Well, all in all it’s been quite a year…though perhaps not entirely in the way I’d anticipated professionally! That’s not to say I’ve not had a good year, because actually, it’s been great. But, looking back at my hopes for the blog, it’s fair to say I was expecting rather a lot of myself with a new baby. Plus new algorithms (bain of a blogger’s life) are at least as difficult to negotiate as a tiny dependant, if not more so…
Delivering Elfin was probably my greatest achievement of 2017, because I managed it sans pain relief (and I got my water birth – yay!). Despite our fears, she was a good healthy weight. I took just two weeks off before cracking on with work, which in hindsight was a bit (a lot) mental.
But my point is that in terms of any targets I’ve failed to accomplish, it’s not through lack of effort.
And yet unfortunately, most of the items on my list, I’m not able to tick off…
My Goals for 2017
- I didn’t complete the course I’d signed up to. However I don’t view this as a fail because I quickly realised that it was not going to help me very much at the level I’d reached, and so my time was better spent elsewhere.
- Neither did I reach my 10k milestone on Twitter. (I did discover that I hate the platform though).
- Earning a regular income was not realistic because I’ve been caring for a poorly baby! However I’ve had some really exciting opps this past year and I’m finishing on a professional high, with a potential long term relationship with a fantastic client. So that’s all really positive.
- SEO – ha. Well, suffice to say that a couple of months after writing my projections last year, it finally came to light that I’d sustained a sophisticated hack which obliterated my efforts. I’m even now clawing my way back from it, but I’ve made huge inroads. Google is not yet my friend, but neither does he completely stonewall me.
- I took on an ambassadorship with Little Tikes which saw me vlogging regularly for them, though not on my own channel. I put out one of my own too which was moderately successful. So, fair to say I achieved my goal of dipping my toe in the waters.
- I like to think my photography has improved. I’m no pro, but I am enjoying learning and I’m beginning to use more of my own photography on the blog.
- Pinterest has definitely been a winner for me. I persevered and I’m pleased to say I’ve seen a return.
So yeah, I’ve not smashed it, but I think given the circumstances I’ve not done too badly!
Last year I set Smart goals as it’s easier to be acceptable for them than if they’re not measurable. However, given my current situation (technically still on maternity leave; two small children and minimal help with childcare), I’m deliberately being less rigid for 2018.
My new list is more about helping me to stay focused than specific targets to hit.
Once my girls are both older and I have more time to dedicate to work, I’ll be more inclined to go back to SMART goals. In the meantime the added pressure would not be helpful!
My Goals for 2018
- More vlogging. If I want to be taken seriously as a professional blogger, I really need to up my game, ie. do some vlogging.
- More photography. By the end of 2018 I don’t want to be using any stock photos on the blog. That said, I won’t go as far as saying all my own images, because I expect to be collaborating lots with my fabulous SIL who’s a wonderful photographer.
- Reach 10k on Twitter – or even 12k! I lost focus on this platform because I’m not a fan and I’ve spent more energy on Pinterest instead. But during 2018 I would really like to meet that target as a minimum.
- Reach 3k on Facebook. I’ve been quite pleased with how Facebook has been performing for me and I’d like more growth this year.
- See double my current Google traffic by this time next year. I don’t know how realistic this one is as Google barely acknowledges me, but I’d love to turn things around.
- Earn more this year than previous years. Obviously, if I can achieve all this and be bringing some pennies in then I’ll be happy!
- Make an effort to create more seasonal posts which will still work for future years, as they’re the ideal content for Pinterest!
- Maintain a good work/life balance. In the last few months I’ve got overwhelmed with work because I got bogged down in always posting on the same days. I want to have a more sensible and relaxed approach in 2018, ensuring quality takes priority over quantity. This might mean an occasional blog audit/appraisal, looking at the bigger picture and making sure I’m content with how my editorial calendar looks.
You might like to check out some other bloggers’ year in review:
Mrs Mummypenny has had an incredible year – I’m hugely inspired by her achievements!
The Money Whisperer has also had a super exciting first year!
What do you think – am I being more realistic this year than last? What goals are you setting yourself for 2018, and did you meet all your targets for 2017?