Today I’d like to share the main factor that shifted my blog from a sporadic hobby to something that was actually making me money.
I can’t wait to tell you guys all about the factor that shifted my blog journey. And let me just start by saying that I am NOT an expert at blogging. I am still learning, still growing, and there are still a million more things I should be doing when it comes to this whole blog thing.
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BUT I will say that there is one thing specifically that changed the game for me, and now my blog is actually producing income for my family. It feels so crazy to even be typing that, but it’s true.
Let’s go back to the very beginning. I can still remember when I found out what a blog was. I discovered one online, and I was so excited about it that I ran to my Mom’s house to tell her all about it. I didn’t know anything about blogs or how to start one, but the seed was planted. I knew that one day I wanted to have my very own blog. That was in 2010, the year I got married.
Fast forward to 2016. We had been living in our house for four years, Ethan was 3 and Gabriel was just a one year old. My husband had just built some DIY shelves for our dining room. I snapped some pictures and posted them on my personal Facebook feed, and I had so many sweet comments from people about our home. It got me so excited that I wanted to share more, but I didn’t want to keep blowing up my Facebook with pictures of my home. That’s when I decided to start a home decor Instagram account.
I know Instagram has it’s negatives, but starting that account was good for me in a lot of ways. I built so many close friendships, but I also learned a lot about my style. I truly believe it helped grow my decorating skills and I began to figure out what spoke to me and what didn’t.
NOT that I have arrived in the decor world. NOPE. Haha. I’m still learning and I feel stumped by design choices all the time.
But there is something so different about looking at a space in your home in a photo as opposed to in person. You see things you never saw before and realize what is lacking or what needs to go.
Anyway I shared my home on Instagram for about a year, but that dream of starting a blog had never left me. I didn’t even know that you could make money blogging, I just thought that having my very own website would be so cool.
I prayed about it for a long time, and I felt like God continued to show me again and again that this was the right path.
So in January of 2017 I started my blog – Pine and Prospect Home. I was SO excited to start sharing and growing, and I had pretty hight hopes for what my site would be. It didn’t take long before reality set in.
Blogging was hard. WordPress was difficult. I got frustrated, I got angry. I cried. A lot. Haha! There were times I wondered if this was really what God wanted me to do.
It seemed like every time I wanted to quit, God placed people in my life that encouraged me to keep going. I had amazing blogging friends who helped me and taught me so many things about SEO and WordPress.
Then, in September of 2017, I got pregnant with Caleb. I was so sick, and I basically stopped blogging altogether. I would post sporadically when I felt inspired, but I was never consistent with it. Again, I questioned whether or not this was something I should be doing.
The Factor that Shifted my Blog
I had Caleb in May of 2018, and in September of that same year, another friend reached out to me. It was Lisa, creator of the blog Farmhouse on Boone. She was coming out with a blog course called Create Your Blog Dream, and she asked if I would be willing to take it and give my honest feedback.
I could not say “YES!! YES yes yes yes YES!!” Fast enough. I pretty much binged her course in a little over a week, and guys.
It changed EVERYTHING for me. It was the factor that shifted my blog.
Lisa starts at the very beginning and walks you through every single thing you need to know about starting a blog. She is the best the teacher, one that doesn’t make you feel stupid or silly as she explains how to do things.
Her course put a fire under me. I was so inspired by her story…she had brought her husband home from work, and they were living out their dreams all because of her blog.
The remainder of 2018 was all about learning. I began to implement everything she taught, but I had to take it one step at a time. I had 3 little boys, and I didn’t want to overwhelm myself. Technical stuff is hard for me and it doesn’t come easy. But I slowly began to chip away at everything Lisa had taught me, and almost immediately my blog traffic doubled.
In 2019, I tried to be more consistent and post more regularly, but I failed. That summer, I hardly posted at all. My husband got a new job and a lot changed for a our family, I had to adjust to new schedules and my routine was thrown off a bit. But that fall I got back at it, and I tried to start posting again more consistently.
In January of this year, 2020, I made a goal for myself to try to post at least once a week. Then in February, Lisa asked if I could take her Video for Bloggers Course.
If you’re not familiar with Lisa’s blog, video is a huge part of it, and she has attributed much of her success to the hard work and effort she’s put in to her YouTube channel. Taking her video course was just the thing I needed to get the ball rolling for me again, and it opened my eyes to the power of video and how it really connects you to your audience.
When I finished the course, I decided to start making video a regular part of my blog. I added videos to each blog post, and suddenly my blog traffic started to increase more and more and more.
It was so exciting to watch and the growth just continued to propel me forward. When my YouTube channel qualified for monetization in March, I just couldn’t even believe it. I was actually making a dollar amount simply from creating video…I was making money from my YouTube channel before making money on my blog.
I know this is awkward and sort of weird to talk about what you make, but for those interested…I made over $500 in my first month of being monetized on YouTube. The following month I made over $600. And a lot of you might laugh at that and think those numbers are measly, but for this stay at home mom sharing her passion, it was HUGE! So much time goes into every blog post, and to actually get something back?! It felt amazing.
At the end of April, after creating video and new content each week since February, my channel hit 10,000 subscribers. That very same week, my blog qualified for Mediavine – a service that runs ads on your site which in turn generates more income. I had been working hard towards this goal, and to finally get there felt so exciting.
I’m not here to tell you that I am a successful blogger just because I finally started making money a few months ago. Like I said before, I’m still learning, still growing, still trying to take this crazy blog thing one step at a time.
But what I will say is that Lisa’s courses WORK. Both her blog and video course were the main factors that shifted my blog. And had I stayed consistent from the beginning, I probably would have seen more success earlier on.
The tagline on my Pinterest graphic for this post says, “from amateur to earnings.” Truth be told, sometimes I still feel pretty amateur when I compare my self to all the amazing bloggers out there earning 6 figures. But I have to remind myself that we all start somewhere, and Lisa’s courses gave me the knowledge and confidence that I could actually do this thing.
I’m sorry to disappoint you today if you were hoping for a home decor post…but I’m guessing that if you got this far, you have some curiosity about the blogging world.
I will end with this – if you’re interested in starting a blog or maybe just a YouTube channel, don’t waste your time like I did, trying to Google all the things and learn it all on your own.
Invest in Lisa’s courses. You won’t regret it. I already had a blog when I took her first course and still I learned SO much. It truly was the factor that shifted my blog. You can get the ultimate bundle (both courses) here!
Do you have questions about Lisa’s courses? Have you ever thought about starting a blog? Let me know in the comments below!