• Mom Blogger Resources

    39 Lessons For Marketing A Blog

    I’ve been blogging now for more years than I care to admit (because it ages me, not because I don’t love blogging).

    In all of the…ahem…years I’ve been blogging, I picked up some nuggets of wisdom along the way when it comes to marketing a blog.

    I’m sharing 39 marketing lessons so you can benefit + profit from them for your own blog.

    1. Niche It To Rich It

    You have to choose your niche, focus on your niche + cater all of your marketing efforts + marketing messages to that niche. You CANNOT market to EVERYONE + expect to succeed in your marketing.

    The niche options are endless.

    BUT…

    Narrowing down your niche allows you to focus everything you do in marketing your business + increases your income.

    2. Know Your Clients

    Ask yourself this…how can you create Facebook ads, email marketing campaigns, or any marketing at all if you don’t know who you are sending these messages?

    You have to know the type of clients you are marketing to so you can create services, products, packages + marketing campaigns that are meaningful for them.

    Your message for a single Millennial woman is completely different than that for a working mom of four.

    In order to nail your marketing message, you have to know your clients like you know the back of your hand (no cliche intended).

    This is another reason why a niche is sooooooooo important. When you narrow your niche, you know your clients so well that you speak straight to their heart — providing solutions to their pains, problems + worries.

    4. Can’t Follow All The Trends

    It seems like every day, a new marketing “trend” pops up.

    You have to use Facebook.

    You have to have a listing on some website.

    You need reviews on this site or that site.

    The fact of the matter is…you CANNOT follow all the trends + expect a landslide of business to come your way. When you know your clients + create messages that speak directly to them, you have to get the message in front of them where those clients hangout.

    If they hang out in your Facebook group, then that’s where you should be too.

    If they are on your email list, then land those messages in their inboxes.

    Figure out where YOUR clients are + what works for your blog…

    Forget about the rest.

    5. Hire Professionals

    If you think hiring a professional is expensive, wait until you hire an amateur.

    Unknown

    The saying goes something like that + could not be more true.

    Make sure you have a professional presence from your website copy + design to the e-newsletters you send out to your list once a month.

    6. You Have To Connect With Them

    If visitors to your blog don’t feel a connection with you, then, well…they aren’t going to hire you, buy your products, or click on affiliate links that lead to products or services you love.

    How you speak to them through your website copy, emails + anything you get in front of them speaks volumes to them. Something you say strikes them — connecting them with you — + makes them want to work with you, hire you, buy from you.

    7. Build A Relationship Before You Sell

    One of the biggest mistakes I see bloggers make is trying to sell a product or service right out of the gate.

    It’s so sales-y (+ most think it is a bit on the sleazy side).

    While your ultimate goal is for them to hire you or buy from you, you have to build a relationship with them first. People do business with people they know, like + trust.

    They do business with people they have a connection with, so you have to build a relationship with them before you sell them on your products or services.

    The best way to do this is by sharing content, your knowledge + information via email, in person, or with a free guide, checklist, or ebook + on in your blog posts.

    8. It’s About More Than Price

    The cost of your product or service is a factor.

    • Credibility
    • Experience
    • Trust
    • Creativity
    • Rapport
    • Reputation

    …are but a few of the other factors.

    Keep these in mind when you are writing your marketing messages so you can portray yourself in the right light to land their business.

    9. Other Blogger Are Your Allies

    Other bloggers are your allies!

    Other bloggers have people visiting their site that may be the same traffic people you’re looking to attract to yours.

    Build relationships with other bloggers + figure out ways you can work together to leverage each other’s traffic.

    10. It’s All About Them + Not You

    Your marketing messages, the copy you use on your website + what you say to your email list ALL. ABOUT. THEM. (not you).

    Speak directly to your audience + list out the benefits of your products or services.

    Use “you” and “your” rather than “I,” “we,” and “our.” Honestly, they don’t care about you.

    Blog readers are SELFISH (no matter how sweet they are) and only care about what you can do for them. So…TELL THEM!

    11. Weave Your Brand/Messaging Through Everything

    Use consistent marketing messages in everything you do. Your brand + messaging should be the same on your website, emails, social media + anywhere else you’re showing up.

    12. Always Be You

    Be you, nobody else can do it.

    Be you when you write your website copy, blog posts + any other marketing copy you create.

    When you are yourself, you attract the right people to your blog. It’s a natural process.

    13. Always Be Learning

    New marketing techniques hit the market all the time. Some come + some go (sometimes just as fast).

    Some come + stay forever.

    It’s important that you check out the new stuff + determine if it is something that can be beneficial to your blog.

    Knowledge is power, so make sure that you are always learning better ways to attract, engage + land new readers + customers.

    14. Expensive Isn’t Always Better

    Throwing good money after bad is not the way to ensure you have an influx of income from your blog, either.

    Building an expensive website doesn’t ensure that you’re going to increase blog income. Spending hundreds of dollars on Facebook ads doesn’t ensure your ad is going to be a success.

    Focus more on the quality of the website design + copy or Facebook ads than what it costs — because no matter what the cost is if it doesn’t work then…well, you get the picture.

    15. Be An Educator + Resource

    Always teach + share your knowledge. Be their resource for up-to-date information.

    Sharing info builds your credibility as the expert that you are in your niche or industry. Sharing information + being a resource builds that relationship we talked about earlier.

    16. Talk The Talk And Walk The Walk

    When you write website copy or craft your marketing messages, it’s important that you talk like the audience you’re trying to attract.

    Use the words your clients use.

    Just as important — you have to walk the walk. Make sure you can back up what you say, no matter where you say it.

    17. Words Pack A Powerful Punch

    Use your words wisely.

    When you use the right words, you attract the right people.

    If you are targeting luxury buyers with high-ticket products, but are using words like shoe-string budget, uh, you’re probably missing your mark.

    18. Colors Have Meaning

    When you’re building your brand, colors play as important a role as the words you choose.

    For example, shades of blue can be soothing + are thought to represent + attract money. Maybe this is why Tiffany Blue is Tiffany & Co.’s signature color.

    Think about that for a minute.

    19. Test, Test + Then Test Again

    Unfortunately, marketing is not an exact science.

    Sigh.

    You can, however, test things out to see what works best for you + your blog.

    In order to run a true test, however, you can only change one item at a time to see what is really affecting your results.

    For example, if you want to test the headline on your About Me Page, only change the headline, but keep everything else on the page the same — copy, images, pictures + all.

    20. Don’t Toot Your Own Horn

    Try to leave “we,” “I”, and “our” out of your copy + vocabulary as much as possible.

    (Remember they don’t really care about you, but rather what you can do for them.)

    Rather than talk about how great you are + how creative you are + how wonderful your blog is, let your past (+ even your current) clients toot your horn for you by using testimonials they provide to you.

    (It’s kind of a turnoff when you do it, but attractive when other people tell people how great you are.)

    21. Ask Your Dreamiest Of Dream Clients

    While you try to think like your audience as much as possible, you’re a blogger.

    Never assume you know exactly what is important to them.

    Ask them.

    Tweak your marketing + marketing messages to meet (+ exceed) their needs, to solve their problems + be the answer to their prayers.

    22. Appearances Matter

    Have a professional domain for your website + use a domain email address (not your Yahoo!, Gmail, or other personal email).

    It looks professional + shows you have a professional business when you use a domain + domain email.

    It appears (+ clients and prospects say it) unprofessional when you’re running a business website on a free site domain extension + showing a free email account as your contact email (especially when it’s hotmama@whatever.com).

    23. Content Is King

    Someone who is searching for the information you provide through your blog wants you to share content with them.

    Content takes on soooo many forms, so don’t feel like you have to be a wordsmith to make this happen.

    Share videos, articles that experts in your industry write, your own articles + blog posts, infographics, pictures, audio files, etc.

    24. Strategy Is Queen

    While content is king, strategy goes hand in hand with it.

    You can’t create content + just start throwing it up on your blog + social media accounts.

    Instead, create a strategy for the content you’re going to create + share + how you’re going to distribute it.

    25. Pictures Do Speak 1,000 Words

    Share your photos!

    You can add a caption or description but images, pictures + other graphics often grab the attention of readers before words ever do.

    26. Treat It Like A Dog Does

    If it doesn’t work, pee on it, kick some grass on it + move on.

    I think this one speaks for itself.

    27. Partner + Collaborate

    Partner up + collaborate with some of your fave bloggers, influencers or companies.

    • Cross-promote your services to each other’s lists
    • Share the ad costs for the hottest local publication
    • Run a webinar together to gather leads (+ then add them to your list to communicate with them on an ongoing basis)
    • Publish each other’s blog posts on each other’s blogs

    Remember, you + your faves have the same target audience, so partnering up gives you access to swim in a pool of the dreamiest of dream clients.

    28. What Works For Others Might Not Work For You

    You watch your competitors closely (Keep your enemies close, right? I’m kidding, of course.).

    You notice that a fellow blogger is running an ad on Facebook.

    Said blogger can’t rave enough about how much business that listing is landing them.

    You run to your computer + pay for a Facebook ad but…

    It’s like crickets (Your traffic isn’t increasing, you’re not receiving inquiries from the ad — it’s nothing, nada, zilch.).

    What works for someone else might not work for you — for a myriad of reasons.

    29. Delegate

    Do what you do best + delegate the rest.

    Don’t feel like you have to be an expert copywriter or marketer. Pay an expert to handle these items for you.

    In the end, you make more money because you have the time to focus on your money-making efforts — whatever that is for you + your blog.

    30. Sometimes You Have To Pay For Good Info (+ To Save Time)

    Let’s say you’re ready to tackle SEO.

    While you’re ready to tackle stuff on your own, pay for good info to get you where you need to be + FAST.

    Can you find free info spread out all over the Internet?

    Sure, but it’s going to take up A LOT of your time to find it. Find the top experts for whatever it is you need and pay for the information products, bootcamps, ecourses, or ebooks they offer.

    They’ve done all the work — compiling all the info for you. Remember, time is money.

    31. Online Is Where It’s At

    Your blog is online.

    Your people are online.

    Find + use online marketing techniques that work for you + your blog.

    32. SEO Is Not As Scary As You Think

    Search engine optimization (SEO) plays a key role in your search engine rankings.

    I took an SEO course so I could do it myself + continuously rank #1 and on the first page of Google for my keywords.

    Especially with great WordPress plugins, you can easily put SEO to work for your blog.

    If you decide to hire an expert, do your homework first + try to find someone that specializes in the niche of your blog.

    33. Share + Tell Before You Sell

    Share info + tell them some expert advice before you start trying to get them to hire you or buy from you.

    If they type over their email address to receive your free checklist, your next email can be an offer for one of your products or services.

    Try to avoid being sales-y right out of the gate; it can be a turnoff.

    34. Expertise + Credibility Mean Something

    I talk a lot about how it is all about them + not about you in your marketing efforts. Your expertise + credibility do mean something, though.

    By combining all of the marketing efforts we’ve been talking about this entire time, you can build your credibility + portray your expertise.

    35. Perspective Is Everything

    Think like your audience, not a blogger.

    When you choose your words or angle for your marketing, think of it from the reader’s point of view.

    Then, present the benefits to them — from their perspective.

    If you build a monthly budget for them, how does this benefit them?

    • Does it save them time?
    • A headache?
    • Money?
    • Allow them to focus on the rest of their life?

    The benefit totally depends on your readers, but always think of how what you do benefits them — + then use that!

    36. Guest Blogging Is Gold

    Showcase your expertise by writing + publishing guest blog posts. Guest blog posts can be a goldmine for building your list + getting in front of readers that you might not otherwise reach.

    The key to publishing guest blog posts is finding the right blogs –it has to be blogs where pools of your ideal audience are swimming + hanging out.

    37. Build A List

    Build a lead list of visitors to your site.

    The quantity of your list isn’t as important as the quality of your list, but building a list is a key element of your online marketing efforts.

    38. Communication Is Key

    As you are building your list, then you have to communicate with your list.

    Set a schedule for communicating with them + let them know how often they can expect to hear from you.

    Once a week or every other week is a good schedule for sending out emails to your list that are rich with JUICY info, tips, advice + news.

    39. It Doesn’t Have To Be Perfect

    It doesn’t have to be perfect. It just has to be out there.

    Your content, website, or any other marketing you do does not do you any good if it is sitting on your computer, where you are the only one that sees it.

    Stop waiting for “perfection” to get it in front of your audience. Just get it in front of them.

    You can always perfect it later.

    Don’t get me wrong. This does not mean to send a hot mess out into the universe, but do get it out into the universe so it can start working for your blog.

    So there you have it. Go forth + prosper.    

    XOXO, Kristie
    Let’s get social
  • Girl Mom Reviews,  Mom Blogger Resources,  Raising Girls

    3 Resources For Personal + Business Life While You Stay At Home

    If you are like me, you are staying home + staying safe. I’m homeschooling my kiddos (but they are on Spring Break this week).I’m working on client projects.

    I am working on earning as many certifications as possible + getting my own website + marketing in order.I want to share 3 resources available to you to help you work on your business during some of your temporary down time. 

    BTW: I have used all 3 of these resources to help me in my personal + business life (even before now).

    1. Stay At Home Bundle: I received a preview of this bundle because it doesn’t technically hit the market until midnight tomorrow (7th) + it’s only selling through the 8th.It’s full of resources for:

    Working From Home
    Kids activities
    Parenting
    Preparation + Organizing


    It is almost $500 worth of resources for $19.97.

    2. Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: In my 7 ways to make money in your wedding business during the Coronavirus article, one of the ways I mentioned is affiliate marketing.Michelle Schroeder has a great course: Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. 

    3. Stupid Simple SEO: Use this time to create search engine optimized blog posts and website pages. This strategy can pay off for you long after your stay at home time.

    Mike Pearson’s Stupid Simple SEO course has all of the information you need to quickly and easily learn SEO + then put it to work for your wedding business. 

    Again, I have used all of these resources so if you have any questions, please let me know!
    Let’s get social
  • Black Friday Deals for Bloggers
    Mom Blogger Resources

    19 Black Friday (+ Cyber Monday) Deals for Bloggers

    It turns out Black Friday isn’t just for getting a bargain on that SmarTV you’ve been eyeing. I came across a TON of Black Friday (+ Cyber Monday) deals for bloggers. It’s deals on everything from legal contracts for your service to blogging courses (+ everything in between).

    Freebies for Bloggers

    1. Start a Money-Making Blog: Ana from the She Approach shares actionable information on how to start a blog that actually makes money.

    2. Blog Plan: Suzi Whitford is one of my favorite mom bloggers. She shares a ton of free information on how to start a blog + run a blog that makes money in her free Blog Plan.

    3. Stupid Simple SEO Bootcamp: Mike Pearson is my all-time favorite SEO expert. His free 5-day course gives you amazing information that works for boosting your search engine rankings. It worked so well for my blogs that I bought his paid course but this one is FREE.

    4. Launch Your Dream Website: BluChic is one of my favorite template designers. They offer a free email course to help you plan, build + launch your dream website.

    5. Affiliate Course + Funnel: Ana from The She Approach offers a free email course on how to set up a successful affiliate marketing strategy + learn how to make a passive income with your blog. 

    6. WP Engine: 5 months FREE on any annual shared plan at WP Engine. USe Coupon Code CYBERWKND30. 

    50% Off Black Friday Deals for Bloggers

    7. Virtual Assistant Content Creation Packages: Save 50% on my monthly retainer packages. Monthly content creation (blog posts, Pinterest pins, social media updates + more starting at $150/month). Use Coupon Code BF19.

    8. Blog Traffic eBook: Ana from The She Approach offers a step-by-step guide to a growing a blog, building an army of loyal readers + getting your blog traffic up to at least 50,000 pageviews. Use Coupon Code BLACK50.

    9. Affiliate Marketing Bundle: Ana from The She Approach offers a step-by-step guide to earning your first $1,000 in affiliate commissions that helps you master every aspect of affiliate marketing that a blogger needs to know. Use Coupon Code BLACK50.

    10. 500+ Affiliates Program MasterlistAna from The She Approach offers a list of 500+ affiliate programs in 17+ niches that can help any blogger find the best + highest paying products available. Use Coupon Code BLACK50.

    11. Pinterest eBookAna from The She Approach offers a step-by-step guide to growing a Pinterest presence + growing your blog traffic by fully automating your pinning schedule. Use Coupon Code BLACK50.

    12. EBook Bestseller BootcampAna from The She Approach offers a step-by-step video course that teaches bloggers how to write, launch + sell their first (or next) bestselling eBook. 

     

    40% Off Black Friday Deals for Bloggers

    13. Custom Website $999 (save $750): Autumn Lane Paperie offers custom website design for just $999.

    Legal Contracts: Your Legal BFF is offering 40% off all of their legal contract templates.

    30% Off Black Friday Deals for Bloggers

    14. WordPress Themes + Design Templates: Bluchic is offering 30% off all of their products, including WordPress themes, Canva templates + more.

    25% Off Black Friday Deals for Bloggers

    15. Custom Logo for $100 (Save $35): Autumn Lane Paperie offers custom logo design for just $100.

    16. Restored316: Restored316 offers website + blog templates. For Black Friday + Cyber Monday, they’re offering 25% off on all their products.

    20% Off Black Friday Deals for Bloggers

    17. Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: If you’re trying to up level your game when it comes to affiliate marketing, check out Michelle Schroeder’s course. I took it + LOVED it. Use Coupon Code BLACKFRIDAY201920.

    18. Blog by Number Course: Suzi Whitford takes you step-by-step in this paint-by-number type course to start, grow + monetize your blog. I took Suzi’s course when I first started blogging + she just updated it so it has all the latest information, strategies + more when it comes to blogging + making money from blogging. Use coupon code BLACKFRIDAY2019.

    19. Blog by Numer eBook: If an eBook is more your style (the eBook is included in the course), check out Suzi Whitford’s eBook on starting a blog, growing it + monetizing it to make money as a blogger.earning video

    Black Friday Deals for Bloggers
    Black Friday Deals for Bloggers
    Black Friday Deals for Bloggers
    XOXO, Kristie
    Let’s get social
  • what new working moms should know
    Mom Blogger Resources

    What New Working Moms Should Know

    One of the biggest challenges of becoming a new mom is figuring out your new role as a working mother. You can make the transition go a lot easier by having a plan to deal with both the logistics + the emotional fallout that this new role in life may bring.

    Here are three primary things that all new working moms need to know:

    1. How to Take Time Off

    Depending on what type of maternity leave package your company offers, you may need to get creative to stretch out your time off from work after baby arrives. Maternity leave is one of the most common uses of short-term disability. According to Darras Law, you can also use long-term disability to help cover the necessary maternity leave period.

    Speak with your human resources staff prior to going on maternity leave to ensure that you understand how to maximize your time off of work while minimizing the disruption to your income + benefits.

    2. Transitioning Back to Work

    Jumping back in to work full-time can be a real challenge. If possible, try transitioning back to work on a part-time basis so that both you + your little one can gradually get used to this change. Talk to your boss about possible work arrangements to make this a reality.

    Possible solutions include working half days for the first few weeks back or spreading your maternity leave out so that you have long weekends as you make the transition back to work.

    Or perhaps you can work from home initially in an effort to help ease the separation. According to Work Options, there are a variety of ways to make this work for both you + your employer.

    3. Leave the Mom Guilt Behind

    According to The List, it is normal to experience a level of guilt upon your return to work. However, it is important to not let these feelings consume you. Remind yourself that you are making the best decision for your family + it is not up to anyone else to decide how you should feel about this.

    Making the most of your time with your child can also help to ease your feelings. It is important to remember that quality time is more meaningful than the quantity of time.

    In the end, it is also critical that you do not neglect your own self-care. As a new mom, make sure you pay extra attention to your new emotional + physical needs. Taking care of yourself + your feelings can help to make this transition a better experience for everyone involved.

    what new working moms should know
    what new working moms should know
    what new working moms should know
    Let’s get social
  • self-care for moms
    Mom Blogger Resources

    Self-Care for Moms

    I remember after having my first daughter, I totally lost myself in motherhood + being a wife. I gave up all the things I loved doing — reading, working out, going out with friends, getting my nails done.

    It was the WORST possible thing I could have done.

    Self-care for a mom is soooooooo important. It goes back to putting your oxygen mask on first before helping your child put on theirs when you’re on an airplane. If mom isn’t breathing then nobody is.

    So, Mama, put on your oxygen mask. It’s going to make you a better mom, person + wife if you take care of yourself first.

    Why Self-Care for Moms Matters

    You’ve probably heard the term “self-care” used a lot lately. It’s become a popular buzzword in the media + in personal development circles. However, you still may be unclear on what it means. While the concept does involve taking care of yourself, it actually goes much deeper. Read on to learn what self-care is, why it matters + how to get started doing it.

    About Self-Care

    Self-care covers a lot of areas with regard to caring for yourself. It involves nurturing your body, mind + spirit. It focuses on building yourself up so that your internal resources don’t become depleted.

    Essentially, self-care is being as good to yourself as you would be to someone you care about. It requires you to show yourself some compassion + encourages you to be vulnerable with others, asking for help you when you need it.

    What doesn’t fall under the umbrella of self-care are self-destructive coping mechanisms such as using drugs, drinking, gambling or retail therapy. These things only make you feel good in the short-term.

    The Benefits of Self-Care

    There are lots of benefits to practicing self-care. Embracing this concept can be difficult for those who’ve always placed emphasis on the welfare of others. However, giving all your energy to those around you without filling your own back up leaves you depleted + empty.

    That’s no way to live.

    Instead, spending time + effort on yourself rejuvenates + energizes you. Taking time to indulge in your own interests demonstrates your worth, leading to improved self-esteem + a more positive outlook on the world. It teaches you a lot about yourself + provides you with insight into what you need to be the best version of yourself.

    Self-care helps you better cope with stress + to prioritize what’s important to you. You’ll be better able to take care of others when you also take time to meet your own needs.

    Examples of Self-Care

    self-care for moms

    There are countless ways to add self-care into your routine. The key is to choose activities that are most enjoyable to you + provide you with the most benefits.

    Going for a walk in nature is great for those who enjoy the outdoors. Other forms of exercise like yoga, running or going to the gym work well, too. Spending time with friends can be rejuvenating, but so can saying no.

    Allowing yourself to decline invitations or favors when you’re feeling run-down is a big part of caring for yourself. Treating yourself to a favorite, affordable indulgence like a movie, manicure or ice cream cone are all good examples. As is taking a bath or meditating. These are just a few of the ways you can easily incorporate self-care into your life.

    Now you know what self-care is + why it’s important. You’ve also got some ideas of how to get started, so you’re well on your way to adding this useful practice to your life.

    Start + End Your Day With A Little Self-Care 

    Like any new habit, adding self-care into your life can seem kind of tricky. You probably wonder how you can find time to do anything extra for yourself, let alone how you can remember to do these things.

    One of the best ways to get started is to build your activities into predictable parts of your day. In order to make something a habit, it has to happen regularly. Keep reading for some tricks to making self-care a routine part of your life.

    Make It Personal

    The first thing that can will help you in creating your self-care rituals is to choose activities that are meaningful to you + that you enjoy. This is your practice, so you want to be sure it’s customized in order to get the most out of it.

    Consider making a list of things that help you to feel relaxed, peaceful, excited or happy. These activities should be able to be done in a short amount of time + easily fit into your life without special equipment or tools. At least as you begin your practice, the things you choose to do should be as simple as possible.

    Fit It In

    You should add your self-care rituals to the most convenient parts of your day. Choose times that are already somewhat flexible so that incorporating something new into that space is less stressful.

    Many people go with morning or evening routines, right when they wake up + before going to sleep each night. Getting up fifteen minutes earlier than usual + setting aside a window during the usual night-time schedule are usually things most folks can do.

    However, designating your daily lunch break as your self-care time might work better for you. Consider activities like writing a gratitude journal entry before bed, listening to music while having your morning coffee or going for a short walk over your lunch hour. It might require trying out self-care activities + times of day to find a moment to call your own.

    Be Flexible

    It’s best to come up with a routine that works for you + stick to it. Committing to a particular schedule can help you create a habit + ensures that you get the self-care you need. However, try to cut yourself some slack.

    Some days are more hectic than others. You may not be able to fit in your anticipated self-care activity + that’s okay. Tomorrow is a new day + you can try again. Soon, you’ll find yourself wanting to take part in these rituals, + getting back on track becomes easy.

    Getting into the practice of regular self-care doesn’t have to be difficult. Making a few adjustments to your existing schedule can free up some space in your day. Choose things that refresh you + that are simple to make getting started a breeze.

    Try Something New Today

    self-care for momsWhile creating habits + adding activities to your calendar help increase your chances of sticking with your new routine. Another way to keep things interesting is to treat yourself to things you’ve always wanted to do.

    Adding new + novel experiences to your self-care routine is like giving yourself a little gift every day. It’s a great way to stay motivated to do things to care for yourself.

    Pamper Yourself

    Taking physical care of yourself in a pampering way makes us feel good. Pampering is a go-to for many people when it comes to their self-care routine. Think of something you’ve never done before. It doesn’t have to be expensive.

    A small act of indulgence can have the same effect as an extravagant one. Maybe consider scheduling a manicure if you’ve never had one. A bubble bath with candles can be soothing if this is something you don’t do very often. If your budget allows, a spa day with a friend can rejuvenate your body + spirit.

    Celebrate Today

    Most of us don’t buy ourselves presents very often or even give ourselves little treats. You can change that starting now. Think of something within your budget you’ve been wanting for a while now.

    Then give yourself permission to buy it. Maybe it’s that snazzy pair of shoes you’ve had your eye on or the cell phone upgrade that would make your life easier. Giving yourself one gift, no matter how small, can be a boost to your self-worth.

    Enjoy the Little Things

    Self-care really doesn’t have to be on a grand scale. The tiniest gestures can be the most meaningful. Indulging in small free or low-cost treats allow you to spoil yourself more often.

    What are some little things you’ve never done for yourself that you can start adding to your life today? Have you ever bought yourself flowers? Give it a try.

    You get a little boost every time you see that beautiful bouquet on your table or desk. Think of your favorite food item, the one you have on special occasions. Why not make one day a week a little more special by trying a new version of it? For example, commit to tasting a new truffle each week at your favorite chocolate shop. Get creative with it.

    Adding new experiences to your self-care routine keeps things interesting + can also help make them more meaningful. Novelty can also expand your world + enrich your life. Plus, it’s just fun!

    Make A List Of 5 Simple Self-Care Routines

    self-care for momsBeneficial habits like self-care often go by the wayside during stressful times. It can be difficult to focus on anything but the bare minimum when life gets hard. The fact is, though, that these are the days when you most need to take care of yourself.

    Keeping a list of self-care routines as part of a self-care toolkit can make it easier for you to implement them when needed. There are some other tricks you can employ to get you through the tough times, too. Keep reading to find out more tricks you can keep up your sleeve.

    Make a List

    Create a list of at least five activities you can easily fit in your life during the most stressful periods. The list is a simple reminder you can keep on-hand + pull out when you need to pick a little something for some self-care.

    These can include super simple reminders like go to bed early so you get enough sleep, eat nourishing food to keep your energy up or ask for help you need it because these are all things you might forget when you’ve got a ton on your plate. During times of trouble, the very basic foundations of self-care can be the most important.

    Make a Care Package

    Another way to focus on self-care during hard times is to prepare a care package ahead of time. This can include some of your favorite little indulgences like a good book, herbal teas, facial mask, fuzzy slippers + classical CD.

    Consider it your own subscription box!

    Include anything that brings you joy. Being able to reach for this package when you’re stressed can mean the world + make a huge difference to your outlook.

    Enlist Your Crew

    When things look bleak, you may require a bit of help to get back on track. That’s why it’s a good idea to reach out to trusted friends + family now to enlist their help for the future. Talk to your closest confidantes to ask for their encouragement with your self-care routine.

    Share with them the benefits it’s provided you + tell them you’d appreciate their assistance if they see you aren’t caring for yourself as well as you should be. Sometimes those who know us best can see things we don’t. When your crew knows to look out for you in this regard, they can reinforce your self-care needs during times of stress.

    Taking steps to plan now can make maintaining your self-care routine easier in the future. Always remember it’s during the hardest times that you need to nurture yourself the most.

    Self-Care Doesn’t Have To Cost Anything

    Lots of people get the wrong idea about self-care. They think they have to be deserving of it. They feel like it’s splurging to do something good for yourself. It can seem extravagant.

    I’d like to change that mindset today.

    Self-care is something you deserve. Everyone does. It benefits us all, along with those around us, when we put our own well-being at the forefront. You can’t take care of others when your own well-being is suffering. Let’s take a look at some free + low-cost ways you can care for yourself.

    Take a Time Out

    Sometimes just a little bit of alone time is all you need to feel rejuvenated. So why not give yourself a time out? Lock yourself in your room with a nice cup of tea. Listen to some quiet music. Just sit still + let your mind wander for a bit. It’s a luxury we all can afford.

    Waste Some Time

    We often feel pressured to be productive all the time. Being busy is a sign of worth + accomplishment. However, it really doesn’t have to be that way.

    Just kicking back + doing nothing is important to recharging our batteries. Let yourself have some down time to do something frivolous like binge your favorite Netflix show, take a nap or just sit + pet your cat. You deserve it.

    Do Some Writing

    Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, journaling can be a very therapeutic activity. Jotting down what you’re grateful for has been proven to be beneficial to well-being.

    It can also be energizing to simply do a brain dump in which you write down all the things that are floating around in your head. Jotting down dreams for the future might inspire + motivate you to take action. Give it a try.

    Reach Out to Someone

    Socializing is a crucial part of self-care. Even introverts benefit from interpersonal connection. Humans aren’t meant to be isolated.

    Pick up the phone to call a friend you haven’t talked to in a while. Sit down to Skype with your favorite Internet pal. Meeting up in person for a walk together or a cup of coffee is even better. Connecting to others might just provide the spark you’ve been missing.

    Change Your Perspective

    A change of scenery can be a wonderful source of renewal + it doesn’t have to be an expensive trip, either. Just heading out to walk in your neighborhood might help when you’re feeling stir-crazy in your home. If you’re able to afford it, a low-cost staycation to a nearby location for a day or two is a fun way to switch things up. It’s surprising what this change of perspective can do for you.

    While these are just a few of the countless ways you can indulge in self-care without spending much money, perhaps they’re just the jumpstart you need to begin exploring this concept. You truly do deserve to spend time, energy + effort on your own well-being.

    Don’t Feel Guilty For Practicing Self-Care

    Mom guilt — it’s probably the #1 reason moms don’t indulge in some self-care now + then. Maybe you feel guilty for spending time + resources on yourself.

    It’s actually good for those you love when you take care of yourself. You truly can’t fill another’s cup if your own is empty. So, I’d like to take this opportunity to emphasize why you shouldn’t feel any mom guilt for practicing self-care + encourage you to do so in every area of your life.

    It’s Not Selfish

    Taking time to care for yourself is not selfish in any way. It may be hard to get past the mindset that the needs of others are more important than your own, but overcoming this mindset is essential to allowing yourself to adequately meet your own needs.

    Care isn’t a zero-sum concept. When you care for yourself, it doesn’t have to mean you don’t care about others.

    It’s Necessary

    Self-care isn’t a luxury; it’s a necessity. It really is like the airplane air mask comparison. You have to ensure you can breathe before you can help those around you. If you’re tired, rundown + overwhelmed all the time, you absolutely cannot give your best self to your kids, your spouse, or anyone else. You also can’t offer yourself the very best. Remember that self-care isn’t selfish.

    It Sets a Good Example

    Investing in self-care for moms is not only good for you, but it sets a good example for your kids + for those around you. In order for a stigma to end, it has to be normalized. When more of us let the world around us know why self-care matters, they may begin to change their minds about the concept, as well.

    It Demands Respect

    It also sets a precedent for how you expect others to treat you. When you demonstrate that you value yourself + that you find worth in investing time in yourself, others will respond in kind. Learning to say no + set boundaries is good for your relationships. It teaches others how you expect to be treated + makes it clear that you see yourself as a priority. There’s no reason to feel guilty for that.

    With practice, you can come to see the benefits of self-care and that it doesn’t have to be something that causes guilt.

    Tips To Continue To Take Care Of Yourself

    Self-care is a process. It requires practice + dedication if you want to make it stick. Don’t get discouraged if it takes time to make this new concept a part of your life. It’ll get easier, and you’ll probably find yourself craving your self-care activities so much you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them.

    However, there will inevitably be times that are busier or more stressful when self-care may go by the wayside. If you find that happening, be sure to follow these tips to continue to take care of yourself going forward.

    Follow Your Gut

    Sometimes we get so busy that we find ourselves living on auto-pilot. That’s only natural during hectic times, but it’s critical that you make an attempt to listen to your instincts during these times to know whether you’re in need of a boost.

    When you start to feel especially frazzled or fatigued, it’s your body + mind telling you that you need a break. Listen to these clues. Look for other unusual signs that things are off balance with you such as irritability, eating poorly, losing sleep or indulging in bad habits. These things are telling you to take care of yourself.

    When I feel especially frazzled (usually from being with my three kiddos 24/7), my husband always tells me to go do something out of the house. Whether it’s girls night out, heading out to read a book or get a manicure + pedicure, I always come back a much better person, wife + mother.

    Sometimes it is only a 10-minute or an hour break but this small time to give something to myself is priceless + it is just enough to calm me down + make me come back refreshed + ready.

    I’ve also started regular self-care with:

    • Book club for moms (We read a book a month but we really just meet up for dinner + drinks rather than a book discussion)
    • Bunco group
    • Professional mani-pedi once a quarter (paint my own in between appointments)
    • Spa day once a year courtesy of my hubs

    Schedule It In

    A trick that helps some people to fit self-care into their schedules when life gets busy is to actually write it in their date book or calendar. Treat your self-care commitments like any other appointment or event. Write down the time your self-care “appointment starts + finishes.

    Try to be specific about the activity you’re going to engage in. Doing these things increases the odds that you actually follow through. It’s easy to put yourself on the back burner when life gets crazy, but don’t forget that these are the times you need self-care the most.

    One final word. Take time to assess your self-care needs regularly. This can help you stay on track. Ask yourself once a week or so if you’re giving yourself enough time + attention. Listen to your instincts. Make adjustments as necessary. Self-care is an ongoing + evolving process that requires your constant attention.

    self-care for moms
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  • Mom Blogger Resources

    How to SEO a Blog

    Bloggin’ + Mommin’ ain’t easy. Every Mama knows that search engine optimization (affectionately known as SEO) is the key to getting blog posts to rank in search engines like Google.

    The challenge is how to SEO a blog without hiring an expert that costs the big bucks or that you find the process of optimizing a blog post so complex that you give up before you even start.

    I’ve been blogging full-time since 2008 + I have searched for an SEO expert for almost as long. I knew all that time how important SEO is to a blog + I taught myself some things here + there.

    Just this year, I FINALLY found an SEO expert that is an SEO GENIUS, Mike Pearson of Stupid Simple SEO.

    I took his free course + loved it so much that I immediately enrolled in his paid course. I lucked out that it was open for enrollment because it’s only open a few times per year. Enrollment is opening again August 12-16. If you miss it or just want to test Mike out first, you can also register for his free SEO course.

    I am not going to go over all of the steps Mike covers on how to SEO a blog but I am going to share how to SEO a blog so you can rank your blog posts the easiest way possible.

    How to Learn SEO for Bloggers

    The first step in how to SEO a blog is to figure out the keyword (or at least the blog idea you’re going to write about). This post focuses on the SEO part of writing a blog post. If you are looking for a course on SEO to do keyword research, check out Stupid Simple SEO. His approach to finding keywords is so simple + it is far less complex than any other “expert” I have turned to in the past to learn SEO.

    Once you have the keyword you want to target, here’s how you set up the post SEO on WordPress.

    First, install the WordPress plugin WordPress SEO by Team Yoast.

    Once you have the plugin installed, the SEO information you need to fill in each time automatically shows on each page + post of your blog.

    You’re going to want to complete these steps for each page or post on your blog. When you’re on the post or page you’re SEOing, scroll down to the bottom to the section that says Yoast SEO.

    Start by filling in the keyword in the Focus Keyword box. You can edit the title of the post + the meta description by clicking on the Edit Snippet button. The title + meta description should include the keyword.

    In reality, the meta description doesn’t really have anything to do with SEO for search engines but it is the description that people searching for the keyword see (+ presumably read) in the search engine rankings. It is more likely these searches are going to click on your link if the meta description contains the keyword they were using to search. SEO for Wedding Planners Meta Description

    You also want to include the keyword in the main body copy of the post a few times, in the permalink of the post (this is the URL of the post) + at least one sub-header (h2) in the post.

    You can give your EO a boost by using the keyword in the graphics or pictures you include in the post.

    Check SEO for a Blog

    Once you save the draft of the post or update it, check on the analysis section. You do not need a green light for all of the lines + you do not need the SEO check to be green in order for you to be good to go.

    SEO for Wedding Planners SEO Chec

    Your goal is to have a green light for:

    • Not previously using this keyword (You don’t want to compete with yourself for Google ranking)
    • That the keyphrase is in the meta description
    • Text length (how many words is in the post)
    • Keyphrase is in the slug (URL)
    • The post includes outbound + inbound links

    All of these are important for SEO. Check each of these lines to see what color light you have. If it is anything but green, make changes one thing at a time until you get a green dot. Then, move on to the next line. You do not need a green light for every single item in Yoast for your SEO to be good.

    Do Your Homework on How to SEO a Blog

    Before you start batch writing blog posts + before you start updating old posts to SEO them, make sure you fully understand the types of readers you’re trying to attract to your blog. Think about it. How can you write blog posts they are searching for if you don’t know who you’re writing for in the first place. 

    SEO Tools for Bloggers

    You can use free tools like Keyword Planner from Google (you have to have a Google account to use this free tool) or paid options like SEMRush or Ahrefs to help you find the keywords people are using to search for the information you’re providing. This is the foundation for creating content your visitors want to read + that they can find because you’re using keywords that helps it rank higher in the search engines.  It’s a win-win.

    How to SEO a Blog Using Long Tail Keywords

    Simply put, a long tail keyword is a more specific keyword. For example, the term “mom blogger” is a highly competitive keyword. In the Google search below, you can see that 14,800 searches a month are for mom blogs. A longtail keyword that is less competitive, but still competitive is “working mom blogs” or “mom lifestyle blogs.” You can see that 880 searches a month are for “working mom blogs” + 320 searches a month are for “mom lifestyle blogs.”

    Place Keywords Carefully

    Formatting + SEO go hand in hand. When you’re formatting website copy or a blog post, make sure you use your keyword in the headline (H1) + in a sub-headline (H2). 

    For example if you’re trying to rank for “best wedding planner in New York City,” then include this keyword phrase in your h1 (Headline) +  at least one h2 (sub-headline). This way, you spread out the SEO juice across the page in all the right places.  

    Include it at least 3 times in the body copy of the post. You can include it more times in longer posts but there is no need to go overboard. You can leverage SEO to make it easier to rank a blog in the search engines. If you want all of the details laid out as simple as possible, check out Stupid Simple SEO. Remember, it is open for enrollment August 12-16. 

    XOXO, Kristie
    How to SEO a Blog
    How to SEO a Blog
    How to SEO a Blog
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  • writing website copy
    Mom Blogger Resources

    Writing Copy Stinks

    Writing copy + content is the most time-consuming part of marketing a blog or online business.

    It’s also one of the most important pieces.

    So when it comes to writing website copy or content, you have to work at it. You have to practice it.  

    I was offering website copy reviews for a long time but I took a break. I did one again recently for a loyal subscriber, Nancy.

      
    After reviewing her copy + content + providing feedback to her, I realized that bloggers like Nancy don’t necessarily need a copywriter like me to write their website copy or blog posts from scratch but they do need more than just feedback on how to write it.

    Bloggers like you + like Nancy need a copy or content re-write.

    So here I am offering copy + content re-writes.

    Copy or Content Re-Write

    You already have website copy or a blog post. You don’t need a copywriter like me to write it from scratch but you do need a re-write. I edit, re-write + revise one page of your website copy or one blog post (up to 1,000 words).

    If you have more than one page or more than one blog post you want a re-write for you can change the quantity during checkout.

    $75.00

    I can help your website copy or blog post stand out + make it really compelling.

    Sign up for a copy or content re-write with me. It’s only $75.

    If you want more compelling website copy or blog posts, register for a re-write.

    XOXO, Kristie
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  • Mom Blogger Resources

    How to Write an eBook to Make Money

    If you’re like most moms + bloggers, you’re probably on the hunt for other sources of income, beyond 1:1 client work or ad income. 

    Writing + selling an eBook can be that additional stream of income (+ a lucrative one at that).

    My friend Ana over at The She Approach is opening her eBook Bestseller Bootcamp. She starts by answering the question:

    Is there any real money to be made by creating + selling eBooks?

    If you sell a $200 online course, you only need 3 sales to make $600. But you need to sell 20 eBooks at $30 apiece to make the same amount of money.

    So wouldn’t it be more profitable to just create courses instead of eBooks?

    The math makes sense. But what people fail to consider is how much harder it is to make a $200 sale than it is to make a $30 sale. (Not to mention the cost of creating/hosting a course vs. creating an eBook. Spoiler alert: it’s nearly triple! Take it from someone who’s done both.)

    But enough with the hypothetical. Ana shares with you exactly how much money she makes with her eBooks, to show you what’s possible if you enroll in her Ebook Bestseller Bootcamp.

    How much money Ana made selling eBooks:

    • In May of 2017, she launched her first eBook. By the end of the year, she earned $3,504.05 with her digital products. 
    • In 2018, she made $11,512.79 out of which $8,099.72 were eBook sales alone. 

    What changed? She got better at launching a digital product, at selling it throughout the year (+ not just during the launch), at marketing it + at working with affiliates. Ana also launched a new eBook.

    Her audience grew as well + people began to trust her expertise more, but Ana believes that her sales skyrocketed because she improved her skills + process. 

    She’s including everything she learned in her signature course, Ebook Bestseller Bootcamp. Because when you know what you’re doing + you have a plan, your earnings show it! 

    It’s not too late! If you enroll before Monday, July 29th, you also receive Ana’s best selling eBook ever – her Pinterest eBook – for free! 

    • In the first 6 months of 2019 alone, Ana has already reached $15,000 in sales. ($14,964.16 to be exact)

    That’s an estimated revenue of $30k this year. All she did was launch 2 more digital products (including a $3.99 Amazon eBook) + used the same exact launch + marketing strategy that she teaches step by step in EBB. 

    Ana’s email list is under 10,000 people so you DON’T need a huge audience to make real money with eBooks

    Don’t forget that if you enroll before Monday, July 29th, you also get a free copy of Ana’s Pinterest eBook, that’s going to help you send more traffic to your sales page + blog.

    Here are a few of the lessons Ana covers in EBB:

    • How to come up with an eBook idea that sells
    • Choosing the best platform to publish your eBook
    • Formatting + designing your eBook to meet the Amazon KDP requirements
    • Creating an eBook cover that stands out
    • Self-publishing your eBook – a step-by-step guide
    • How to create a launch calendar + strategy
    • How to work with collaborators to increase your eBook sales 
    • Email Marketing 101 for eBook authors – growing + using your email list to make sales, without coming across as salesy

    >> YES, I WANT TO LEARN ALL OF THAT <<

    Use the secret code “EBB20OFF” to get $20 off when you pay in full. 

     Skipped to the end?

    • Doors for Ana at The She Approach’s signature course Ebook Bestseller Bootcamp are officially open! 
    • And if you enroll before Monday, you get a free copy of her Pinterest eBook on top of the 30 lessons + $500 worth of bonuses included in EBB.
    • On August 8th the price goes up to $197, so you save an additional $50 if you enroll before then!
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  • Resources + Recommendations for Mommin' + Bloggin'
    Girl Mom Reviews,  Mom Blogger Resources,  Raising Girls

    Resources + Recommendations for Mommin’ + Bloggin’

    I started bloggin’ waaaaaayyyyy back in 2001 (not full-time until 2008). I started mommin’ in 2013 when my first daughter was born.

    Over the years, some things have stayed the same + other things have completely changed.

    I’ve tried a lot of resources, courses + apps for bloggin’ + mommin’. I’ve compiled a pretty comprehensive list of these resources that I recommend for bloggers + moms to use.

    Check ’em out. You can find everything you need from things to pamper yourself as a mom to Pinterest courses to take you blog to the next level. 

    Mommy Swag

    Mommy Mailbox: I might have a small obsession with subscription boxes. I think it has something to do with the fact that this box shows up at my door full of surprises. I have them for my kids + I found one just for me! Mommy Mailbox is a subscription box just for moms. It comes with 5-6 surprise products each month that retail for $55-$85. Subscriptions start as low as $33.95. I love Mommy Mailbox + you will too!

    Stitch Fix: I don’t have the time or energy to shop for + try on clothes for me but I do like to look nice when I go on a date with my husband, play bunco with the ladies or go to book club with my mom book club. Stitch Fix sends me a box full of clothes + accessories. I try it on, pick what I want to keep + send back the rest. I usually buy the ENTIRE box, which might show how much I love Stitch Fix + so will you! (HINT: They have men + kids’ boxes too!). You can also save $25 on your first box!

    Stella & Dot: I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to accessorize. Seriously, a necklace, bracelet, ring or pair of earrings can really make an outfit pop. Stella & Dot allows me to accessorize without making me cringe at the price tag. Most of the pieces are classic but stylish so they are pieces that can I use for years to come. Get your accessories, Mama!

    Activities + Gifts for Kids

    Little Passports: This subscription box is great for kids from toddlers to about age 12. Little Passports is a monthly subscription box that kiddos get super excited about receiving monthly. There are different versions (travel, science, US edition, etc.) you can choose from. Beyond the fun activities inside the box, I love that you can order by age so that the activities are age appropriate. Give the gift of adventure your kids with Little Passports.

    Green Kid Crafts: Green Kid Crafts is another kids’ subscription box that has activities + crafts that focus on being creative but in ways that are friendly to the environment. They also focus on STEAM so it can help your kiddos academically while they are having a great time. If you’re looking for fun + creative ways for your kids to learn, check out Green Kid Crafts.

    Meal Prep + Planning

    My FreezEasy Meals: I am a huge fan of saving time in the kitchen, saving money + saving my sanity when dinner time rolls around. Freezer meals do it for me. I can spend some time prepping meals, freeze them + pull them out when I need to feed my family (They insist on eating EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.) Starting May 1, you can join 100 Days of Summer Freezer Meals so you can spend more time in the sun + less time in the kitchen during the summer!

    Healthy Meal Planning Bundle: I try to cook at home rather than eat out so I am always on the hunt for meal plans + recipes that are healthy, yummy + that my girls will actually eat [insert eye roll here]. Did I mention that I want those recipes + meals to be quick + easy? Yup, that’s why I love the Healthy Meal Planning Bundle. It has everything I need in one place. You can even instantly download a free sample. Check it out for yo’self now.

    Instacart: Shopping for my weekly groceries with Instacart — life changing! Dragging 1-3 kids through a grocery store (or really any store) is not my idea of a good time. I can shop from my phone. I can shop from different stores + it all gets brought to me at the same time. I am an express member so the service fees + delivery fees are waived. I suggest giving Instacart a try. You can save $10 on your trial!

    Mom Blog

    Stupid Simple SEO: Most SEO experts tell you to brainstorm the keywords you think your audience is searching for + then find out how competitive these keywords are. Blah, blah, blah.

    Mike comes at it from a different (+ mind-blowing) angle. He has a 5-day email course that is free + a paid course — Stupid Simple SEO that is ah-mazing. It’s only up a few times a year but it is open now until Friday, May 17 @midnight PST.

    The Blog Plan: Suzi from Start a Mom Blog offers a 12-month planner for your blog FREE. I printed three sets (one for each of my blogs). You can instantly download it + start planning right away + it does not cost you a dime. BONUS: It’s pretty. There’s that whole saying if you fail to plan you plan to fail. Yes, that applies here so download the FREE blog planner NOW.

    Start a Mom Blog Ebook: If you’re not ready to spend money on Suzi’s Blog By Number Course then you can invest in her book for less money. It’s a scaled back version of the course but is still full with information on how to start + run your blog. Check out the ebook now.

    Start a Mom Blog Course: I took this course, Blog By Number, with Suzi from Start a Mom Blog. Not only is Suzi an amazing source of information but she is nice (+ lives in FL, which is where I’m from so there’s that). Her course walks you step-by-by through the process of setting up your blog, writing blog posts, promoting the posts, etc. It’s super comprehensive + she sells it at an affordable price. I refer back to the course often! I highly recommend you check it out. BONUS: If you register for the course with my link, send me the receipt + I’ll email you a FREE copy of my Mommy Business Blogging eBook ($27 value).

    75 Productivity Tips eBook: I started working at home waaaaayyy before I had kids. Somehow after the kids came, though, I seemed to lose my sense of time management + productivity. Then I found this FREE ebook of 75 Productivity Tips. Whether you are a working mom, WAHM, or a mom, these 75 tips can help you be more productive on the daily! Download the free 75 productivity tips now.

    SiteGround: I had my domain name, hosting + email accounts with BlueHost. After a MAJOR problem with them, I searched for + found SiteGround. I find them to be affordable + to offer all the services I need to run my business online. WordPress hosting is not a problem + they offer good customer service when (+ if ) you need it. I highly recommend checking them out if you are starting a website or blog or looking to move from your existing host. 
    BONUS: If you buy a hosting plan with my link, send me the receipt + I’ll email you a FREE copy of my Mommy Business Blogging eBook ($27 value).

    NameCheap: If you need to buy your domain name, I suggest NameCheap. I buy all of my domain names from NameCheap. As their name suggests, the domain names tend to be less expensive than other places + I tend to keep my hosting + domain names at separate companies.

    Grammarly: Sometimes you need a second set of eyes on the copy and content you write. Grammarly offers proofreading tools to help you catch misspellings + grammar mistakes. Grammarly also helps you to become a better writer overall by making suggestions on how to structure your sentences + paragraphs so it is easier for your visitors to read + easier for your readers to make a connection with you + your business.

    Pinterest Ninja: I’ve had a tremendous amount of success using Pinterest for my blog. In fact, it’s the #1 source of traffic to my blog. I decided I need to really focus on Pinterest so I bought + read through Pinterest Ninja. I’ve been working back through it to implement the strategies. Since using the strategies I had TWO pins go viral within HOURS of pinning them!

    Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing: I have dabbled in affiliate marketing over the years, but then I decided to get serious about it. I heard a lot about Michelle’s course Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. I researched it online. I talked with other bloggers that had taken the course + then I invested in it. I devoured the entire course in one sitting in one night while I was reading in bed. I went back later module by module to implement the strategies, tools + advice that Michelle gives in the course. Check out Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing + save big now. BONUS: If you register for the course with my link, send me the receipt + I’ll email you a FREE copy of my Mommy Business Blogging eBook ($27 value).

    Email List Building

    Milotree: Milotree offers a pop-up that allows you to grow your social media followers on networks such as Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube + Facebook. As a BONUS, it also allows you to grow your email list so it is a pop-service that combines growing your following via email + on all your social media networks.

    Sumo: I’ve been using Sumo as part of my list building for quite some time now. Some big names that you probably recognize use it, too (AirBNB, theChive, Tony Robbins, Tim Ferriss). Sumo is a suite of tools that help automate your business’s growth. What I love about this tool is it is something that is used by some of the biggest sites on the Internet but is also easy to use + accessible for people like me and you.

    Mailerlite: I use + highly recommend Mailerlite. It’s a free (or low-cost option) + easy service that allows you to manage your email list AND build + send e-newsletters + email blasts that look like a pro did it. Save $20 if you go with a paid plan.

    Building a Blog/Website

    BlueChic: This is one of my fave places to buy feminine website templates. BluChic offers WordPress templates that are perfect for any business + this includes a wedding business. I also find their templates to be super affordable, easy to install + simple to personalize + customize to fit your mommy blog or business. BluChic also offers other types of templates so check them out to help you create your online brand + presence. BONUS: If you buy a template with my link, send me the receipt + I’ll email you a FREE copy of my Mommy Business Blogging eBook ($27 value).

    A Prettier Web: If you’re building a WordPress website for your mommy blog or business or you’re looking to change the theme, but can’t afford to hire a designer to customize it quite yet, check out the WordPress themes from A Prettier Web. BONUS: If you buy a template with my link, send me the receipt + I’ll email you a FREE copy of my Mommy Business Blogging eBook ($27 value).

    Restored 316: Restored 316 offers a variety of feminine WordPress themes, which is perfect for mommy bloggers or businesses. All of the themes are pretty affordable. If you’re looking for a custom design, Restored 316 offers custom site-building too. 
    BONUS: If you buy a template with my link, send me the receipt + I’ll email you a FREE copy of my Mommy Business Blogging eBook ($27 value).

    WPBeaverBuilder: If you have a WordPress site or are starting to build a WordPress site then WPBeaverBuilder is a great tool for taking complete control of your website pages + design. It has WordPress page templates but you can also EASILY modify the page design so your site looks + works EXACTLY how you want it to! BONUS: If you invest in Beaver Builder with my link, send me the receipt + I’ll email you a FREE copy of my Mommy Business Blogging eBook ($27 value).

    Social Media

    Tailwind: Tailwind is a scheduler for your Pinterest pins. In fact, it is the ONLY scheduler for Pinterest. Pinterest + Tailwind are good buddies. I use Tailwind + I LOVE it. If you use my link, you get your first month of Tailwind for FREE + SAVE $15. If you’re not using Pinterest, start using it now. Pinterest is the second largest search engine (second only to Google).

    Milotree: Milotree offers a pop-up that allows you to grow your social media followers on networks such as Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube + Facebook. As a BONUS, it also allows you to grow your email list so it is a pop-service that combines growing your following via email + on all your social media networks.

    Recurpost: I am in L-O-V-E with Recurpost. It is a social media management tool like no other. Not only can you schedule your social media updates, but it puts your social media updates on autopilot (autopilot on steroids). You see, Recurpost stores your content in categories. You can create a schedule of your categories. Recurpost chooses content from your content library to share from the appropriate category (So you upload content one time and Recurpost uses it over and over again). You can also schedule updates for one-time use. Recurpost is my crush. You can open a FREE account or use a paid plan.

    Buffer: Buffer is a social media scheduling tool. You can add your social media accounts, create an update one time, and send it out into the social media universe. The main difference between Buffer and Hootsuite is that Buffer does not allow you to monitor other people’s updates from your social media accounts (Hootsuite does). (HINT: If you’re solely looking for a tool to push updates out, then I like Buffer better.) Try Buffer FREE for 14 days.

    Loomly: Loomly is a social media scheduler that helps you put your posting on autopilot. It also provides advanced analytics so you can measure how your posts are performing. You can try Loomly for 15 days FREE, no credit card, no obligation.

    Instagram: Alex Tooby is THE Instagram expert. She offers two courses to help you take your Instagram from ho-hum to wow. Her courses are Infamous to Influentialand Hashtag Hero. Check one or both out if you are looking to up your Instagram game.

    Stock Photos

    SC Stockshop: Mamas are always oooooo-ing and ahhhhhh-ing over my photos that I use for my blog posts, social media updates + Pinterest. SC Stockshop is one of the stock photo shops I use. If you want to pretty up your website, blog, or Instagram feed, check them out. Get 20 FREE styled stock images instantly.

    Oh Tilly: Gorgeous stock photos are so hard to find! I refuse to pay for photos, but want them to look great as part of my blog posts or my teaser banners, or whatever! Oh Tilly is a great resource, with fab photos, and it’s free. Register on the site + she delivers FREE + FAB stock photos to you on a pretty regular basis. Sock away those photos + when you need one for something, start looking at the pics you have on hand. Download the ones you need, when you need them. She also has a paid plan. Grab 15 FREE photos today!

    Design Tools

    PicMonkey: I love this monkey! (Maybe I just like monkeys in general because I’m a MailChimp fan too.) I use PicMonkey to create my own “teaser” photos, banners, etc. You can edit a photo online, add text + add other embellishments. Again, you don’t have to be a design genius to figure this stuff out, but it can help you look like a genius when it comes to promoting your business.

    Canva: Canva has some free pro layouts for various types of promos. Some are Instagram posts, PDF docs, FB cover photos, Twitter profile backgrounds + more. It offers some free layouts + embellishments + some are paid (I think they are like $1 for each one you use). Awesome way to create professional looking, well…almost anything.

    Kids Party Supplies

    Minted: I love minted birth announcements, stationery, kids’ birthday invitations + other invitation options. Minted offers one-of-a-kind type designs by independent artists. As a freelance writer + blogger, I love to be able to support other freelancers. Check out these designs by independent designers today.

    Kids Clothes

    Kids on 45th: With three girls, we have a need for a lot of clothes. I was shopping consignment sales to pick up (mostly) name brand stuff at bargain prices but how exhausting (+ sometimes annoying–you know with all the other people?)! Then, I found Kids on 45th. They ship the gently used (+sometimes new) clothes we need right to our doorstep for cheap + I don’t have to step foot in a store or a dressing room with all three girls. Try it out + save $10!

    Babies

    Honest Co. Diapers + Wipes Bundle: Diapers with adorable designs that I get to choose show up at my door along with 4 packs of wipes. The diapers + wipes are organic/natural/water-based so are good for my baby + good for the environment. AND I always have diapers + wipes on hand without having to go to the store to get them! Check out Honest Co. diapers + wipes bundle. Start your FREE trial of the subscriptions service.

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  • blogging mistakes
    Mom Blogger Resources

    The 5 Biggest Blogging Mistakes + Lessons Learned

    I started writing blog posts for clients full-time way back in 2008. After this, I started my own blogs, along with writing for clients. 

    I would LOVE to say that I did everything right + made a bunch of money right out of the gate, but that’s just not true.

    While I did do a lot of things right, I also made a bunch of mistakes. The important thing is that I learned from those mistakes + used what I learned to make all of my blogs better as well.

    So here are some of the biggest blogging mistakes I made at the beginning + the lessons I learned.

    1. Not Having a Professionally Designed Site

    Bluchic WordPress Themes

    It is so easy these days to put up a website. There are some free templates on WordPress + Square Space, even Wix. I use WordPress so I was using a free template for my website + blog.

    The problem with this is that the template never truly represented my brand + my business (even though I could customize colors + fonts — to an extent). It didn’t function the way I needed it to, either, which was a big problem.

    When I started using a Premium WordPress Template + then later had a designer custom design a site for me, it made a world of difference for me, my brand + my business. 

    If I had to do it again, at a minimum, I would have bought a Premium WordPress Theme + then had the company customize it to fit my needs.

    2. Not Investing in Education

    I was the Queen of why would I pay $297 (or whatever the price was) to learn this stuff when I Google here + Google there + spend the rest of my life until I retire finding all of the info I need?

    Yeah, not smart at all.

    I learned that being cheap was really expensive.

    I wasted a lot of time, which cost me a lot of money.

    Once I realized what a HUGE mistake I was making, I took courses like:

    OMG…tons + tons of expert information, tips, tricks, advice…everything I needed to truly take my blog + business to the next level — all in one place.

    Seriously. I don’t know what I was waiting for or why I wasted so much time. 

    3. Choosing the Wrong Host

    I started out with GoDaddy + had a good run with them. Then, the bottom fell out.

    I switched to Bluehost + it was a disaster.

    I switched to Siteground several years ago + I’ve never looked back. Pretty much 100% uptime, superior customer service, yeah, great. 

    4. Trying To Do It All Myself

    Another HUGE mistake I made was trying to do it all myself. Not only when it came time to learn but also just trying to keep up with the amount of things I had to do to keep the blog running. 

    I started outsourcing + quick. OK…not so quick because I kept telling myself that I couldn’t afford to pay someone else to do “the things” for me (PLUS, I might be a teeny-tiny-weenie bit of a control freak.).

    Similar to education, though, I realized that I was LOSING a ton of money by focusing on the tasks that weren’t actually making me money. 

    I hired a VA to take care of these tasks + now I focus almost solely on writing content.

    5. Choosing to Be a Generalist

    For years + years + years, I wrote for any industry that would hire + pay me to write for them. 

    The day I started writing for one niche, my business increased instead of decreased.

    I made more money because I became a specialist instead of a generalist. 

    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, learn from all of my blogging mistakes so you don’t make the same ones, too!

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