Within the last week I got a lot of new blogs submitted to the critique, so I thank you all for helping me keep this series alive. With the increased amount of interest this series is getting, after much debate I decided that I will go through with offer blogging consultations outside this blog. I will get into more detail about that service at a later date, but just be advise that’s going down.
I read all the blog submissions and try to pick blogs that are dealing with new issues that haven’t really been addressed yet with these critiques. I took the time and renamed all the previous blog critiques, to make it easier for you to find common problems that all bloggers seem to be dealing with including promoting engagement, increasing page views, and building a credible brand within your niche/industry. I offered some lovely tips and techniques that you could apply to your own blogs and brands. If you’ve gone through all the posts and still have an issue that hasn’t been addressed, by all means.. please submit your blog for submission. Let’s move right along to today’s critique.
Brooklyn based illustrator, Brittany Holloway-Brown, finally submitted her blog for critique after months of deliberation. Although she’s fairly ‘new’ to the blogging community, she’s had her blog for quite some time now. This year she made a resolution to put not only herself, but her art out there more and start networking with other fellow artists. Although she’s confident about her blog post imagery, she submitted her blog for a critique to get my advice on the overall design of her blog and most importantly, what she can do to increase her presence on social media as she feels her skills are lacking. Well Brittany, you’ve come to the right place.
Three months into 2014 and I never got a chance to thank everyone who has supported The 2014 Blog Action Planner thus far. So far the planner has worked its way into the hands of 140+ bloggers and our Google+ Community, Blogging Better, is growing with 60+ members. Although I haven’t gotten to blog as much as I wanted to so far this year, I’m glad to know that this planner is helping bloggers of all experience levels get more organized and have a better focus on their blogging goals.
Bloggers are genuinely enjoying the blog planner, here’s what a few of them have to say:
I love how much this has helped me with organizing all of my ideas for posts, my additional website ideas, and helping me expand and grow my site with the helpful links and plugins mentioned each month. Also, the Google+ community is amazing and a fantastic idea to accompany a fantastic book. I highly recommend it for new, intermediate, and even advanced bloggers!
— Jade Ivory
I was shocked when Laura said it’d be 270 pages with resources and for $12! As a person who loves to plan, and strategize I was excited for this planner after she dropped the mini content planner back in Nov I believe. I love the aesthetic, I too had Laura’s problem with googling and searching pinterest for 1) viable content planners that made sense and 2) weren’t neon bright, flowery or princess-ey. My last editorial calendar was made by me in Excel and was bare bones. It was more a schedule than a planner. The Blog Action planner is perfect. This planner is so good b/c this year I know I won’t be blogging seriously as much as I did last year due to a career change but just reading January’s tasks it’s still very useful to me and I can definitely apply it to my more casual blogs.
— Alex B.
It has literally been months since I’ve done a blog critique. Let me just thank all the bloggers that are still submitting their blogs for critique even after this series has gone on a mini hiatus. I’m slowly but surely going to make my way to everyone’s site.. eventually.
I’ve been thinking about switching the medium up for this post and turning it into a video series instead. I feel like some points could come across better via video than text, so we’ll see. So just don’t be surprised if you see one of the next critiques a video. Moving right along with today’s critique.
Veronica is getting ready to approach her first full year of blogging as of March. When first setting up her blog, Veronica had two goals in mind: build traffic and reach out to women everywhere. Since she started blogging last year, she’s managed to pull in over 2000 unique visitors, but like all bloggers, she’s facing some challenges. Deeming me the “godmother” of better blogging, Veronica submitted her blog for critique to not only get my feedback on the aesthetics of her blog, but she wants to know what she can do to gain a following as well as promote people to leave comments on the site. Like I always say, *that default Godfather accent* you’ve come to the right place.
Thank you to everyone who purchased the 2014 Blog Action Planner that went on sale on Friday. Over the weekend, I sent out invitations to the private Google+ Community for those who bought the planner. With Facebook becoming more strict with their algorithms and what content your readers actually get to see, a lot of people are migrating over to Google+.
I’ve been dabbling with it since the New Year, and I have to say I enjoy it more than Facebook. I made a quick Google+ Community Guide for my new members that I thought I’d share with you all, especially if you’ve been thinking about making the switch over. Feel free to share this on social networks like Pinterest. If you have any questions pertaining to Google+, leave them in the comments. Maybe I’ll make another quick guide for you!
I started this blog on a random Wednesday in June with no real direction of where I was trying to go with this blog. I knew I wanted to inspire others through great design and share valuable resources, but there was never no clear plan at first. Just another one of my experiments to see what works & what doesn’t.
100 post later, I think I’m finally confident in the direction I’m trying to take this blog. My main mission is to inspire & inform creatives, brands & entrepreneurs on topics pertaining to design, branding and marketing. If you’ve been here from day one, I sincerely thank you. If you’re just now tuning into NNY, welcome.. I’m just getting started. Hopefully you’ll rock out with me for at least 100 more post.
As I continue you to bring you more interesting content, let’s have a little recap of what’s been going on here since June, just in case you missed anything:
- Why I Left Your Blog Immediately: Five Design Mistakes Bloggers Make. This was the post that basically gave me the idea to start the Blog Critiques. Speaking of blog critiques..
- The Blog Critiques. A weekly series in which I’ll critique a submitted blog offering design tips, as well as branding & content strategies. So far I’ve critiqued 11 blogs.
- How Instagram May Have Killed Off Vine. There’s was this one time I took shots at Vine & thought Instagram would kill it off completely. Guess I was wrong. You should know to this day I have yet to make a Vine or Instagram video.
- The Thirty By 30 List. Out of all the things I have listed, working on making #15 happen in 2014. Oh yes, and #9.
- 5 Plugins Every Blogger Should Use. I had started a WordPress Wednesdays, but then stopped. This was one of the most useful articles of that short lived series. I will do another post sharing more plugins.
- Fab Friday Finds. One Fridays, I tend to get a little lazy and just share some of my favorite products from Fab.com of the week. Please note, they are also one of my affiliate sponsors. I only share products I have either purchased, want to purchase or can’t afford but stand by it.
- Site Shares: Reaction Gif Archive & Content Idea Generator. Out of all the sites I share, people tend to find these two the most useful.
- Latest Work: Roxy Dare Yourself. I have only shared one of my design projects. I will get better & share sharing more.
- 3 Ways To Spice Up Your Blog Design. A useful article I posted a few months back sharing some ways you could aesthetically spice up your blog post. I even share how you can get Photoshop for FREE.
- Wanderlust: Cape Town, South Africa. Out of all the Wanderlust post done so far, the POD Boutique Hotel in South Africa remains one of my favorites.
- The Best of #ABCReports. When ABC decided to do a report on twerking, #BlackTwitter responded with an epic hashtag: #ABCReports. This is one of my most popular post to date.
- Office Spaces: Urban Outfitters Campus. I want to continue this series, but UO really sets the bar for great offices.
- Case Study: What ASOS Can Teach You About Social Media Marketing. I plan to do more case studies after many people told me they found this information quite useful.
- Lunchtime Linkage: More Doing, Less Promoting. I’ve been on & off w. the lunchtime linkage, but I find it’s more engaging when I just share one great article.
- Free Blog Content Planner. Give me your email, I give you a free blog content planner you can print. At least to hold you until I release the 2014 Blog Planner.
- Design Daily & Interior Envy. I do my best to share some amazing designed projects & interiors.
- How To Increase Facebook Likes With One Simple Step. This post is slowly making it’s way to my popular list. I will be sharing more strategies for social media & content in the future.