Every so often I invest in my blog in small ways. Sometimes they’re ways that don’t cost a thing, but some days it’s nice to inject a little bit of hard cash into your hobby or growing business.
A few weeks ago I looked at my blog and did one of those deep exhales my mother calls a sigh. I felt proud of my content, my visuals looked good, I had a plan for the next few weeks but it was all still feeling like too much hard work. Blogging, of course, is hard work, but because of this, I think it’s absolutely vital to make things easier where possible. Easier might not be the word.
Some things are stressful, sure. It’s when things that don’t have to be stressful become stressful… that’s when some alterations are called for.
They say that you should always invest back into your business when you can. Even though we’re not all out to blog professionally, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to grow your blog maybe with hopes of making a little extra moolah or launching a career from. Today I’m sharing with you eight ways to invest in your blog for under £20. Some are investments big in value and some are simply ways to make mundane tasks less stressful.
I’ve personally made every single one of these investments for this blog (okay, aside from one) so you can be sure that they’ve worked for at least one other person out there (disclaimer: I may be the exception to every rule ever made).
Whatever industry you’re in, it’s vital to know how it’s moving. Blogosphere magazine contains such a wide range of bloggers, big and small, and actually talks about the issues that we’re talking about on our blogs every day. Subscribe or pick up a copy at WHSmiths for £6. I can assure you it’s a brilliant £6 you can spend on your blog.
A Collapsible Reflector
Summer is great and all (well, apart from the unbearable heat) but just because light is abundant doesn’t mean that photos will suddenly be perfectly lit. Uneven shadows, a harsh ray of light or the wrong tone can ruin a perfectly good set up. I recently got a 5-in-1 reflector and it has completely transformed my indoor photos. No more waiting for a sunny day or moving my set-up across the room.
An Industry Book
Reading a tonne of blogging tips is all well and good, but sometimes investing in your blog just feels more real with a physical book in your hand. I’ve recently started reading How To Style Your Brand which is very eye-opening to creating your image. Even books like How To Get Your Sh*t Together and Leave Your Mark could be applied to the blogging world. Shop around and find something great.
Like a reflector can completely transform your lighting, some photo backgrounds can give a breath of fresh air to your photos. Particularly if you’re a fan of product photography, a range of affordable coloured card can keep your shots from being monotonous. I love the A1 pieces of coloured card from Hobbycraft, they’re around £4 each and last really well. Wallpaper samples are also an affordable option!
Social Media Tools
Last month I invested in Buffer, a social media scheduling tool which allows you to schedule content in advance on a wide range of social media platforms. Not only do I use Buffer in my freelance work, but I also use it when I need some proper time off from social media. Like I said, a good investment often means less stress – SM tools are the best investment we could all make (because let’s face it SM is necessary but kind of bad for us).
A Bunch of Flowers
A bunch of flowers is the perfect investment to make on an all-around bad day. First comes the welcome distraction of picking some out, cutting them and arranging them in a pretty vase, then comes the brainstorm of content based around the flowers (I generally find them quite inspiring – even just for an Instagram snap) and finally you get to put them on your desk as you work (which is motivating) and feel like a ‘proper’ blogger.
Buy Your Domain Name
I know, a tale as old of time. Whether you’re on Blogger or WordPress.com, investing in your domain name is just wise. Most cost less than £15 and secure your branding. You might not think you need to lock it down, but you can bet that when you do want it, some bugger will have snapped it up (probably just to spite you). Plus, it makes your blog look (and feel) a little more profesh.
Giveaway For Growth
This is the one that I haven’t tried… yet. I’ve read several bits and pieces about giveaways lately as I’m planning one for something exciting in June/July! They needn’t be as costly as we assume, for example, Life As Tilly Rose hosted an Instagram giveaway of some pretty pens last week to help her followers out with revision. Not only do giveaways attract growth, but when they’re considered and of value to your followers, you can only go up in their estimations.