2019 Pet Blogger Challenge
Attending Blog Paws last year was a pivotal moment in my blogging journey.
I met my tribe. Dog and cat lovers who unselfishly share their stories, tips, hacks and lessons with their readers.
So when Amy with GoPetFriendly announced her 2019 Pet Blogger Challenge I said “yes please”.
Each blogger is challenged to answer the same set of questions.
This is the 9th year fellow bloggers have come together and the first year I’ve participated.
Blogging can be a lonely journey. And it can be overwhelming because you’re the author, the photographer, the SEO specialist, the publicist, the social media expert, and technical person. Basically a company of one.
But the great thing about bloggers is we bond together and support each other in our journey.
If you’re a pet blogger I encourage you to join in on the annual challenge by answering the same 10 questions. At the very least you can read through our fellow pet blogger posts feel rest assured you are not alone.
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So without further ado here goes:
Pet Blogger Challenge Questions
1. For those who may be visiting your blog for the first time, how long have you been blogging and what is your main topic?
My first post was June 11, 2016. [Gifts From New Zealand • Maggielovesorbit.com]. It wasn’t even much of an article. It was a photo and a few sentences.
At that time I did not have any specific goals.
I just wanted a place for photos I didn’t use for Instagram. My publishing schedule was almost non existent and I didn’t even have Google Analytics plugged in until the first of last year.
2. What was your proudest blogging moment of 2018?
I was chosen to speak on a panel at the 2018 Blog Paws Conference. The topic – Instagram. The best part was I got to meet my virtual Instagram/blogger friends who were co-panelists.
3. What was the biggest blogging challenge you faced in 2018, and how did/will you tackle it?
My site was hacked right before Global Pet Expo. It was so bad that Google took it down. Luckily I found a programmer to fix it (thank you WPFIXit) and get me back up and running in 48 hours. I’ve used them at least 4 other times since then for various projects. I can’t recommend them enough.
4. Which of your 2018 blog posts was your favorite and why?
A friend whom we walk with has a dog that lost his fur. It happened over the course of half a year and we would walk and talk about how all of his tests were doing. In addition to that we’d scrutinize his fur to see if he was losing more or if the treatments were working. After many vet visits they finally attributed it to her menopause cream. Even though the article doesn’t get a lot of traffic, it means the most to me because within 6 months after they diagnosed it his fur came back. I wrote the article because I want to help other women who may encounter this with their dog. The article is about how Estrogen can cause your dog to lose its fur.
5. Which of your 2018 posts was most popular with your audience? Why do you think it does so well?
I have two articles about how to find the right dog hashtags on Instagram.
6. Did you implemented a new series, feature, or practice on your blog in 2018 that you’re enjoying?
I discovered the power of Pinterest. I was casually saving pins whenever I thought of it. My traffic was about 5K per month and then I learned how to use it and now my Pinterest traffic is up to 222K per month.
7. As the social media landscape changes, how are you promoting your blog posts and connecting with new readers?
I’d like to prioritize Pinterest over Instagram in 2019. After SEO it drives the most traffic to my blog. Readers who come to Pinterest are looking for content. Followers on Instagram are really just there to be entertained. I do use the story swipe up feature a few times per week but for the most part followers don’t want to leave the platform – they want to continue to use Instagram.
8. Looking forward to 2019, if you accomplish only one thing through your blog, what do you hope it is?
I’d like to increase my viewership to at least 30K sessions per month. That puts me over the threshold needed to qualify for Mediavine. Improving my storytelling skills is where I think the growth will come from.
I think I get too caught up in the technical or what to write for SEO …which is important … don’t get me wrong but I think equally as important is improving my ability to write stories that people want to read. And have a blog that people want to return back to.
Upon discovering it (as in yesterday) … I willingly entered her rabbit hole and I stayed there. I found myself returning to her blog in all my free time. While I was waiting for the ribs to cook. After the kitchen was clean and the house had gotten quiet. Last night I woke up at 3am and couldn’t sleep. I had to read more.
For a minute I reflected on my obsession.
I loved her content.
No I adored it.
It spoke to me.
She gave me hope.
My dog is reactive and it puzzles me to no end trying to figure her out. In any event she is a behaviorist and has countless of articles on various issues related to it and surrounding it.
In any event … I realized when you’re a great storyteller and relatable, whatever message you’re communicating is very easy to digest.
And that’s the type of writer I would like to be.
9. What steps are you planning to take to ensure you reach your goal?
My 2019 goal is to write two articles per week to total 104 for the year. Some weeks might be less and some might be more but by the end of each month I need to publish 8 quality blog articles.
It’s going to take discipline to write meet those goals.
And as for writing… instead of spending hours in free workshops and courses and seminars … I realized I just have to surrender myself to the process. To not be so afraid to tap on the keyboard and let the thoughts in my head materialize.
10. Now it’s your turn! How can we help? Is there an area where you could use some advice, or an aspect of your blog that you’d like input on? Share it here, and we’ll answer you in comments!
So I’d like to know from my fellow bloggers …. Do you sleep? How much coffee do you drink? What time does your brain wake up?
All kidding aside … I’d like to learn who your top resource has been for SEO and your best tip would be?
If you can help a fellow pet blogger out leave me a comment below.
As always, thank you for reading!
And because a post would not be complete without a photo.
Here’s a photo of my two, Orbit on the left and Maggie on the right taken during yesterday morning’s urban walkabout. The rest of the photos from this walk can be seen on our Instagram post.
Have a beautiful day!