As the day begins to draw to a close on February 1st, I thought it would be wise to remind ourselves of the momentum we had going into 2019. While this post is specifically about blogging goals, don’t neglect the other goals you’ve made for yourself. It’s never too late to put your thoughts into action.
Planning and organization seem to go hand in hand. Creating a downloadable planner was the first idea to pop into my head. I tried to think about what I would want in a blog planner all the while keeping it very simple.
What You Will Find
Reason for Post
As always to gain access to the blog planner, all you have to do is sign up for the Newsletter.
Please let me know what you think about this planner if you end up using it. I truly hope it helps some of you with your blogging goals. This post is definitely short, simple, and sweet but I wanted to get this up as soon as possible. Be on the lookout for the next post.
Welcome back to Join TheMEProject. In today’s post, I’ll be discussing the importance of blog maintenance. Find out my experience in responsibility, and learn how to fix mistakes. At the end of this post, you will find a checklist that will make it easier to maintain your blog.
I realized very quickly that owning my domain would be a bit more responsibility compared to before. Transitioning from a free site to a self-hosted one presented a new set of challenges. I had to learn SEO, what plug-ins to use and how to transfer over all of my data.
What I originally thought would be a quick fix, took a lot longer. I realized that if I truly wanted to do it right then I needed to understand what it meant to be a self-hosted blogger. I looked up articles and with some trial and error, I thought I was on the right path.
One of the first things I learned, was the importance of continuously sharing your old blog posts. It helps generate a steady stream of traffic to your blog and readers who may not have read it the first time. Since Spoonie Tips for Surviving Winter is still relevant that was my pick. Imagine my surprise to find all the pictures missing.
After my small freak out, I learned that the transition between blogs wasn’t as smooth as I thought it was. I was still at fault though, because I had not been doing maintenance on my blog as I should have. If I was, I would have found the problem sooner and I could have fixed it. But then I wouldn’t have the inspiration for this post so I guess it works out.
Time to Fix it
I was left with a blank canvas, all the pictures were gone and all of the subheadings were oddly shifted to the left. Instead of pouting, it hit me that this gave me the opportunity to refresh the post from when it was originally written. I have learned more in my blogging journey since then and I could incorporate it all into this post.
Add the Pictures
Now, this would be a great time to update the pictures in your old posts if they are no longer relevant. The pictures I use in my post still work so that’s what I used but do keep this in mind.
Organize Files & Pictures
I cannot say this enough, but back up your files and save them. Towards the end of last year, my laptop finally died but every chance I got, I saved all of my files to an external hard drive. So thankfully nothing was lost. Since then, I’ve been using my iPhone for everything but I still like to keep everything organized. This mess up was easy to fix since I already had the pictures and files saved, but I can imagine the opposite happening if they weren’t available.
What Else Should You Do?
Here is where the Checklist will come in handy. Gain access to the BlogMaintenanceChecklist by signing up for the Newsletter.
Let me know if this checklist helps you and if you have ever encountered problems like this before.
I’ve been focusing a lot on the brand identity for this blog and what I wanted that to be. Especially, with my recent blog change, I wanted to make sure that I got this right. So today I’ll be discussing not only what brand identity is, but how I came up with mine.
What is Brand Identity?
If you were to think of your blog as a house, brand identity would be the bricks that make up that house. Brand identity can include your blog name, tagline, logo, the fonts you use, and colors you feature throughout. Once it’s established it should stay consistent. This may sound like a lot of effort for some but once you figure out the look you want your blog to have it’s easy to do. I’ll use mine as an example.
With my first blog, I created everything by whim or accident. By chance, everything worked out, but I didn’t want to do that this time. So I sat down with a piece of paper and wrote out what I wanted my blog to represent.
Over a period of time, I came up with what I wanted. And then I put my plan into action. But don’t feel like you have to rush through the whole process, I found myself backtracking and fixing things over and over again.
When I decided to rebrand, I immediately knew that I wanted the name my blog either be TheMEProject or JoinTheMEProject. Just based on its previous success on my old blog and I really want to build a community of like-minded people. So I thought putting a verb in the title would sink in that point.
Tagline: On a journey to inspire.
Now I don’t pay attention to fonts that much on my blog, I use the regular set for the theme. But while I’m using the Canva app I make sure that I use Brusher and Lora for logo and headers. And for my Pinterest pins I use PlaylistScript and GlacialIndifference. Keeping your fonts consistent on your creations helps people associate them with your brand.
Logo, Facebook & Twitter Header
It features a white daisy, orange roses, and red anemones. I went with flowers because I honestly love flowers and floral print items. But I picked these three for their meaning and their qualities that I want to emit not only from my blog but in my personal life as well.
White Daisy: innocence, purity, cheerfulness
Orange Rose: enthusiasm, passion
Red Anemone: anticipation, hope
Using the flowers, I was able to come up with a color scheme for my blog.
My color scheme features middle yellow-red, fawn, mandarin, vivid tangelo, and persimmon. These colors are very earthy and natural which is what I wanted. A good point to remember is that your brand identity will be the voice for your blog or brand. Think of content that you create and try to match your identity around that.
Overall, I’m really happy that I made the decision to do all of this. I feel like my blog and all of my social media are working together as a cohesive unit now.
I’ve seen a few other bloggers on Twitter asking about logos and design so hopefully this blog post will help. As always, let me know what you think. Have you thought about a brand identity for your blog?
To help keep everything organized, I’ve created a BlogIdentityChecklist only available through the Resource Library. Sign up now to receive your own copy.
What You’ll Find
Details: Check off your list as your work gets done. You’ll find boxes for:
Post may contain affiliate links. These links allow me to make a small commission by referral at no extra cost to you.
Hello and thank you for visiting JoinTheMEProject. I officially welcome you to the first blog post of the new year. And to start the year off right, I thought I would reflect on my first-month blogging. Which just so happens to be December of 2018. Today, I’ll be breaking down my stats, what lessons I learned, and what I think other bloggers should be doing.
The Warm Up
I’ve mentioned before in, Let Me Reintroduce Myself, that this is not my first time blogging. I do have some prior knowledge. While this helped the whole experience seem less daunting, I still felt overwhelmed at times.
Towards the middle of 2018, I went on a hiatus from my previous blog. I made the decision to rebrand under a new name. This meant I needed to:
Create a blog with the new name
Change my social media to match
Think of my blog identity
Choose my brand colors
Resources That Come in Handy
To complete this list that I created for myself, I sat down and thought about what I wanted JoinTheMEProject to represent. I used the majority of resources discussed in Free Resources Every Blogger Should Know About. I used Canva to come up with a mood board for inspiration. I go back to this mood board often when I’m thinking of colors to use for headers or other content.
In this regard, the best advice that I can give you is write down a game plan and stick to it. Your blog identity should be what helps people recognize your blog. Think about:
By November, of 2018, I was on my way to being ready. The only cost that I had accumulated at this time was biting the bullet and deciding to self-host right away. For my domain fee and WordPress Package, I was only charged $12.00. I chose 1&1 IONOS because that’s who I had my previous package with for my other blog.
Writing from experience, when it comes to self-hosting, a lot of companies will offer great deals for first-time customers or first-year packages. You usually won’t see a hike in prices until the second year. First-time bloggers, don’t be afraid to shop around before agreeing to contract. At the same time, don’t be afraid to leave a contract if it’s not what you want.
I set aside the month of November to do some fine tuning on my blog and get my social media together. In my case, I recycled a theme from my previous blog but I will list where to find WordPress Themes, free and premium.
Next, it was time to set up social media. My first time blogging with my other blog, I made the mistake of trying to juggle every social media under the sun. Quickly, I found myself overwhelmed. This time around, I knew not to make that same mistake. I focus on Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook, mainly because they are great sources of traffic.
Tipforthebeginning: I had no posts for the month of November but I was still able to get 107 views and 57 visitors. It may not seem like much for some but all progress and all success should be celebrated. A great way to build anticipation and get people interested in your blog is to post teasers about it. This, of course, requires that you set up your social media beforehand.
The Month of December
I published 10 posts during the month of December. The most popular were:
A lot of my traffic came from Twitter, WordPress.com Reader, Facebook, and Pinterest. I had some from Instagram but not a lot, it’s not something I spend a lot of time on. I post on it regularly, but the follow/unfollow game has caused me to lose interest in the app.
Besides my mini-rant on Instagram, you should be sharing blog posts on your social media. Don’t think that by writing a great post and hitting publish that your job is done. If that’s the case, it may never get seen. Share across your social media to attract readers back to your blog.
I am honestly very happy with my stats so far. December necessarily isn’t the easiest month to write a blog in because of the holidays and vacation time. I didn’t make any money last month but it wasn’t a goal of mine. My goal was to work on traffic and engagement.
JoinTheMEProject is very near and dear to my heart, and I want to do everything that I can to make it the best blog and brand possible. Right now, I want to work on establishing a community. Everything else can come later.
Now, I want to hear your thoughts. Did any of this information help you at all? Will you be using any of these tips from this blog post? Let me know below.
Over the weekend, I started thinking about what I want to accomplish in the new year, what good habits I want to start. And I’m not talking about New Year’s Resolutions. To be honest, I’ve never really understood the hype. Only the determined and dedicated stick them, most give up after a couple weeks. My goal is to incorporate some of these things into my lifestyle and the others are things that I want to do for my blog.
The Blog, The Brand
In the middle of the year, I decided to do a complete brand 360. I realized just how much TheMEProject meant to me. I questioned why it wasn’t the focus of my brand. I went on a hiatus and I got to work.
One of my biggest goals for 2019, is to make sure that both my blog and brand are optimized to their fullest potential. Motivation and Encouragement are the very foundation of TheMEProject and they always will be but I want to include more. Be on the lookout for:
Wellness & Self-Care
Social Media Tips
Some may not believe this, but I finally got a planner. And I am so excited because I won’t have to keep dashing between my phone and the notebook I’ve been using. I’m honestly surprised that I’ve done well so far, it’s a bit of a mess I’m afraid. I picked a planner that’s nondated. I liked this option because I have more control over what goes into it. I also bought some pens to use along with it.
Previously, I was using post-it notes to keep track of what needed to be done. Let’s just say, that got out of hand very fast. I’m a visual learner so being able to write in different colors will help me keep track of everything. Price: $5.95
Health & Exercise
I have to say it seems like I’ll be ending the year with more questions than answers when it comes to some aspects of my health. And I’m okay with that. It’s taken me a long time, but I’ve finally come to an understanding about that. There are some things in my life that I won’t be able to change so I’m going to start focusing on the parts that I can.
I’ve found certain exercises that I can do without breaking my 20-minute limit. Losing weight isn’t really my priority. I want to try and eat healthier, exercise to the best of my ability, and drink more water.
The Blogger Series
I’ve expressed my gratitude often, but I still don’t think it’s enough. The outpouring of support has been so awe-inspiring and I just wish that I could do more to show you all just how appreciative I am. Remember, if you would like to be a part of Blogger Interview series you can just leave me a comment with your email below or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, I would love to have guest posts for this series. It can be anything along the topics of mentioned earlier under The Blog, The Brand subheading. If you would like to do a guest post, just let me know.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small referral bonus.
Hello everyone and welcome back to The ME Project. After writing, Tech Review|Canva iOS App I realized that there were other free resources out there for bloggers that I thought you all should know about. So today, I will be breaking down my top 8 and I made up an infographic which will be at the bottom.
Let me know what you think of my list. If you made up your own list how would yours differ from mine? Tell me in the comments below.
I use Canva to create the majority of the graphics you see on my blog and social media. It is very convenient to use and with the iOS app downloaded on my phone, I can create graphics on the go. (For a more in-depth review, please read Tech Review|Canva iOS App)
I think by now we all know of the follow/unfollow game on Instagram. At this present time, I don’t really see it changing. It is really sad that people do it, I don’t honestly see how this helps them grow their platform. Using Followers+ doesn’t necessarily stop the problem, but it helps me keep track of the unfollowers.
With Collabor8 you set up an account on the app and link your social media. You have the ability to contact brands or have brands contact you. Most transactions are done by either trade or pay. But you have control of when the transaction will take place. I think it’s a very handy app to have. So far I haven’t found another quite like it.
I started using it for the convenience but now I find myself lost without it. It makes writing a blog post or a quick tweet so easy. Spell checking and grammar, it’s all there. Just download the app and the keyboard to your phone.
In the very beginning, I had such a love-hate relationship with Facebook. I understood that it would be in my benefit to create a Facebook Page for my blog but I went about it in all the wrong ways. I hadn’t used the site since 2009 so I was a little rusty in what to do.
Making a page for my blog has created some traffic for my blog. But the biggest source of support has been finding other blog groups and communities. Sometimes it takes effort to find the right ones for you but the support you find within these communities is so helpful. I’ll list two of the ones I like below.
Hello everyone, thank you for joining me again on The ME Project. I love this time of year, but as the weather starts to transition throughout the season it gets a little hard for me. The cold weather makes me ache and the lack of sun just about drains me. You may be thinking to yourself, “Why do you love it?” This time of year lets me create my own sunshine. I find ways to keep myself busy and most importantly healthy.
Now, this is not to say that I don’t still have bad days. I do, just like everyone else. But I try my best to work through them and remember that tomorrow is another day. So today I’ll be taking you through my top tips for surviving winter. I hope you all enjoy and let me know in the comments what helps you get through this time of year.
This may sound like a weird tip, but I’ve found that it’s helped me so much. If you deal with any sort of health condition like me, you probably take a lot of medication. I’d noticed that I’d gotten really lazy about taking my medicine at night. Periodically, I would forget to take my morning doses. Sometimes it can be a chore to huddle up all of the pill bottles and get the right dosage of medication.
Weekly AM/PM Pill Organizer- $9.99
So each week I’ll set aside time to refill it and it makes my life so much easier. I really like this pill organizer because the capsules come out. If my day is going to be busy from morning on, I can pop the capsule in my purse and go about my day.
Stay Hydrated the Right Way
Dehydration is a serious issue and sometimes we may not be aware of it. If you’ve experienced dry skin, headaches, or dizziness in some cases these symptoms can be attributed to dehydration. Chronic health problems and the weather can affect the way we feel but we can take precautionary measures. There are a lot of benefits to drinking water and staying hydrated.
Rehydrate Pro 25oz Insulated Water Bottle- $18.97
Drinking water throughout the day will increase energy, prevent muscle cramps, and detoxify the body. There are also fruits with high water content. My local grocery stores stock pre-cut watermelon and I’ve developed a habit of snacking on that.
Other fruits and veggies are:
Dress At Least Five Degrees Warmer Than the Temperature
My sister always says that being a meteorologist is the only profession where you get to lie constantly and keep your job. She was slightly joking when she said that but the point still counts. My fibromyalgia doesn’t act up in the warmer months as much as it is now. When I get cold it seems like it takes forever to get warm and I’ll spend the rest of the day huddled underneath a blanket.
So as an example, Friday it’s supposed to be 49 degrees. There’s 90% chance of rain and thunderstorms. Factoring all of this in, I’ll dress like it’s 55 degrees outside that way I know I’m warm. It may not seem like much, but a scarf or a hat can make a big difference against a wind chill.
Create Your Own Sunshine
My mom likes to do this by turning on a bunch of lamps in the apartment. She says if the sun isn’t outside than she’ll create it inside. Another way to do this is by making life fascinating. Just because we have ordinary responsibilities to take care of does not mean they have to feel that way.
As an example, say it’s time for your weekly grocery shopping. Each time you go to the grocery store, you take the same route. You’ve gotten so used to driving in this direction that you barely notice what you drive by. This next time, pay attention to your surroundings. You just may discover a new store or what could potentially be your favorite restaurant. Make time for adventure and discovery.
What tips do you have for winter? Let me know in the comments below.
This is my first review on this blog and I am very pleased that it is a positive one. Anyone starting out knows the difficulty in finding resources. And it doesn’t necessarily matter what they are starting out in. They could be pursuing their dream, starting a new job, or opening a new business. The point is, at the very beginning of anything, there’s not much money to spend.
I want to make this blog as organic as possible and be truthful about each step that I take. So I went online to look for an aid in making logos and banners. I went to handy dandy Google and did a search for free logo makers. Now mind you, the free part is what got me. Because the first few sites that popped up looked like they were taking notes from clip art and PowerPoint presentations.
Before all hope was lost and I lost what patience I had left for the day I came across Canva.
In clicking the link, it sent me to the direct link to the free iOS app for the iPhone. And even though I was thinking the only use I could get out of it was to make logos. It provided me with so much more. You can create logos, banners for Twitter and Facebook, and edit pictures for Instagram. All of the pictures on my blog, except for one that I haven’t got to yet were made on Canva.
Since the app is free, you honestly can’t go wrong in giving it a try.