In episode 338, Megan chats with Kathleen Pope about starting a food blog late in life, a mindset for a new, exciting and successful career and how to keep motivated. Kathleen especially encourages us to not give up until we start reaping the fruit from our hard work.
We cover information about why blogging gives you the flexibility you need to create the life you want, why being older is the perfect time to step into blogging, why when you say you can’t, you really mean you won’t and remember to not do this blogging thing by yourself or be isolated – find your community.
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Bio Kathleen, is a recipe developer, food photographer, and food writer. Owning her own business for 20+ years specializing in product marketing and development for non-profit organizations, she shifted her focus in 2017 towards her passions — cooking, photography, and hospitality. A fast-growing cooking, baking and hospitality blog; encouraging families to gather together and invite others to the table. Inspiring others to healthier choices and “make it yours” providing tips, substitutions and easy-to-follow, real food recipes with a healthy twist! The Fresh Cooky was established in 2017 and has posted over 500 recipes.
- Jump into blogging and be a learner.
- You can connect with others on the blogging journey as you find what’s important to take on.
- When you say you can’t, you really mean you won’t.
- Connect with other bloggers on Instagram, on Food Bloggers Central through FB through either same stage in life or same niche to bond over.
- Become an expert in something that you already do and enjoy.
- Use your analytics and Google search console to give you clues how to focus and grow your niche.
- Treat this like a business and have goals for yourself. Create a routine for yourself and go to work.
- Listen and engage with your audience – make it a 2 way conversation. This makes it more enjoyable for both of you.
- Feel free to reach out to Kathleen at: [email protected]
- Rank IQ
- Denver Bloggers Club (FYI Conference, which sadly stopped with COVID)
Click for full script.
Kathleen Pope: Hi, this is Kathleen from the Fresh Cooky and you are listening to the Eat Blog Talk podcast.
Sponsor: Hey, awesome food bloggers. Before we dig into this episode, I have a really quick favor to ask you. Go to your favorite podcast player. Go to Eat Blog Talk, scroll down to the bottom where you see the ratings and review section. Leave Eat Blog Talk a five star rating if you love this podcast and leave a great review. This will only benefit this podcast. It adds value. I so very much appreciate your efforts with this. Thank you so much for doing this. Okay, now onto the episode.
Megan Porta: Hey, food bloggers. Welcome to Eat Blog Talk, the podcast for food bloggers, looking for the value in the confidence that will move the needle forward in their businesses. This episode is sponsored by RankIQ. I am your host, Megan Porta, and you are listening to episode number 338. Today I have Kathleen Pope with me. She is going to talk to us about her amazing story and encourage all of you to just understand that you can start a food blog over 50 and you can make an income while doing so. Kathleen is a recipe, developer, food photographer and food writer. Owning her own business for 20 plus years, specializing in product marketing and development for nonprofit organizations. She shifted her focus in 2017 toward her passions, cooking, photography and hospitality. A fast growing, cooking, baking, and hospitality blog, encouraging families to gather together and invite others to the table, inspiring others to healthier choices and make it yours providing tips, substitutions, and easy to follow real food recipes with a healthy twist. The Fresh Cooky was established in 2017 and has posted over 500 recipes. Kathleen, it is such a pleasure to have you here today. Thank you for joining me. And how are you?
Kathleen Pope: I am well, Megan, thank you so much for welcoming on to your so informative podcast. I just love it.
Megan Porta: Aw it’s a pleasure to have you here. I’m super excited to talk about this topic, but before we get into it, do you have a fun fact to share with us?
Kathleen Pope: I do. So I have my forklift driver’s license.
Megan Porta: Whoa.
Kathleen Pope: Yeah, years ago, I worked for a large Christian nonprofit that did events across the country. I was the product development manager, but I also worked at the actual stores at these events. We would put up, like a Walmart size store on a weekend. So I was trained on how to drive a forklift.
Megan Porta: Oh, my goodness. Okay. That’s really cool. I don’t know anyone…you always see like you’re in the stores and you see the forklift drivers and you’re like, wow, what kind of training does that take? You wonder if something’s gonna fall in your head? Yes, but I don’t actually know anyone who does that. That’s so cool.
Kathleen Pope: It’s been a long time, but yes, I can do it.
Megan Porta: Oh, it’s like riding a bike, right?
Kathleen Pope: Exactly
Megan Porta: You can get right back on that forklift. Oh, that’s cool. Okay. I love this topic because it’s a really relevant topic today. I feel like there are so many food bloggers who are over the ages of 40 and 50 and even 60 in some cases and they are crushing it. I have some really close friends who are, I would say probably some of the older food bloggers and they’re just the smartest food bloggers out there. They’ve got the tactics down. They do the research. They’ve got the drive and it sounds like you have a similar story. So you’re 50 plus and you started a food blog a couple years ago, and you just decided that you were gonna make it work and you were going to make money. Talk us through your story. How did it start and where are you at now?
Kathleen Pope: Fabulous. Yes. So I was 52 years old when I started the Fresh Cooky. I had my own business while still having my own business for over 24 years, doing product development, promotional products, helping non-profits get their product lines launched. But I was at the stage where you can only get so excited about a logoed coffee cup and pen. I really wanted to do something that served more my passion. I was also working part-time at our church at the time and it was coming to an end. And so I just started kinda thinking and praying about something that would be new and fun and exciting, but would keep me home because at that point my boys were in their teenage years. I really had felt that it was really important for me to actually stay home while they were in those middle school to high school years. So after stalking some of my favorite food bloggers that I had been following for years, I’m like, how hard can this be? It is hard. But it’s so rewarding.
Megan Porta: Also fun, right? The fun way outweighs the hard sometimes.
Kathleen Pope: Absolutely. It really is. And yeah, there’s tedious sides to it, but the fun part is the creating and interacting with your readers. That’s one aspect that I really love.
Megan Porta: Yeah. Oh my goodness. Okay. I love that you pointed out that you wanted to stay home with your boys during their teen years, because I have that urge too. I am so glad I’m here with my boys right now when they’re teenagers. I feel like a lot of people discount that. They look to the toddler years and baby years and that’s important too.
Kathleen Pope: Yes.
Megan Porta: But we overlook the fact that they really need us during these middle school and teenage years. I know that our conversation is not about this at all, but I just, I commend you for that because I think a lot of people overlook that. So good for you. So you decided you were gonna do this food blog thing. So how did it go once you dug into it?
Kathleen Pope: If I had known then what I know now, I wish I had RankIQ back then.
Megan Porta: Oh, yes.
Kathleen Pope: I slugged it out for about a year and a half putting a recipe out just once a week. That was about all I could do. I was really ready to quit. It was a lot of work without much reward. I hit a stride at one point with the encouragement of another blogging friend where I just kept sticking it out. I heard that on food blogs, most of ’em die after about three years. So I just was determined. I’m gonna make this work. I tried to learn as much as I could. I connected with as many bloggers as I could. Really just started learning and trying to understand what it meant to grow organic. I knew that was the key to growing organic traffic. Here I am.
Megan Porta: Yeah, and here you are. So you knew that you weren’t too old to learn. I know that’s a stumbling block for a lot of people, like the technical side. When you’re a certain age, I feel like it just, it doesn’t click as much as if you were younger. So was that a stumbling block for you?
Kathleen Pope: Yes, it absolutely was. I’m fairly computer savvy because I’ve had my own business and been on computers my whole career. I’ve been home with my boys a lot, but I’ve tried to make it just something that I’m always a student, just trying to understand technology and industries. My husband always makes fun of me. If there’s something that I can break on a computer, I’ll break it. I should be a tester. Cause I’m not afraid to just jump in and try it. That’s what I would encourage others to do is just jump in and connect with other people. You can learn new things. I think you sometimes have the capacity to do it the older we get, you’re not so immersed in what’s going on around you.
Megan Porta: I feel like sometimes, not everybody, but some people use that as a crutch almost. Oh, I’m older. I can’t learn technology. Certain people in my life, my parents do this. My dad has a hard time getting into email and it’s this constant issue; you can do this. You are smart. You are capable. Just don’t lean on the crutch of the words, I can’t figure this out, or it’s too complicated for me because you’re a smart person and you’ve lived like 80 years of your life and you can get into email. So that is something that you can get over. It’s a mindset thing. I think you’ve done this. It sounds like Kathleen you’ve just told yourself, like I can do this.
Kathleen Pope: Yes. My mom always would chide us as kids. When you say I can’t, it really means you won’t. So I have filtered that my whole life and just saying, I can do this.
Megan Porta: Oh, gosh, that is the best advice ever. When you say you can’t, that just means you won’t. Oh, I love that. Okay. So do you have advice for other people? Maybe they’re not 50 plus, but maybe they’re even like 35 plus. They feel I can do this? Can I make money? I don’t know. They’re questioning themselves or doubting. Give them some advice.
Kathleen Pope: I absolutely do. So the first thing I would do is just encourage people to find a community. Find other bloggers that are your same age and stage. I do think that’s a little bit easier to connect with because we naturally connect with people that, oh, I have teenagers. Oh, I make recipes that are healthy. Oh, I love doing copycat. Something along those lines. Find those people and develop a relationship with them. I found my mastermind people through just DMing and chatting with other women on Instagram of all places. Which I cannot stand for the most part , but I am so appreciative of that platform because that’s how I was really able to get connected to other bloggers.
Megan Porta: Yeah, that’s funny. I actually found one of my, I would call her like my blogging bestie, Melissa from MamaGourmand. We connected on Instagram. It’s really weird because I too have been resistant to Instagram a lot over the years, but I found her and so many other just amazing food bloggers there. So it is a good platform for that. Do you have other recommendations for where to look?
Kathleen Pope: I do. So there’s also so many great communities on Facebook, like Food Bloggers Central, still one of my favorites today. Locally, we have in Denver, we have a Denver Bloggers Club where they, before COVID they were having monthly, weekly meetings. She did a conference. That was a great networking possibility. Just looking at different opportunities in your area and they don’t have to be right in your area. I have developed a mastermind or not personally, but I am part of a mastermind group and we are all across the nation. So you don’t have to be right in the same place. I think it’s important to have that community of people.
Megan Porta: I think it’s vital. I would change important to vital in this world because it can be so lonely, especially if you are already feeling doubtful about your skills or abilities to make it work. I think that getting yourself involved in a group is essential.
Kathleen Pope: You know what? I totally agree. Yeah. To do things alone like I think I’ve heard it said many times on your podcast, blogging is very isolated. To try to do it alone, we just learn from each other. I’m a big believer in asking for help and asking opinions, having people filter things that I’m thinking about, bouncing ideas off of. There are people out there that I think are more than happy and willing because they’re probably in the same position.
Megan Porta: Everyone needs it. So just go in with that mindset that you’re not bothering anyone that everyone needs this and you’re actually helping others as well.
Kathleen Pope: Yeah. There you go.
Megan Porta: And then I’ll mention the retreats, the in person retreats that I’ve been hosting. They’ve been so great for this. I know a lot of the members who have come in feel isolated and lonely and I don’t have any friends. Then when we leave our three days together, they feel connected and we stay in touch. It’s a really great way to just really quickly get to know people and form some really solid friendships. So find a retreat or organize one yourself. Just form one yourself. It’s not that difficult to do. Just find a house and people and some food. That’s all you need.
Kathleen Pope: Exactly. The food. That’s the key. That brings everybody together.
Megan Porta: Yep. Okay. What other advice do you have for people?
Kathleen Pope: I would say narrow down your areas of expertise. I hear all the time. I would not say I am very niche down, but I’ve learned that we all have areas that we’re experts in. I heard a quote a few years ago from Food Blogger Pro that everyone’s an expert in something to someone out there. That really resonated with me when I didn’t feel like much of an expert necessarily. That was probably my own insecurity and feeling some self doubt, but I really started to dive into things that I really already knew and developed. So for instance, my blog has always had real everyday recipes, but they have a little bit of a healthy twist. So yes, I still use sugar in my baking. I still use butter and all of that. But I use organic ingredients. I use less sugar when I can. I’ll use organic flour and whole wheat at times. So I found that that’s an area, quote, unquote, kind of niched in. I also bake it at high altitude and I’ve been baking and recipe testing and perfecting high altitude baking for over 30 years. I’m like, I think that makes me an expert.
Megan Porta: Absolutely.
Kathleen Pope: Yeah. I think that some ways too, if you’re kinda lost in that area, there are ways to do through Google analytics, RankIQ, Keysearch, different platforms out there that you look at your keywords and maybe pull one out that’s more of a phrase instead of, a London broil in a crockpot, right? I have a phrase, bow tie pasta that I rank for. That actually crosses many different things. You can narrow down that area and I can become the bow tie pasta expert. So that’s just an example. Find ways to drill down into a silo that makes you an expert in that one area. I think it starts to really expand and grow not only what you’re creating and doing, but people will come to you because of bow tie pasta recipes or beef recipes or whatever it might be.
Megan Porta: Yeah. So that is just proof that you can, think about food, the word food, you think of so many things. Then pasta is just one little piece of food, but bow tie pasta is the smallest little niche niche food item you can talk about. So that is just proof that you can narrow down into the smallest thing and be known for it and get really good at it. I love that example. So how many bow type pasta recipes do you have and how do you expand your expertise on that? Do you talk about making it from scratch or like how deep do you go with that?
Kathleen Pope: It’s actually a newer one for me and I probably should have given you a different example, but so I have a couple of bow tie pasta recipes, but it’s something that I it’s in my calendar for the, coming months to do an air fryer bow tie pasta, to kinda look at some things where, how do I expand it? You can have pasta salad. Basically your keyword is this bow tie. So it’s maybe using a different sauce, adding something, a unique way to make the pasta, but it’s really just a simple recipe.
Megan Porta: I love that so much. I think we all have those one or two, or even a handful of things that we’re really experts in, but we don’t even really know it. This might be a good segue to your next point, because RankIQ really helped me figure out what those things were. I didn’t know really what things would fall under my areas of expertise until RankIQ started telling me. Then I was like, oh, okay, cool. I’m gonna write more about one of my things for RankIQ was roundups. I started writing roundups and saw on Google analytics that that did really well for me. So I started digging into RankIQ more. Then like your bow type pasta, I started finding these little nuggets. There were like little clues really, and then just started digging in. So maybe you could talk more about how you used SEO tools, like RankIQ to figure those things out.
Kathleen Pope: Yes. So I love RankIQ and doing your content analysis and pulling in that information. It was so informative to me to pull that up and to see the different variations of the keywords that I could rank for. I have done the same thing with some roundups. Summer I take a little more of a step back because my kids are home and I really wanna invest in and spend time with them. But, starting in the fall, my content calendar is full of just doing roundups and pulling that information and becoming the go to person for things such as bow tie pasta or shaved beef recipes or whatever it might be. That information I found all in RankIQ.
Megan Porta: Yeah. It’s an amazing tool.
Kathleen Pope: I’m so new at it. I still don’t know that. I can say it enough. I’ve been using it since October, and I feel like I’ve really hit my stride with it in the last few months just understanding wow, I really can rank within the first few weeks in the top three positions on some of these keywords.
Sponsor: Food bloggers, let’s take a moment to talk about a few things that Eat Blog Talk has to offer that is going to add value to your business and accelerate your growth. First of all, head over to the Eat BlogTalk forum. It’s totally free. It’s off of Facebook. It has a bunch of valuable discussions inside. You can create your own discussion. You can self promote, you can talk about products and services that you offer without worrying about being removed from the group. Go to forum.eatblogtalk.com to check it out.
Also, I have hosted a few in person retreats here in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and I’m going to continue that. They’ve been wildly successful, so much connection and growth and learning has occurred within these. And they’re fun. So join us in the next one. Go to eatblogtalk.com/spring2022 retreat. You will get access to all of the information for retreats moving forward at that URL. Go there. Join the waitlist for the fall retreat and beyond. You will not be disappointed in that.
Also, I wanna mention the mastermind program. So for 2022, we are full on the mastermind program. Two groups are underway and they’re going really well. There are transformations happening. It is such a powerful, positive group of like-minded peers, and we do so much collaboration and learning inside these groups. We will open up new groups starting in 2023. So if you’re interested in joining, join the waitlist, go to eatblogtalk.com and follow the prompts for the masterminds.
Last but not least, I’ve started a group coaching program for foodie creators who are interested in becoming foodie podcasters. If this is you, send me an email, [email protected] and let me know, you’re interested in this group coaching situation. Whether you just have an idea or you’ve already launched or anything in between, we will serve you. We show up twice a month on group coaching calls where we’ll answer all the questions you need to get answered. So you can start a successful foodie podcast. There are so many ways that we can accelerate your growth and add value to your business. So I hope that you will take advantage of some of these. Now we’ll get back to the episode.
Megan Porta: I love that you said you hit your stride with it because it took me a while too. At first I was like this isn’t working. But it’s this little formula, but it’s such a simple one. When you figure it out and when you hit that stride, it’s oh wow. It’s so powerful and cool to watch. Because like you said, you can rank within a few weeks. So I wanna encourage other people because people reach out to me all the time, because I’m constantly talking about RankIQ and how awesome it has been for my content. They reach out and they say, It’s just not working. I’ve used it for a few weeks and it doesn’t seem to be doing much. So I’m going to set it aside. I’m like no. Don’t set it aside. Give it a few months and really try to hit your stride with it like you are Kathleen. Because once you do, you’re gonna be so grateful. I wanted to say too, that for people who might be technically challenged, RankIQ is great because there’s not much inside the tool. It’s not one of those tools you open up and you’re like, whoa. I’m super overwhelmed by this. There’s really just simple columns really that you look through. Once you get them down, they’re super easy.
Kathleen Pope: Yes. And the optimizer, I think, makes the writing so much easier. It still, hopefully if you’re a decent writer, you could, you come across sounding very natural and organic. The tips that he has in the little videos I had to watch those a couple of times to go, oh, okay. I should choose my title and it doesn’t have to be exactly the keyword that I’m trying to rank for. I just think it, yes, stick with it. I’ve talked to a bunch of my mastermind friends who have been on the fence about it and not sure about it. I would get rid of almost everything else if this is all I could afford. I love that they have different levels and you can bounce back and forth with how many reports you do. It’s been immeasurable for me. I think we’ll continue to be.
Megan Porta: Yes. I love that. I love that you’re using that. Do you have any other tips with SEO or just getting into that world for people who are maybe a little resistant to SEO?
Kathleen Pope: Yes. So SEO was definitely one of the things that I think maybe being older, I struggled with. But listen to the different podcasts that are out there to really try to understand what it is. It is still, I used to be like 80% Pinterest and 10% organic traffic. I’ve really worked over the last three years to flip that around. Now I’m about 55% organic and about 30% Pinterest and the rest comes from. variety of different places. But I’m really proud of that organic growth, because I think that reveals that I’ve started to understand what this whole search engine optimization and keyword importance really means and just investigate some of those. Top Hat Rank, there’s different podcasts that you can listen to. Listening to yours I think helps you understand a little bit better what this whole SEO thing is all about. I don’t personally waste a lot of time, I shouldn’t say waste, I don’t spend a lot of time, like Instagram on my Facebook. I know people are poo pooing Pinterest all over the place. I don’t spend a ton of time, but that is one other area that I do get a significant amount of traffic on. So I probably spend 30% of my time in a week on Pinterest. I would just say, that’s what you should do. Focus on focusing primarily on your organic and on that SEO. And then maybe choose one other platform if you want to and like to, but I don’t even think you have to do that. I think you could focus 100% of your time on your organic traffic and do incredible.
Megan Porta: It really is king. There’s a reason that is a phrase. It’s so important to focus on that. I always think, okay. I’m one that embraces my story. I’m so grateful for the way my story has evolved. I wouldn’t change anything, but if I could go back and focus on SEO more in the beginning, my blog would be so much bigger. Ss it’s killer thinking about that. Oh, If only. But at the same time, I’m like, my story wouldn’t have been this long and drawn out, I probably wouldn’t be here doing this podcast. So I totally accepted it, but I did ignore it for a really long time. I love that you’re encouraging people to not ignore it and put a focus on it.
Kathleen Pope: Yes. I don’t think I ignored it. I think I was just ignorant to be totally honest. I don’t think I really, for the longest time. I’m like, explain a keyword to me. I don’t understand this.
Megan Porta: Yeah. It’s hard to understand, especially if that’s not your world and SEO is not most of our worlds when we start. We’re creative people. We like cooking and creating. But when we hear SEO, we’re like, what the heck is that? I don’t know what a keyword is, how would I pick a keyword? It’s such a confusing world. I think that a lot of us resist it to begin with.
Kathleen Pope: Absolutely. I know I did. I just didn’t understand.
Megan Porta: You’re not alone. Yeah. I think that n is great advice. So focus on sseo but also pick another platform to focus on and see how it goes from there. You can always evolve too. You can always change things. What else do you have? What other great advice do you have?
Kathleen Pope: So I also believe that setting up a consistent schedule is so important. If you want to make an income from blogging, which was my goal, you really need to treat it like a job. It can be a job. That’s a lot of fun. To me, this is my dream job. Where else can you get to sample copycat crumble cookies, on a daily basis?
Megan Porta: Oh my gosh. I love that I’m obsessed with crumble cookies.
Kathleen Pope: But I think that sometimes people don’t take it too seriously. Yes. There’s a lot of flexibility and freedom in blogging and you are your own boss, but I get up at the same time every day, I kinda have my routine. I sit down at my computer by about nine. Or I plan to shoot, cook, edit, and write a post. I have a plan every week and I am very consistent with it, with an occasional hiccup along the. I think it’s also important to communicate with your readers. That’s a big one that I’ve really been encouraging my fellow bloggers to do is they’ve been collecting these emails from their readers and they’re not communicating with them. I think it’s a treasure trove and I’ve personally done it from the very beginning. That was probably from my own history in the business world to communicate with my readers. Yes, at the beginning it was my mom and my husband and a handful of friends. But I sent a weekly email and I’ve developed that into a personal thing where it’s a little snippet of my life. It’s the recipe. So it’s more than just, it’s more like a little newsletter each week. I love communicating with my readers. Then that’s important to me where I personally respond to them. The good and the bad, the nasty emails and the really nice ones.
Megan Porta: I love that you incorporate just some personal stuff. Can you give us an example of something? Cause I think we struggle with that. How do you go from being really personal to talking about your recipes? How do you find that good balance?
Kathleen Pope: It’s still a struggle. So my email has evolved into a kind of segment. So I have some inspiration each week. I have what my readers are saying about some of my recipes. Then I just try to tell a little snippet about what I’m doing. Like I recently started swimming and more for accountability on my part, I started telling people about the fact that I started swimming. I told ’em I’m only telling you this, I think it’s a great way for me to continue getting in the pool a couple days every week. Then I’ll do things like my birthday was a few weeks ago. So I threw in a birthday giveaway and I talked about birthday gifts that are important to me. What’s your favorite gift? It gets people talking. It’s more than just a one way communication, because those comments then are there for other people to read.
Megan Porta: That’s great. I love that idea of more of it being a communication instead of I’m here to deliver info to you. So you’re the recipient, I’m the deliverer. It’s more of a back and forth like you’re swimming now. So people I’m sure are like, oh cool. I love knowing that about her. They’ll probably follow up and ask you about it. So it’s like a friendship.
Kathleen Pope: Yes. Yes. I’ve always been super relational probably to my detriment at times, but I think that we are so built for relationships that’s one of the ways that I am fed is by communicating. I don’t just wanna be a talking head out there. Sometimes when I respond to those nasty emails, people will actually respond back to me and. Oh, my gosh. I’m so sorry. I thought I was speaking to a robot. I’m like, even if I’m educating one person at a time, you know that there are real people behind these blogs. It’s not just some corporation. Then that’s doing my job.
Megan Porta: Oh, that’s such a great message. I love that you mentioned this. It is very easy for me to get in a rut of just being the deliverer and forgetting. Okay. So I do this really well on the Eat Blog Talk side. I will say. It’s a relationship there. But on my food blog, here are the recipes. So after 12 years, Kathleen, I have to remind myself, okay, this is a relationship and it’s not all about the recipes and that goes for Instagram too, right? Yes, delivering just content there and making it more of a relationship on other platforms as well. But I appreciate this reminder. This has really hit me today. So thank you. I know you have a few more points, so tell us what else you have for us.
Kathleen Pope: So I think it’s also important to know your demographic. Again, that’s not something I understood right away, but as you develop your blog and you have time under your belt, start to learn who your people are. While I really wanted to be more in a mentoring role, cause I’m an older mom, didn’t get married until I was 35 and had my first child at 37. I really wanted to help other moms realize how important it is to get food on the table. But the reality was or is, my demographic is between 45 and 75 years old.
Megan Porta: Oh, wow.
Kathleen Pope: I absolutely adore some of my 70 plus year old readers. They’re the ones who email me, they tell other people about me. So I’ve actually started now that we’re gonna be empty nesters in the fall, I’m gonna actually develop a whole new recipe category of just developing recipes that you can cook for two, which would work, for younger couples as well as older couples.
Megan Porta: Right. Yeah. That’s cool. Then how do you get to know your demographic? Is it just by tuning in and listening to who’s writing you back? How do you do that?
Kathleen Pope: Yes. So a little bit of both. So some of it I get from Google analytics, you can go in and actually set up your demographics so you can see what your age group is, but mostly it’s through communication. Like I said, that probably comes hand in hand with the fact that I am doing this email and regularly communicating with my readers or they’ll DM me. But I have people say all the time, they’ll give me their age because I’m honest about my own age. I think that starts opening people up and just understanding, this is what they’re wanting. Seeing what recipes are doing really well on my blog. and almost reading into that, intuiting into it like, oh gosh, this healthier Mongolian beef is doing really well. Why is that? It’s quick, it’s easy. It’s scalable. So that tells me a little bit about who is looking at my blog and why they’re there in the first place.
Megan Porta: Yeah, a huge theme from our conversation is just really listening and paying attention to a lot of things that are going to make a difference. So your recipes, themes, what you need to narrow down, your people. Just really tuning in, I think that’s such a key that we tend to zoom past because we get so busy and we’re like in it, like in our businesses just doing the things, we forget to tune in sometimes. So I love that this is a theme. This is great. Okay. You have one last tIp you want to give us, let’s hear it.
Kathleen Pope: Yes, don’t do it all by yourself. It circles back really to what I talked about in the beginning is get into a community, ask questions. I found that really most food bloggers are so friendly and willing. I am so grateful for the ones who’ve mentored me. I have another good blogging friend in my mastermind group. She always says, rising tides, lift all boats. I really believe that’s true. That in this world of, it’s all about me and we’re all out for me, I wanna see how I can serve you? How can I help you? Because I think that comes right back around on you.
Megan Porta: I love that. If you are struggling with, I don’t know, feeling lonely or overwhelmed, or I can’t do this, doubting yourself. Is actually a really good place to start. So your last point is a really good place to begin. Serve someone. You don’t have to look very far. Go to Instagram and find someone who looks like maybe they could use help or they’re struggling. They’re lonely and serve them in some way. Serve somebody else and it’s going to come back to you. Not that you do that to get something in return, but that will be a byproduct.
Kathleen Pope: I think it’s a natural byproduct. Yeah. Yes. I think that the more we can reach out to others, be helpful, be willing, it’s only gonna naturally increase our own understanding. We learn along the way.
Megan Porta: Oh, my goodness. You have so many great points here, and this is not just directed for people at 50 plus, I feel like this applies to everybody. Every food blogger. Because we all feel inadequate at times and, wondering if we can do it, questioning ourselves, our abilities, our skills. So this gives us all some really great tips. So thank you so much, Kathleen. This was such an amazing conversation.
Kathleen Pope: Oh, it was so fun to do this with you. I really appreciate this time.
Megan Porta: Same. So why don’t you end by giving us either a favorite quote or words of inspiration?
Kathleen Pope: Okay. My quote is from the Bible. It’s actually from Proverbs three, five through six. So I call it my life verse. It’s, trust in the Lord with all your heart lean, not on your own understanding and all your ways submit to Him and he will make your path straight. I’ve recently added being a food blogger. I’ve added verse 8. It says, this will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones. I just love that. I filter everything in my life through that. I feel like it just studies me and gives me hope and passion to face each day.
Megan Porta: Aw, I absolutely love that. So you remind yourself of it daily. I love that too.
Kathleen Pope: I do.
Megan Porta: Okay. So we will put together some show notes for you, Kathleen. If you want to go check those out, you can go to eatblogtalk.com/thefreshcooky. And the cookie is so clever and I love how you spell it. C O O K Y. So tell everyone where they can find you online, on social media, et cetera, Kathleen.
Kathleen Pope: Absolutely. So it’s The Fresh Cooky with a y.com. On Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, my handle is all the same. It’s @thefreshcooky. I just did that little play on words.
Megan Porta: I love it.
Kathleen Pope: I love to cook. I love cookies. I’m a little cooky.
Megan Porta: Oh, yes. Cooky. That’s funny. Oh it’s been such a pleasure talking to you and thank you so much for being here, Kathleen. And thank you for listening today, food bloggers. I will see you in the next episode.
Outro: Thank you so much for listening to this episode of Eat Blog Talk. If you enjoyed this episode, I’d be so grateful if you posted it to your social media feed and stories, I will see you next time.
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