It’s been a long time since I’ve posted a full article on the A Million Musings blog, but I’m back, and I’m here with a special interview of fellow blogger Nupur Gupta. She’s the creative behind Nupurspeaks.com, and she’s got a lot of great advice for aspiring bloggers in their twenties. If you’re either in college or about to graduate—and you’d like to start a blog, this interview is for you.
Nupur discusses why you should start a blog sooner rather than later, how to incorporate blogging into your schedule, and what you can do to build your online presence from Day 1. She also gives us a glimpse into her creative pursuits outside of blogging, which I wholeheartedly support. Read on for my interview with Nupur below:
NupurSpeaks is a platform I have created to unite like-minded students who have a technical and creative flare. Between the time of graduating from college and going for grad school, I had time to kill. I had always wanted to put my voice forward and help students overcome the challenges that I faced during college. I was unaware of so many things in college.
With the help of seniors and teachers I was able to overcome the challenges and felt that many students are wary of them too. This is why I started NupurSpeaks.
NupurSpeaks is mainly divided into two categories: Technical Me and Creative Me. Technical Me is where I talk about college as a whole. Getting internships, about engineering, grad school, writing a CV for internships, etc. Whereas Creative Me consists of the creative aspects of my college life. Inspired by the jewelry-making project I had started in my final year of college. Although I do not write about that, I do focus on DIYs and Planning.
Starting a blog had always been something that I had wanted to do but had been procrastinating on for quite some time. The time I got before joining grad school gave me the opportunity to make my voice heard.
How I wish I would have started this while I was in college. I used to write quite a lot being a member of the English Editorial Board of my college and later on the Joint Editor-in-Chief (Commentator), but I was really not aware of the steps of starting a blog.
But I definitely suggest that if you want to start a blog, do it now. There are so many resources on the internet about blogging and starting on your own. Blogging provides a pathway for students to display their creativity. With so many students in college, it is the perfect way to have your voice heard and I feel gives you an individuality which many tend to stray from. It is also a great way to network and increase your communication skills.Blogging provides a pathway for students to display their creativity. With so many students in college, it is the perfect way to have your voice heard and I feel gives you an individuality which many tend to stray from. Click To Tweet
After I started blogging, I am so much better at talking to other bloggers and it has given me the opportunity to connect with so many people from around the globe. It is also a great way to explore other areas of study that you might be interested in as compared to your major. You can write about anything!
In college, making time for a blog can be challenging, but it is not impossible. If you take out about one to two hours of your day, you can slowly build up your blog. Yes, you might have to give up a little on social life and sleep, but it is definitely worth it as it opens up new avenues for you.
Now this is a great question. As a college student, you have a particular field of study. But that does not mean that you are not passionate about some other topics as well. A blog gives you the creative independence to explore other areas as well.
College Lifestyle – Talk about college as a whole, your aspirations, what you are doing etc.
Your major – Now, you are going to be great in this. You can start a blog with the latest updates in your major, what your thoughts are, what you are doing, your research etc.
Any other major – As I said, a blog gives you the independence to write whatever you want. You can explore any other major that interests you, you are good at, and have the knowledge you would like to share.
Self Help, lifestyle, DIYs, technology based, fashion, poetry etc.
Whether in college or not, you should select a niche that complements your knowledge and that will help your readers. The main aim of a blog should be to help the community with your writing and skills.
Some of my favourite resources as a college blogger are…
Grammarly – I wouldn’t call it a resource but I use this on day to day basis to make my blog better
Before I answer this question, let me give some stats. So I started out about two months, on 13 September and have had about 3K users and 7K page views. Here are my strategies of growing your blog:
1. Build an online presence: You should have your blog on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. These might not be a direct source of traffic for you but can help your brand be known.
2. Join Facebook groups: I have joined some Facebook groups that have experts in blogging. While I was starting out, I got wonderful feedback and help from these amazing people who helped me understand a lot about blogging.
3. Use Pinterest: Now, this is something I want to share. I was doing amazing one month into my blog. Had about 3-4 pins reaching more than 70K people. Then I experimented, I did not pin for a month. This affected me drastically. I accept that I should have done this experiment with a new account. But I did learn from it. I am trying to reach the same viral pins, but it’ll take time.
4. Find where your readers hang: this is important. If you know where your student community hangs, you will be able to make a huge increase in traffic as you are promoting to a targeted audience.
So, I have maintained two planners (one monthly and one weekly) which I use to schedule out my blogging dates. The monthly planner has layout of my entire month on my collabs, guest posters on my blog, the dates the posts go up; all colour-coded.
My weekly planner is a little more detailed. I write about my daily goals, such as the details of each post, Instagram and Facebook updates, social media handling, etc.
My day starts off by looking up my analytics and checking my Instagram for that day. Then I work on the content for my blog. After this, it is all about promotion, promotion, and promotion. The problem with a new blog is, even if you are optimised for SEO you won’t get past the 7th page on Google search results in a jiffy. And who ever goes on the 7th page? No one. So your last resort is to promote using social media. And my oh my, that takes TIME. Whoever said blogging is easy is either delusional or just too lucky. It takes time and effort if you do not want to invest money on paid advertisements etc.
I have been slacking at this for some time, as I am in the process of creating another blog on fashion and travel www.petiteintown.com.
As I wrote my own code for nupurspeaks.com I wanted to do the same for petiteintown.com, that is mainly why it is taking this long to create.
Long before blogging, my main creative outlet has been art. I love sketching and drawing. I am not great at it, but this is something I am passionate about. I also love to dance and write poetry.
You can find a few of my drawings on my Instagram. I have not uploaded any of my dances, looks like it is time to do that 😀
For my blog, my next aim is to put out more helpful content for the student community and also write more about the field aerospace engineering and getting started with it. I want to extend my blog as a source for those who wish to take up any of the STEM fields and encourage more women to take up the sciences.I want to extend my blog as a source for those who wish to take up any of the STEM fields and encourage more women to take up the sciences. Click To Tweet
I am also working on another blog which will be dedicated to women of shorter frames. I know that is not related to my major or my current blog, but being a petite girl has its pros and cons and I would like to use that blog as an outlet to express my views and help girls with a similar body type.
Neither of them are currently monetised. I feel that creating a presence and free knowledge must be something that reaches everyone. In the long run, I would like to provide some courses on the TOEFL and maybe some subjects in Aerospace Engineering. If you would like to get hold of these resources, do sign up to my mailing list and you’ll get CV templates, internship guidelines and planner templates right in your inbox.
I also give out freebies every Sunday and Thursday 😀
Nupur is a student of aerospace engineering who has created NupurSpeaks as a way of uniting the creative and technical worlds. Her blog is dedicated towards helping students with college, internships and on college lifestyle in general. She also writes about DIYs and various tricks and tips to getting through college. Other than blogging she loves to draw and coding. To read more about her and her content head on to https://www.nupurspeaks.com/