Day In the Life of a Professional Wedding Blogger {Personal}

Today marks the launch of The Love Collective: A Community of Professional Bloggers. Actually, TLC (as it’s called internally) has been quietly growing among a small group of bloggers for months now. It is a private memberships site where fellow professional bloggers support one another and help each other create an emotional and financially sustainable life as a blogger.

So as an ode to professional wedding bloggers everywhere, this is a snapshot of the day in the life of the Mountainside Bride:

Wake up a 4am

You read that right. I wake up at 4am. It’s my creative time. Sometimes I do research. Sometimes I write. Over the next few weeks, I am planning and launching a Mountainside Guide directory.

Writing + Prepping Posts

Blogging entails a lot of writing for me. I write advice posts as well as curate real wedding features, spend around 60% – 75% of my time writing and preparing posts. I keep an editorial calendar that I schedule about 2 weeks out. I try to get all of my posts up by 5am. I do most of my major planning and multimedia projects over the weekend.

  • Advice posts: {3-5 hours}It generally takes me about 3-5 hours to research and write each advice post.
  • Real Weddings: {2 hours} 1.5 hours to prep a real weddings after I receive the images and the bride interview. The 1.5 hours for real wedding prep does NOT include the administrative aspect of emailing the photographer and bride. It can take anywhere from a couple of days to several months to hear back from a bride. I have a worksheet for keeping track of which bride interviews are pending.
  • Podcasting: {4-5 hours} The interview itself generally takes about an hour. Editing typically takes 2-3 hours, and administrative emails and talent releases take around 30 minutes to an hour total.
  • Video: {4-5 hours} Videos are new for me and they are hard! Story boarding takes about 1-2 hours. Camera and mic set up takes about 30 minutes. Shooting takes about an hour and editing takes about 1-2 hours depending on the craft!
  • SEO: {30-45 minutes} After each post is written, it is optimized for search engines. All of my images are names with keyword-rich descriptions, the alt text is filled in and each description is written. Then, I try to create titles that contain keywords that rank in Google. To do that, I look at Google Trends to do comparisons. For example, do wedding dresses or wedding gowns see more search traffic? How about signature drink or signature cocktail? Finally, tag each post according to color, style, parts of the wedding, season, location, and preferred vendor name, and assign it a category.
  • Social Media {15-30 minutes}: After the post is published, I generally schedule it on Facebook and twitter. I need to be better at posting to Pinterest, but I don;t want to be a spammer :-) I HATE it when bloggers post 30 freaking pictures in 5 minutes and completely pollute my Pinterest feed :-)

CEO: Chief Emailing Officer

My inbox is out of control!!! I get lots of lame emails from PR companies with “story ideas” and opportunities for me to have them guest blog here. I politely tell them that I write my own content.

I get emails that start, “Dear Blogger,” “Dear Mountainsidebride.com,” and recently I got one addressed, “Dear Elizabeth.” I trash them.

I get emails that blatantly ask me to promote their product out of the blue. I consider the fit, but typically trash them too.

I’m looking for the email that says, “Hey Christie, I found you blog and Love it. IN particular I love your spunky writing style and your down-to-earth advice. I think our product may be a nice fit for your readers. Can you please send along your ad rates?” Yes, I like getting paid for my work. Who doesn’t?

I also spend a lot of time working with vendors to publish real weddings. I email photographers and brides to get content. And I email every vendor published to let them know the post it up.

Community + Social Media

This comes and goes for me. Some days I’m practically sitting on social. Other days, it’s a post here or there. I definitely need to get more consistent.

Me Time

Lunch and Exercise: This entails lunch with Hubs, maybe some errand running in town, and a few hours skiing or running. Currently I’m training for a high-altitude half marathon in Mammoth Lakes.

Learning: I try to build in time to learn new things. I have a set of podcasts and blogs I listen to about small business and internet marketing. I also follow SEO blogs and podcasts. Right now I am in Marie Forleo’s RHH B-School I think the “B” may jointly stand for booya and business:-)

Money

Over the years my overhead has gone up! I have monthly software fees for my SEO plugin, my mail client, and my CRM. I’ve also paid for a professional logo and web design, as well as letterpress business cards. My big recent expenditure was going to WPPI in Las Vegas. I recently dropped cash on incorporating and am on the hunt for an accountant.

Because I don’t have a money tree in the back yard, the blog has to pay for itself. Right now it does this through sponsored posts and banner ads. Soon I will roll out a preferred vendor directory called the Mountainside Guide.

Monitoring

I use Google Alerts to monitor what is happening in the world of mountain weddings. It helps me find new vendors to work with and identify which blogs are featuring them.  I also follow bloggers and vendors on social media and have RSS feeds set up in a reader so I can comment on fellow blogger’s posts. I try to do this once a week.

Legalities and Paperwork

I recently incorporated my business, so there’s all sorts of paperwork involved with that. Also, keeping track of receipts and balancing the books takes time. Since this blog is  a legitimate business, it has to be run like one. Then there is the podcast paperwork, talent release forms, and insertion orders (IOs) for advertisers. Keeping track of everything takes time and effort!!!

Collaborations

I enjoy collaborating with fellow bloggers and preferred vendors on projects. Most recently I am the tech girl for The Love Collective. Lauren, Megan, and Stephanie also graciously invited me to participate in The Experience at WPPI.

Technology

I find that I constantly have a laundry list of technology things I want to tackle. Anything from styling my “Pin It” button better, to setting up events in Google analytica.

In bed by 8PM

Yep, you read that right, too. If one gets up at 4am, one must get to bed early. I generally take hour or so to read. Right now I’m reading the Steve Jobs biography.

Sound Bigger than you thought?

It is a big job! A really big one. and it’s tough to do it alone. But it’s like any small business; you’re either called to it or not. That’s why a small group of bloggers has gotten together to form The Love Collective. It’s a community of professional bloggers who support one another, bounce ideas around, and help grow each others blogs into professional sustainable businesses. We are now taking new members, so check it out!

At the very least, stop by to download one of these awesome desktop backgrounds!

desktop21-1

Via The Love Collective

More Day in the Life Posts from Pro Wedding Bloggers

Christie Osborne
Christie Osborne has lived in or visited every mountain range in the US. Once a mountain bride herself, she's dedicated to helping mountain brides plan their weddings and find the perfect vendors. She's known in the blogging world for her no-nonsense attitude, and she loves to ski. Follow Mountainside Bride on Twitter Facebook and Pinterest.
Christie Osborne
I love the sophistication of this Halloween Wedding Inspiration @BrideLink http://t.co/fGEmZgWLRQ - 18 hours ago
Christie Osborne

Comments

  1. says

    Cannot believe you get up at 4! I roll out of bed at the crack of 10. Also, Pinterest spamming is a HUGE pet peeve for me, too. And I never thought to email vendors in my real weddings posts with links. D’oh.

    • says

      LOL, yep, 4 it is, nearly every morning. And the email the vendors thing is apin in the ass, but it puts me on the radar of vendors other than photographers. It’s usually a short and sweet email saying congratulations, you’ve been published on the mountainside bride :-)

  2. says

    Christie, I LOVE this post. As I was reading it I could totally hear you, (like you were here in my office talking to me). Sadly you are not…but the way you write is definitely all you and I love it! Great post. YAY for The Love Collective!!!

  3. says

    LOVE THIS! That video seriously made me LOL. If someone followed me with a camera it would look very similar :) Doesn’t seem so interesting or glamorous but the perks and getting to do what I love to do more than make up for it!! :)

  4. says

    What a great post and omg you are training! That’s so inspirational. I need to get off my butt more. And a major LOL on the video you found. It’s SO accurate!

  5. says

    4 am-you are one dedicated blogger! Obviously all the hard work is paying off, and I’m so excited about a vendor guide!!

  6. says

    Now THIS is a fabulous idea! While it’s incredible to be able to blog in your pj’s in paradise (if you so choose) the work is undoubtedly draining, so what a great idea to form a supportive network! Bravo!

  7. says

    You’re amazing. Need an intern?

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Every Last Detail,  Alexandra of Heart Love Weddings, Sara of Burnett’s Boards, Christie of MountainSide Bride, and  Jessica at The Budget Savvy Bride. While I am not a member of The Love Collective (however, [...]