Blogging is sometimes borne out of necessity.
The great bloggers are those with the burning desire to succeed in their field. Complacency is not an option.
Success in blogging, however, comes at a certain place.
That means going against the flow of working in an office and the loneliness that comes with blogging without any colleagues.
However, if you have an unquenchable passion for greatness just like Raelyn Tan has, all your work and effort won’t come to waste.
In this interview, find out the drive that keeps pushing Raelyn towards becoming a useful and helpful blogger that all beginners look up to.
Before you started blogging, what were you doing as a professional?
I was pursuing my passion doing digital marketing in the corporate world. I did content marketing and social media management at a large company in Singapore.
Before that, I’ve already been blogging, but it was mostly as a hobby rather than with the intention of making it a full-time business.
I enjoyed my work, and liked my boss colleagues, but did not like the long working hours. I realized that I could pursue my passion online as well. I prefer to call my shots and be my boss through entities that I own – like blogging!
What was the biggest obstacle that you had to overcome as a beginner blogger?
Feeling like I was all alone.
I barely had anyone to talk to, and the few friends who understood what I was doing? They only existed behind my computer screen. I made efforts to connect with other bloggers, but it is always better to have real life friends to talk about all things business with.
My parents and friends did not know what I was doing at all, and wanted me to get a “real job.” It is hard to explain what I was doing to them.
For this reason…[clickToTweet tweet=”#Blogging requires passion, discipline and time management. @raelyntan #expertblogginginterview” quote=”Blogging requires passion, discipline and time management. “]
Getting an accountability partner and mastermind group will always help, of course!
Which blog post you have written that you feel the proudest?
I would say that my article, 101 best blogging tools & resources, is my current favorite.
I noticed that beginner bloggers often struggle with getting the technical know-how down. This post allows me to direct them to some of the best tools available online.
For instance, I had a blog reader who told me that I changed his blogging life because I recommended him to a grammar tool that helped him improve his English significantly (and churn out excellent content!)
Also, it gets me quite a lot of affiliate revenue as well, because it’s such a comprehensive list. 🙂
Who among your blogging peers do you consider the best and why?
I value transparency and honesty a lot, so Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income is my favorite.
It is difficult to showcase your success without being seen as an arrogant person online, but Pat does it in a way that makes you feel inspired rather than annoyed through his transparent income reports.
Pat’s brand is based around a topic as dubious sounding as passive income (some people will associate his website with a get rich quick scheme), but he still manages to create a trustworthy brand.
I find that Pat does an excellent job of delivering massive value too!
What do you think separates yourself from other good bloggers out there?
I believe that the internet has more than enough articles about blogging and business, but not enough successful bloggers.
Hence, I don’t focus on providing information – I place a high emphasis on transformation.
I pride myself on providing actionable strategies that people can act on.
When I do list posts, (8 tips.. 5 strategies, etc..) I make sure that I don’t add in fluff points just to beef things up.
I am also a Christian and build my business around Christ-centered values.
Some of these values include hard work, integrity, loving people, etc. This ultimately drips down to even the smallest things like user experience, branding, content quality, taking in prayer requests, and more.
List down the blogging tools that you use and explain why people should use them for their blogs.
My top 3 favorite tools are:
1) Evernote: I use this to organize my life.
Evernote allows me to save copies of my competitor’s sales pages and website copy. I brainstorm blogpost ideas with Evernote. I journal with Evernote. When someone says something relevant to my business on Facebook, I place it in Evernote. The list is endless!
2) Convertkit: Excellent email service provider that allows me to segment users and serve them emails according to their behavior. It has a very user-intuitive interface and is priced very reasonably.
3) Tailwind: I use Tailwind to schedule my pins on Pinterest, and it saves me so much time. It appears that I’m online all the time pinning stuff, but that’s not true! As a result, my Pinterest followers have grown exponentially since I used Tailwind.
How “successful” would you consider your blog?
Pretty successful. Every day, I get to interact and help online entrepreneurs build a profitable blog and business.
Being able to wake up every day to work on something I love is also a great success in itself.
I used to be very hung up about reaching growth milestones.
Milestones are good, but putting constant pressure on myself to perform and associating my self-worth with my numbers affected my happiness.
Today, I am extremely happy with how successful my blog is, but I’m always aiming for the stars. I’m a dreamer!
I would advise all beginner bloggers to be grateful for their progress, but always stay hungry for more.
What do you think are the upcoming blogging trends people need to watch out for?
Oh, great question!
Live video is the next big thing, and it will be here to stay – until something more interactive comes up, of course!
Advancements in technology bring about great opportunities for bloggers to collapse the timeframe between someone being a casual reader to being a customer.
Gone are the days whereby just writing articles on your blog and relying on ads will bring you success in your blogging career. Interacting with your readers live on social media is one of the best ways to accomplish this!
Personal branding is also becoming increasingly important. With more and more blogs being created with each year, being able to establish a personal connection with your community is paramount.
People buy from people they know, like and trust – and you do this best by simply being authentically yourself, rather than hiding behind a pen name or writing in the third person. Even Apple’s CEO goes on stage to sell his product personally!
If there’s any one advice that you would say to a starting blogger, what would it be?
[clickToTweet tweet=”Write about something you are passionate about. @raelyntan #expertbloggerinterview” quote=”Write about something you are passionate about. Blog about something that excites your soul.”]
Otherwise, you will burn out after a few years and start feeling miserable in your business.
I’ve seen countless people want to blog about blogging simply because they feel it’s more profitable – that will not work out for you unless you have a genuine passion! There is room in every industry to make money.
Can you imagine starting from scratch and deleting your email list, or ignoring your community because you just aren’t interested in your business anymore?
Start with something you’re passionate about, and build a business around it. Not the other way round.