I’m backkkk! And for once, my absence was my decision (vs. my laziness). I decided to take a week off from blogging, just because we all need a break sometimes, and it was actually much needed. Coincidentally (and unfortunately), as soon as my break started, I fell really ill – so actually, the majority of my week off was spent in bed feeling sorry for myself and going through dosage after dosage of cough syrup and paracetamol. Oh, and to make things better once I started to recover I developed a bunch of ugly cold sores on my lip! Needless to say, things were so bad I ended up having to miss my first day back at work. However I’m a good 95% healed now, back to my regular posting here on Skylish, and
hope know 2017 will be a really banging year. Whilst I am looking forward to the year ahead, I also couldn’t help but reminisce on the time passed on this blog and how much things have changed in that time. There are a number of things I did as a fresh faced blogger that I would never do today, including putting out generally pretty crappy content; I’ve listed a few of my more memorable mistakes below, a long with some plans for this blog for the year ahead…
Saying yes to everything and anything
When I first started blogging – the answer to every question that entered my inbox was YES. “Can we send you a-“, “YES.” “Will you publish this-“, “YES”, “we’ll pay you-“, “YES.” I was just so excited that anyone in the world wanted to work with me, such that anyone that wanted to – the answer was YES. This led to a few rubbish posts and pointless products delivered along the way – in fact, I once found myself blogging about childrens’ nail polish – yes, you heard right – nail polish for children! I am not a child, nor do I intend on having one any time soon, hence the blog post was absolutely useless and if anything damaged my credibility. I am a lot more selective about who I work with now, there are a lot of offers I turn down if I feel it won’t add any value to my blog and in fact I think it keeps my blog at a good standard and also more credible. It’s easy to want to accept every offer that comes your way, and offers will come your way even as a brand new blogger – but just know that its not always worth it.
Poor quality photos
It took me a while to get a DSLR to take photos with, and it took even longer for me to get someone professional to take photos for me. It’s tough, because it’s not easy to drop £300 on a new camera, especially when you’re a poor student (which was always me). Sure, I’m able to now pull money out to invest in myself since I’ve graduated and work full time, but that wasn’t something I could always do. If I’m being truthful, I do believe poor photo quality stunted my blog growth at a point. I mean, who wants to see small grainy photos taken on your webcam? Not me… And given how saturated the blogging industry is now, quality like this just doesn’t really cut it anymore.
Writing about things I didn’t care about
I used to write posts just because everybody else what doing it. For example I used to write up haul posts because that’s what was popular at the time – when the truth is I really couldn’t care less about haul posts and don’t read or watch them. If you can’t even go onto your own blog and say – yep, this is something I would read/a blog I would visit – then the real question is, wyd? My strategy these days is to ensure that all of my blogs are actually posts I would be interested in, even if they weren’t my own posts. Sometimes I discover new blogs and get lost in clicking through post after post, the next thing you know I’m hooked – and that’s what I want the outcome of my blog to be.
Losing my own voice, having no direction
I think a really good question every blogger should ask themselves is – “what value do you want people to get out of your blog?” and also, with regards to you favourite blogger “what makes you love them so much?” As I feel like this gets you on the right stepping stone to getting your blog to the quality you want (not to say that I’m 100% satisfied with the current quality of my blog). Every blogger will have a blogger they admire – sometimes a really popular blogger, and at times its good to ask what they’re doing that is bringing so much success, so that you can hopefully draw inspiration and also reach the same success. For example, in 2016 I learned that there are a few thing synonymous with all of my favouirte bloggers – great pictures, and just the general vibe the blogger builds. If you read my 2016 Advice Favourites post you’ll learn that I also defined a purpose for my blog last year – and this has helped a lot in me creating better quality for my bog and defining the direction I want to take it in.
The year ahead…
In 2017, I want my blog to be a lot more thought provoking. Aside from giving advice, I also want to share more of an opinion on several topics that come across my mind every day. For example, in late 2016, I became perplexed with the idea of girls supporting other girls, and why it seems to be such a rarity these days – ideas like this I’d like to get written up, I’d like to get a conversation started and get more opinions. Also in 2017, I want to do more beauty blogging; I do a lot of fashion and lifestyle blogging with a nice touch of advice posts – but I also love beauty and makeup and want to share more makeup reviews as the year develops. Lastly, I’ll continue with blogging two times a week – Monday and Thursday. Unless something gets in the way – I don’t see why I can’t be consistent with this!