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Vicki PsariasOh the irony that this in itself is a commissioned post (!) but it is of value to you and my tips will hopefully help you too get work.

You see, I’m a full time professional blogger and have been for over 2 1/2 years, working with clients and brands both big and small that fit my blog and importantly my audience: you.

If they’re of interest and use to me, products and services I would use myself, then I’m happy to endorse them on this blog here and mummysgotstyle.com, my style blog.

Blogging is big business, it has created greater equality in the workforce for parents and it means you’re in control of your career, making you a business owner, and as a blogger, essentially a publishing house right at your laptop- creating material, offering in house PR and controlling finances at your fingertips.

Empowering, yes, daunting, sometimes, and for many new to freelance life, a time of uncertainty of how to make the most of your creative talents.

Freelancing can of course bring about irregularity of income and some could say that holds you back from getting a mortgage.

Companies like Contractor Financials who work with contractors and freelancers all the time can offer new starters advice and even financially support you throughout your career as you start on your quest to become a pro blogger.

So let’s get you started with my top 10 tips to getting noticed and hired:

1. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Content is king. Write well, hone your voice (the more you write, the easier it becomes) read widely and be inspired by others and life itself and readers will come and of course PR’s will follow…

Small blogs have a niche, targeted and much sought after audience too so don’t worry if you’re just starting up. Know your worth from the start!

My style blog was receiving well paid blog posts from day 1 with a tiny audience (thanks Mum) and 0 page rank. PR’s like a writer’s style and professionalism and invest in the future of your blog too.

Quality writing, personable, engaging posts presented in a well designed blog with ideally large, high res photos, go a long way.

Confidence wise, if you’re struggling (as all we creatives do) follow my rule of ‘faking it until you feel it’-trick your brain into feeling confident and it will happen, trust me. Exercise the muscle of confidence! You rock, now believe it!

2. Comment on lots of blog posts across varied blogs (look outside your genre too) and that includes commenting on sponsored posts too-so I expect to see lots of your comments here!

You want to be hired by PR’s, then comment on all the sponsored posts you come across as PR’s check paid posts and commission others that way. Make their lives easier to find you!

Also the more you comment on posts generally, the greater the traffic to your own blog (most blogs enable you to leave your blog url when you comment) so do make your words interesting and sincere. ‘Great post’ just won’t cut it.

Read,engage and leave a thoughtful response. I must add try and reply to all the comments left to you on your blog posts and on social media. The busiest bloggers in the world find time to reply to all their readers, even if it’s not immediately they do it!

3. Join in with linkies. A way to connect with lots more bloggers and readers, linkies allow you to share your work on usually established blogs, helping you to grow your audience further.

Ensure you link up posts that really show off your strengths and voice, be it beautiful recipes or heartfelt pieces that will capture new readers’ attention.

Remember that the most brilliant of bloggers always give a little something of themselves away, it’s that exchange, that emotional transaction that keeps readers coming back for more.

Every post doesn’t have to be emotive, just be true to you.

Then when you get the confidence, why not set up your own linky!

4. Make your pictures bold and be imaginative where possible, cameras are relatively cheap (and even phone pictures can look captivating) so practice taking dynamic, in focus, vibrant pictures that really help tell stories. Fuzzy, low res images won’t do you or your blog any favours. I’m lucky that my husband takes wonderful professional pictures but I’m often photographing solo and invested in an easy to use, professional camera that didn’t cost the earth that also connects with my phone if I want to share on the go.

5. It’s worth spending some money on your design and theme too (designers don’t have to be costly), a clean, easy to navigate blog will help PR’s take you seriously and being a huge part of your brand, will serve to sell you too.

Ensure your design reflects your personality and passions and helps you to stand out from the crowd so don’t imitate, innovate. Smart designers ( I used Amee D’Souza) will hone in on who you are and want to reflect, to offer you a bespoke service that fits your tone of voice and subject matter. Work together to create a blog you’re proud of.

6. Social media is key. Get SM buttons up high and share buttons down low, at the bottom of every single post, so readers can share your fabulous content and follow you all over the web. Make sure you have a separate contact page near your header too, making it easy for PR’s to hire you!

7. Get social-plug your posts and general statuses on Google + (facebook for SEO) and do use lots of relevant hashtags after your status there to really help you come up in google searches, use tweetdeck and other scheduled tweeting vehicles to promote your posts so you don’t have to and sign up and start using instagram and pinterest to reach new potential readers.

Social media experts usually advise focusing on 3 social media profiles minimum to really gain momentum and drive traffic to your blog so don’t stress if you can’t do them all (who can?) and focus on what makes you happy.

8.  Have realistic expectations. Blogs can grow quickly, but they can also grow organically too so don’t worry if time is not on your side. A little, strategic work can go a long way.

I recommend posting each day if you can to help SEO (I could blog up to 4 times a day on honestmum.com) but I really only blog once a week on my style blog Mummy’s Got Style. If your content is worthy, readers will stop by whenever you post!

My blogs grew rapidly during maternity leave (both times) as it gave me time to write more (babies sleep a lot) and by my second child, my business had taken off to such a great extent, I didn’t return to directing, my previous career!

9. Always be professional and polite. When a PR offers you ‘free work’ or a silly figure in return for a post, explain that you’re pro-blogger (say it, believe it and you’ll become one) and inform them that you always work for a fee.

You’ll be surprised how many respond with a magically discovered budget!

Work out what feels reasonable for your time money-wise and note the client’s requirements and timeframe so you can always make your deadlines (and give yourself enough time to).

Life can sometimes get in the way of course (sick children anyone?) so always be honest and keep PR’s in the loop but do try where possible to deliver when you say you will.

Most PR’s like to approve a draft before you go live too and campaigns have deadlines so make sure you’ve submitted yours in time. Do also check back in with PR’s you’ve worked with a couple of weeks later to see if they or their colleagues need you for future campaigns.

10. Reach out to brands on twitter you would like to work with (time to get brave people) and remember to enter brand hashtags and mentions to garner interest and attention. I know bloggers who mentioned brands in posts just because they loved them which lead to paid work from them down the line.

Actually after writing about Chanel sunglasses I loved when I started my style blog, I hashtagged #Chanel on twitter which a PR saw, and then kindly sent me some Chanel shades!

Twitter works, it’s a search engine for PR’s to discover and engage with bloggers so make sure you use it to help your business, as much as for fun!

So there you have it, my Top 10 tips in becoming more confident in making your blog your career.

For lots more of my Blogging Tips posts click HERE

I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments-

Like what you've read? Then why not follow Vicki on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram

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129 Responses

  1. One Messy Mama

    This was such an informative read for me. I am so new to this! So thank you! The part where you speak about believing in yourself hit home! Just one little question? What is a PR.. Not sure of that abbreviation. x

    Reply
    • Honest Mum

      Glad it helped, being your own publicist (PR) or a PR for a brand is usually the contact who hires a blogger from an agency or is an in house PR x

      Reply
  2. Suzanne

    Have just come across your blog and fallen in love with it – how have I not found you before now?! This is a great post and very timely, as turning my blog into something more professional is high on the agenda right now. Thanks for the great tips x
    Suzanne recently posted…Little Monkey’s blog!My Profile

    Reply
  3. Helen

    This is really useful to me, as someone just starting out into pro-blogging. I’ve made a list of your points in my trusty notebook and have already crossed a number of them off. Thank you.

    Reply
    • honestmum

      That’s fab to read Helen, I have lots of posts that might be of use to you under the category of Blogging Tips. Thanks x

      Reply
  4. International Elf Service

    Fantastic and informative post, thank you! It’s so hard to fit everything in and there is so much more that I would love to blog and read about if only I had a few more hours! I find that I spend most of my time on Facebook.

    Just about to start writing Series 2 of Elfie’s Christmas Letters ready to launch in September 2015 and another couple of exciting products too. So…..that will leave even less time!
    International Elf Service recently posted…Disciplining KidsMy Profile

    Reply
    • honestmum

      So exciting and I remember hearing from an expert that you should focus on 3 social media areas minimum. I love Pinterest too and have got back into it. Good luck with our your new ventures x

      Reply
  5. Spidermummy

    I totally gobble up these posts, I find them so interesting and helpful! Thanks for sharing 🙂 x
    Spidermummy recently posted…Re-gifting… mean or thrifty? My Profile

    Reply
  6. Rossi

    This is the best pro-blogging tips list I have come across. I appreciate the useful information and will save it as a checklist going forward.
    I am really pleased to have found your blog.
    Best wishes and enjoy the festive season.

    Rossi
    http://www.rossiwrites.com

    Reply
  7. Lynsey Poole

    Fantastic post – I’ve only recently become interested in blog pages and blogging mummies over the past few months. I’m now on maternity leave and trying to think of ways to keep my mind ticking over before baby No.2 arrives.

    I did not think I had anything much to add of interest to anyone, but I wrote a blog post on my sons experience of a specialist treatment and was very excited to ask for it to be shared. Now I think I have caught the blogging bug!

    Your blogs are fantastic, and you truly are an ‘honest Mum,’ which is wonderful and refreshing. Good luck in your new ventures to you and your family.

    Reply
    • honestmum

      Thanks so much for your lovely comment, so pleased you like my blog. Going to check yours out too. Blogging is an incredible creative outlet that’s also my full time job xx
      honestmum recently posted…Exciting Work NewsMy Profile

      Reply
  8. Morgan Prince

    A very useful post Vicki, thank you. I have been blogging for almost three years, my first post ever went live on 30th December 2011. In that time I’ve blogged erratically, sometimes blogging lots in one month and sometimes going months with nothing. I realised recently that that doesn’t work very well for readers! I began posting more regularly, have been offered reviews and my traffic has increased. Not much but a little. I would love to go pro, be offered paid posts and fantastic products to review but like you said it’s all about content. I’m working hard on that now and have a plan for the coming year. A series of posts about health and fitness, cross stitch posts, and drawing. That is if I get time for the drawing!

    I just wanted to say, I love your blog. I read it often (not every post, but I try) and think you set a brilliant example for the rest of us. Your posts are heartfelt and I truly believe you love what you do. Congratulations on all of your achievements this year. I’m not the least bit jealous… okay, maybe just a little 😉
    But really, well done. Keep it up. xx
    Morgan Prince recently posted…The Snowman & The Snowdog 2014 GiveawayMy Profile

    Reply
    • honestmum

      Oh thanks so much Morgan, your comment has literally brought tears to my eyes. I do love blogging but I love it because it connects me to like minded people, brilliant bloggers such as yourself, smart women who inspire and move me and because I love the written word. Thank you for reading my blog, you are right, consistency even if it’s once a week as I do for MGS means readers know when to come to you and it really helps with SEO. More reviews, competitions and writing about what you love, your passion is key. You’re doing great, thanks for your fab comment x

      Reply
  9. Polly Mixtures

    Fantastic tips! Particularly like the one about faking it until it’s real. Something so many men have the confidence to do but I certainly struggle with! #brillblogposts
    Polly Mixtures recently posted…The unspeakable truthMy Profile

    Reply
  10. Hannah Mums' Days

    Sorry it’s taken so long to finally get here. Another fabulous post from you lady – there’s no wonder you’re the ace pro-blogger you are. You’re fantastic at what you do and great ambassador for us mummy/parent bloggers!

    I think I’ll be printing this one out and getting my highlighter on it again Vic!

    Thanks for linking up to #theList xxx
    Hannah Mums’ Days recently posted…Little Bird Mothercare and the S/S15 Press EventMy Profile

    Reply
  11. Franglaise Mummy

    Yet more great tips lovely. These will definitely help bloggers considering turning their hobby into something more 🙂
    Franglaise Mummy recently posted…12 ways to save time when you’re a mumMy Profile

    Reply
  12. You Baby Me Mummy

    Fabby tips as always hun. I echo the being polite when responding to PRs it is amazing what can come from it. Thanks so much for linking up to #TheList x
    You Baby Me Mummy recently posted…What Baby Rocked NovemberMy Profile

    Reply
  13. Lucie

    An inspiring and thought provoking article, I hadn’t considered half these tips but will definitely be implementing them going forwards – thank you! x

    Reply

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