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Ep. 40: Real Talk on Being Professional Bloggers

In this week’s podcast, we are diving deep into all of the questions we have gotten about blogging and have an open and honest conversation about what it takes. For the first time, we’re also discussing why, when and how Chris quit his job, and the lessons we have learned about separating criticism from critique. We share a few tips on how we have grown our following organically. We also answer some tough questions you’ve asked, like “Do you feel like you’re at the mercy of your readers to survive financially?” and “Is there room in the field to start a blog today?” We’re holding nothing back and can’t wait to hear your thoughts on this week’s episode. You can stream the episode right here: OR listen to the latest episodes on: iTunes, GooglePlay, Stitcher. In this episode, you will hear us refer to a few things, including: • Our new gallery wall in the dining…

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Ep 19: Becoming Affiliated With Affiliates

JavaScript is currently disabled in this browser. Reactivate it to view this content. Listen to the latest episodes on: iTunes, GooglePlay, Stitcher. Title: Ep 19: Becoming Affiliated with Affiliates Game: Instant Podcast where Chris and Preston attempt to come up with 6 Tips for Parties with Kids on the spot. (And then Julia shares some actual tips from this post.) Show Notes: This episode we’re squashing the stigma around affiliate links by talking about what affiliate links are and what they mean for readers, bloggers and brands. Please leave a rating and review for the podcast! Theme song Headphones by Preston Pugmire How to Listen (iPhone): 1. Tap the podcast app on your phone. The icon for it looks like this: 2. Search for “Chris Loves Julia” in the search bar and tap on the podcast title, which is “The Chris Loves Julia Podcast w/Preston Pugmire” 3. On the search results page the top section will list Podcast Episodes. Ignore that…

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How I Gained 50K Instagram Followers Rapidly and Organically

Last July (a year ago next week precisely), we were starting our kitchen renovation and I decided I really wanted to start using my Instagram as an extension of our blog and business, instead of mostly for personal use. As scary as that was to say out loud–I wanted to grow my Instagram following. At the time @chrislovesjulia had around 4k Instagram followers, although I guess they don’t give you the coveted “k” until you hit 10k, so rewind–I had around 4000 followers over there and got, on average, 100 or so likes per photo. I told Chris I wanted to to grow my Instagram following, but I wanted to do it in an organic way. No buying followers, no being a part of those round-robin giveaways where you have to follow 20 bloggers who all pooled money to giveaway a Target gift card (and hopefully gain a lot of followers).  I just wanted to…

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Thoughts on Blogging + Kitchen Kickoff!

Chris and I just got back from an 8 day trip to Cancun! We booked the trip to the new Secrets Playa Mujeres there last year before we knew about Chris’s back surgery. After the surgery and his recovery at the beginning of this year, among a few other things, well, the vacation couldn’t have come at a better time. We went with Chris’s siblings and their spouses and his parents and it was a blast, despite missing the girls terribly. We both feel rejuvenated and ready to finish off the year with a bang. A kitchen bang. Yes, we are finally starting the kitchen. Eeee!!! To be honest, there was a big insurance issue at the beginning of the year and Chris’s back surgery was not covered. It was a HUGE bill and required us to push the kitchen renovation back until that financial burden was under control. Now that it…

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5 Years of Blogging + Reader Survey

We don’t celebrate a “blogiversary” around here usually because it’s always been a little hard to tell when this blog started. Or maybe it is just hard to explain when it became the blog it is today? I started this blog five years ago this week. Five years! And while I had no intention of it sprouting into what it has, this year I’m feeling awfully proud of what it has become and the opportunities it has brought our way. We now have an accountant and an LLC and while I hear so many advice-givers (you know) say, “treat your blog like a business from day one!” I didn’t go that route. I nurture it like any other hobby I am passionate about. It has evolved, most definitely. Our most ancient archives consist of cruise recaps and baby Greta stories that generally kept our family and friends updated. Clearly the…

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A New Look + Better Function

Well that was a doozy. We finally put on our big girl/boy pants (respectively) and made the switch over to WordPress. I kicked and screamed the whole way and to be honest, I am sure that isn’t completely over but we made it! For the past few months, Chris and I have been designing (me) and coding (him) this new virtual home that hopefully is a lot more user friendly and functional for all of you. The layout is  fairly similar to our last blog, but the look (including fonts, photos and even our logo)  is very much refreshed.   We wanted something fresh, of course, but the main purpose of the switcheroo was for function’s sake. The biggest change we hope you’ll notice right away is the second menu bar. Our “channels” if you will. So now, if you’re interested in seeing just the food posts, per se, you…

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5 Things You’re Currently Curious About–Answered!

We mostly try to respond to comments and questions as they pop up in email, the comments section, on Facebook and even Instagram, but there are always a few that get asked so many times that we feel like we should make an official declaration.  And lately, I’d say in the last month or so, these five questions have been real popular. You asked: 1. How’s Greta’s carpet? Did you ever get the paint out? Was it covered under warranty? First, if you’re thinking, Paint? Carpet?! Whaaaa??–Read this.  And no.  And no, again.  The carpet still looks exactly like it did 5 hours after the incident.  Slightly pink in spots.  Because the carpet is under a lifetime stain warranty, my fingers were crossed that there would be something that could be done.  Afterall, it had been only a year since we had the carpet installed. Unfortunately, I spent hours on…

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How To Know When You’re Ready for Sponsors

A full year ago, we opened up spots for advertisers in our sidebar and then three months after, I decided to close them. At the time we decided to take a sponsor hiatus, we had a good amount of sponsors, but something felt forced.  Honestly, I found myself mimicking one style of accepting advertisers and realized it wasn’t how I wanted to handle or present these companies at all. I could sense there was a change occurring in my blogging style and in my personal taste and I didn’t want to find myself in a routine of doing something one way, when everything else seemed to be changing for the better. All I could see was our blog was growing so the next natural step was advertisers?  Not always the case. I have spent the last year working on honing my own personal style, which we’ve discovered is a lot different than…

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Big News!

We have some really, really exciting news to share–the sister husband site to Chris Loves Julia has just launched and it is appropriately titled Julia Loves Chris. I have been nudging Chris to write a food blog for a long time, and then recently–he came up with the idea himself. I pounced and the coding and designing began again.  It makes sense really.  Chris cooks dinner every night over here.  And not just dinner–like, really really good food.  It’s his passion. It’s one of his degrees. Honestly, we wish we could invite every one of you over for a meal, but this will kind of be the next best thing. So while this blog will continue to share updates as we renovate and redecorate our home, Julia Loves Chris will house all things food related–written by Chris, the culinary master around here.  And hey, I love him for it. Hop on…

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Going, going…

Almost gone. Our very first curated Joss & Main event ends today–well “today” as in the next 14 hours.  It has been one of the most exciting things to happen to our little blog and we have been completely blown away by the response. You are a fantastic group of people on the other side of this computer and we thank you–seriously. thank you, for allowing us to be a little part of your lives. If there’s anything you’ve been eyeing this week, today’s the last day to snatch it up right here–which means I better go order that teapot I must. have. :)

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