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Episode 319: 10 Things I Wish Someone Told Me When I Started My Food Blog with Eloïse Jennes

In episode 319, Megan chats with Eloïse Jennes of Cooking with Elo, about 10 things she wishes she knew when she started her food blog in college. These are essential tips that will help you grow your blog quicker from the start by applying the right skills and avoiding common pitfalls.

We cover 10 tips you might have wished someone had told you as your food blogging career took off, even while you were still a college student. You’ll learn when is the best time to start a blog, what equipment do you need, how do you stay consistent with your business when you are your own boss and what should you focus on first to name a few.

Listen on the player below or on iTunes, TuneIn, Stitcher, or your favorite podcast player. Or scroll down to read a full transcript.

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Guest Details

Connect with Cooking with Elo
Website | Facebook | Instagram

Bio Renee is the blogger and podcaster behind Awesome on 20, striving to build a content creation business at the intersection of food and magic. She blogs about comforting recipes for witches who love junk food and host a podcast about everyday spirituality and wellbeing through a witchy lens. Her latest project is the Moon Magic Mastermind for spiritual souls looking for loving support and gentle accountability in reaching their goals.

Takeaway

  • Don’t wait until you’re “ready” to jump into full time blogging.
  • You can start blogging without having everything in place to begin.
  • Treat your job professionally – show up!
  • Be consistent with blogging and set realistic goals that are achievable.
  • Create a content calendar to help you stay on track.
  • Efficiency is key and batching will get you there.
  • Work ahead of time to build time in to your schedule when life gets busy.
  • Continuing education is importance – and free resources are abundant!
  • Find the quality free education – blogs, podcasts, videos, courses. Then you know to invest in those people for resources that cost.
  • Learn one skill at a time and really learn it well to avoid overwhelm.
  • You don’t have to dive into social media platforms while you’re beginning blogging until you’re more seasoned.
  • Have fun with blogging!

Resources Mentioned

The Bite Shot

SEO with Top Hat Rank

Cooking with Keywords

Transcript

319_Eloise_Jennes

Eloise Jennes: Hi, this is Eloise fromCcooking with Elo and you are listening to the Eat Blog Talk podcast. 

Sponsor: Food bloggers, I want to take a really quick second here to talk to you about something new that we’re starting this summer. I’m super excited about it. I am loving this new movement of food bloggers who are digging into podcasting as a way to add an awesome, unique new layer to their business. I feel so passionately about this topic. Audio is so powerful. Food bloggers, digging into audio in the form of podcasting is going to be a huge successful movement. It will be a way to expand your brand into new areas that you cannot even imagine. There is an entire episode dedicated to this. So go listen to episode number 306, if you haven’t already and I promised you’re going to be inspired to dig into audio yourself. AS a way to support this movement. I am creating a group coaching experience starting in June of 2022. If you are interested in joining us, there are a limited number of spots available, just because I want to give you all my dedicated attention. Send me an email at [email protected] If you’re interested, I am including an introductory rate. It’s a monthly rate. If you want in, you will be locked in at that rate. Send me an email. Tell me you’re interested in group coaching for podcasters. I can’t wait to see you inside. And I can’t wait to see how this just totally explodes your business. All right. Back to the episode. 

Megan Porta: Hey, food bloggers. Welcome to Eat Blog Talk, the podcast for food bloggers looking for the value and confidence that will move the needle forward in their businesses. This episode is sponsored by RankIQ. I’m your host, Megan Porta and you are listening to episode number 319.

Today Eloise is here with me. She’s going to talk to us about her 10 tips for starting a food blog in college and it’s everything she wishes someone had told her when she started. Eloise is the self-taught recipe developer, photographer and copywriter behind cooking with Elo, where she shares her vegan and gluten-free recipes for busy days.

Eloise has a background in biomedical sciences and graduated with a master in health food, innovation management last summer. As someone who always had an entrepreneurial calling, she decided to start blogging and freelancing during the last two years of college. Today, Eloise is successfully working full-time as a blogger and recipe development business in Luxembourg. Eloise, hello. Thank you so much for joining me today. 

Eloise Jennes: Hi, thank you so much for having me, Megan. 

Megan Porta: Yes, I’m super excited about our chat. But first we would love to hear what your fun fact is. 

Eloise Jennes: Oh yes. So my fun fact is that I had a secret food blog when I was in high school. I think I didn’t have anyone about it, except for my best friend and my sister. I started the blog around the time when I got diagnosed with my food intolerances, and I think it was just a way for me to cope with these new restrictions and that complete diet change. I was trying out new ingredients, developing recipes and sharing them on that blog, hoping to maybe inspire one person out there that was having a similar challenge.

Megan Porta: okay. So it was a secret. Is it still around? 

Eloise Jennes: It is. 

Megan Porta: Oh I’m assuming you probably aren’t gonna share that then. 

Eloise Jennes: Probably not, but it’s still like a wordpress.com page. So it’s nothing to look at really. I completely, the blog I have now is a new domain. Everything is completely new. So yeah.

Megan Porta: Oh, that’s funny. So I do love how you used it as a way to cope. It was a coping mechanism and not necessarily something you made to share. Now you’re at the point where you are ready to share your content. 

Eloise Jennes: Yeah. I guess the passion was there. Then a few years later I decided that I wanted to pursue it more than what I did in the past.

Megan Porta: Yeah. Oh, that’s so cool. Definitely a fun fact that I haven’t heard before. Secret food blog. Okay. So you started a food Bo blog in college, correct? 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. 

Megan Porta: You kinda went through this process on your own, like we all do and figured everything out. Now looking back, there are things that you wish someone had shared with you because I feel like, I wish I could go back to my previous self and just be like 97 tips here, please do this. Don’t do this. So you’re gonna share with us 10 things that will help other people when they’re starting food blogs early on when they’re young. So let’s just move through those. I guess first, before we get to that, will you just give us a little bit about why you started this new food blog and how long it’s been. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes, of course. So I started a food blog. It’s been probably a little more than two years now because I graduated in summer and I started it one and a half years ago. So during my master’s degree. It’s something that during my entire years of college I wanted to do, but I feel like during the first years I was still figuring out college and was focusing on that. Once I found routines, I was able to really pursue that passion because I always loved cooking from the moment on when I was diagnosed with these food intolerances, I love developing recipes for myself and for my family and I loved sharing them. I felt like a food blog was a really great way to do it and on top of that, I loved food photography. So it just made sense. 

Megan Porta: Yeah. Oh, I love that. What a great story. I commend you for starting it so young. I wish I had done the same and I think a lot of people can say that too, so good for you for just digging in and making it happen. So let’s move through your tips. What is your first tip for people for just starting a food blog when they’re young or in college? 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. So my first step would be to not wait until you feel ready because shocker, that’s never going to happen. It’s the same when you start a business. You never feel 100% ready. There’s always other things that you need to learn. There’s always new things that you wanna have ready to go, but it will just never happen. You will never be 100% there so I would say just do it. College is such a great time to start a food blog because you’ll probably never have more time than when being in college. As soon as you start working, you’ll have much more to do. It’s also a great time to just experiment with things and you won’t have to justify yourself to anyone. It’s just a great time to pursue that passion, which maybe is not even related to your degree. So it’s an incredible creative outlet to have. If you’re successful, you can already make money while you’re in college. Maybe you can pursue it as a career afterwards. So why not just do it? 

Megan Porta: I have this memory of being in college, sitting around with a bunch of friends. We were like, oh, I can’t wait until we have a job, like real jobs. We’re gonna have so much time on our hands. I look back at that and laugh because it’s like the exact opposite. We had so much time then. We had all the time in the world and we didn’t see it then. So I think it’s good to give this message to people who are in college, look around you. You have so much time to do extra things. Because when you are out of college and you’re working and living life and getting married or whatever you, whatever path you decide, life is going to be way busier. So I love this advice. You are never going to be ready. If you are in college or maybe just out of college even, start now there’s not a better time than now. Great first tip. So let’s move on to tip number two. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. So I guess tip number two, goes hand in hand with tip number one and it will be that you don’t have to have everything you need to start. So I think of it in terms of equipment. If you don’t have a great camera to start, maybe you can start with your phone or you can buy a secondhand one. That’s what I did back then. Get the basic one with a kit lens, which is affordable and you move from there. If you don’t have a cute background to take your photos, maybe you can make one yourself. There’s so many YouTube tutorials out there. Or maybe you have a cute wooden table already at home that you could use. If you don’t have your domain yet you can purchase that really quickly. So I think that it’s a good way. You don’t have to overthink it, just do it. Make it happen. Think about it in a very simple way and try to find easy stuff.

Megan Porta: Oh, that’s so great. I learned this too the hard way, but just being one step ahead is really all you need to do. That sounds very unprepared, but really, I mean, the cameras on phones are so great right now. So just get by with what you have right in front of you. Then as you’re ready, you can upgrade, right? 

Eloise Jennes: Oh, I think we always make it more complicated than it has to be. . . 

Megan Porta: Yeah. Oh my gosh. That’s so true. One of my big problems is that I overcomplicate everything and then everything just gets messy. Then I have to take five steps back and be like, okay, I need to simplify. Do you ever get to that point? 

Eloise Jennes: Yeah, I think that’s one of the reasons why I included that tip in here because it’s just for myself as well. 

Megan Porta: Yeah, it’s easy to overcomplicate because we’re in this space that has so much going on that it’s easy to try to look at everything and try to solve it all. But it’s really not necessary. There are people who don’t even focus on certain platforms. There are bloggers who don’t get on Instagram or TikTok. There are bloggers who don’t like high end cameras or lenses. So it really is possible to simplify and not just that, but to be successful too.

Eloise Jennes: Yes. Especially in the beginning, I think it’s really important. 

Megan Porta: Yeah. Oh, I love that. Okay. Move on to tip number three. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. I think that’s one of my favorite tips and it would be to treat your blog like you would treat a student job, because that’s something you have to show up to. You have to be dedicated to it. You can’t just call your boss and be like, I’m feeling unmotivated today. I don’t think I’m gonna come. I think that if you have that mindset for your blog, it’s just a really great way to start and to commit to it. It’s a commitment for yourself. So I think that once you decide that this is going to be your job, you can determine how many hours per week you can allocate to blogging. Maybe you have a semester where you have more credits or maybe you have a little bit more time and then you can decide, okay, maybe I have Wednesday afternoons off and I could be blogging then, or maybe most of your Saturday could be dedicated to your blog. So you can decide on a certain amount of hours. And then go from there. Once you know the time that you have, you can also decide how much you can publish, how many blog posts you can share, and that’s going to help you so much as well, because yeah, there’s no magical number here. For me in the beginning I think I was doing four blog posts per month. So one a week per week. That was just a really great way. Maybe you can do six or maybe you think that two is like the most you can do. If you have 10 hours, then maybe focus on two. If you have 20 hours, you can do more. But my tip would be to, if you think that you can do four, maybe start with three, because it’s always more work and more challenges than we anticipate. If you get to these three, you will be super happy with yourself. If your goal was four and you just don’t get the four, then you will be maybe a little disappointed. So I think what I’m trying to say here is that the best schedule is the one that you can commit to and treating it like a job is a really good mindset to have.

Megan Porta: Do you have advice for people who can make that plan, but they can’t execute it? So they have a hard time being their own boss and showing up for themselves. I think this is a pretty common problem in our area, not just in the food blogging space, but just being an entrepreneur in general, because we don’t have anyone that we have to report to. It’s us. I hear people say this a lot. I just can’t seem to get things done or stay on track. So do you have advice for just once you commit to a certain number of hours, actually following through?

Eloise Jennes: I think. It’s tip number four as well. So that’s really great. I think having a content calendar is something that will help you a lot. So I’m an organization freak. I love product management tools. Give me all the planners, the to-do list. I love it. Having a content calendar, it can be as simple as just an Excel sheet. I do it on Google drive. So anyone can do it is really great. So first you would start with your keyword research; identifying keywords that you want to pursue. Then from there, you can write your content calendar. I usually do it every month or up to two months ahead of time. I go through my keyword list and I check what’s seasonal, what recipes that I really want to do that month. I added it there. I like to think of it as waking up in the morning because, if I wrote a to-do list the day before the night before and I wake up in the morning, I know exactly what I wanna do that day. I will wake up super easily. If I just wake up and have no plan, no schedule, I don’t know what I’m going to do, it’s so much harder to wake up and I feel like it’s the same with your blog. If you know exactly what you wanna do that month or that week, it’s so much easier to follow through and to just make it happen instead of having to just figure it all out at first. 

Megan Porta: I love this. I have never really put words to this before, but I do the same thing, Eloise. If I’m really good at planning my week and my days in advance, which most of the time I am, I always wake up knowing exactly what’s gonna happen that day. That just gives me peace of mind and it’s not something. That I’ve really said out loud before, but it’s so true. Like this morning I woke up, like I knew I had my chat with you. I have an awesome Clubhouse room I’m hosting later. Then I have a mastermind call I’m hosting. I just ran through it in my head. Good, awesome. This is gonna be a great day. If I would have woken up and not had any idea what I was doing, it just feels not right. Like confusing or just a mess. You know what I mean? 

Eloise Jennes: Yeah. 100%. 

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Megan Porta: These are all really good by the way. So move on to point 5. This is maybe one of my favorites. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. Tip number find would be to batch work, to be more efficient. I know that it’s not something for everyone, but it’s been helpful to many people I know. So that’s why I wanted to talk about it here. If you’re not familiar with the concept of batch working, it’s basically grouping similar tasks and executing them at the same time. So for example, if you have a blog, let’s say that you have that Saturday, that’s dedicated to your blog. Maybe that’s a time where you can write a few blog posts or shoot several recipes or edit a series of pictures that were from different shoots. That way you will do the same tasks. Instead of doing, for every single blog post, doing every single task individually, you just group them together and you will be much more time efficient. Because once you are doing a task for a certain amount of minutes or hours, you get faster at it, you get better at it. You are really focused on it and concentrated rather than if you have to do every single thing separately. As food bloggers, we know that we have so many things to do. So I think that batch working is always really helpful. The only thing that I personally do not batch is my recipe development, because I find that’s something that I can easily include in my everyday life. If I’m writing out my meal plan for a week, I’m going to check which recipes I wanna make that month. Then I will just add it to my weekly meal plan so that I can test it for dinner or maybe it’s breakfast or whatever. What I’m trying to say is that you have to figure out what works for you, which task you want to batch work and which ones you maybe do not want to batch work and then go from there. Especially in the beginning, I think that there’s going to be a lot of trial and error, but once you figure it out, it’s going to be so much better and much more efficient. 

Megan Porta: Batching equals freedom, honestly. At first it’s a mess because like you said, it takes trial and error, but once you get a flow down with whatever task you’re working on, Oh, my gosh. I cannot even describe the amount of space and energy and time it opens up and it’s not easy batching. Sometimes it’s really hard. It’s hard work, but it is freedom. I feel like that’s why we all are in this business to have a little bit more freedom. So I love this point and I always compare this. I have to tell you my analogy. I compare it to cooking or making a recipe. So take guacamole. Let’s say we’re making three batches of guacamole. Would you peel and chop the avocado and then squeeze the lime juice and then chop the cilantro and the onion. Put it all in the bowl, mix it. Do your dishes. Put everything away and then get it back out and then chop the avocado. No, you wouldn’t do that. You would chop all the avocados and then you would chop all the onions. You would batch it because that’s the most efficient way to do it. So anytime that I have resistance to batching, I think of that. I’m like, okay, I don’t like doing it all the time and it’s hard, but it’s so much more efficient. 

Eloise Jennes: Yeah. I love that comparison. That makes so much sense. 

Megan Porta: It just doesn’t make sense to do it the other way. I know some people have legitimate issues like attention issues, something along those lines. I totally understand where it wouldn’t align with that, but I think for most people, the resistance is just that it’s hard work and it’s yeah, you have to invest a lot of time and energy to really crush it with batching. 

Eloise Jennes: I think that’s where a content calendar is really helpful as well. Because if you have planned out what you wanna do, you can batch all these things because what’s going to come up and again, you can be your own boss and make sure that you do the tasks that have to get done. 

Megan Porta: Yeah, love that one. I think that is probably my favorite so far. I preach about that a lot, so I love that you included it. Okay. Go on to tip number six, Eloise. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. So my tip number six would be to work ahead of time because if you’re a student, you know that at some point like exams will come up. At that time that’s really a moment when you want to focus on studying. You will need all the time you can get, and it’s maybe not the time to focus on your blog, but we all know that consistency is key. If you’ve listened to this podcast, I feel like every person on here says it. It’s because it’s true. It’s important for the algorithm. It’s important for Google, but I think it’s also important for ourselves to be consistent, because if you have a routine, you get better at tasks, you get faster at it, whatever. So we want to be consistent, but not one when we are having exams. That’s one, it’s interesting to work ahead of time. So if you said that you were going to do four blog posts a month. Maybe you’re going to publish three of them and prepare the fourth one, but schedule it out for that month or the two month that you have exams. That way at that time, your blog is still running. Everything is automated and you don’t have to think about it, but you are able to remain consistent with your blog posts. 

Megan Porta: Do you have recommendations for getting scheduled ahead? If let’s say somebody’s listening and they’re just not, they’re flying by the seat of their pants and doing it last minute. How do you get to the point where you’re scheduled out and how far in advance do you recommend being scheduled out? 

Eloise Jennes: Yeah, so I think what I did when I was in college is really to try to have one extra blog post that I was doing every single month and having it really prepared from start to finish. So it was written out, the pictures were taken, the recipe was developed, everything was edited and already in there. I only had to read it. I go to the schedule button and choose the date that I want to have it go live. That’s why it’s really important to have that keyword list that you wanna pursue because you can really plan it out ahead of time. I have a keyword list on my phone where if I’m in the core and I have an idea, I will just write it down on that list. Maybe I don’t have time to really do the research about that keyword. But if I batch my keyword research, I will have that list that I can go through of ideas that I had, like at any point in time. That’s one thing that has been really helpful to me to just not go out of ideas and to have keywords that I know that I wanna pursue and that I can plan the blog post around ahead of time. 

Megan Porta: I love how all of your points are working together. So using all of these tips together produces an efficient system. So I love this. This is such a fun chat. Okay. Eloise, let’s move on to your next point, which is point number seven. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. I think that’s also one of my favorites and it’s just the importance of education and using free resources to educate yourself. So let’s start with the educational part. I think when you start a blog, it’s so important to educate yourself. It’s the same in college, right? First you take the course and then you write the test. I feel like with blogging, it’s the same. It’s important to learn as much as you can in the beginning so that you don’t have to go back later on and change stuff because you learn how to do it the right way. That’s one of the mistakes that I made. I was just doing it the way I thought was right. Which ended up being fine, but not great. Now I still have to delete posts or update them. That’s so much more work when you have to go back rather than if you did it correctly from the beginning. Don’t get me wrong here. I’m not saying that you should not start. So tip number one would still be to start and then learn along the way, but do it at the beginning and invest time at the very beginning. So if we say that you have 10 hours per week that you want to dedicate to your blog, maybe you need to take one hour that you would educate yourself. That can be through webinars, YouTube videos, and listening to a podcast. If you are commuting, that’s a great time where you could be listening to something, or maybe you are at the gym on the treadmill and instead of listening to music, you can listen to a podcast. So take advantage of all the time you have and invest in education early on.

Megan Porta: There’s so much free stuff out there. You mentioned all of my favorites; webinars, there are groups, forums, podcasts, YouTube channels. You don’t have to look forward to finding really high quality free content. So I think this is a really good recommendation. Then I love your example of just dedicating 10 hours to your blog and then taking one hour to educate. So for every 10 hours or whatever it is, like five hours, 20 hours, dedicate an hour or two to dig into education. I think that’s super smart. 

Eloise Jennes: So, I think investing money in yourself is also really important, but you have to make sure that you leverage these free resources. First, especially as a college student. I wanted to give out my favorites out there so that you have something concrete that you can go after. To name a few, Joni Simon’s YouTube channel called the Bite Shot for food photography is so great. I think, especially on YouTube, You can get lost so easily and skip from one video to the next. If you have one person that puts out really good content that is helpful, that teaches you, then you can just focus on that YouTube channel and go through her videos and you will learn so much from it.

Then we have the Top Hat Rank webinars. If you don’t know these already, you have to listen to them. It’s made such a big impact on growing my blog for me. You will learn everything you need to know about SEO and its experts teaching you. I have learned so much more from these webinars than from courses I took that I paid for. So really that’s really something you shouldn’t skip. Then if you have the Feast theme, which I think many food bloggers have, they have so much good stuff on their blog. Reading through all of that, you will know exactly how to structure your blog post, which plugins to use, all that kind of stuff.

Then we joined Facebook groups. I’m in the food blogger central group, and I’ve learned so much just from reading other people’s questions and the answers to these questions. When I had a question, I had a place to go to, if I didn’t have\ another person that I knew personally, that I could ask. This is such a great place to have. Obviously listening to podcasts like the Eat Blot Talk podcast, but there are so many other food blogging podcasts out there that are really great to learn. There’s just one course that I took that I paid for, that I would like to recommend because it’s really been game changing for me. That’s the Cooking with Keywords course. I know many people on here already recommended it, but you guys. I thought I knew how to conduct keyword research. Then I took that course and then I realized, wow, I had no idea what I was doing. It’s made such a big difference in the way that I do keyword research, the way I write my blog post. It’s ultimately helped me grow so much that I think it’s one that I wanted to recommend here as well. 

Megan Porta: So many great resources you just mentioned, Eloise. Thank you for running through those. I think that most of those are common things that people have dug into probably, but it’s always helpful to just mention those again. So thank you for running through those. I really appreciate that. Everyone else does too. Then you made a really good point, I just wanna touch on really quick. Which is to find the people who are delivering the good content that really resonates with you. The free content. Then maybe dig into investing in those people. Does that make sense? So find the free stuff, find the people who are quality, valuable, reputable, trustworthy, and then if you want to take it further, invest in them. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. That’s one of the things I did. I really love Joni and her YouTube channel. At some point for my freelance business, I wanted to learn more about pricing. That’s when I invested in her course, because I also knew that I loved how she was teaching things and that it was resonating with me, as you said. So I think that it’s a really good approach. 

Megan Porta: Okay. Tell us what tip number eight is. 

Eloise Jennes: Tip number eight is to take things one step at a time. That’s so important, not only for blogging but for so many different things in life. But here especially, I would say that you should learn one skill at a time to prevent feeling overwhelmed. To give you an example; don’t start with Pinterest or with a newsletter before you really master your blogging routine. Unless you know exactly how to write your blog post and how to shoot and edit and all of that. Once you start doing that in the kind of automatic way where you don’t have to think about every single task that you have to do and that’s coming next. I would not add something to my list because as I said, that’s how you feel overwhelmed. So once you have that completely figured out and you feel good about it, and you notice that you get maybe better at it and faster at it, then would be a great time to add new things to your routines. That could be shooting a video for that recipe or making pins and posting them to Pinterest or writing your newsletter. But overall, it’s just a really great mindset to have, and that will help if you learn one skill at a time, and then you add more things to what you have to do.

Megan Porta: This is probably one of the most important ones for food bloggers to hear just because of that shiny object temptation that we all want to like, do all the things. We see all the things and hear all the things and feel like we should be in everything. So I feel like this is maybe one of the more important ones, but it’s so hard, isn’t it? It’s so easy to hear it and say, you’re so right. Eloise. I need to do one thing at a time, but actually doing that is so difficult. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. It’s a lot easier said than done, but if you just have it in the back of your mind and you remind yourself from time to time, it’s already better than not doing that at all.

Megan Porta: Yeah, I totally agree. Okay. Move on to tip number nine. 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. So tip number nine would be to not start a social media channel for your blog. You don’t need it to have a successful blog. I’m thinking mostly of Instagram. I know that it’s a really unpopular opinion to not start Instagram. Maybe that’s also like instinctively you would want to start an Instagram account for your blog. You are creating these delicious recipes and you are making these beautiful photos. Of course, you’d like to share it with the world and get instant feedback because you don’t get that from Google. But I think we all know how much time it takes to run a social media account. It’s a part-time job if I have a full-time job for many of us. And so if you only have, let’s say 10 hours to dedicate to your blog and you have to cut that time in half to be able to post to Instagram, create content for Instagram, we all know how important video is getting and that’s something that you would have to add to your to-do list and then plan your feed, engage with people in comments and via DM and do stories and all of that. If you only have 10 hours and then you cut that time in half, that’s going to impact the growth of your blog tremendously. If growing your blog is your ultimate goal, then you should put all the time and effort you have into making that happen. So starting an Instagram channel or social media in general is something that you should maybe do further along the line. That’s just my opinion and that’s because I think that it’s one of the mistakes I made when I was in college. I was spending a lot of time curating my Instagram and doing a few stories and really just to show what I was doing. Maybe the return on investment that I got from it was not worth it. I invested a lot of my time into it and the return in terms of traffic, which was helping me grow my blog, was nonexistent. Because back then the links didn’t exist on Instagram if you were under 10K, but even if you had them, I don’t think many people click through. So really focusing on your blog and on your SEO and getting that right before you start your Instagram channel, I think will get you quicker where you wanna be.

Megan Porta: This might be an unpopular opinion. 100% agree with you, Eloise. So just to say that I know people who just crush it on Instagram and other social media platforms that I really respect and they have such beautiful curated content and reels and videos and amazing stuff that I could stare at all day, but that has not been my case at all. I would consider my business to be a thriving, successful business, but I don’t have that at all. For a while I wanted it really bad and I tried really hard and it just didn’t work for me. But yeah, I agree with you. It doesn’t need to be like that. It can be. You can have an awesome Instagram account and have a thriving blog too, but it doesn’t have to be like that.

Eloise Jennes: No, it’s still the same for me now. I still haven’t reached my goals for my blog and at the moment, Instagram, I focus so much less on it because my efforts all go through my blog. Once I reach these goals, I can put more time and effort into Instagram as well, because ultimately it’s nice to grow on there as well to have different assets, but right now is not the time for it.

Megan Porta: Yeah. I agree. So we’re onto our last tip, sadly. Tip number 10. What is that? 

Eloise Jennes: Yes. So last but not least tip number 10 is to have fun. As cheesy as that sounds. Blogging is not always easy. There will always be one task that you like less than the other. Maybe you will not always feel understood by close friends and family. But I think that if food is your passion and if you have knowledge in a certain field, and if you have a specific mission, then just go for it and enjoy the process. The best thing that can happen is that you turn your blog into a profitable business. And the worst that could happen is that you realize that blogging is not for you, but you still learn so many new skills, including photography, SEO, copywriting, all of that. That will most certainly help you in your career in one way or the other. So I’d say that it’s a win-win either way. 

Megan Porta: I love that you ended this. I think it’s so important. We can get lost in the details and the technical parts and the parts that we don’t like and the tasks that we feel like we have to do and get just drained and overwhelmed. So having this reminder to keep it fun and keep the passion alive is so important. So thank you for ending that way Eloise. I feel like you’ve provided us with this perfect formula for blogging success, which it’s oh my gosh, these are all so great. I might actually title this episode, formula for success or something like that, because I don’t feel like you missed anything important here. You nailed everything. So thank you so much for all of this today. 

Eloise Jennes: You’re welcome. 

Megan Porta: If you had to pick one of your tips, I know this is gonna be hard, but what would you say is probably the most important thing to nail? 

Eloise Jennes: I would say education right away, because I think that if I could change the way I did things, that’s what I would change. I would put so much more time into educating myself on how to write a good blog post that will rank because that would have taken me so much further than I am right now. I think that could make a big difference for many people that are starting a blog. 

Megan Porta: Perfect. Thank you again, Eloise, for being here. This was an amazing chat and I am curious if you have either a favorite quote or words of inspiration to leave us with today.

Eloise Jennes: Yeah. So it’s a quote, but I don’t know I don’t know who it’s from, but it’s just to take things day by day and step by step. I think like you could hear it when I was talking about it before, but just. It’s great to have goals and to see the big picture, but ultimately taking it day by day and step by step is what will make you reach these goals and get to where you wanna be. So I think that it’s important to focus on the small scale as well. 

Megan Porta: Love that so much great way to end. We will put together a show notes page for you, Eloise. If anyone wants to go look at those, you can go to eatblogtalk.com/cookingwithelo. E L O Tell everyone where they can find you on your blog and on social media and everywhere else.

Eloise Jennes: Yes. So my blog is cookingwithelo.com. You can find me there and on Instagram, it’s the same name. I’m an open book. If you have any questions, feel free to DM me. If you are from Europe as well, or if you’re anywhere in the world and you’re food blogging, I would love to chat about it. It’s always so nice to meet new people via podcasts or masterminds, whatever it is. I always love chatting with you. So feel free to do so. 

Megan Porta: Great. Yes. Take her up on that, everyone. Thanks again for being here and thank you so much for listening today, food bloggers. I will see you in the next episode. 

Outro: We’re glad you could join us on this episode of Eat Blog Talk. For more resources based on today’s discussion, as well as show notes and an opportunity to be on a future episode of the show, be sure to head to eatblogtalk.com. If you feel that hunger for information, we’ll be here to feed you on Eat Blog Talk.


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Pinterest image for episode 319 10 things I wish someone told me when I started my food blog with Eloise Jennes.
Megan
Megan

Megan started her food blog Pip and Ebby in 2010 and food blogging has been her full-time career since 2013. Her passion for blogging has grown into an intense desire to help fellow food bloggers find the information, insight, and community they need in order to find success.

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