Happy six months of blogging to me! Native Mommy Lawyer turned six months old on May 29, 2021. I swear the months are just flying by. This article is about continuing to change my mindset and embrace new tools on my journey after six months of blogging.
When I first started blogging, I had this romantic notion of writing for a blog as my day job and how amazing that would be. I had no clue how much work it would really be. Yes, writing is a huge aspect of this process but there is so much more.
There are so many details that go into the creation and maintenance of a blog, it’s quite astounding.
Last month, I decided to change my mindset about investing in my blog. I moved forward with purchasing a new logo from Fiverr and purchasing a stock photo. These are small, tiny investments, but I needed to get my feet wet.
These small investments made me feel so much better about my blog and actually renewed my excitement to continue blogging, so it was definitely worth it.
In month six of blogging, I decided to check out Canva Pro and Tailwind to see if I could up my Pinterest game. The parenting niche is very Pinterest-friendly. So, this article is primarily about how these tools really changed Pinterest for me.
If you want to read prior monthly blog updates (I’ll be doing monthly updates to document my first year of blogging), here they are!
- Blogging for five months, update on the journey
- How to avoid writing burnout early on in blogging
- How to stay motivated after blogging for three months
- Newbie blogger mistakes I made after two months of blogging
- Ups and downs in the first month of blogging
Jumping onto the Canva bandwagon
The great thing about using Canva as a tool is they offer you a free 30-day trial. In that 30 day trial, you can test it out and see if you really want to subscribe. If you’re using Pinterest or rely on stock photos for your blog, you will probably like it.
I was already using the free version of Canva for a couple of months, but there were so many limitations on Pinterest templates and stock photos. The Pro version far exceeds the free version, as it should.
I have decided to keep using Canva Pro, which is $12.99 per month or $119.99 per year, for the foreseeable future. Here are the reasons why.
Honestly, the Content Planner has changed my Pinterest game because I can schedule pins directly from Canva far in advance. Prior to joining Canva Pro, I was very inconsistent with pinning and re-pinning. I would basically do it whenever I had time, which was sometimes once every two weeks.
The Content Planner is pretty interactive. It shows me the pins that are scheduled on a particular day. I can also move my pins around on the calendar if I don’t like my scheduled date, which is very similar to Tailwind.
I’m not that fast or creative with my Pinterest pins, so I’m still working on that aspect. I will schedule anywhere from one to three pins every day from Canva.
My biggest beef with the free version of Canva is the limited amount of cool design templates. All of the templates I wanted to use were only available with Canva Pro.
With the Pro version, I enjoy having unfettered access to all of Canva’s design templates.
Using the design templates is pretty straightforward although developing pin creation skills requires time and practice. With more practice, I’m slowly getting better and faster at it. When I look at the evolution of my Pins on my account, I can definitely see the progression!
Millions of stock photos
Hands down, I would’ve subscribed to Canva Pro for the stock photos only. Without the Pro version, Canva charges $1.00 per stock photo, which is pretty reasonable. This fee gives you the right to one design, which you can use anywhere.
Again, there are huge limitations of stock photos with the free version of Canva. Literally, all the great photos can only be accessed by Canva Pro users.
Since I don’t use a lot of personal photos in my blog posts, I tend to rely on three to four stock photos per post. After six months of blogging, I’m averaging 7-8 posts per month. So, Canva Pro definitely comes in handy.
Using Tailwind for free
In my first six months of blogging, using Pinterest as a social media platform to increase traffic confused the crap out of me. It confuses me even more that every blogger has their own solution to conquering Pinterest.
I will say, learning Pinterest is a journey all on its own and it’s kind of fun to try different things and see some results.
Get a Tailwind account right now
Despite all of the Pinterest articles I’ve read, I did not know that you can use Tailwind for free. Seriously, I would’ve opened a Tailwind account like six months ago had I known this. Of course, the free version has many limitations but it’s still a great way to test it out and get some use from it.
If you’re on Pinterest at all, open a Tailwind account immediately and start using it.
What’s included in free Tailwind
- 1 Pinterest account
- 20 pins per month
- 20 Pinterest designs using Tailwind Create
- 5 Tailwind communities
- 30 Tailwind community submissions
Although Tailwind gives you small limits on pins and designs in the free version, it’s still enough to play around with and learn the platform. After one month, these limits reset and you can use them again.
Currently, I’m in my first month of free Tailwind and I’ve already used my 20 pins and 20 Pinterest designs. I’ve joined 3 Tailwind communities and have submitted 20 pins in the communities so far.
There’s a lot going on in the Tailwind dashboard, so it requires a few days to a week to digest all of the information and learn the various Tailwind functionalities.
Still on the fence
I’m still on the fence about whether I want to upgrade to the Pro version of Tailwind right now. Although I did see some boosts in my Pinterest impressions and overall engagement once I introduced Tailwind, it’s too expensive for my budget.
The price for Pro is $14.99 per month or $119.99 per year. That’s a lot of money for a blog that isn’t producing any income right now.
I will definitely think about joining Tailwind Pro down the road. It’s just not for me right now after six months of blogging but I will continue to use the free version.
It’s all in the Pinterest numbers
So, there are many ways to track your overall Pinterest performance, including Impressions, Engagements, Total Audience, and Engaged Audience. I’m using monthly impressions below to show the before and after of Canva and Tailwind use on my account.
Prior to using the Content Planner on Canva Pro, I used to pin whenever I had the chance. Sometimes I wouldn’t even log into my Pinterest account for weeks. When I would pin, I would dump 5-15 pins at a time and move on. As you can see, that resulted in an average of 2.5k impressions per month. There was also very little engagement.
When I started using the Content Planner in Canva Pro, I started to design and schedule at least one pin per day. In the first month, I scheduled anywhere from one to three fresh pins per day. This resulted in 14k monthly impressions.
There was definitely a jump in impressions and engagement when I started using the free version of Tailwind. I can also see the decline around May 20 after I used my 20 pin quota for the month.
I’m trying to stay consistent with scheduling three fresh pins per day on the Content Planner but I don’t have enough fresh content to do this consistently. I started creating five pin designs for each blog post and I schedule them throughout the week.
After six months of blogging, I’m happy with the results I have and am excited to learn more in my Pinterest journey.
What’s next after six months of blogging
Six months of blogging is a huge milestone! I’ve learned a ton about blogging and I continue to learn more almost on a daily basis.
Although I’m happy to learn so much about Pinterest, my new Pinterest obsession has distracted me from creating content. There are times when I would rather sit down and design pins versus writing. If I’m going to reach my goal of 100 quality blog posts in one year, then I need to get back on the writing train.
What Pinterest tips have helped you the most on your journey?