Blogging & Monetization

I have been struggling a little bit with The Great Canadian Housewife. Not so much with content, well maybe a little, but more with just knowing where to start. I have exactly 20 posts since my first one in February this year. Most of those in April, May, and June I think, which is when I really started to get serious about it. As I said I am not really struggling so much with content, at least not yet, but I am sure that will come soon enough.

Right now my biggest struggles with it are driving traffic to it. Which I am doing somewhat okay at, but honestly I have nothing to compare it too as this one I never cared a whole lot or paid attention. It was more for me than for anyone else. Maybe that’s a bit selfish to say but it is a personal blog after all (this one).

I don’t care so much about SEO and that with this as I mostly just seek out other bloggers that I enjoy reading and comment on their blogs and probably 8 or 9 times out of ten they then come comment on mine. Which is sort of what I am doing with the other one, but I am not sure if that is the right way to go about it. It seems to be working okay but I am just not really sure.

I am struggling a lot with monetizing it and also with social media. Starting with social media I made a Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram account for the blog. Facebook was not too hard and I already have about 40 people following it but I am more active on Facebook than anywhere and most of those are my personal friends, a few bloggers, and some former work acquaintances. Not all of which are the right audience for the blog I don’t think,

I am unsure if I should narrow down my “niche” for it a bit more. It started as a place for me to share my “learn to be a housewife” kinda lifestyle I am sort of now living. But let’s face it, I suck as a housewife lol. I still love the name though and it still sort of fits so now I am trying to make it a product review (household products, beauty products, cleaning products, etc), book review, crafts, recipes, DIY, etc type of blog which I guess could fall more under “lifestyle” maybe?

I want to do some sponsored posts, mostly about makeup, haircare, skincare, bath & body, and those kinds of products as well as cleaning and household supplies, gardening, etc. So yeah, basically “housewife” type stuff. As well as some book reviews. I found a good site for that where I can get free books (popular newer ones at that) in exchange for reviews. I don’t get paid but I spend a lot on books so it seems a fair trade-off.  I am struggling though on how to start out with getting my first few sponsored posts. I joined some influence/sponsored post networks but they either have nothing, or it’s crap for lack of a better term, or I don’t qualify.

I did get one person email me and ask me to collaborate with her brand (hair wigs) in which she wants me to do 2 posts, shared to social media and a banner for 3 months on my page all for $12 US. I’m not a genius but even I know that’s too low. I am not afraid to reply back and say that but I am unsure even remotely on what to ask for for that. Not to mention I have never worn a wig in my life and will not lie so I am wondering what exactly the post entails. She has not mentioned trying a wig or anything like that and her wigs are expensive so I can understand.

I am okay with doing a post where I do some research maybe and write a post about it and link to her site but I won’t be saying I have tried one of the wigs when I haven’t. She’s not offering up a lot of info and I am not sure where to start to ask. I would love to collaborate but I am just unsure where myself and my blog would fit in in that scenario and don’t honestly really know how to ask.

I know my lack of knowledge and inexperience could become an issue when trying to get a sponsored post but you have to start somewhere right? And I am good at researching and have been trying to gather as much info about monetization and sponsored posts as I can. If anyone has any knowledge I would be more then thankful if anyone wants to share. I need a mentor lol.

I keep getting directed to these online courses that sound too good to be true in the groups and things I am in and I refuse to pay $300 for something that could literally be a flop or “scam”, not to mention I am broke as hell again and we are living off of Eddie’s part-time job and my student loan so I couldn’t afford it if I wanted too.

One last thing I am struggling with is affiliate links/banners. I did not want to go with Google Adsense for one because I want control over the ads I put on my site and only companies I either have dealt with or research and two because I can’t seem to get approved by them for some reason anyways even though I keep following all instructions. So I joined Rakuten Affiliates, CJ Affiliates, and Amazon Affiliates and figured out how to use it as far as banner ads on my site or pointing to specific things with their link codes but I am not getting any clicks, not one single click. Some impressions but no clicks. Not sure what I am doing wrong there either.

Sorry, this post got long, so I am going to end it here. Hopefully, I can figure this all out. And juggle school at as well. I so badly want to make this work in the long run for some additional income, not expecting miracles or anything but just a little extra every few months would be nice.

Crafting

This past week was my last week before school officially starts. I am not sure if I’ve mentioned this or not but Edward and I made the decision that since my student loan is enough to cover most of our costs after the tuition is taken out and he is working pretty much full-time at the moment and we are ahead, that for a while at least I am not going to work at all. I am just going to concentrate 100% in the beginning and not work part-time or full-time at all.

I’ve been working on getting The Great Candian Housewife blog and also my mom and I are starting a crafting business, so between all of that I don’t have much spare time or time to take on a job on top of everything else and we want me to be concentrating and doing well in school. It still feels weird saying “school”, that I am in school and am almost 40 (a little over a month), but I am.

My mom and I have been mainly just crafting and starting on reading some of the course outlines and into materials and getting familiar with things. We’ve done a lot with the Cricut and mom’s done some other crafts as well. The image at the top is some of the things we’ve made. I have a domain name for it already and we have an Etsy site and now a Facebook page. We plan to sell both locally and within the province as well as ship anywhere.

I absolutely love doing the glass stuff like the mugs, candle holders, even candles, wine glasses, etc. I want to eventually make some of my own designs instead of just finding and downloading ones. We’ve bought some and found some that are free for commercial use. I also need to work a bit on my photography skills when it comes to taking pictures of the things that we are making. I have been working on a logo for the company but I’m not really happy with it yet.

Overall it’s been a great week. Lots of time spent with mom and dad and my brother while Eddie was at work and some when he wasn’t. Things are coming together nicely.

Happy Birthday Dad!

I’ve been spending a lot of time over at my parents since Nova Scotia let up a bit on restrictions and allowed you to join up with another household within your immediate family. I missed them so much and so did Edward. He’s been over twice. It’s a little harder for him to get over there because he’s still working. It’s so nice though to be able to spend time with them.

My Dad’s birthday is today and since Edward works tonight we went over last night and had supper with them and cake. Tonight I am going back over after I take Edward to work at 4 and Mom and I are going to play around a bit more with the Cricut Explore Air 2 that we bought last weekend.

Mom and I spent a few hours yesterday making my dad a t-shirt, hat, and mug with it. I wish I had pictures of them but I don’t. We are still getting used to the machine but what you can do with it is pretty amazing! We’ve made glasses, mugs, bags, hats, t-shirts, decals, and all kinds of things so far. I will start taking pictures of things we make as we get a little bit better at it.

We’ve been having some beautiful summer-like weather the last few days during the day, but at night we still have frost! The days have been reaching the low 20’s and humid and at night down to 2 or 3. I got sunburned a little bit the other day, nothing major though. It’s been nice though to be able to get out around the yard here and on their property and down at their beach area. My dad’s putting in a 20ft rectangle above ground pool that is I think about 4 or 4 1/2 feet deep in their back yard and we are putting up a smaller round easy set 3-foot deep one here when they are done that one.

Other than that I have been mostly working on my websites, I re-did the theme for this one after accidentally deleting it. I am going to soon be working on our craft store website and Etsy store that we are eventually going to set up. I start school a week from tomorrow. The school has been paid their portion of the loan and I should be getting my portion soon.

I am going to start tomorrow by reading the first chapters in my textbooks. I can’t submit anything until June 1st but I want to get a head start and get that first assignment in each of the 3 courses I am taking this semester maybe done this coming week so they are ready to submit. It’ll give me some time as well to go over the course material more. I have already done that to a point but I want to do it again just to ensure I understand everything so I can get any questions out of the way as soon as I can.

I’m getting more and more excited!