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Blogging Basics: A Reflection of 2011 and Goals for 2012

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Last year I never got around to my Blogging Basics reflection and goals.  This year, I refused to put it off again. (See, I am growing and maturing with age, tee hee).  This is going to be kind of a big year for me… my oldest boy will turn 13 (yes, my very first teenager!) and my middle one will hit his double digits.  With that said, this post is not about family.  It is about the blog:  the things that I have accomplished with it this year and the things I want to accomplish next year.

#1 – I wanted to increase my blog readership and my social media presence.  I did!  Majorly!

  • My blog traffic increased 134.90%!
  • My Facebook fans increased 482% and my interactions increased 4,080%!
  • Twitter, I have no idea how many fans I had at the beginning of the year, but in May I had just barely over 5,000 fans.  I am now pushing 10,000!

#2 – I wanted to start making actual money with my blog.  I did!  Again, a pretty good bit!

  • I have sold a blog sponsorship set each month since October!
  • I am finally getting a regular check from Google Adsense… not every month yet, but it has been every other month for most of the year!
  • I have figured out Amazon’s affiliate program and am getting money from it every single month!
  • I typically have 60% of my 125 x 125 spots filled and sell a few sponsored posts and text links every month.

#3 – I wanted to travel with my blog and I did!

    • I went to BlogHer this year  – my first time ever!
    • I went back to Kraft Foods this year!


#4 – I wanted to get some help and again, I did!!

  • I set up 7 full-time contributors on this blog!
  • I hired a part-time assistant!
  • I filled out an application to get interns and was approved.  This new quarter should hopefully actually get them.

#5 – I wanted to work with some more brands in a closer capacity.  I did!  I “scored” some pretty big brand Ambassadorships:

  • I am a Kraft Delicious Bytes Blogger (still)
  • I am a Tropicana TropiMomma
  • I worked on short campaigns as a Brand Ambassador for: Jockey, Mrs. Dash, and Purina!

For 2012, I want to increase even more!  I have already taken a few steps to see that happen.

    • I finally was able to join the Collective Bias group and have been having fun with that over the past month.  I am excited to see what 2012 is going to bring as far as that goes.
    • I was finally approved for Burst Media – from everything I hear, it is the way to go for bloggers!
    • I have teamed up for a year-long Simple Dinner Ideas Series with Crystal and Company and am super stoked about it.
    • I started my new deals site in May of 2011 and have a few regular linkies over there that are growing slowly (Homeschooling and Giveaways)- I want to start getting around 100 link ups on each one this year!
    • I (and my assistant) have been working pretty hard on my Twitter and FaceBook pages and I want to see them continue to grow as a place for my readers to hang out and come to with questions!
    • I finally set up my very own newsletter.  I can customize it as I want and feel that I am really able to keep in touch with y’all more that way!  I want to see it grow back to what my Google Friend Connect readership was.
    • I want to write a blogging basics ebook and publish it


So my Blog Goals for 2012 are:

I am trying to be very specific in my goals for the year.

    …to consistently make 1000 per month on my blog (consistently to me means 1000 per month at least 3 months in a row.
      …to reach 2,000 newsletter subscribers on my

NEW newsletter

    …to finally review a car.
    …to reach 5,000 Facebook Fans
      …to reach 20,000 Twitter Followers on


      and 10,000 on


      …increase traffic on my blogs by 140% EACH
        …post at least 1 video to

    my YouTube Channel

      each month.
      …Increase YouTube subscribers to 200 (I only have 9 LOL!)
      …to have an image (or video) of every recipe on my site!
      … to complete A-Z Fruits and Veggies book and start selling it!
      … to begin (and hopefully finish) A-Z Countries book and start selling.
        …to consistently have no less than 100 entrants in my

    Homeschooling on the Cheap

        weekly linky and my

    Giveaways Around the Web

      weekly link!

    Where do you want your blog to be at this time next year?  Are you writing what your readers want?  Do you interact with your readership?  Are you maybe thinking this is finally the year to take the plunge and start your own blog… or a second blog?

    Well, stick around!  For next week’s Blogging Basics post, I am kicking off my 12 weeks to GOAL in 2012.  A pretty specific (and possibly intense) series to help us jump start our blogs this year!

    My biggest goal?  I want to drive a stinking vehicle for a couple weeks and test it.  I have wanted to do that for so long.  It is actually less value than lots of things I have been able to try out and that I have been able to do, but for some reason a person who reviews a vehicle seems like a big blogger to me. LOL!  That is like my ultimate goal. LMBO!

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    Cindi F

    Tuesday 24th of January 2012

    You have really made some great accomplishments with your blog. Very inspiring! Thank you for sharing.

    Hanni Banszki

    Thursday 5th of January 2012

    Congratulations on your success! It is inspirational for me. I help you to reach your goals. I like you on Facebook and subscribed via Google Friend Connect. Love, Hanni


    Wednesday 4th of January 2012

    Wow! Congrats on your blog growth, that's amazing! For my part, I'm still trying to get my new blog set up.... and I'm not sure what my goals should be yet lol.

    Crystal & Co

    Saturday 31st of December 2011

    Kelli, 2012 is going to be a great year!


    Thursday 29th of December 2011

    Congrats on your blog growth. Your hard work is paying off! I love your specific goals. I need to put some thought into my own goals. Thanks for sharing.