HOW I REACHED 10,000 MONTHLY BLOG VIEWS

Tuesday

This post contains affiliate links so I will earn a small commission when you buy through these links. Please see my disclaimer for more information. 

As a lot of you may know, I have been blogging on and off for over 4 years. It was kind of just a hobby for me as and when I felt like it, and it wasn't until the coronavirus lockdown until I started blogging regularly. After regular blogging since April 2020 and putting in more hard work, I am proud to announce that I received 10,700 blog views for July 2020. This is a massive success for me since in April, I had just over 1000 blog views for the month. Thank you so much to everyone who has been reading and supporting my blog over the last few months.


Celebration balloons


How did I achieve this?


I still wouldn't call myself an expert when it comes to blogging and I know that there are people out there with a lot more views than this. I am still always trying to learn more about it, but I'd just like to share with you how I got to 10k monthly views in the hope that I could help some current or aspiring bloggers.


Sharing my blog everywhere


After writing and publishing a blog post, I would promote it over every social media channel. I will create an Instagram story of the post, prompting people to click the link in my bio to see my blog. I will also share the blog on my Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and sometimes LinkedIn if it's relevant to my audience on there.


Twitter


The main source of my blog traffic comes from Twitter. I will share 3 blog posts a day on Twitter, including new ones and old ones. I schedule these posts using Buffer. Make sure to tag in retweet accounts when tweeting blog posts as the blogs will be retweeted and will reach more people.


Here are some of the blog post retweet accounts I tag:

  • @bournemouthbloggers and @sotonbloggers - make sure you use your local equivalent of this if there is an account for it. 
  • @bloggerstribe
  • @cosyblogclub
  • @BloggersHut
  • @theclique_uk

On Twitter, there are also daily blog post engagement threads that you can add your blog posts to. Post your blog on these threads and be sure to interact with other creators and comment on other blogs. I use threads from the following Twitter accounts:
  • @GoldenBloggerz
  • @unpredictedpage
  • @_kayleighzara
  • @cosyblogclub
  • @theclique_uk
  • @BloggerDreamsRT
  • @TRJForBloggers
  • @BloggersHut
  • @LaurenyLoves

Pinterest

I only started using Pinterest a few months ago and I am still learning lots about it, so I am by no means an expert. I managed to get my monthly unique viewers on there up quite rapidly but the clicks through to your blog is the main thing. Some people get most of their blog traffic from Pinterest so it's worth using for your blog.

Basically, you just need to create lots of pins for each of your blog posts to promote it on there. There are lots of useful guides out there about using Pinterest to attract traffic to your blog, I am still getting to grips with it at the moment but I managed to get over 100 views from Pinterest in July so it was a good addition.

Advice if you are starting a blog

If you are new to blogging, I would just say set aside some time to promote your blog as well as writing it. Consistency was the key to reaching my goals for me so just try and give yourself a routine.


I haven't spent lots of money on my blog and don't think you need to in order to be successful, it's just your personal preference in how you'd like to invest in it. Also, spend time trying to grow your social media too as the more followers you have on there, the more members of the potential audience you will reach by sharing it on there.

Once again, I'd like to say I'm not an expert and I am still learning about blogging every day. Let me know if you have any blogging tips that I've missed out, I'd love to know how you promote your blog!

Wool of the King

MOVING AWAY FROM HOME - AN INTERVIEW

Friday

This post is an interview with Robyn Moss, third year Psychology student at the University of Lincoln. Before her degree, Robyn was living in Salisbury, Wiltshire, but decided to move 3 and half hours away to Lincoln for university. Read on to learn about her experience of moving away from home.

1. Why did you want to move far from home?


Originally, I wanted to move far from home for university to have a fresh start and push myself to be independent, not having the option to easily escape my problems and go back home. Of course, I also wanted to reinvent myself and explore a totally new place.


Old building in Lincoln


Lincoln, however, was a very unexpected choice of mine as I only picked it to fill in my last choice for university.  I couldn’t think of anything else and I’d never actually heard of it before, but when I went to visit all of my uni choices, much to my surprise Lincoln happened to be the only uni that really felt like it was for me. If you have never visited, read all about how to spend 48 hours in Lincoln.


2. Were you worried about moving and why/why not?


I wasn’t really worried, I was more excited. The only thing in the back of my mind was, if there was an emergency, I wouldn’t be able to get home easily. Other than that, I didn’t really have any worries. I already knew I vibed with the city and any doubts I had were overruled by excitement. 


3. How long did it take you to settle into your new place?


I was pretty much settled the moment I moved in. Of course, it was hard for the first five minutes of watching my parents walk away, and not knowing when I'd see them again. However, you snap out of that pretty quickly due to not having time to dwell on it. You have to unpack, decorate your room and get to know your new housemates, so there’s no time to think about anything else. 


Bridge in Lincoln


You and your housemates are all on the same boat and it’s exciting for all of you and you support each other. I got on really well with most of my housemates to begin with which helped my feel settled initially but after a few days living with them, I realised they weren’t for me which was a struggle and did lead to me needing to change apartments. However, as soon as I found my group and created my own uni family, I felt settled again. 


I believe that the people you surround yourself with at uni are the key to settling and you won’t always be lucky at first, but there’s no harm in moving apartments if you don’t vibe with your initial flatmates. Most people manage to get on just fine though, it’s unlikely that you won’t get on with at least one person in your apartment.


4. Is there anything you would have done differently?


Not really. I’m grateful for the lessons I have learned, and any issues I had were out of my control. I do wish I’d been to more parties and gone to freshers events, but that wasn’t possible due to my job. I feel that I would have benefited a lot more if I’d have socialised more during freshers week as it took me a while to find my group of friends. Once I’d found them, my uni experience became 100x better.


Where to find Robyn

Instagram: @robynmossx

Twitter: @robynmosss


Thank you so much to Robyn for sharing her story. Have you ever moved far away from home? Let us know your experiences!


Wool of the King

5 STEPS TO BECOMING MORE ORGANISED AT UNIVERSITY

Tuesday

This post is a collaboration with Planning with Em. This post also contains affiliate links so I will earn a small commission if you buy through my links. Please  see my disclaimer for more information.
As we approach the new academic year, it's time to get into the habit of preparing university life, or for another year of it if you are already a student. Em will be showing you how to work on productivity at university so make sure to read her post. Read on for tips on how to be an organised uni student!



1. Plan your time. 

While living at university, it can be hard to find the time to do everything you need to do. This is why planning ahead is a must. You should set yourself allocated time slots for all of the things you have to do - whether it's uni work, seeing friends, cleaning or cooking. 

Sometimes your dinner takes longer to cook than you first anticipated, then you start chatting to your flatmates in the time you should be doing an assignment. It's great to socialise but it's important to set time for projects too.

2. Use a diary or planner.

This follows on from planning ahead. In order to plan ahead it might be worth writing a to do list and keeping all of your deadlines in a diary. In my first year of uni, I had a notice board so I wrote a list of all my assignment deadlines in chronological order and pinned it to my wall so that I could see it every day.

You could also use a planner to split up how much time you will use for each project. For example, one hour of essay writing then one hour of Netflix watching for a break. If you need watch list inspiration for your chill time then I've got you.


3. Meal Plan.

As well as planning your time, planning meals is also a good thing to do to stay organised. This is some advice I need to listen to as well, because I am always unorganised with my dinners and just eat what I fancy that day. I am going to try and write a menu for the week though so I know what I'm eating each day and if I make evening plans, I will know how long my food takes to cook.






4. Budgeting. 

As we all know, student life can be expensive and sometimes leave you without a lot of money. That's why it's important to budget your money properly so you have enough, especially if you are like me and still like to live your best life at uni. 

If you have an income at uni, then limit yourself to a certain amount of spending per week. Once you have been at uni a while, you will work out how much you spend on shopping, nights out and anything else you need to buy. I would say try not to have no money at university and have a part time job where possible. Just because, if you are living in a completely new city then it's great to go and see all the things that city has to offer, as well as studying. I know sometimes this isn't possible but it's nice to be able to enjoy yourself too.


5. Keeping lecture notes organised.

You will have lectures with lots of different lecturers about different units, so it's helpful to keep these notes separate and organise them. When it comes to looking back at your notes, they will be so much easier to understand if they are neatly organised.

I tend to write the date and unit title at the top of my lectures and write the number of the lecture, e.g. Lecture 4 | Media and Society | 03/09/2020. This is probably obvious but it really helps me to remember what I learnt and when. Another good thing to do is to colour code the notes. You will spot the colour a lot more quickly if you are flicking through your note book to find something.

Are there any tips and tricks you have for keeping organised at university? Let me know as I am always looking for ways to stay organised. Be sure to check out Em's post on increasing productivity at university!

You can find Em over at:

Twitter - @planningwithem
Pinterest - planningwithem

Wool of the King
*Image 1 from Pixabay.
*Image 2 from Engin Akyurt on Pexels.

48 HOURS IN LINCOLN UK

Thursday

Just a little update on me - I have now finished my year marketing internship ready for starting my final year of university in September. I am trying to get a little bit of a summer by doing things before I go back to studying. The first thing I did after finishing was visiting one of my friends, Robyn, who lives up in Lincoln and goes to university there.


It was very hot there and I had to put sun cream on because of how pale I am so it kind of felt like a holiday, we’ll call it a staycation as that’s where it’s at at the moment! If you want to read more about travel, see my favourite travel destinations. I am living in Wiltshire at the moment so it took about 3 hours and 20 minutes to drive there, but I felt like it went pretty quickly.


Steep Hill Lincoln

Day 1 in Lincoln

After arriving in Lincoln, we had a walk along Brayford Waterfront and took some cute pictures. We then walked up the steep hill to the cathedral. There is a reason why it’s called steep hill and it is not an exaggeration! But once you get up there the views are pretty good, and there are lots of cute, independent cafes on the way up.


It was quite a hot day, so we had to go back to shower and get ready before going out for the evening. We booked into Zizzi for dinner and it was a Monday so we got that Eat Out to Help Out discount! After that, we went to the Slug & Lettuce for some cocktails. That was the first time I had been out for drinks since the lockdown and it was actually a lot less scary than I thought it would be.


Bars do seem to be closing earlier now than what they used to. So, after leaving Slug & Lettuce we got some end of the night food from a chip shop. I had to try the cheesy chips and gravy because I’d never had it before being a southerner and they were so nice even though they looked kind of gross. Proper comfort food. I have to say, the north does takeaways better.


Lincoln Cathedral

Day 2 in Lincoln

Day 2 was a chill one after a busy first day. We had a lie in and went to McDonald’s, classic after night out food. After that, we went to Boultham Park, which was really nice. We sat by the river and saw lots of cute ducks and swans. Again, I had to put on sun cream for this.


Once we had sat there for a while, Robyn wanted to show me round her uni so we walked around Lincoln University which was quite cool, it was really quiet though due to it being summer and Covid-19. I like nosying around other universities so I can compare them to my own.


In the evening, we just chilled and watched some TV because I was getting up early to leave the next day. It was one of the hottest days when I had to leave and my car has no air conditioning so I left at 8am to try and get home before the hottest point of the day.


Historic City of Lincoln

I really enjoyed going to Lincoln and really want to visit more places in the north as I haven’t been to that many places up there. It is such a pretty place and I hope to go there again soon.


Where is your favourite place to visit in England? Let me know in the comments! Special thanks to Robyn for letting me stay with her and looking after me so well.


Looking for more day out ideas in the UK? Read all about my trip to Sculpture by the Lakes in Dorset.


Wool of the King

FRIENDSHIPS: THE LOW DOWN

Tuesday

This week, I just wanted to talk about friendships because I have seen a lot of people posting about friendships. As the lockdown restrictions ease in the UK and other countries, we are able to see our friends more.

Group of girls on Amsterdam canal boat

Advice on friendships

Lately, I have seen a few people on Twitter saying that they don't have friends which saddens me. I don't know these people, so I'm not sure that's actually the case, but sometimes you can feel like you have no friends, or that you have no one in your corner.

My advice for these people would be to value the people that you actually have in your life, whether that be family or colleagues that you like. I would also say it is never too late to try and make friends! It is a common misconception that you can't make friends as an adult, as it isn't as easy as when you're in school, but this is not the case! If anything, making friends later on is actually easier.

Since I have started blogging regularly, I have interacted with other bloggers online who have similar interests to me. Making online friends is also a good way to connect with people if you are shy in person. Of course, you do need to be careful when making online friends - we have all seen the TV show Catfish.

I also think it is important to remember that you different things out of friendships with different people. For example, you may have a friend that you have a good time with but you can't trust them. If you have friends like this, it's important to know where you stand. If you know they aren't the most trustworthy, then you shouldn't expect them to be trustworthy. There are also the friends that you have a good time with, and you could trust them with your life. I tend to find myself gravitating towards these people and wanting to spend less time with the people who are only fun for a short time.

Group of friends in Leicester Square

Friends getting ready for night out

My friendships

As I get older, I tend to be pickier with who I call my friend. Just because I really believe that no company is better than bad company. I have individual friends who I will meet up with as well as groups of friends and the majority of my friends now are from university. I do still have some amazing friends from home but as I left school and college, I seemed to leave friendships behind there. The same thing could happen after uni too, but I do think most of them will become my friends for life.

One of the main qualities I look for in friendships is when they are happy for my successes and when they build me up. I am always reading posts about how women should empower women and this is definitely true! I'm always looking out for those who do that for me. 

I am really grateful for the friendships I have at the moment. For the friends I see often and the friends who I don't see as much.

What sort of friendships do you have? Mainly close individual friends or do you have a friendship group? Let me know in the comments.

Friends in Dublin

Two friends at a party

Wool of the King

5 BOOKS I WISH I'D READ SOONER

Saturday

Guest post from Liz Loves. This post includes affiliate links so I will earn a small commission if you buy through these links. I have put asterisks next to the products linked. Please see my disclaimer for more information.
Hi, my name is Liz and I am the blogger behind Liz Loves Blog! I am so excited to be writing for Lauren’s blog. I wanted to share a post on books I wish I read sooner. These are the books that I have read and immediately told my friends they NEED to read them, books I will read over and over and books that really have changed my outlook on life. 

*Why I'm no longer talking to white people about race, Reni Eddo-Lodge

Why I'm no longer talking to white people about race

This book is becoming more and more important with the current political climate. I think it’s important that we all educate ourselves as much as possible and I really wish I read this book sooner, mainly so I have more points to argue when discussing this topic. It really breaks down a lot of issues about racism in a really simple way, and there was a lot of history in the UK that I wasn’t aware of when it comes to racism. It really brings home what a huge issue we are still facing.


*Women don't owe you pretty, Florence Given 

Women Don't owe you pretty by Florence Given

I pre-ordered this book nearly a year ago because I am obsessed with Florence. If you don’t already, I would highly recommend following her on Instagram. She is so empowering and inspiring and her book talks about how a lot of society is often designed for the benefit and gain of men. She explains how women are often criticised for their behaviour and actions in a way that men aren’t, and essentially, we can’t win, therefore we should do whatever we want and whatever makes us happy regardless of what other people say. There are also lots of reminders to support each other as women and to build each other up so we can all be the best that we can be. 


How to break up with fast fashion, Lauren Bravo

This book has really spurred me on to my decision to stop purchasing clothes from fast fashion brands. I have talked about it in my blog post about sustainable fashion, but she essentially explains the negative effects of the fashion industry without making you feel bad about it, and also provides options to limit your own fast fashion purchases. The environment is something I am really passionate about and I am always looking to learn more about what I can do to help, and the fashion industry has a huge impact on the environment. 

*Notes on a nervous planet, Matt Haig

Everything Matt Haig writes is amazing, his book The Humans is one of my favourite novels, and Reasons to Stay Alive has been talked about for changing people’s lives and helping cope with mental health and depression. For me personally, Notes on a Nervous planet really explains the disparities between our human nature and the world we now live in filled with social media and technology. It really helped me deal with obsessing over my phone and after reading this it was the first time I put in place some boundaries with my phone and social media use. 


The humans by Matt Haig

Everything you need to know about love, Dolly Alderton

I read this book on holiday last year, my friend actually let me borrow it and I read it in a few days. This is like a laugh out loud book, there were so many relatable stories in there and I think it is just really nice to hear about other people’s experiences and relationships to know that we are not alone in the things we experience or the feelings we have at certain times in our lives. I do think most people have already read or at least heard of this book, but it’s definitely worth the read if not. 

Follow the author

 

Website - Liz Loves Blog

 

Instagram - @lizhartley04

 

Twitter - @lizziejhartley


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