My 5 Favorite Blogging Resources for a New Blogger

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There are so many blogging resources I wished I had known about when I was a new blogger. I had a friend ask me recently how to start a blog, and when I started to explain it all to her, I realized just how much there really is to it! And while it is complicated, there are tons of tools out there to make blogging more streamlined and professional. So for today’s 5 Friday Favorites, I’m sharing with you my top 5 favorite blogging resources that allow me to have the time to focus on creating quality content while maintaining a professional blog in my “extra hours” each week. If you’re interested in blogging – no matter the topic or niche – these resources will help you manage your blog more effectively and efficiently.

A laptop, notebook, candle and mug sitting on a white table with a white background.

When I started Joyful Derivatives last year, I honestly never thought my blog would become more than a hobby – a place to document and share all of our fun projects. But I have to admit, it has been such a neat experience to realize that people (other than my family) actually enjoy what I have to say, and even more than that, want to learn from me and apply it to their lives! Being a professional blogger – not just a side hustler – is hard work, and I don’t think people realize how much time goes into maintaining a profitable site.

I know this isn’t at all interior design or DIY related, but my number one goal for this blog is helping people love their home. And if working from home, on a blog, is what’s going to help even just ONE reader of mine, then this post is worth it! I want anyone who has been following my blog and contemplating the idea of starting their own to be successful and I know these blogging resources are a huge part of what makes mine a success. I hope this helps you if you’ve been on-the-fence about starting your own blog!

Must-Have Blogging Resources for a New Blogger

1. Geek in Residence

Renee Shupe, also known as my “geek in residence,” does all of my behind-the-scenes website management. This includes hosting, updating, monitoring, backing-up, and securing it all. Plus, I get tech support hours each month that can be applied in any way I’d like. She’s super personable, and for the cost of her services, worth every penny! Keep in mind, you’re going to pay for hosting no matter what – so consider having a private host with focused attention. Trust me, not having to worry about the “tech” of it all is AMAZING.

2. ConvertKit

ConvertKit is my email marketing platform. It’s from here that I collect subscriber emails and send out my communications with my readers. It has a super easy-to-use interface and makes setting up automation extremely simple. While there are other email marketing platforms that cost less (I started on the free version of MailChimp) the long-term growth capabilities on ConvertKit are definitely worth the cost.

3. Tailwind

Did you know that the recommended activity for a blogger on Pinterest is 30-50 pins a day?? Can you imagine going in and manually pinning that many things every single day? No? Good, me neither. Tailwind is my favorite Pinterest automation resource because it makes pinning on Pinterest super easy. It allows you to schedule out pins, weeks in advance so you’re account is always active but you don’t have to be! It is also a wonderful tool for analyzing your pins on Pinterest. Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about you blog’s activity on Pinterest can be found in their analytics, so you can try out new marketing tactics and adjust as you discover what works and what doesn’t. Sign up using this link before June 22nd and you’ll get $30 off your subscription!

4. Skimlinks

Skimlinks is an affiliate marketing program that makes earning affiliate income super easy. My favorite part about Skimlinks is that you put their Javascript code on your site once, and it can track the affiliate references from your blog using the original product URLs! For example, if I’m referring you to a pillow I love at Pier 1, rather than logging into an affiliate program, searching for that product, and collecting an “affiliate link” to place in my post, I just put the link to the pillow on Pier1.com and the Skimlinks code from my site recognizes that you came from my blog and gives me affiliate credit. SUPER EASY. I’ve tried other affiliate programs and found they’re just too much work. I love that Skimlinks saves me time AND makes me money! 😉

5. The Society

Sorry gents, this one’s only for the ladies. Back in January I joined a blogging membership site for women called The Society. It’s run by Jen Snyder, who I actually had one-on-one coaching with for a few months, and she does an amazing job creating a community of support and encouragement for women bloggers. She recently shifted gears in regards to the focus of her teaching, more into the realm of online businesses rather than just “blogging,” but if you’re looking for a group that will force you to grow, this is where you want to be! Within the Society we’re doing challenges, we’re having weekly Q&A calls, we’re bouncing ideas off of each other – it’s awesome. I highly encourage you to join if you’re someone that isn’t very good at self-motivation. I guarantee that Jen and the other ladies in The Society will motivate you to be an amazing online businesswoman!

BENEFITS OF BLOGGING RESOURCES

  • Having a tech guru RELIEVES WORRY.
  • Email marketing allows you to CONNECT WITH YOUR READERS.
  • Automation SAVES YOU TIME.
  • Affiliate programs MAKE YOU MONEY.
  • Community KEEPS YOU MOTIVATED.

Well, there you have it, my 5 favorite blogging resources for the new blogger. Please let me know if you have any questions! I’d love to support any of you that do decide to start a blog – I mean, it’s my new favorite thing! 😉

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