I’m not much of a hippy. I’m an impostor. In fact I kind of feel a bit rude borrowing the name from the real hippies out there making a change for the good in the world while I still shop at places so cheap their production practises are probably questionable. I have sort of covered why I chose the name The Hippy Christian Mum in my blog post and my About Me page. It was to do with certain personal  parenting choices I have made like home birthing, longer breastfeeding and baby-wearing. But I’m a luke-warm hippy at best. No more or less a hippy than most people really.  I love the idea of not flushing chemicals out into the waste system but at the same time I really just want to clean my loo.

babywearing

 

So although I’ve never claimed to be an all out activist I do wonder if my blog name is right overall. I really do not want to mis-lead. I also do not entirely fit into the Christian blogger groups as my posts are never super spiritual. I never meant for them to be, and that’s OK with me.  This was always a mummy blog and that’s what I want it to be. I’m secure about my faith so I don’t mind being a bit off the beaten track with that.  I enjoy reading those posts too.

So either I don’t really fit anywhere or I’m a blogging genius and I’ve created my very own super niche. Which is more likely I wonder? Does the name just exclude me from both groups, just frittering on the outskirts of all of them?  I certainly do connect with and enjoy reading other hippy type blogs. And with the name The Hippy Christian Mum I could be more likely to be approached by companies who are thoughtful about their environmental impact. That would be right up my street because I think that’s really commendable. The idea of a complete re-brand seems daunting, and restarting at a DA of 0, but the general advice seems to be if you are thinking of doing it to do it earlier rather than later.

blogging

Maybe I’m experiencing some sort of blogger nerves as my blog approaches it’s 1st year anniversary (May 27th if you’re wondering). I am actually a lot more excited about that than I thought I would be. I cannot help but compare my blog to others that have been going about the same length of time. Usually I fall short but then I remember how much I love blogging and I suppose that can’t be measured in page views. (That’s not to say people with high numbers don’t do it because they love it too!)

I go from buzzing with ideas about really driving my blog to days where I feel silly for even thinking like that. I wonder if The Hippy Christian Mum really just sounds quite condescending. The original thought behind it was to juxtapose two terms-even though they actually go well together when you think about it.

Maybe if I’m happy just pootling along then there’s no need to change the name but if I look to the long term and hope to forward it then perhaps a change would be good?

The only thing is I just got some business cards made up.

What do you think? Have you ever changed the name of your blog before? Was it easy and are you glad you did it? Did you get 1st anniversary nerves? Or is that just me?! Would you change the name of your blog?

 

 

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

 

What kind of numbers could you be looking at after your first year? Which social media channels should you focus on?

May 2017 heralds the completion of one full year of blogging for me. I started when my second baby was 3 months old and I started the blog to share my traumatic birth experience. I had no previous or relevant experience and started from scratch the way many people start- by Googling ‘How to Start a Blog.’

I love my blog. I love sitting down to write, I love finding inspiration for posts in my everyday, I love connecting with people in the blog community, promoting on social media, everything that goes along with it I really enjoy. It’s my creative space. Just mine.  However, I have avoided the anticipated pressure of turning my blog into a business.

The Hippy Christian Mum went self hosted at the end of last year (Dec 2016) in a bid to make it a bit more of an official capacity but I am still relishing the joy it brings of being a hobby rather than a business. I have been messing about over on YouTube too and really enjoying watching other vlogging families and making videos.

So here’s a quick low down of what my stats look like at the end of my first year blogging:

  • My Moz DA = 29
  • My Tots100 ranking = 1,752
  • Facebook page likes = 166
  • Twitter followers =1,221
  • Instagram followers = 383
  • YouTube subscribers = 76
  • Pinterest followers = 161

These stats are pretty poor really in comparison to other blogs that started out around the same time as me, but I know the why behind my stats (apart from one). If you have been slogging and slogging and not really seeing an increase in your stats then it might be worth asking where to concentrate your time. There’s loads of helpful blog posts out there about this kind of thing.

Moz DA is the internet domain authority, basically how good your site and posts are at showing up in searches. Mine is 29, some of the bigger bloggers I know are at around 40 and some very visible bloggers I see a lot in the groups who are regularly posting content are a bit lower in the early 20’s so I think 29 is OK. You might often see people advertising their DA when offering to give a backlink on their site to your site for a guest post.

My Tots100 ranking is dire. This ranking would be representative of a blog which does not post very often or is very new. This is the stat that I’m slightly confused about. Tots100 is great website for bloggers go and check it out! The scoring system is explained on their website but basically they take a few numbers and try to calculate where your blog ranks among all the registered blogs. My low number could be because my Instagram following is low compared to a lot of bloggers (Instagram is a whole other kettle of fish!) and I’m not on Klout so that may or may not attribute to the low score.

 

Facebook is actually one of my more successful platforms. Even though 166 likes may be considered really low, my post reach is quite high in relation to page likes thanks to very supportive friends who like, share and comment on my posts. My posts are never gonna go viral on there but I’m thankful for a lot of support from my friends. Facebook have been a bit hit and miss for bloggers and small business owners of late in changing their charging structure. I personally do not pay to boost posts there yet but I don’t see why you wouldn’t  if you felt it would benefit your page. I get enough from the engagement with my blog on Facebook to feel the benefit.

Twitter. Oh how I love Twitter. It’s like the detention room at school, all the funny people are over on Twitter! I used to spend a lot of time there, probably more than any other social media channel because I see things like posts, news, and funny articles that I don’t find anywhere else. However, the mummy blogging network on Twitter is – I hate to say it – a bit of a bore! It is mostly, and understandably, used as a marketing tool with most mummy blogger accounts using post schedulers to make their hard-worked on posts visible. So I’m missing the witty quips and indulgent swearing I used to get from my old personal account where I followed a lot of American comedians.

Instagram as I said is a whole can of worms, with the algorithm changing so frequently (or so it seems) that none of us can keep up. People are really tapping into the power of Instagram so the landscape has changed a lot in the last few months even. There are Instagram bots and ‘like for like’ and people following and un-following left right and centre! I go on there because my ego can’t help but think people are actually interested to see pics of my little family and what we have been up to but also there are some *amazing* photographers on there if you know where to look ;). There are some really cute accounts too and I must confess to completely enjoying the element of voyeurism Instagram affords.

YouTube is fun and scatty and has a really youthful, new vibe to it. I post these vids and wonder why people would want to watch me on a video but they do! And I watch them too! I’m actually currently a bit addicted to the Daily Bumps YouTube channel who are an American vlogging family. YouTube is exciting because it feels like you could find anything you want on there. Someone advised that if you look at YouTube as a search engine rather than another social media platform you will likely have more success over there. P.S. if you like YouTube check out my friend’s channel MyahZineTV it’s fab! My friend Ceri and her husband and daughter do crafts, kids recipes and weekly fun vlogs.

Pinterest to be honest can be found languishing in the corner. I love it but I tend to forget it’s there and I use it for personal use more than for the blog. I know there is masses of untapped traffic through Pinterest and I see quite a few of the American mommy bloggers doing a lot with it so I think this might be one for me to work on.

Anyway that was quite a long post for some stats! But the long and short of it is, enjoy your blog, make it unique to you, ask yourself how you define success and go for it! Don’t be shy. Good Luck.