Ask Abbie

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So you want to start a blog? Lately a ton of my friends have been interested in starting a blog. I have learned so much since starting The Pink Paperdoll Blog in 2013. That’s exactly one of the things I love about blogging-the constant learning! This post is an ongoing brain-dump of sorts about what I’ve learned about starting a blog. I hope it helps you as you start your blogging journey.

Blogging FAQ

Q: What’s your advice to people who want to start a blog?

The best advice I got was just start. Seriously, start immediately. I first thought of starting a blog about five years before I finally did it. Think about what I could have accomplished in that half a decade if I’d just gone for it! That could be you. So get started!

Q: How Do I Get Items to Review?

“You’re so lucky, you get all these things for free!” I hear this a lot, even from my friends who know how much work my blog takes. While reviewing items is one of the perks I enjoy most, nothing in the blogging world is free! Writing, photographing and promoting all takes a ton of time. Gifted items are part of the job, but I’m always considering the bigger picture of my brand. That said, where do you get opportunities when you’re just starting out? For new bloggers seeking to get into the fun world of product reviews, Brandbacker is a great network because they have a multitude of opportunities and are always adding more. Just sign up, apply for campaigns that interest you, and you’ll hear back shortly if you’re accepted. I’ve done beauty products, food and health item reviews with them.

Q: Where Do I Find Paid Opportunities?

Linqia Sign up with my referral link for Linqia to be notified of pay-per-click campaigns that you might fit with. Your earnings depend on how many clicks you get, but it’s one of the better pay-per-click deals out there. Here’s an example of a Linqia campaign.

Q: How do I choose a name?

This is often the hardest part for newbie bloggers. My suggestion is make it general, and don’t confine yourself to one topic. You want to allow your brand room to grow with you! If you’re thinking of naming your blog “My Beauty Diary,” consider the possibility that you might want to blog about other things down the road. Using a variant of your name is a commonly used blog naming technique and allows a lot of creative freedom. And remember, you can always, always rebrand. I have seen some of my blogger friends re-name very successfully, including Seattle Stylista.

Q: How do you find pictures for your blog?

You can use stock photos, hire a photographer or take the images yourself. One thing you cannot do is take photos online and just use them. Check out this post for more details on using online imagery. If your blog is about fashion, you really need to invest in a photographer. That’s a mistake I made early on, which you can see for yourself by digging through my post archives!

Since partnering with some great professionals, the quality of my blog is much improved. By the way, the stock images in this post are from Jenna Redfield Designs. Check her out for styled stock photography options.

Have a question that wasn’t covered here? Leave it in the comments or send a message on Facebook!