I recently asked my coaching client, Margaret Short, to tell me about starting her blog. (I explain what she’s doing in this post.) Her answers are in purple. (I promise I didn't pay her anything to write this nice stuff.)
First, let me say that never in a million years would I have thought about creating a BLOG for promotion of this project. BLOGS to me were just something out there in cyberspace that other people with lofty thoughts were doing. When Alyson suggested it, I was flabbergasted and clueless how to get started. She fortunately was very experienced and helped walk me through the process. Anything computer scares me.
What was the hardest thing about this? Just getting started was difficult. It took a while to build my confidence and work through some kinks. But I finally went to Typepad, set up an account and started typing. Initially, I was very intimidated by the content of what I was actually saying and tried to be very literary which was painfully laborious and time consuming. Finally, when Alyson said to me "just have fun with it and don't worry." I began to think of the BLOG as a step by step journal of my project, Lessons from the Low Countries, how it came about, and where it is going.
Interestingly, as I wrote posts my project itself became clearer. A time line began to emerge, and it was clear I had to do certain things at a certain time for it all to come to fruition next spring. Thanks to Alyson's coaching, promotional tasks were already in motion, but now I am more aware of the "whys".
What was the easiest? After I realized I could have fun, the writing just started to flow and became a joy rather than a struggle.
Did you get someone to help you? In what capacity? My web site designer and guru wizard is Sheri Huffman. I could not have done this without her. For many years she and I have been collaborating on the design of my web site but she does ALL the real work on the computer. A couple of months ago she gave my site a makeover with a completely new design, new images, new everything. When Alyson said my BLOG should mimic the look of my web site I asked Sheri to create the design of my BLOG also. I am a firm believer in delegating. I know what I am not good at, and this is why I hired both Alyson and Sheri. I just want to paint paintings. Sheri is at this time working on a template to use for my email broadcast mailings. She had me sign up with Constant Contact and send her all my addresses. This should go out in a mailing today or tomorrow. Those who receive the mailing will immediately have the option of sign up or unsubscribe. Constant Contact will send me notices of new subscribers. Slowly I am beginning to see the picture. Of course, Alyson, also was there to answer questions as I encountered glitches.
How long did it take you to get the hang of it? Did you have an “aha” moment? The best "Aha" moment was when I thought "this is really fun!" Initially, I made many mistakes as I was posting and had to re-do 3 times once. But then Alyson told me how to type in WORD and cut and paste, then it worked better. Each task, such as, using the "hyperlink" and "insert image" was shockingly easy.
How will people know how to find your blog? The BLOG will be found by googling my name Margret Short, email announcements to my address list, surfing, and through my web site where there is a BLOG link. I hope as time goes on there will be more.
1 thought on “Margret Short Explains Her Blogging Experience”
Although I’ve had a website for a few years I just started my blog about 2 months ago. I make it a point to check out at least a few new blogs of other artists, writers, people like yourself, etc. each day. I make sure to comment, email, etc. if I like the blog, website, etc. and have “met” many interesting people. I also started an Etsy shop a few weeks ago and two new blogs offering free art lessons (for kids and adults) that I update each week or 10 days. While getting used to blogging I also realized updating my website with weekly information could bring more people back to my website and make it more interactive so I post weekly lessons there (that are archived in the lesson blogs) and a weekly article I write. The best and most simple thing I did, however, was google local art listings and spend about an hour emailing each to ask to be included. I am now included in all the local art listings in my area and have already begun receiving contacts and queries through my website, blog and email from this simple thing. One has even asked me to contribute some writing. It’s for free but will invite people to my website and blog as well. I am definitely seeing an increase in sales and interest in my work. Thanks for all your good information. Margret Short’s blog is great–as are many of the others you send us to. Keep up the good work, Alyson!