second draft and publish. It can go on for days but if it’s something you’re passionate about you’ll make time for it. 

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For anyone thinking about setting up a blog I really hope that mine can be of some inspiration to you. I have had so many people privately message me and say they had been thinking about it but just didn't get around to it or didn’t have the self-belief or confidence to go ahead with it. All I can say is it’s not easy but neither is surfing, doesn't mean it’s not fun trying it out. Also there's free food and stuff. 

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Thank you so much for reading, I hope you enjoyed it. :) MOD X