Image by Today is a Good Day
For the last year of blogging, I've hit a plateau. My traffic is steady, my comments may sit at a particular range, and my subscribers aren't getting any larger. And it's FRUSTRATING!
Then I have to remind myself– no matter whether it's in your blogging, creating art, losing weight, or building a business, you'll hit an inevitable plateau. Everything has risen and grown to a healthy point, and then it all stops off.
Plateaus don't have to be permanent. But they do require hard work to break through them. Whether it means adding an extra 20 minutes of exercise in to your routine to drop that last 5 pounds or an extra hour of work to gain an extra 100 subscribers, breaking through a plateau can be challenging, frustrating, and self-esteem breaking.
Tips for Busting Through Your Blogging Plateau:
- Step outside your niche. Start reading blogs in other topics–personal development, blog development, career advice for 20 somethings– you get the drift. Leave comments, and guest post. It's a great way to find new audiences.
- Stop being a silent blogger. Maybe you've been silently reading dozens of blogs for ages. What good does it do you (or the blogger) for you to read silently all of that time?
- Step back. Stop stretching yourself too thin. Re-engage with what matters. Many bloggers, and I know especially for myself, start to stretch themselves too thin. They spend more time on Twitter, Facebook, and other blogs than they do on their own. Stop. Spend your time writing posts and returning comments. Engage with your readers in the original place.
- Revisit your past. Trying going through your archives, post by post. What's getting tweeted? What's getting the most comments or pageviews? How did you feel when writing those posts, and how can you recreate it?
- Look at your present. Is your content regurgitating popular content? A niche can become easily saturated with similar posts. For the fashion community, it's often fashion week posts or award season. Are you providing new insight in to these? Or are you sharing the same images?
- Write something different. Use the rhythms of your life to inspire you and challenge your content. As I enter my busiest season at work, I've used it as an opportunity to post more “what I wore” inspired pieces. I'm dressing up more in my daily life, which is breaking me out of a fashion rut–and readers are responding to it! It's refreshing to see me inside the blog and not just my thoughts. It's different from what I normally write, it's inspiring me, and it's creating a response from my readers.
- Realize plateaus are natural. Many blogs grow fast– often too fast. Eventually that exponential growth is going to catch up with you and you're going be stuck at the same number for awhile. That doesn't mean that's the number you're destined to sit on, but rather, that maybe early success came quickly and easily. You may have to work harder to increase numbers at this point– and that's natural.
Have you experienced a blogging plateau? What tips did you use to break through it?