Blogging in 2016 – The year in review

Blogging in 2016

2016 has been such a significant year for this blog and my own blogging journey. I knew that this was the year when I needed to take Mum in Brum to the next level and get a little (a lot) serious with this whole blogging thang. I absolutely love blogging and it’s always been my dream to turn this passion into a regular income and something that I could be really proud of.

I started 2016 as I meant to go on with a new home office – my own blogging space. Granted, I still retreat to the sofa or the kitchen table at times (like right now), but I love having my own work space to inspire me and get into the right head space.

Blogging in 2016

I still don’t class myself as a ‘Pro Blogger’ even though I’m lucky enough to now earn a regular income from blogging (albeit small). I know that I need to post more often to really get to where I want to be, but I’ve always had issues with the constant need to churn out new content – mainly that I’m a pretty slow writer and I simply don’t always feel like writing. But on the whole, I think I can give myself a big pat on the back for all of the posts and all that I’ve managed to achieve this year…

2016 achievements

  1. BiBs Winner – My biggest achievement by far was winning the Brit Mums Brilliance in Blogging award Family category. When I first put myself forward for this award I never in my wildest dream imagined winning. Hearing my blog name called out at the ceremony was The. Best. Feeling. Ever.
  2. Working with brands – I’ve worked with so many cool brands this year and have turned this blog into a decent money earner. Making something from nothing takes a lot of time and hard work but is hugely satisfying in the end. Brands this year have included Trunki, Radley, Dunelm, Joules, Pampers, VAX, BT and Mamas & Papas.
  3. Over 12,000 MPV – My monthly page views are now over 12,000, a figure I’m proud of. I know that I could still be doing a lot more to increase the traffic to this site and it’s something I need to spend time focusing on next year.
  4. Set up a guest post series – The #UsAfterYou series at the beginning of this year was hugely popular and gave me the great opportunity to build long-lasting relationships and form friendships with some fantastic bloggers.
  5. Setting up a YouTube Channel – Last month I finally launched my YouTube channel. This is something I intend to focus on heavily next year and hone my filming, presenting and editing skills.
  6. Increased social followers to over 11,000 – I started 2016 with very few followers on social media. I think I had under 3,000 last year at this time. I haven’t particularly focused on this area, aside from Instagram which seems to have become a bit of an obsession!
  7. Significantly improved my photography – When I look back at photos even from 12 months ago I cringe. I made it one of my plans to improve my photography this year and I think it’s fair to say that I’ve definitely come a long way. I still have so much to learn, but it’s been a good start!

Family Mum in Brum

Goals for 2017

  1. Make more blogging pals – I’ve found some ace like-minded blogging friends this year through various linkies and guest post series. I’d love to make more and intend to attend some more blogging conferences this year so I can catch up with the community.
  2. Get shortlisted for another award – Perhaps it’s a little greedy but I’d LOVE to get shortlisted for another blogging award. We will see.
  3. Become a brand ambassador – Despite working with lots of brands, I’m yet to be a brand ambassador. I aim to start approaching brands in the new year.
  4. Use more of my own photography – I love stock photography and it really is a great time saver. But I’d love to get into the habit of only using my own photography for every post. I also want to totally get off the auto setting once and for all and would love to take a photography course.
  5. YouTube – Having just launched my channel I really need to get a content plan in place and start creating new content. I think I could have a lot of fun with this and want to create something a little different.
  6. Collaborate with another blogger – It’s probably about time that I put myself out there and committed to a new project with a fellow blogger. I don’t think running a linky is really for me, but I’d love to create something a little exciting and challenging next year.
  7. Launch a newsletter – The truth is, I’ve tried this on multiple occasions, but Mailchimp has issues connecting to my blog and I always end up pulling my hair out! I think 2017 might be the year to nail this once and for all.
  8. Refocus – I intend to take some time out from blogging in early January to assess the blog and where I need to be channeling my time and efforts next year. I also want to get more of a structured content plan in place next year and really separate what works from what doesn’t work.

My three biggest sources of traffic this year were:

  1. Pinterest
  2. Google
  3. Twitter

And now, a break…

I’m feeling a little lazy of late and feel like having a well-earned blog break as I stuff my face with mince pies and turkey. So I probably won’t post again before Christmas (or New Year) now…

Thanks so much to everyone who reads these rambles of mine – the fabulous friends who tell me that they ‘read that one’ when I start to tell them a story, the supportive bloggers who share my content with their followers, my mum who ‘likes’ everything I post on Facebook, and those compers who just pop by to enter my competitions in the hope that they just might win. Your support means so much.

Have a fabulous Christmas y’all!

What were your biggest achievements in 2016? Did you reach your goals? What do you have planned for 2017?

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4 Comment

  1. Mary Smith
    December 22, 2016 at 5:43 pm

    Well done on all of your achievements, I have enjoyed dipping in and out of your blog and seeing your lovely pics! Some great goals for 2017 … all the best and have a lovely Christmas x

  2. Donna
    December 23, 2016 at 10:55 pm

    I think I only started following your blog after you won that award – it’s how I find quite a lot of new blogs to read. It sounds like you have had such an amazing and productive year and your goals for 2017 are good – achievable! Good luck – and have a wonderful Christmas! x
    Donna recently posted…Review: Babe, The Sheep Pig, the Polka Theatre, WimbledonMy Profile

  3. Otis and Us
    January 19, 2017 at 9:26 pm

    I have just started off in the blogging world and am learning everything as I go. What a fantastic achievement well done – and what a lovely blog!
    Otis and Us recently posted…10 Tips for Surviving a Festival with KidsMy Profile

    1. Natalie Mudd
      January 22, 2017 at 9:30 pm

      You really do learn so much from blogging and I love the new skills you constantly pick up and the support of the community. Thanks for your lovely comment, I will definitely pop over to your blog soon

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