Digitally She Does It Podcast

EPISODE 60: How to turn your passion into a successful blogging business with Lifestyle Blogger, April Harris

September 13, 2023 Karen Davies Season 1 Episode 60
Digitally She Does It Podcast
EPISODE 60: How to turn your passion into a successful blogging business with Lifestyle Blogger, April Harris
Show Notes Transcript

In this episode of Digitally She Does It, I am joined by April Harris, a renowned lifestyle blogger & success entrepreneur. April shares her insights on transforming a blog into a thriving business and offers valuable tips for content creators and entrepreneurs alike.

Throughout this episode, April talks about the importance of understanding our clients' struggles & creating impactful solutions for them. We dive into the world of blogging, exploring how to stand out online and how creating meaningful & relevant content can make a huge difference to your business. April also shares how she leverages Pinterest to increase her followers and customer-base.

If you are building a business online then this episode is one not to be missed. Listen to the full episode to find out more!

Get in touch with April Harris

  • Instagram - @apriljharris
  • Pinterest - @apriljharris
  • LinkedIn - @apriljharris

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/The21stCenturyHousewife/ 

Blogging for Entrepreneurs

https://apriljharris.ck.page/products/blogging-for-entrepreneurs


The Digital Creators Hub

Gain FREE access here... www.pink-lemondigital.com/hub


The Ultimate Marketing Bundle

Click here to learn about The Ultimate Marketing Bundle


Get in touch:


Got a question, suggestion for an episode or maybe you would like to be a guest?

Email me at karen@pink-lemondigital.com

Karen Davies [00:00:00]:

Hello and welcome to the Digitally she does it show. This is episode 60, and in today's episode, I'm going to be talking to lifestyle blogger and entrepreneur April Harris about what it takes to create a successful blog that you can make money from so let's jump right in and get started.

Welcome to the digitally she does it show. I'm your host, Karen, and I'm here to lift the lid on what it actually takes to create a successful business. If you are an ambitious, creative, ready to build a business on your own terms and without compromise, then this podcast is perfect for you.

With my award winning approach to marketing and expert knowledge in creating online courses, this show will leave you feeling inspired, energised, and ready to bring those big dreams to life.

Karen Davies [00:00:52]:

Join me each week for a dose of motivation and marketing know how, along with actionable step by step strategies to help you accelerate your business's growth. So let's dive in and don't forget to subscribe to all my upcoming episodes, which drop every Wednesday. So, hello. Welcome to this episode of the Digitally she does it. Podcast. Today I am talking to lifestyle blogger April Harris about her journey in her business and what she has been able to create for herself as a successful lifestyle blogger and the key learnings that she has discovered along the way. So, April, thank you so much for coming onto this episode. I'm really excited that we're talking today.

Karen Davies [00:01:46]:

I know we've spoken previously about creating an episode because I know you're just full of so much value and good stuff, and I'm really excited about what we're going to uncover today. But welcome to the show. Would you mind just introducing yourself for the audience and just telling them a bit about who you are? Thank you so much, Karen. I'm really excited to be here. I'm April and I'm a writer and lifestyle blogger. I've been a lifestyle blogger for the last 21 years. I share delicious home cooking ideas to help you make the most of your home travel stories and tips inspiration to help people embrace their own unique style. And my blog is Apriljharris.com.

Karen Davies [00:02:27]:

I originally started doing something a little bit different than that, but I've moved through all the stages from mummy blogging into more of a midlife lifestyle blogger. I guess that's the great thing about what you do, isn't it? Because you can align your content with where you are in your life journey. So, like you say, as a mom, the content you create is about being a mom and all the things that kind of go into that phase of your life. But as you grow, your blog and the content that you include in your blog grows with you. That's absolutely true. And I think the brilliant part is you can write about things retrospectively as well, so it's wonderful. Now, I can incorporate things, for example, say, on how to deal with an empty nest and things to help you develop beyond that as you begin to grow into midlife. Having said that, I still remember what it's like to have young children.

Karen Davies [00:03:21]:

I still remember what it's like to build a family. And I've now got that benefit of that wonderful extra experience of having an adult child who's starting to make a life of their own. So I've got a great range of experience to share and I've been exposed to lots of different products, services, brands and ideas that are all in that sort of COVID all of that area. And I guess your audience has most likely grown with you as well. So your audience that wanted to kind of know your story when you were bringing up your children to what it's like, like you say, having to deal with emptiness syndrome and all those things. And I guess they grow with you as well because they're going through it. So as you're going through it, you stay relatable in that way. I absolutely endeavor to stay relatable and some of my readers have been with me from the very beginning, which is incredibly rewarding and I'm very grateful for them.

Karen Davies [00:04:17]:

I also obviously get new people coming in, which is really interesting, and seeing them come in at different stages of their lives. Kind of most of the people who are coming in are starting at about 30 and moving on up through to sort of 65 plus. But I'm kind of hitting that right in the middle, which is really nice. For those of you who don't know what lifestyle blogging is, April, would you like to just tell them a bit about what it is, what's involved and how you got started as well? So a lifestyle blog is basically kind of a lifestyle magazine on the web, and it can be approached in two ways. If you are following a lifestyle blog, for example, or you've got a lifestyle blog that really resonates with you, you may visit that blog repeatedly. You might go to that URL and see what the person's putting up, what they're covering. You might also find them via a web search. So you're on Google, you're looking for an answer to a question or you have a problem you want to solve and you might find one of their blog posts comes up in the search results and it resonates with you and maybe you keep coming back or you travel around that website.

Karen Davies [00:05:22]:

A lot of people find my blog through recipes because they're looking for how to make a particular thing and my blog will come up in the search results and hopefully they're impressed enough that they hang around. But it has really changed from when I started, because when I started, blogs didn't even exist. I started basically writing a series of essays because I became really frustrated as a housewife and stay at home mum. Very early on, I became very frustrated around the idea that no one thought I was doing anything that mattered and nobody thought I was interesting anymore. And I had a collection of essays, it wasn't quite enough for a book. And my husband said to me, well, you need a website. And I genuinely did not know what a website was at that point, and that was back in 2002. And he got me set up on a website and I had a static website which I called the 21st Century Housewife, which at the time seemed really current.

Karen Davies [00:06:15]:

And the idea of housewife whiffri still resonates with me, it still resonates with some of my audience, but I've gone on to become an entrepreneur, so it's a bit different now. But to backtrack, we basically started this website and it was literally a series of static pages and I got a bit of attention with that. The Guardian noticed me, there was a bit of interest around the idea of this was something new and different. And not long after that, we happened to be in the US and I saw an advertisement for a blogging conference in the city where we were. And I thought, well, this sounds a bit like what I'm doing. And it was very early days, I mean, it was the days when people were writing blog posts, just sharing their thoughts about anything and everything. But I went along and I thought, wow, this is interesting, I could do this and I could actually share other things of value, not just my thoughts, I could share how I do things, how I deal with issues around raising a family, maybe recipes, and it just led and kind of snowballed from there. Yeah, it definitely sounds like as you have developed your idea, there's been a real sort of evolving process that's gone on as well.

Karen Davies [00:07:24]:

Like you say, I always feel as though it's this thing about the universe, isn't it? Like things are presented to us at certain times of our life for a reason. And although in today's world, blogging is seen as a way to help drive traffic to the website, it's so much more than that. And I think what you do with your blogs and the way you write your blogs is that you're helping and you're giving value and it isn't just about being a traffic driver, it's so much more than that. And when you say that you were sort of obviously in the US. And this thing was presented to you, I just feel like things like that it's the universe is showing you the way, and this is something that clearly you were meant to do. It was a path you were meant to embark on, which I love, because I think we could all relate in one way or another, isn't it? When we have these thoughts and these ideas, something is then presented to us. You take that brave step in going and finding out more about it and then you're hooked and then that's it. You know what path you're on.

Karen Davies [00:08:31]:

Obviously, you never set out to do what you're doing, but what do you love about it? Because you clearly must love doing what you're doing, because you've been doing it for a long time, haven't you? I do love it. I love the community that I've created, I love the interaction that I get with my readers and I love that I'm helping people. I also love how it grows with you. So I rebranded about eight years ago, and I rebranded under my own name as April J. Harris because I felt that it was time to become a little more modern, to move forward. And as I was an entrepreneur at that stage, I just felt like it was right. People still know me as the 21st century housewife. People still follow my blog for that reason, but I've got a whole new audience that are following for all different reasons and, as you said, a blog originally, yes, I was using things just to drive traffic to the website, but working with brands to help them promote their own things, you're driving traffic to other people's websites.

Karen Davies [00:09:25]:

As an entrepreneur, though, you can definitely use it to drive traffic to your website, but you also want to be helping people at the same time. But it is incredibly rewarding for me, I think, to your question, it is the fact that I feel like I'm making a difference and I'm creating a resource that people come to again and again. And it's a nice legacy. Absolutely. Because that's the thing, isn't it? It's evergreen content. There's no timestamp on it. So some of the content that you created years ago may still be relevant today and therefore can still be found and enjoyed. The thing about creating time sensitive content is that when that moment has passed, it becomes out of date.

Karen Davies [00:10:09]:

So being able to, like you say, things like recipes and content that really does help, may not be ready for somebody right now, but it may be in the future. Absolutely. And I think if you get the right I mean, I work on WordPress, and if you get the right blogging package, you can definitely bring content forward and you need to do that. As a lifestyle blogger, you need to quite ruthlessly look at some of your old content and go, Is this still relevant? And if it isn't, can I make it relevant? Can I bring it forward as a new post? Can I add information? Can I add more value to this? Or do I need to just say, actually, do you know what? This is not working. We need to just move that along and put that in the archive and move forward with something new. It is a constantly evolving process. I'm doing a lot of culling at the moment and sort of moving forward in new directions and it's so interesting how you can take some content that you would think, oh, well, that's passed and gone, but actually you can pull something out of it and bring it forward to something else. There's a lot more flexibility within the blogging packages out there, particularly WordPress, and it's allowing us to take even content that isn't evergreen and make it more evergreen.

Karen Davies [00:11:18]:

That said, if you can go at things from a position, if you are writing a blog, either as a blog post, either as an entrepreneur or as a person who is a lifestyle blogger, thinking about doing that from an evergreen perspective is very important. And like you say, WordPress, which is a fantastic platform, has evolved so much. So being able to kind of have the tools in place that support you to be able to do the thing that you do, I think is important as well. And having that critical eye over your content, what is your process? So how do you come up with your content in terms of, you know, you need to create something because obviously in order to keep it going, how do you keep coming up with new ideas, new thoughts about the content that you're creating? There's two different angles that I come at this from. One of the angles is if I have a client who wants me to promote something so that's a bit more targeted in the sense that they want me to promote a certain thing. So I have to look at ways that I can make that appealing to my audience. I have to be sure that it resonates with me because I would never promote something that I don't believe in or that I haven't used myself. And I have to come at that from a different angle.

Karen Davies [00:12:35]:

How can that benefit my audience? The other angle I come at is what are people's problems? What's happening? What's happening in the greater world? What's happening to me? What am I looking at? So a lot of the work I did around The Empty Nest, I did a couple of years after I experienced The Empty Nest because I kind of had that really huge amount of experience with what it was like. And so it is literally looking at, well, what topics can I talk about? What things are resonating with me at this moment? And as an entrepreneur, you can do that as well. What's resonating with me at the moment that plays into the service or the product that I'm offering. So taking those things also being aware of the wider world and what's going on, listening to conversations with friends and family and in the wider world, what things people are talking about, what's worrying them, what are their pain points and taking that and brainstorming how you can approach it and what you can bring to the table and how you can help. I think that's a great way to think about it because I think certainly as an entrepreneur. Our job is to show up and serve in whatever capacity that we're in. But you're absolutely right. It has to come down to what is happening right now.

Karen Davies [00:13:47]:

We have to go to where our clients are and understand the things that they are struggling with, so that whatever we create, it's going to provide that level of solution. So it isn't just for vanity, so that we have something nice in our armor. It's the fact that we're creating things that make a difference, that create impact, that make change in the world. I think you're right because that's one of the things that a conversation I have a lot, especially with online courses, is I don't know what course to create. There are so many ideas. How do you pinpoint it? And that's why I always say to my clients, it's like, what are people coming to you for? What are they struggling with? How do you help them right now? Not how did you help them six months ago? What are people needing from you right now? So I think, like you say, it's just being really tuned in to the environment you in, what's going on around you and having those meaningful conversations. Because that's where the magic happens, isn't it? That's where you then get your inspired thoughts that then lead to creating innovative products and services that actually make a difference. I totally agree.

Karen Davies [00:15:02]:

And whether someone's a writer or whether they consider themselves a content creator, I would always say to make notes. You may have something that comes to you that seems totally irrelevant at the time and you've got wonderful thoughts around it. And if you don't write those down, I can promise you they will disappear. And you'll think when you're creating content I thought about that last week and I had these wonderful thoughts and I don't remember what any of them are. Write things down, keep lists. Honor what you're doing by creating a system where you have references, whether that's online or just on paper or in a file box, so that you've got you can refer back to in subject areas so that when something comes up, you can think, oh yes. Or if you read something or hear about something, write down references, write down quotes, make sure you get the attribution so that you can actually go and have a resource there and you can just get on with sharing that content that's going to help someone at that time. Yeah, I think that's a great tip.

Karen Davies [00:15:55]:

I think. Absolutely. I have a little black book that I just keep in my bag. I'm always sort of writing notes and that's exactly what I do because I will see something or someone will ask the question. I'll say I haven't thought about that. But actually that is a real question to ask. That's a really good question. And I think like you say, having somewhere where you can capture that because that could be a piece of content in the future.

Karen Davies [00:16:19]:

Got it. It could be the start of an online course that starts to bring in that extra revenue in your business. You don't know necessarily where it's going to lead. You just need to have sort of faith in yourself that whatever's going to come to you and whatever you're going to create in the future is on its way and it's showing itself up in meaningful conversations or things that you see online. And I was talking earlier to a friend, and we were talking about synchronicities. And you'll have a thought, and then you'll see something, and then you'll see something else, and then you don't realize it at the time, but things are starting to fall into place. And it's only when you're down the road and you're looking back, you start to see, oh, had I not had that conversation, this wouldn't have happened, and I wouldn't have seen this, and I wouldn't have been tuned into that. And then all of a sudden it snowballs and then you've got something that you never would have thought you would have had in the first place.

Karen Davies [00:17:17]:

So that's a great tip, I think. Yeah, definitely. Keep a little book or notepad or something where you can start to capture things, even on your phone. I mean, phones are great now, aren't they? And to your point, what you said earlier about how things happen for a reason and how you end up in the right place at the right time, I completely agree about synchronicity. And I think that sometimes we're given ideas because and this isn't a new concept. This is things that many people talk about. The idea of ideas being sentient and coming to you for a reason, because they want you to share them. They want you to bring them to life.

Karen Davies [00:17:49]:

So don't ignore things and don't ignore that intuition because I think, particularly as entrepreneurs, you need to be switched on to your sort of 6th sense, if you like, because that will really help you and it will help your clients. It's so powerful. I know for me, today's Pink Lemon's 6th birthday. So we're recording this on the first September. So my business is now six years old, which I'm incredibly proud of, but I don't think I would have lasted or be where I'm at now had I not listened to my intuition and followed my gut. And there have been times where I've been tested and things have been presented that may have taken me off track. And for whatever reason, things have kind of signposted me. And I believe that the path I'm on is the path I'm supposed to be on, like 100%, now more than ever, believe that.

Karen Davies [00:18:43]:

And I think it's really important to, like you say, really put the faith in you because nobody knows you better than yourself. So when you get those I have a client, actually, who calls. She calls them digital downloads from the universe and I love that they're inspired thoughts, but when you get them, they've been sent to you and you have to follow them with your gut. You have to really tune into it. And I believe that's one of the secrets of success is backing yourself, having that faith and following your gut. Because I think when you do that, you can't go wrong. It really is. I think as women, we are often not encouraged to trust our guts and to trust our instincts, and we absolutely have to do that.

Karen Davies [00:19:30]:

I really think that there is so much potential for growth if you just follow your instincts. But also, I did want to say congratulations on your 6th birthday in business. That's fantastic. That's a real accomplishment, and especially through everything we went through. Well done. Yeah, I did think that earlier because I haven't made a massive splash about it, mainly because we were talking before and I've taken August off and I've had time with the kids and stuff, but it did occur to me, it was like, oh, this is a milestone and it hasn't been easy. We've gone through the pandemic, the cost of living, all of this stuff that impacts us. And I'm still here and I'm still going strong and I'm so excited for what's to come because I know I've been working on some great stuff that's going to make a difference for the business in the future.

Karen Davies [00:20:19]:

But like I say, it's down to instincts, because it was my instincts that got me to start the business in the first place. And it's been an incredible journey. There's been lots of highs, lots of lows, everything in between, but ultimately I've had this real strong sense of what I'm supposed to be doing. And even when I shifted my focus in lockdown, it was the right time to do that. And looking back, I think it was a very brave hit because my creative studio at the time was that I was managing so many projects, I was so busy, so it was a real gamble. But I followed my gut instincts and it led me somewhere else and I'm so pleased I did that. And I think, yeah, as women, maybe we don't do it enough and we really should, because that's what's going to lead us to the right path and take us to where we want to get to. I totally agree.

Karen Davies [00:21:11]:

I think it's so nice to see, and I think I've seen that in sort of seeing other people, either in the entrepreneurial space or other people who are entrepreneurial in the blog space as well. It is so interesting to watch how people grow and how they progress and how they move forward, and also how social media has changed what we do and how it's allowed us. I think in some ways there are some negatives to it, but it has allowed us to grow in many ways and it's expanded our reach in ways I don't think we could have I certainly could never have imagined the expansion of reach that that could create when I started out. I mean, no way. Yeah. So that's an interesting because when you started out in 2002, is that right? You've been going obviously a long time, so congratulations to you, because I think what you've achieved is incredible. But you're absolutely right. Social media at that time, I believe Facebook was coming around.

Karen Davies [00:22:05]:

I think it was in the early stage. Facebook 2006, 2007 for Facebook, I think was there. Wow. So the things that we take for granted today as being a way to reach our audiences, like you say, that wasn't really around when you first started. So what did you do then to get awareness and attention to your blog? It was really difficult. A lot of it was word of mouth. And then one of the things I started doing, it was so interesting when I began because you become very protective, especially back then. So it was kind of like, well, I have a blog and I want people to come to my blog, so I'm not going to pay attention to these other people who are blogging.

Karen Davies [00:22:49]:

And it was more about sort of protecting yourself and not reaching out. And then suddenly we discovered the idea of collaboration. And one of the things that started back then was people would link to each other's blogs in what they called blog parties. Now, I'm still actually running a community called the Hearth and Soul community, where people do link once a month and they share their content there. But there was a lot more of it back then and it was a way to introduce yourself to other bloggers and to their audience without taking their audience, just sharing something in a similar vein. And it really helped expand our reach then. It still works. It's a different world these days, so it's more about creating community now, but it definitely does expand reach.

Karen Davies [00:23:31]:

And I think we also did guest posts, which you can still do, but there's a little bit more awareness around guest posts. There's a real knack to it now, and you need to be careful who you're linking to. You need to be careful about how their website is viewed by Google, because a link from a website that's not so great isn't going to help you. If you get a link from a website that does have a high domain authority that is really valuable. So there's a knack to all of it. But yes, that was how we did it, was literally by sharing each other's content through things called link ups. So I guess now, having got social media at your fingertips, I suppose there are different challenges now, aren't there, in terms of how to build that reach? While social media has helped in so many ways, like you say, there is a negative side to social media. But what's your experience of leveraging those platforms like today? I think they can be amazing.

Karen Davies [00:24:32]:

They can really help you expand your reach. You are at the mercy of the algorithm and sometimes you can end up I know someone recently who's actually ended up being locked out of Instagram and it's a very big part of their business and they have nowhere to go with that. So that's where you definitely need to have a newsletter. My newsletter is really important to me. It is something that my readers really enjoy. If someone's willing to give you their email address. And generally you offer them I mean, you know this you offer them something for free that they can download that's worth their giving the email address, but you still need to provide really useful content in your newsletter, or they can unsubscribe. But that list of people that belongs to you.

Karen Davies [00:25:12]:

So whilst I cherish my followers on social media and I really think they're important and I try not to neglect them in any way, I know that my newsletter is a targeted way of reaching people who've said, hey, we want to hear from you. So, absolutely, social media can be incredibly valuable, but equally focusing on the newsletter is really important. And then another thing that you can look at as well, which isn't actually social media, but depending on where you sit and what you're doing. Pinterest, I mean, for me, is a huge driver of traffic and business. Yes. So I know we've spoken about this and I would love you to obviously sort of dive a little bit further into this. So as a lifestyle blogger, you do use Pinterest and it is, as you just mentioned, an important part of driving traffic to your website and promoting what you do. I know, having spoken to many sort of fellow entrepreneurs, pinterest obviously works a little bit different to other social media sites.

Karen Davies [00:26:12]:

And I know from my own experience of using the platform, there is more strategy involved. But what is your experience of Pinterest and how do you use it to benefit your business? The first thing I would say about Pinterest, and my experience of it is that Pinterest are much more hands on. Their raison detra is to give everyone the inspiration they need to create a life they love. And they're concerned about their creators, they're concerned about people who are putting content on the platform so you can always contact them, you can always get in touch. That's not necessarily the case with Meta, but the thing that I love about Pinterest is it's constantly evolving. And I think we were speaking earlier about the fact that there's so many new features being rolled out. If you're going to use it to promote your business, you do need to have a business account. And that doesn't need to be scary.

Karen Davies [00:27:02]:

That is very easy to set up. It doesn't. Cost you anything. You can obviously advertise on Pinterest like you do on Facebook, and that has a cost implication. But there's no cost implication to having a business account. And it allows you to do all sorts of things that at one point video Pins were only rolled out to business users. I believe. Now everyone can have a video Pin, but those things, there's just so much potential.

Karen Davies [00:27:26]:

So with an idea Pin or a video Pin, you can actually show someone how to use your product or service, literally demonstrate it to them. And I know you can do that in a reel, but on Pinterest you're getting that reach. It is a search engine as well. And if you use your keywords correctly, you can really bring people to actually see things. It's a fabulous platform for gardeners, interior designers, for people like me who are sharing my lifestyle. Content does very well on Pinterest, but it's my recipes because people eat with their eyes. And I ended up developing a following of well over 10,000 people. In fact, it's still growing.

Karen Davies [00:27:59]:

We're getting about ten and a half thousand at the moment. And a lot of that is because of the food content. And the reach for that is just exponential. I started using incorporating Pinterest earlier this year, and I've noticed already the metrics, and you're absolutely right, it's a search engine, it's a visual search engine. So people are using the platform very differently. I just find with Instagram or Facebook and I really enjoy social media, but I find that content lives for such a short space of time, which is frustrating because we put all of this effort into creating this amazing content and then what happens is that the algorithms then makes the decision as to who sees it and who doesn't. So then, like you say, you're at the mercy of these social media platforms. But I've noticed what's different with Pinterest is that more eyeballs are on the content, which means more people are clicking through to your website, which means you're getting more uptake, I suppose, on the content that you're creating.

Karen Davies [00:29:05]:

And then it's evergreen. So it doesn't just go somewhere and die, which, let's face it, on a lot of the other platforms it does actually. On Pinterest it's evergreen, it's ongoing, which means somebody can find an article you wrote two years ago and still consume it today. And I think there's something really powerful about that. It's incredibly true. One of the Pins that drives the most traffic to my website, the Pin, is, I believe, seven years old. Wow. And not even optimized to the size that you're supposed to have Pins at these days, which is 1000 by 1500 for a similar ratio.

Karen Davies [00:29:43]:

It's not even optimized to that, and it's driving so much traffic. I have several Pins that are at least five years some older. It's just incredible. The content does not live and die. It's not for everyone. In terms of an entrepreneurial space, but for those people who it is, and I'm pleased to hear you're getting such good results with it, it's just amazing. Yeah, I mean, I could do better, as always, but what I've realized is it's all about consistency. So whether you pin one pin a day or you pin ten pins a day, whatever that looks like, I think the secret, or what I think the secret is, is that level of consistency.

Karen Davies [00:30:25]:

So whatever you decide to do, you're just being consistent with your efforts. But I have to say, even very early on, my results are very different from the other platforms. And I'm a content driven business. Like what I do, what I talk about, my podcast, I've got so much content, and so I don't want my content to just go somewhere and die. I want it being consumed. That's why we're creating it. So I was just really impressed with how quick I've started to see the results. And I'm notified you've been on there for a long time, and I can imagine the longer you're on there, it's like with anything, the more it grows and the better results you get.

Karen Davies [00:31:06]:

But I think for somebody starting out that is looking to expand their reach and to connect on that deeper level with their audience, it's a great platform for that. I think good things can happen with that platform. It really is. And I've been on it so long that it was when it first came out and I remember thinking, oh, I don't know, do I have time for this? And I'm so glad that I decided that I did, because it really has just been it's a very holistic environment as well. You don't get into the same, at least not in my experience or the experiences as I know. You don't get into that same sort of you don't get trolls on pinterest or I certainly haven't experienced that. And I think that it's so lovely that you've got a growing platform, something that's evolving now, occasionally they do things that you think, why have you done that? And that's very frustrating. But in general, on the whole, they are one of as long as you remember they're a search engine, they're one of the platforms to use.

Karen Davies [00:32:05]:

You can get engagement, though, and you can get connection because you look on your dashboard, there is this thing where you can see what's happening. There's like little notifications, but there's also the little arrow where people can message you. And it's really important to respond to those messages and make sure that you do interact with people so that they feel you're getting that you can actually build it's not the same kind of community that I've built around my lifestyle blog, but you can build a sort of community and it's really lovely. It's important to look at people who, first of all, to enrich your experience, you want to look at content from people who you don't necessarily know of, but also when you leave a comment, they're going to think, well, who's she? She's left me a really nice comment. Maybe I'll go and have a look at her content. And you do create a wonderful reciprocal spiral and I think that Pinterest is a wonderful place to do that. Now, you can do that on any social media. As I say, Pinterest isn't social media.

Karen Davies [00:32:57]:

You can do that on other social media platforms and have that sort of reciprocal and going out and looking at other people new to you, people's content. But with Pinterest, there's a real sense of I really feel like you grow when you look at things on Pinterest. You're finding out how to do things, you're finding out, you're learning. And I think that that can be the case on social media, but Pinterest brings something to the table that social media just cannot. I think the difference is that a lot of the time on social media is very much about awareness. So, yes, people share things on Instagram and Facebook and LinkedIn and whatnot they might share their blogs and articles, but you're absolutely right, I think the difference and it's just a very small difference, but I think with Pinterest, it's all about sharing that valuable content, because that's what the platform has been designed for. Whereas on the other platforms, nine times out of ten, it's about awareness, it's about letting people know that you exist, talking about the things that you do, and just getting people to engage. And it is becoming harder because there's more noise on the platforms now, more people are jumping on the bandwagon of, oh, I must do this, that and the other, in order to make this work.

Karen Davies [00:34:09]:

To stand out in amongst all of that, I think is harder. But the way you can stand out and the way you can differentiate yourself is by creating really great content. And I think that's why I enjoy the Pinterest platform, because not only do I get to consume it, I get to be able to create it as well. And it's lovely to know that Pinterest as a whole really want I mean, I've been to in real life events with Pinterest and I've been to Pinterest head office in San Francisco, and they really want to engage with the creators. They want quality content on their platform, whereas I sometimes get the feeling with social media that really all they want to do is take the content that you're creating and get you to pay them to boost that content. And it is also, I found anyway, and obviously I came at this a lot earlier, so this may not necessarily be the case for everyone, but for me, growing a following on Pinterest was almost it certainly wasn't effortless, but it was much easier than trying to build a following on Facebook and on Instagram. It's just much more organic people see things they like and they're much quicker to engage, they're much quicker to feedback. It's a really wonderful platform to work with.

Karen Davies [00:35:21]:

And I would encourage anyone who's in the entrepreneurial space to consider whether it's a good idea for them to take out a business account and to be sure to do that, because Pinterest really well, it's actually against their community guidelines for you to share business content on a private, personal Pinterest account. So with that in mind, who do you think needs to be on Pinterest? I think anyone who has a business that has something that's easy to photograph. I mean, I really admire how you've been able to take your content. I think with video Pins and idea Pins, it makes it really good. And also infographics are great visual content. But anyone who's in the sort of interior design, gardening, food creating recipes, any of those things, that sort of space is really super easy to create content. Well, not easy, but easier in some ways. I think that anyone can use it if it resonates with them.

Karen Davies [00:36:19]:

I think the idea is don't panic when you start you get your business account. Start with a couple of boards, have a couple of boards that are relevant to your content, and a couple of boards where you can share other people's content that sort of resonates with yours, but isn't in competition to you, obviously, and sort of backs up your ideas and just start small. So don't feel you have to have hundreds of boards to start with. And utilize the feature where you can subdivide within boards so that it's easy to find things, because you will get people who will click on one of your Pins and go, oh my goodness, I need to know more. They click on your profile and they've got your boards and they will look at your boards and go through them. So it's nice to have that laid out in a really consistent way so that they're easy to access. I think that pretty much anyone can benefit. Although it would be very hard in some cases if you are strictly services based.

Karen Davies [00:37:13]:

Say, if you're doing something where you can't I mean, if you want to provide video, I think actually even a life coach could provide verbal content and kind of like reels, but using those as ideas. Pins. So I don't think anyone wouldn't benefit. It's much easier for entrepreneurs who are in the space where there's something visual that it's easy to share. But as always, and I say this every time, put yourself in the picture, get yourself out there, put yourself in video Pins, put yourself in idea Pins, have photographs of yourself in carousels so that people can see you. And people love that connection. Yeah, absolutely. I always notice whenever there's a post that goes out with an image on of a person as opposed to something nice and designed or whatever, they get so much more engagement because people want to know the person in the business behind the business behind the brand.

Karen Davies [00:38:10]:

So I think being able to kind of put your face out there, it can sometimes feel uncomfortable, especially if you're an introvert and you're not comfortable with being out in the public domain. But I think it would go a long way to sort of helping build awareness around your business and helping your audience, like you say, get to know you and so that you can make that connection on a much deeper level rather than just sort of talking at them. It's that kind of difference, isn't it's? Like bringing them into your world. Before we finish the episode, would you kindly provide some tips for my listeners? So if they're thinking about starting a blog, what would you say they need to maybe consider? And if they're looking to maybe get started with Pinterest, do you have any tips there that will help them to get started? So, with regard to a blog, I think the most important thing is the website it sits on. You need to make sure that you have a good website that is optimized for SEO, because you can have the best content in the world. And if it's sitting on a website that isn't indexing or doesn't look nice and people don't feel drawn to it, it's just going to be wasted. So definitely make sure you've got a good foundation to build on. You've got a good website to sit that blog on.

Karen Davies [00:39:24]:

I think really consider, if you're doing it from the point of view of an entrepreneur, really consider whether it is for you. And that's something I can help with, is, is that something that's going to benefit you and will it be something that resonates with you, something that you can really make fly? And I think to be consistent always with blogging is making sure you have content. So if you're going to launch a blog, make sure you have content ready to go, so you don't put up a blog post and have people going, oh, where's the next one? And there's nothing. So I think consistency with anything, that's just a really top level because so much to it. And with Pinterest as well. Start slowly. Make sure you curate your boards carefully so that you're sharing content that's your own and that's other people. Be brave, reach out, do things that you might not expect.

Karen Davies [00:40:10]:

I don't encourage deleting pins. Once they're up, you must leave them up. But if you literally put one up and think, oh no, you can immediately delete it, it's okay. And I think that there's just so much space if we just allow ourselves to fly, it just makes such a difference. But yes, start slowly, get in there again. Plan your content. Consider a scheduling tool if you're using it a lot, but definitely plan that content out. Think about what boards you share.

Karen Davies [00:40:35]:

What do you again, a bit like blogging. What is it that you offer? How can you benefit? How can you solve people's problems? And maybe put those into categories? And those are your boards. So start with and be consistent and visual. Be very pinterest is a visual medium. And remember, it's a search engine. Remember those keywords. Yeah. And always remember and this is my branding hack coming on.

Karen Davies [00:40:59]:

Just make sure that whatever content you put out, it's aligned to your brand. It looks when somebody sees something that you've put out, they know it's from Pink Lemon or it's from April Harris or it's got your stamp on it. It's individual, it's very tailored to your business so that you're developing that thread of awareness. But it all kind of goes back to your brand and that strength. So they're great tips. Thank you. So one of the questions that I wanted to ask you when it comes to Pinterest, because people are time poor and they don't necessarily have a lot of time to spend building their Pinterest, but what would you say is a good frequency for putting Pins out there? I think that if you can do a couple a day, it really just start with a couple a day and see how it goes. If it really works and you're starting to see results, then consider investing in a scheduling tool.

Karen Davies [00:41:55]:

They can be expensive and you can put out more. But I think if you just look at doing a couple a day, depending on how much content you have, and be sure that you need them to where you can you need them to link to your website, you want these Pins to sell. But equally, remember that within Pinterest, you can actually link to a product page. You can actually link to a sales page very easily, and you don't have to declare that it's a sales page. But yes, I would say in terms of frequency, two to three Pins a day to start with. And you can decide maybe you only do that Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and you don't do the weekend, or maybe you do seven days a week. Just see how that goes and how much you have. Yeah, I think like anything, isn't it? It's all trial and error.

Karen Davies [00:42:34]:

So start with a particular sort of schedule and then, like I say, it all comes down to the metrics, doesn't it? Monitor the metrics, and the metrics will tell you definitely. And don't just create one Pin. Put it up there and then be like, oh, nothing for ages. Make sure before you jump in, or if you've had a pause, or if you've just opened a business account, or if you've got a business account and you haven't pinned for a while, create enough Pins to get you through a week and then start and then be consistent, whatever you do. Absolutely. That's what I'm saying. It's all about consistency, isn't it? Whatever we do, whether it's social media, blogging, Pinterest, whatever it is that you do, just be consistent with it. April, thank you so much.

Karen Davies [00:43:18]:

You have shared so much valuable stuff today and I really appreciate you coming onto the show and I hope the listeners have enjoyed everything you've shared with us. I'm sure they have. I will obviously share your details in the show notes and I know you are creating something amazing at the moment which will also go into the show notes. But thank you so much for coming on board and for doing this. And hopefully we can do another episode at a later date where maybe we can sort of get a little bit more into the detail of Pinterest because like I say, there's just so much there. Thank you so much, Karen. I've really enjoyed talking to you and I would love to come back and talk more about Pinterest. It's one of my passions.

Karen Davies [00:43:57]:

Thank you so much for taking the time to listen to today's episode. I hope you found this episode of value and of course, please feel free to share it with others who you may think will also benefit from listening to today's episode.

If you are feeling inspired and would like to know more about getting started with creating an online digital course, then why not download my free ebook, 10 Steps to Digital Course Success by visiting my website www.pink-lemondigital.com. I will be back next week with another episode, but until then, have a great week. 

I hope you enjoyed this episode of the Digitally She Does It show. Don't forget to check out the show notes for all the links and resources mentioned in today's episode. New episodes drop every week on a Wednesday, so why not rate and subscribe so you never miss an episode? 
Thank you for tuning in today and I will see you next time.