How to Be a Boss at Blogging When You Have 0 Followers

Sometimes I like to pretend I’m a photographer. Mostly with other people’s cameras. And the results are oftentimes… not as bad as you’d expect.

I do not research the subject, I do not take classes, I do not read about photography, I do not actively aim to become better.

Yet, somehow, I am becoming better with each photograph I take.

And I wondered why.

Wouldn’t you?

Here’s an odd fact about me: I am an artist. I have been writing for fourteen years now. I love art. I love artists. And beautiful art has made me cry far more often than real life ever did.

This belief of mine works for me in all artistic fields. I don’t feel much pressure, just the desire to have fun, to enjoy myself, to take part in the ritual of creation.

I see beauty and I want to capture it, recreate it, change it, share it with the world.

It’s not the knowledge, you see, but rather the skill. And I believe that it’s not what we acquire but who we become that influences our results.

It’s all about mindset.

“It is your attitude, more than your aptitude, that will determine your altitude.” – Zig Ziglar

Yeah, knowing the techniques and being a great storyteller matters, but it all comes down to self-confidence.

If you honestly believe that you’re a great blogger, you’re going to write a killer blog post on a napkin, or if you think of yourself as a great photographer, you’ll make do with a three year old smartphone. The same way folks who are into fitness find a way to exercise, even if they’re stranded on a tropical island with only two coconuts and a volleyball.

I am pretty sure you’re thinking something along the lines of, “It’s easy for you to say this, but I do not have any followers.”

Let me ask you a question: how do you define success as a blogger? Who told you that you have to have a certain number of followers or that you have to earn a living out of it in order to call yourself successful?

What if there was a new consensus regarding success as a blogger: you must punch the damn keys and do your very best to produce great work, even if you have 0 followers. Especially if you have 0.

If you have 50, you’re already a blogging god.

Gary Vee talks a lot about Macro and Micro levels. He’s stated that he did a lot of interviews that got 50-60 views long before being on CNN and becoming a big social media star.

And I believe this is the kind of attitude most bloggers simply lack.

In other words, some people get excited to write their best content even when no one is reading them, while others are secretly waiting for some day when they’ll be Internet famous to write their best ideas into existence.

That’s about it.

There was this post on Tumblr about a woman who had lost a lot of weight. She then noticed her husband was more affectionate towards her, and this made her sad, because she thought it was all about her looks. Then she noticed how people acted differently around her: joked more, were kinder…

It took her a while to figure things out: it was her who had changed. From the moment she first looked herself in the mirror to when she went to sleep, she felt different. She was happier, more alive, more confident. Smiled more. Wore different clothes. Her attitude towards herself was different, and thus the attitude of others.

People were simply reacting to the way she perceived herself.

If you believe nothing else of my posts, if you take just one thing, let it be this:

Mindset is everything.

If you have the right mindset, if you are self-confident, self-reliant, fueled from within, clear in your intentions and purpose, free from outcome, social pressure, or setbacks, then you will turn those 20-30 followers into thousands, even more, in no time.

That’s why the advice is to write for yourself. Write the kind of content that you’d love to read, because you must enjoy yourself while doing it, and not because someone else likes to read it (or needs to or would pay good money to).

Do you know why we make jokes? Say or do stuff we find funny?

Most people would assume it’s because you want to make others laugh. It’s not. You make jokes because you find them funny, because saying that one-liner out loud makes you feel good. It elevates your own mood, and that’s the only goal.

The same goes for blogging. Develop the kind of mindset that enjoys the art of blogging:

  • Looking for inspiration anywhere you can find it
  • Siting at the desk to write.
  • Having a schedule
  • Interacting with fellow bloggers
  • Reading other blogs

The numbers game is going to mess with your head

When I first started blogging in April 2012, I was unstoppable. I’d blog every single day, even though I got 2-3 likes per post, some twenty odd views a day.

It didn’t matter.

I knew success was just a matter of time. Luck, also, but I knew that the harder I worked, the luckier I’d get.

But the thing is that the more followers I got, the more I lost track of the importance of just one reader.

My words became diluted somehow. I lost a great deal of clarity.

What do a hundred thousand people want to read? What do they care about? They come from some 200 countries, they speak vastly different languages, have different customs…

Blogging is all about two people: me and you.

That’s it. I write what I want, because I enjoy writing, because this is my passion, and because I want to do this until they throw dirt on top of me, and you, the one reader, the person who is reading these blog posts, who comments, who takes the time to like the content, or share it, or print it out…

If you can get excited about the act of writing a blog post, and then get even more excited with every single like, comment, or follow, then you’ll be successful as a blogger.

If not, there’s no knowledge, technique, trick or tip that will help you become successful.

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Cristian Mihai
Became Internet famous by the age of 23. Never recovered. I write short author bios all over the web. I’m an acquired taste. Don’t like me? Acquire some taste.
Articles: 38

269 Comments

  1. I really enjoyed reading this. I found this post to be very comforting and it speaks volumes. I really felt that you were only speaking to me. Great post.

  2. Very good post! Another thing I’ve learned – there are people reading what you write every day who never comment, and who never become a follower.

    Also, write about what interests you, no matter how mad you think the topic will appear to others. The most successful post I ever wrote was about the total solar eclipse last year, by far. The other one was about another blogger who was under attack by a famous person. That one get views every day, after more than 2-1/2 years!

  3. Love this, thank you for sharing such wise words in a comforting manner. You have really opened my heart and mind to my blog again. Thank you.

  4. Great post. I love your style. Feels honest and direct.

  5. Thanks for the inspiration 🙂

  6. Thanks for the authenticity

  7. Amazing. Sharing.

  8. I agree, the issue is when you become aware of the stats. I started to write just because i love to do it, and you are right, once the views increase, the visitors increase, month on month, you want to continue that trend, and I personally have become entrenched in trying to exceed the previous month on month.
    My friend whom I walk with and whom was part of this “idea” said to me just a few days ago, why didn’t I write a 1000 word story? That was it. He wanted me to write more of what I was writing in the beginning. He’s right. Thanks for the post, its made me think!

  9. Thanks for sharing!

  10. This is such a brilliant post that I really needed right now! I’m about to restart blogging but I struggle with it, think about whether or not I should, because I’m not interested in the current blogging trends, but wonder if it’s even worth writing a blog that is more old school. You now inspired me to do it because that’s the kind of blog I enjoy reading.

  11. This really helps me to realize that I’m not the only one who will like what I write. If I put enough passion and work into it people will notice.

  12. I really enjoyed reading this. I definitely agree with this idea that some people withhold what content they think will be really good because ‘nobody will read it’ but then nobody comes and reads their less good content because it’s, well, less good. And I’ve been guilty of that myself, and perhaps now while I’m building up this new blog I might fall in to that way of thinking again. But it’s definitely an important thing to consider, and to just see where your love of writing gets you. Thanks for making me reflect on my own blogging plan!

  13. Wow! I loved it when you say that you lost track of just having one reader! I loved that! I think the lesser our follower the more authentic we are because we don’t filter ourselves and what we write. And the more it gets a following, the more we need to preserve that authenticity and rawness! I love Gary Vaynurchuck, I don’t how my life would have turn out if not because of him! Such a humble and inspiring guy!

  14. i love your post. Learn a lot from it. It is an amazing post
    #PerfectPost
    #PP

  15. Great advice. If you aren’t writing for yourself, you won’t find a consistent audience. Each of us are so remarkably different, yet we share so many things in common with others. When I am an audience member (whether it be reading, sports, music, movies etc.) I gravitate toward those which resonate with my personality. So, as the saying goes: “Be true to yourself.”

  16. Great stuff, like always. Thank you so much for pointing out the importance of having great content regardless of how many followers one has. I used to have that syndrome of trying to keep what I thought was great content for later. Loved this post.

  17. Golly! Golly! Golly! I just love this post and I’m so glad that I’ve found you. You now have another follower and that’s me. What you say makes sense. I love to write and I love the confidence that it gives me. I hope that I’m getting better at it, but even if I don’t blog as often as I used to … it’s gone from every day to a couple of times a week … this is because I’ve started on my book. This makes me incredibly happy! Katie

  18. This is a beautiful post. And personally I can total relate to it. I am an artistic person and just started blogging. But for me it’s not about the amounts of followers. But as long as I can plant a little seed in someones Hart to inspire them. Help them, cause I am a big fan of mental health.
    But again love this blog!

  19. Awesome post. For me it’s the same with my photography. Firstly i do this to have fun. I’m soo excited to learn every day more, to discover new great things. Thank you for sharing these encouraging words !

  20. I appreciate your advice greatly, I’ve been trying out different blogging networks and had absolutely no luck with gaining any new followers. I’m writing what I want and like, but I was also concerned with the numbers. You’re right in how true success takes patience, thank you for reminding me that. I hope you have a superb day! 😊

  21. Cristian,

    I’ve actually been following you for quite a long time, and just noticed that I wasn’t actually “following” on WordPress. Sometimes you have to slow down and pay attention. I recently retired from the working world and started to slow down a bit and pay more attention myself.

    Your blog is really one of the most interesting and helpful that I visit, and I wanted you to know that you are an inspiration to many of us blogging here on WordPress. You have been generous with your knowledge of blogging and I appreciate your interest in my blog very much.

    Kind regards….John H.

  22. Phenomenal post. Ever since I picked up journaling and blogging it has been to write for myself and because that is what I enjoy doing. I enjoy reading where other started and where they are currently at. Thank you for sharing!

  23. What great advice that and not to technical that a simple person as myself can understand. Some blogs I have read you would need a dictionary to translate. Considering I am a first time blogger and not to advanced to use long words no one really understands. Plus some one who has no followers and a lot of unread posts I can relate to all that was stated thumbs up to you.

  24. Wow…..amazing post! Liked all your words……especially “ritual of creation” ….”blogging is all about 2 people: me and you. Thank you for your gems! Erica

  25. Thank you for your inspiration!! Art is awesome in every form!

  26. Amazing article and a great inspiration for me as a new blogger. Thanks!

  27. Very timely post, thank you! Self-belief/confidence is key in mastering whatever field we are engaged in I believe, but how people respond to it is not fully under our control. This should be the fire that burns in us, that we strive to achieve. I guess its what makes us human.

  28. “I see beauty and I want to capture it, recreate it, change it, share it with the world.”

    A perfect line for all of us creatives out there. When I first started blogging I too got caught up with the stats and felt like giving up. What was the point if nobody was reading my stuff or looking at my images? A very kind and experienced writer advised me ” Forget about all that, just write for yourself.” I took his advice and haven’t looked back since. I now feel absolute joy in being true to myself. Thank you so much for writing about this concept on your very well followed blog. I am sure that it will bring comfort to many.

  29. I just start my blog last week. Almost hopeless about how to promote it, and will it works? But this, this give me hope. I agree, we also should keep up our mindset and self-believe! Thank you! This post give me a courage to continue on!

  30. How am i just stumbling on your blog. What a beautifully crafted message. I needed this, not that i have lost sight of why i blog which is fundamentally what you said, i just need a boost of confidence these days. Thanks for this

  31. Great post. While the “likes” are nice I really just like to write and get down thoughts that have been on my mind for years. People follow when they see you are sincere.

  32. Thank you for this, Cristian. I’m thankful I found this post because I needed it. I started my blog a month ago because I wanted to write and I knew I just needed to start or I would never post anything. I started because I wanted to write for myself but it hasn’t taken me long to start writing to get noticed by other people. This is a nice reminder of what I need to focus on when I write. Thank you, again.

  33. This was very helpful to read. Thank you! I really feel like I needed to read this. I am interested in making money with my blog, but I think your post helps me to realize that it’s all about fun first and enjoying what my passion is.

  34. Great to keep in mind!

  35. Amazing post. Mindset i s everything :*

  36. I am a blogger and my one follower is me!! Great post and oh so encouraging. Thank you!

  37. Oh I love this line “I knew that the harder I worked, the luckier I’d get” I think it’s important that we try to figure out what we really want out of this to really find the fulfillment or the void we’ve been trying to fill

  38. I just started my blog and don’t know how to promote it. This is very helpful advise. I will work on it without any expectations, like a hobby. Thank you!

  39. Three simple words, yet so powerful. “Mindset is everything.” Love it!

  40. Reblogged this on Vi skriver en bok and commented:
    Great advice 📚👌

  41. Your voice is so much similar to my own voice. Very much like I am talking to myself!

    Thank you so much for those words.

  42. Great post!! When I started my blog which was not too long ago, my intentions were to write effective content. I didn’t think about followers. However, I did think about and still do, is what I write about helpful? And if my posts are helpful, the likes and followers will eventually come.

  43. I love this! It speaks truth! I write because I enjoy it and if someone does too that’s all the better.

  44. thank you! this was so helpful and encouraging to read. It’s jam packed with excellent insight and advice! I laughed about the killer post about a napkin. 😀 But it’s so true!!! Thanks for reminding some key concepts, self-confidence being high up there. Keep living true to your beautiful artist self. 🙂

  45. Very comforting.

  46. Great post! I think i needed this reminder.

  47. Extremely enjoyed this post Cristian. Sometimes we get so obsessed with numbers that we loose our why. Reading this has reminded me why I decided to blog in the first place.

    Tiffany
    http://www.iamtiffany.co.uk

  48. As a relatively new blogger, this gave me hope and a lot more confidence. It implicitly pointed out my vast mistakes at the start of this journey. Great piece of encouraging writing! Loved it. So many things to learn…

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