If you've read our blog for any length of time, you know we're FRIENDS addicts. We've seen the entire series at least 10 times, can quote almost any line (no matter how obscure), and Daisy's even shot multiple YouTube tutorials recreating the hairstyles and outfits from various seasons. And while we love each of the characters equally, today we're focusing on the quirkiest member of the group: Pheebs!!
Since I (Erin) do most of the behind-the-scenes work for the blog, I'm sharing a few of the important truths Phoebe Buffay has taught me about blogging.
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9 Lessons From Phoebe Buffay About Blogging
Because Phoebe always speaks the truth (no matter how harsh)…
1. It's Not A Get Rich Quick Scheme
If you go into blogging with the expectation of getting rich, you're in it for all the wrong reasons. Blogging is first and foremost about helping others, not about getting rich.
Does that mean you should feel guilty about making money from your blog? Heck no!! Blogging involves a ton of hard work and you have every right to profit from your effort.
The key to blogging is in providing valuable information that (hopefully) helps your readers transform their lives. Once you do that, the money will follow!
It works like this:
- When you provide something of value, readers will enjoy returning to visit your blog again and again. You'll develop true fans.
- That in turn builds your traffic and your social reach, which offers increased opportunities to monetize your site.
- Sponsors then love working with you, because you provide a genuine audience that is truly interested in acting on your advice.
It's a win/win (win)! And it all develops out of authenticity and genuinely wanting to connect with — and help — your reader.
2. You Have to Invest in Yourself
This is where a lot of bloggers (myself included) get tripped up. They want an incredible blog, but they don't want to put any money into it until it's actually profitable.
Picture my best Julia Roberts/Pretty Woman impression as I say:
You need to invest in your blog — and in yourself! It's the one thing every successful blogger has in common; they invest in blog courses and mastermind groups that help them grow.
If you haven't started a blog yet, you're in a fantastic position, because you can start off on the right foot from DAY ONE.
If you've been blogging for some time and want to improve, find a blogger more successful than you — someone you admire and hope to emulate. Ask that blogger what courses he or she recommends, and then sign up for the course and put 100% of your focus and energy into completing it.
[If you're curious, this is the one I recommend.]
3. You Need to Have a Plan
Too many (beginning and advanced) bloggers are clueless and bounce around from one strategy to the next, with no actual plan in place. They lack focus and suffer from information overload.
Does this sound familiar?
- You read a brilliant article and think, “That's exactly what I need to do!”, so then you give it a go for a while. When it doesn't work, you abandon your efforts.
- Then you read another brilliant article and think, “Oh boy, I'll try that!”, but it doesn't turn out like you'd hoped, either. Sigh.
- But wait! You stumble across a post from a successful blogger and follow her advice thinking, “It's gotta work this time!”, only to get frustrated when you can't duplicate her success.
It's a vicious cycle.
You need a plan. And not just any plan, but a PROVEN one. Find a method that's worked time and time again for bloggers more successful than you, and then mimic the steps in that process.
Here is one proven method I've noticed consistently amongst top-tier bloggers:
- Define Your Purpose & Build a Solid Foundation
- Market Like Crazy & Grow Your Audience
- Monetize Your Platform & Diversify Your Income Stream
- Build Your Business & Transform From Blogger To Entrepreneur
This is a very simple infographic you can print out showing that exact process [free printable]: The Secret Blueprint for Blogging Success
4. Sometimes You Just Have to Put Yourself Out There
Having a blog can be nerve-racking.
- It's scary to hit “publish” on your first post.
- It's scary the first time you share your blog with friends and family.
- It's scary to reach out to sponsors.
- It's scary when you get negative feedback.
- Blogging is scary. Period.
The best advice I ever received about blogging was to just START. You can't dream and wish forever; at some point you have to jump in with both feet and just DO IT!
Like most things in life, improvement comes with practice. The more experience you get, the more confidence you'll have.
But you'll never gain that valuable experience until you get up enough nerve to put yourself out there. So go forth into the blogging world, and start sharing your message!
If you're curious to know if you have what it takes to start a successful blog, try taking this very easy blog assessment quiz.
5. You Have to Believe in Yourself
I promise, there is an audience out there who wants to hear YOUR story and learn from YOU. For the sake of this post, let's call them your lobsters. 😉 (Ha! You knew I was going to fit that in somewhere, didn't you?)
That's because you have a unique perspective, and that makes YOU pretty awesome. No matter what blog topic or “niche” you choose, there's a whole community out there waiting to soak up any information you can provide on the topic. They're interested in YOUR story.
Even if your numbers are small in the beginning, just focus on churning out good content, have faith in yourself, and keep going. One day, it will all click and everything will fall into place!
Stay positive and keep believing in yourself, because you've totally got this!
6. You Can't Compare Yourself to Others
This is one of my personal favorites!! I'm an encourager by nature, so it makes me happy seeing others succeed.
Are you familiar with Teddy Roosevelt's quote, “Comparison is the thief of joy”? Well, believe it, my friends! You cannot compare your blog to someone else's. Don't go down that rabbit hole.
Two bloggers can start at the exact same time, with the exact same resources, and one may skyrocket to success while the other takes the long and leisurely route. If you're constantly comparing your journey to someone else's, you're putting the focus in the wrong place.
Put your blinders on and focus on YOU. Make your blog the best it can be. Follow a formula for each post you write, and create a message you're proud to share.
Not to be morbid, but I've recently starting thinking of blog posts this way: I publish each post as if it were my last. Think about it…if you were to die tomorrow and all your friends and family went to read your latest post, wouldn't you want it to be something that would make you proud?
Put something of value out into the world each time you post, and make sure you're sharing an important and helpful message.
7. Don't Be Afraid to Look Silly
Look, you're going to make mistakes as a blogger. It's bound to happen. But here's the magical thing about making mistakes: It means you're learning!
I've made tons of mistakes on this blog! Some cost me money. Others cost huge chunks of my time. A few had me crying out of sheer frustration.
But you know what? I figured things out! (Or I found someone who could help me.) Either way — I learned what works and what doesn't! There's a certain sense of satisfaction in knowing that everything is “figuroutable”.
You know what else is cool? Every post doesn't need to be perfect. One of my favorite things about blogging is that each post is editable! That's right: Every. Single. One.
If you screw up, you can go back and make changes. If you learn an improved method or technique, you can write an update.
You're a human being and you have flaws, so you might as well embrace them. (That often makes you more relatable, anyway!) Blogs are as much about growing and progressing as a person as they are about anything else.
Want to know another thing that's cool about blogging? You don't even have to use your real name if you're worried about looking silly! You can blog under your first name only until you get the hang of it — or even use a pseudonym. (Although I hear Princess Consuela Bananahammock is taken.)
8. Reassess When Things Aren't Working
It's important to take a step back and regularly examine your efforts. If something isn't working, you need to PIVOT!! (Ha! Somebody stop me!)
It helps to have a set of clear and attainable goals established (here is a free workbook about goal setting), so you'll know exactly when you're veering off course. Once you've established those goals, set to work making corrections!
If your blog posts aren't resonating with readers, attempt to figure out why. Get chatty with them on social media, via your newsletter, or even by posting a survey. Readers are usually pretty vocal about telling you what they want — if only you ask!
When you receive criticism, learn from it! Constructive criticism provides a valuable opportunity to grow and improve.
9. You've Gotta Have Friends
Many bloggers work from home (they're also known as “solopreneurs”) and good number are introverts — which means they often have a difficult time reaching out to others.
However, it's important to seek support and encouragement when you're a blogger, and you shouldn't attempt to do everything on your own.
Facebook groups are a great way to build friendships online and become part of a larger community. If you prefer face-to-face interaction, try local WordPress meetup groups or attend a blogging convention.
Whatever your method, make sure you develop a solid place you can turn to for support. It's so nice to be able to discuss questions or problems within blogging communities full of people who totally “get it”.
There are so many bloggers that began blogging around the same time that Daisy and I started this site, and it's been really fun watching them grow and become successful! To our fellow FRIENDS addicts in those groups, this post is for you. 🙂 Thanks for always sharing our posts and offering helpful advice.
Final Words of Wisdom from Phoebe Buffay
Before you go, Daisy said I have to close with this one final thought from Phoebe (it's the GIF I send to her every time she has a big test or presentation at school) …
And yes, in case you're curious, I did have a FRIENDS marathon going while I was writing this post. 🙂 What's your favorite episode of all time? Mine is The One Where Everybody Finds Out. The scene between Chandler and Phoebe is pure comedy gold, and there are so many quotable lines just from that episode alone!
Want to test me? Quote your favorite line from FRIENDS below, and I'll see if I can finish it for you. 🙂
PS: Like this post? Don't forget to share it on Pinterest!