Dash Kitten is taking part in the pet blogger’s journey hosted by PuppyInTraining. We need to up the ante as there are so many dog blogs, so here goes.
“Today we put our normal blog topics on hold and celebrate our accomplishments, share the dreams we have for our blogs, talk about goals, and encourage our fellow pet bloggers.”PuppyInTraining
When did you begin your blog?
And, for anyone stopping by for the first time, please give us a quick description of what your blog is about.
In 2013 Dash Kitten began as a Blogger based cat blog celebrating all things feline.
It has grown into a teaching blog on WordPress where cat lovers can learn how to take great pictures and make fun movies of their cats for showing off on cat blogs and on social media. I am all about building confidence and having cat fun.
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Name one thing about your blog, or one blogging goal that you accomplished during 2019, that made you most proud.
I finally got my focus right and consolidated a change of direction to a niche I love and am forever learning about – cat photography.
I love watching cat lovers and bloggers grow in confidence as they begin to take fantastic pictures and using their smartphones for something much cooler than surfing the ‘net – creating their own quality social media content.
Which of your 2019 blog posts was your favourite and why? (Please include a link.)
I discovered Black and White Photography in a big way in 2019 and my favourite post is one I was inspired to write along the way.
What was the biggest blogging challenge you faced in 2019, and how did you tackle it?
Like many people I have struggled with SEO and I knew I needed help. I discovered Stupid Simple SEO, a paid course by Mike Pearson. It is sensible, well balanced and each student works at their own pace. There is a Facebook group for members where questions are answered and plenty of inspiring chat takes place.
SEO works for all bloggers and, with persistence and research, you will grow your traffic. I am still working on my SEO, it’s an ongoing process.
One goal that we all seem to share is we want to reach more people. What is your #1 tip for bringing more traffic to your blog?
Keyword Research. However you do it, using keywords works.
If you want to play the Google game you have to know the rules. Sure, Google moves the goalposts from time to time, but the fundamental idea of making a search easier and easier for readers remains a constant. Keywords count.
Do you do sponsored posts/reviews? If so, what do you find works best and how do you determine what to charge for a blog post, social media shares, etc.? If not, is this something you’d like to do more of? What hurdle is getting in your way?
Yes I do, and I choose my clients and sponsors carefully. The product needs to be relevant to my niche – cats and cameras. Prospective sponsors asking if ‘me and my ‘dog” are interested in a product stretch my patience to breaking point.
Cost per Post?
This is a point often discussed, but bloggers rately quote their own charges unless they are established bloggers already earning money.
Charges vary depending on a post, product and whether or not a video is required. Bloggers too often undervalue themselves, charging little or nothing but product. While working for product is a great way to get some quality work under your belt, doing it often makes earning a living from a blog difficult for those who do so as part of their livelihood.
The more work is involved, the more you should consider charging. One company I have worked with, who worked with many pet bloggers had a basic rate of $250US for a blog post (this was three years ago). Use this is a starting point.
Looking forward to 2020, if you accomplish only one thing through your blog, what do you hope it is?
I want to break four figures with my mailing list. It’s a big job but unless you dream big you don’t get anywhere so I will try.
I hope to have my long-awaited mini course up on Thinkific early in 2020.
What steps are you planning to take to ensure you reach your goal?
I will be using The Five Second Rule, by Mel Robbins to keep me on track wth confidence and determination; my Happy Planner to write it all down; and an Annual Plan with specific goals. You can’t succeed without goals.
The blogging landscape is constantly changing. What changes in blogging do you see coming in 2020 and beyond? What plans do you have to evolve?
Fortunately, people (mostly) prefer humanity and personal choice to tagging along thoughtlessly behind a faceless corporate entity. Blogs continue to thrive and the authentic voice of a good blogger resonates with people and grounds them in a reality big company sites might miss.
This humanity needs to be balanced with the challenge set by Google who say quality content is long, as in 2,000+ words long. For me this means a couple of ‘epic’ quality posts a month, balanced by reflections on the real world my cats and I live in here in New Zealand, every week.
If you could ask the pet blogging community for help with one challenge you’re having with your blog, what would it be?
Reassurance my navigation is clear for new visitors and friendly. I need to know that the blog menus are helpful for anyone frustrated or nervous about their camera who is desperate for a focus and advice on those first steps.
You can see the 2021 Pet Bloggers Journey here.