For those of you who are not familair with the Pet Bloggers Challenge it’s a way us pet bloggers to “take time to get to know each other a bit better, share tips for making our blogs better, and generally commiserate, inspire, and support each other. It’s an opportunity to celebrate what we’ve accomplished over the last year, recognize how we’ve changed and grown, and lay out our vision for the year ahead.”
Since this is my third time participating in the Challenge we will be answering the “Repeat Offenders” questions!
First, let me say that I apologize for using exclamations points but that is just how excited I am to be doing this again, so deal with it!
Now let’s get this challenge started!
1. How long have you been blogging and provide a link to your post from last year’s Pet Blogger Challenge so we can refresh our memories.
I have been blogging for almost 3 years now. Wow! I can’t believe it’s been that long! My first post was April 1, 2010. Please don’t read it.
I did participate in last years Pet Blogger Challenge and you can refresh your memory here.
2. What do you consider the most important goals you set out in last year’s post?
I only had one goal last year and that was to switch from Blogger to WordPress.
3. Have you made progress toward those goals, or have your goals changed over the past year?
Well I’m here on WordPress so YAY! but now I want to move again! Geesh! I also stated that I hoped for many adventures in 2012, of which I don’t think we had many but that’s o.k. because we were just relaxing for 2013! You know what I’m talking about!
4. How often do you post?
4-7 times a week. Usually never less than 4 unless I’m sick and up to 7 depending how chatty I am that week or how often I was able to get out and take pictures. I wish I could be more specific, but hey, life is just unpredictable around here and I’m tired of trying to figure it out!
5. Has your opinion of blogging on a schedule or as the spirit moves you changed?
Blogging on schedule is important to me but sometimes I am just limited on time and can’t get to the blog as much as I would like. I have come to except that fact. See, I’m growing up.
If you publish on a schedule, why? How strict are you about your publishing deadlines? What do you do for inspiration when it feels like you’ve covered every topic?
I am strict on deadlines. If a deadline is given to me than it will be done by that date, unless of course my dog ate the product that was suppose to be reviewed by a specific date. True story. I just haven’t told you about yet because I’m waiting for the replacement product.
For inspiration I visit other blogs, not just pet blogs but blogs of other subjects too. I also go and spend time with my boys. They have a way of inspiring me like no others!
If you don’t publish on a schedule, why? How do you think your decision affects your audience? How do you know when a topic is “post-worthy?”
If I am off on my schedule it does bother me because I think that some people come to expect a post on certain days and I don’t want to let anyone down.
I know a topic is “post worthy” if it is important to me because I’ve come to learn that what is important to me is also important to most of my readers, which is one of the many reasons why I love blogging. Also, if it involves anything that has caused me great embarrassment, I feel the need to share so I can brighten someone’s day:)
6. How much time do you spend writing your blog per week? How much time visiting other blogs? Share your tips for staying on top of it all.
It really depends on what kind of posts I have planned for the week. Product review posts take a lot of time which is why I try and only have one product review a week, if at all. This year I am planning on doing less product reviews and more pet health related posts. Pet health posts take a lot of time too since there is a lot of research that goes into each posts. I would have to take a guess and say 6-12 hours, but it really depends. I’ve added a desk calendar to my routine which helps me keep things organized and if I have an idea for a post I can write it down on a certain day. Sometimes the posts gets moved around but the ideas are still there.
I spend about 6 hours a week visiting other blogs. It’s hard to stay on top of it all and this year I really have to get it in order so that I can be more productive. Last year I started off the year trying to pre-write my posts on Sunday but that only happened for a few months and then summer hit and Sundays were spent at the ballpark. I would really like to try that again this year. Get a majority of my posts written in one day or at least a few rough drafts done. This way I can go back and edit as needed throughout the week and I can have more time to read other blogs and work on other social media platforms.
7. How do you measure the success of a post and of your blog in general (comments, shares, traffic)?
Do you look strictly at the numbers, or do you have a way of assessing the quality of those interactions?
Good question. I think I measure the success of a post by reader interaction. If people read my blog regularly but often don’t leave a comment and I write a post that gets them to make that very first comment then I feel that is a successful post. Of course I look at traffic to, but a great post will continue to get hits and comments for a long time after it has been published.
8. If you could ask the pet blogging community for help with one issue you’re having with your blog, what would it be?
I continue to struggle with SEO and I feel that this may be something that I need someone to hold my hand with or take a course on. It’s kind of like me and math, it just doesn’t click.
9. What goals do you have for your blog in 2013?
I am super excited about this year. For once I feel that I know what I want to do with this blog and where I would like it to go. It’s a good feeling to feel good about what you’re doing! In 2013 I’d like focus a bit more on pet health but still share many more of my ramblings. At one time I didn’t think it was possible to do both but I’m pretty sure I can make it work. I’m also really excited to switch themes and frameworks this year, although I don’t when that will happen. We’ll just say sometime in 2013, expect a new look.
Regardless of what we accomplish this year and what we don’t this community is one that I am so glad to be apart of and hope to be around to take many more Pet Bloggers Challenges!
That wraps up another year of the Pet Bloggers Challenge! Thank you so much to Amy from Go Pet Friendly for hosting this wonderful Challenge! It’s one of our favorite Challenges as a blogger!
Jen, The Pet Blogger