Having over 12 years experience as a full time blogger I did but also witnessed many Mistakes New Content Creators Make. I’m not pointing fingers but teach you how to avoid or fix them. It’s always best to learn from other’s people mistakes otherwise there’s a high price to pay, especially when you are a new content creator.
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10 Mistakes New Content Creators Make
Blogging is one of the most in-demand skills in the marketing industry proven by statistics. The power or blog posts or the Youtube videos is undeniable, but what does it take to make it in the big league? There are many things to consider when you are starting out but constantly educating yourself as you go along is essential.
A new content creator is not necessarily one who just put a few blog posts or videos out there. You can still be considered new if you are making the following mistakes. There were so many things I had to constantly learn that sometimes I felt overwhelmed and making mistakes was natural. Back in the day there weren’t so many choices on how to educate yourself, where to find the proper information or experienced content creators who would offer consultations, courses and books. Today with so much information and help available, making shocking mistakes as a content creator just shows how poorly prepared you are.
1.Quantity Over Quality
Probably one of the most frequent mistakes is choosing quantity over quality. I’m guilty as well and I wish I could turn back time but I learnt my lesson and I hope you can learn from my mistakes. In my defense, back then Google algorithm was rewarding those who were putting as much content there as possible. I just had to blog, blog and keep blogging while I was producing around 150 posts per month (for years!).
Content is king and even though in the beginning you want to produce as much content as possible, is not a healthy strategy on the long run. Here are 7 Smart Ways Content Creators Can Grow Their Platforms.
Focus on the quality of content without boring your audience with super long irrelevant posts & videos. You should create catching content that will keep your audience entertained from beginning to end. You will be constantly growing your audience even 10 years from now but until you have a fan base you should keep your blog posts/ videos shorter and on point.
I often see new content creators who are posting super long videos or blog posts where the introduction takes forever and kills the enthusiasm right from the beginning. Unless is a someone who already made a name for herself in the industry (this takes years) I’m not wasting 30 minutes to watch your video. I have 20 others content creators to check in a day and that will mean to waste my entire day only checking out other people’s content.
Make sure you share quality information without having us read 20 paragraphs or watch 10 minutes of your videos where you are blabbing. Better post 3 times a week relevant content than uploading shallow content everyday just for the sake of the algorithm.
2. Failure to Provide Quality Content
Blogging and Youtube represent huge career opportunities and many people have the impression is super easy to put content out there. I see many new content creators who don’t bring anything new to our community, on the contrary they are turning into copycats. You think is easy but once you sit down and start writing / filming you’ll see the real challenge.
You’ll find yourself not being able to stay on the subject and blabbing for the entire video or creating a post with superficial information. Your main purpose is to deliver relevant information and engaging content that will make your readers come back to your platform craving for more. Get inspired by other content creators who you are following but put your own mark on the niche you are focusing. Don’t just copy the same ideas!
Bloggers, are you familiar with Above the Fold content? If you’ve been blogging for a few months and you don’t know the term you should start educating yourself in the must-know basic info out there. Anything that isn’t visible immediately, that requires scrolling, is considered below the fold.
Applies for Youtubers as well! If you didn’t catch my attention during Above the Fold content or the first 2 -3 minutes of your video, chances that I may continue to check your content are very slim. Even though Google and Youtube algorithm want you to put daily content out there, you should be focusing more on the quality which will attract the right audience. High numbers of subscribers doesn’t always translate into good stats or earnings. Someone with 10k subscribers can earn the same or even more as someone with 50k, just because she targeted the right audience. Of course if you are lucky to be based in U.S. this will help your earnings but the quality of your audience and your analytics will still be low.
3. Trying to Hard to Soon
This is one of the most frequent mistake that new content creators make. While you want your platform to get engagement and visibility, you must use the right methods. I mentioned in my previous Blogging Articles and I can’t stress enough the importance of putting in the work first (for years if you have to) before collecting the benefits.
Many think it will be enough to produce content for 1 year before they’ll get noticed and free PR, collaborations from brands, bloggers/ Youtubers, will start flooding. It takes longer, as Google, Youtube and Instagram algorithms are constantly changing and what was working last year may not work now. You will become impatient that your platform is not growing as you’d expected and you’ll start making mistakes. Mistakes that will cost you along the way!
I’m talking about content creators who want to keep producing content years from now or even make it a full time job. If you are here just for fun and hobby (many hide under these words) the process of growing your platform will be slower.
Many established brands won’t even look at new content creators! Brands want to see you’ll be in this for the long run before they start investing in you. I never said it will be easy so prepare yourself for years of hard work, hundreds of articles/ videos before you’ll be considered ready to play the game.
Getting your foot in the door by having an aggressive attitude and flooding brands and other content creators’ inboxes is not a professional approach. It may work for a while but you don’t want to bee seen as the content creator who can’t take NO for an answer. Maybe you just need to work more on your own content and build a faithful audience before you knock at some doors. Leave the collaborations with other content creators for later when you’ll have your own audience to offer in return. Growing your audience based on constantly collaborations with other content creators may get your numbers high in the beginning…but what you are building is a castle of sand.
I’ve seen it happening too many times throughout the years when someone was trying to build an audience from other content creators. It all started crumbling down when the others had it with her behavior and revealed some behind the scenes cups of tea. She was stripped down from the audience she gained thanks to them and she lost contracts and collabs she had with brands.
The foundation of any business is very important, especially if you want to turn your blogging or Youtube channel in a full time job someday. You need to build your own audience based on the quality content you are providing. Stealing a few readers/ subscribers from here and there will not translate well on your analytics.
A low engagement rate make brands and other content creators wonder about the authenticity and quality of your platform. You may not realize but brands can exchange information between them (brand managers or PRs changing jobs) just like content creators do. So take your time, put in the work, effort and long hours it takes to create amazing evergreen content that will shine on your platform even years from now.
4. Focusing too Much on Social Media
This mistake can be perceived as fun, but is a mistake nonetheless. The more time you are spending on social media the less time you are spending on growing your platform. Your focus should be your blog / Youtube channel and not social media.
As much as entertaining social media is, you can easily lost track of time when you are engaging with your readers and other content creators. There are days when I’m still being carried away by the social media mirage and not post content on the blog. I want to drag audience from social media to my blog and not the other way around.
Back in the day having a nice Instagram feed would easily get you free PR and brands collabs even from some of the most prestigious ones. Nowadays it’s not enough! Many brands have awaken from their beauty sleep, especially now “thanks” to the worldwide pandemic situation we are facing, and they are demanding so much more.
Only in the past month I was approached by several reputable Instagrammers who confessed the game rules are rapidly changing for them. Brands want more than just a pretty photo and an Instastory with a swipe up. Unless you have something else to offer, like a blog or Youtube channel you are going to lose the support of the brand. This doesn’t mean you can get away with a shallow review of 200-300 words on the blog on an entire collection worth over $500.
Budgets are being cut down, sales are dropping so brands will be working with relevant influencers who can prove their value through stats. The era of Instagrammers is not going to last for much longer so please focus on a platform that you can fully control. Your Instagram account can be disabled anytime (just like mine was) if you don’t dance like brands play so I would never trust a platform like that.
5. Being Clueless about SEO
Many don’t even know what Search Engine Optimization (SEO) means and I can easily see it in their blog posts. Being a content creator for many years doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be aware of how SEO works. Even though many can write, not many can blog. What do I mean by that?
To be a content creator, especially full time, means so much more than just writing or filming. It means that you should know how to optimize your web page for SEO so it can be found on the Internet. No wonder your blog posts don’t rank on the first page of Google results!
You need to learn some technical stuff that I know many content creators drag but it’s essential for your blog to be out there in the first results of Google. As a WordPress user I get help from Yoast SEO, a free plug-in that I’ve been using for 2 years. It simplifies things but I was happy to see I was doing the right SEO even before that. I don’t like studying SEO trust me, but it was mandatory that I learnt in order for my content to be in the top search results.
Am I sounding too technical already? SEO helps your blog to be found by growing the quality and quantity of website traffic by increasing the visibility of a blog / website to users of a web search engine. SEO refers to the improvement of unpaid results and excludes direct traffic and the purchase of paid placement.
There are several techniques that you can use but I’ll name only 3 of them:
KEYWORDS. You have to do a keyword research and find the most popular search words that you should use in your blog posts. A precious tip is that your title MUST include a keyword. Then within the first 100 words of the first paragraph (remember above the fold content?) and a few times throughout the content. Now you see why you need good quality content and not just 200-300 words for a blog post?
SOCIAL MEDIA. Choose your social media platform according to your purpose. You need to distribute your keyword-rich content via social media networks that work for you. Did you think Instagram is my main social media platform? Think again! Have you checked my Pinterest lately? You’ll be surprised to know I’ve been focusing on Pinterest for years and is the only social media platform beneficial for content creators.
Having reached over 1 Million Viewers, I can say it was always my main traffic source compared to any other social media platform I ever used. 🙂 I can schedule my content in advance using Tailwind, allowing me not to waste time daily as I do on Instagram.
LINK BUILDING. Last but not least this is a timeless strategy that brought benefits since 2008 when Chicprofile was born. Back then we were linking to eachothers content, constantly mentioning us a few times a week. If you are a veteran on Chicprofile you may remember Chic Enjoyed Reading posts, where I’d mention my favorite articles of the week.
Nowadays it pains me to see content creators becoming selfish, thinking they can grow on their own and refuse to give proper credit by linking to one another. Mentioning someone in your video / blog post by saying her name doesn’t count for Google. Link Building matters so unless you put a link to that name, your mention is just shallow and shows how superficial, selfish or uneducated on this matter you are! This strategy is beneficial for both parts as it will increase your visibility and help you reach out to a wide audience. If nobody would have ever linked to your platform, you’d still be in the dark today. Don’t think just because you are a high roller now you shouldn’t follow the algorithm. Don’t make this mistake!
6. Trying to Be Technical
This is a mistake usually made by new content creators who have very technical knowledge and they want to give a good impression to their readers. Imagine a dermatologist or skincare coach blogging about skincare. While they have the wide knowledge, many times they don’t know how to translate those technical terms for us mortals who are not so well educated in this domain. When I started learning about the wide world of skincare ingredients, I found many blogs very hard to read.
I felt the need of searching online for a dictionary that will explain the majority of words in that post. You have to think that not all your readers have a degree in a science and they are just trying to educate themselves. Your content has been diagnosed with the 3T syndrome: Trying To be Technical.
You can fix this by finding a middle grow in your writing style as you don’t want to alienate your readers. Everyone wants a blog posts they can easily read (remember the Yoast SEO plug-in?) without getting a headache. Otherwise they won’t be able to digest the information how about applying it later on.
You don’t need to show us your mighty technical and fundamental competencies but be able to make any reader easily understand your content.
7. Failure to Invest in their Platform
A blog is not going to grow only by posting content. Remember when I told you many think being a blogger is easy and doesn’t require to much effort, knowledge or funds? They were wrong!
The first thing you should do is to find a good hosting provider. In the beginning when your blog is small the costs will be smaller too. Think of it as a child… the bigger he gets the more money you’ll need to spend. You will need to upgrade hosting plans from time to time which will mean higher costs. Let’s not forget about buying a domain (this one is cheaper) so your URL won’t have the extension of blogpost.com or wordpress.com.
Another shocking mistake is the failure to invest in Site Speed. Especially nowadays when everyone has gone mobile and depends on their smartphones. Your site speed is crucial and you can easily lose subscribers if it takes more than 2-3 seconds for your page to load.
Should we move on to the part where I tell you that many invest in a paid theme for their blogs which offers many widgets and customization options? If you see a blog looking neat, airy and professional it may be because behind the scenes the owner invests a lot.
I could make an entire article about blogging costs so new content creators and readers will be more aware of what’s going on behind the scenes. From hosting providers, blog themes, plug-ins to apps, scheduling programs and so on…they all cost money.
This brings me to the questions I’ve answered in my last blogging post of Why Did I Make a Patreon Page! You Should Too!. If you are an independent content creator you have to sustain all your blog expenses from your blog earnings and on top of that trying to keep up with all the beauty releases it is overwhelming.
8. Failure to Post Constantly
You must know this before you start a blog or Youtube channel. Posting content now and then is not enough if you want your platform to get notice and readers or followers to turn into subscribers. This is how the algorithm works and you have to obey the rules, unless you are blogging as a hobby. 🙂
Is very important that you post constantly, especially in the beginning when you are seen as a new content creator. You need to post fresh content 5 times as week religiously if you can. It can work if you post only 3 times per week but the algorithm won’t reward you so much and your platform will grow slower. It’s very important that you should start uploading content constantly if you have the time for it.
I can’t stress how important this is and how much it will help you grow. Things will get more relaxed in the future but you need to start in force and make an impact.
TIP: You can plan your big opening in advance and start creating content a few months before. Like this when you won’t have time to create new content, you’ll just upload one of the videos /posts you’ve created a while back. Make sure the content is evergreen otherwise who would care to read a review of Chanel Summer collection around Christmas time.
9. Failure to Credit your Sources
While this may look like a beginner mistake, many established content creators are doing it as well. Not mentioning your sources and give proper credit is one of the riskiest mistakes that bloggers and content creators can do. Failure to cite the reference may put your blog at risk for being suspected of plagiarism. The same thing can happen when you don’t credit the photos you are posting on social media. I’m talking about personal photos so be careful as your account may be suspended.
An incident like this even though it was unintentionally can end your career before you start making a name for yourself. The same goes for Youtubers who take inspiration from others without mentioning or when they are using other people photos without LINKING to the source and provide proper content. Why not use the LINK BUILDING as a SEO strategy? 🙂
10. Creating Content without a Purpose
When you start blogging you need to have a purpose in mind, a goal on which you build your strategy. This means you should have done research and accumulate knowledge before you start your blog. Nowadays I see people starting a blog or a Youtube without even knowing how to add a link. What would make you think you can have results this way?
We are not back in 2008 in the prehistorical times of blogging, when you couldn’t find articles on how to grow your platform. While we were learning as we went along, I still spend a few months of educating myself before launching Chicprofile.
That was the tip of the iceberg compared to what I’ve learned blogging is going to be. I don’t want to discourage you but blogging without a purpose and a goal in mind can lead to a completely messy platform. While you may enjoy reviewing luxury makeup you may post photos of croissants and cappuccinos from time to time just because you enjoy those too.
It’s OK to experiment in the beginning with your platform till you get the hang of it but don’t take too long. In the beginning Chicprofile had 3 categories: Beauty, Fashion and Gossip. I ditched the gossip part in just a few months, while for Fashion it took me years to realize is not my calling. I was focusing on 2 different topics and that costs me on the long way.
Not setting a goal and not defining your purpose can make you float in the beauty community for years without seeing results. Time is precious and you must use it to create the right content. Did you know you had to blog for minimum 2 years before you started seeing results and earning some money? There wasn’t any point of monetizing my blog in the first 2 years because I knew I hadn’t had enough audience to bring me a sustainable income. Do you want to hear a shocking news? Only 9 years later I started using Affiliate Links. 🙂
You need to set a purpose and act accordingly, plan and implement a strategy. Educating yourself before starting to produce content will help you get a clearer picture of what you want to achieve and how to plan it. There are so many courses, tutorials, books and even coaches who offer consultations or help you define your purpose and implement strategies. In a world where information is just a click away you have no excuse to start producing content with having the basic knowledge.
Everything seems so much easier when you enjoy watching your favorite Youtuber from your comfy couch or while you read a blog with cup of tea or coffee in your hand. No wonder we have many new content creators bursting from everywhere and producing mediocre content at best! You can easily see they are not working on crushing their goals!