I just recently learned about the wonderful pet travel website over at GoPetFriendly.com and their annual pet blogger blog hop they’re hosting – thank you Elaine from ChasingDogTales for pointing us in this direction, and welcome fellow pet blogger or valued reader! Enjoy the little peak behind the scenes at K9sOverCoffee!
1. How long have you been blogging? And, for anyone who is visiting for the first time, please give a quick description of the subject of your blog.
Dogs became my favorite topic to talk about since my pups Missy & Buzz came into my life in September of 2011. Add my must-have dosage of morning caffeine to the equation as well as a fondness for writing ~ and pawlà, my blog K9sOverCoffee was born in August of 2014.
I first wrote about a plethora of different subjects within the dog world, but have been niching down to writing about how my pups stay healthy using raw food & daily exercise. The catalyst for narrowing my focus on dog health was Missy’s diagnosis with AND overcoming of thyroid cancer.
I learned that only 5% of K9 cancer rates are due to genetics, and a whopping 95% are a result of environmental factors.
As a direct consequence of this piece of information, I began transitioning the pups from a highly processed kibble/wet food diet to a more natural, raw one, and have become more aware of our lifestyle choices (I no longer use chemical topical pest preventatives and have reduced the amount of vaccinations the pups receive – I am now also looking into titer testing).
2. What is the one thing that you accomplished during 2015, either on your blog or because of it, that made you most proud?
I remember getting my first product review opportunity from BestBullySticks in February of 2015 – only 6 months into my blogging adventure.
I was totally stoked about it and have thoroughly enjoyed the various review opportunities that have come our way over the course of the year – I’m equally proud of having stuck to my mission of only featuring products I truly believe in.
Throughout this process, I have actually turned down several opportunities because they didn’t convince me at all!
3. Which of your blog posts was your favorite this year and why? (Please include a link.)
I’ve learned so much about dog health in 2015 and shared it with my readers, that it’s hard to pick one post in particular. The topic of garlic being good for dogs after all when fed in moderation was probably the one that surprised me the most, and would have to be considered my favorite post of 2015!
Myth Buster: Garlic IS good for dogs, after all!
4. What is one thing you’ve done in the past year that has brought more traffic to your blog?
5. Which of your blog posts got the most traffic this year? Why do you think it was so popular? (Please include a link.)
I wrote several posts for the brand Dr. Harvey’s – all of them received a decent amount of traffic, but the one post that clearly got the most traffic of all was my Coconut Smiles post – it was probably a mixture of using the right type of SEO (coconut was a trending superfood last year!!) combined with quite a bit of shares on Dr. Harvey’s side.
6. What is one blog that you read religiously – other than your own – and what makes you such a devoted reader? (Please include a link.)
SlimDoggy and KeepTheTailWagging are my favorite blogs in the two respective niches I focus on: Exercise (SlimDoggy) and Raw Food (KeepTheTailWagging).
I appreciate both blog’s dedication to keeping our pups healthy, and I LOVE Kimberly Gauthier’s no-nonsense blogging style (she’s the blogger behind KeepTheTailWagging).
7. What resources do you rely on to enhance your technical, writing, photography, social media, or other skills that improve your blog?
Until recently I took all of my photos with the iPhone 5s, but had to upgrade to an iPhone 6s because my camera stopped working!!
I already mentioned the social media automation tool MeetEdgar in question 4 – this tool currently costs me the most with a monthly charge of $49, but it does have nice results (I also got the first 6 weeks for free)!!
I especially love using it for my Twitter feed – after all, content published on there dies so quickly, and I just don’t have the time to manually post the majority of my Twitter content several times per day.
8. What is the best piece of advice you can offer other bloggers?
Stay authentic and don’t review every single product you get an opportunity for – if it doesn’t fit into your blog’s mission statement, it’ll just feel fake to your readers.
I get that we all have bills to pay and that blogging professionally is a wonderful way of making an income from the comfort of our home offices – but quality content should trump quantity content.
Things that keep me from coming back to a blog on a regular basis are grammatical mistakes and tons of typos – it may be a fine tuning detail, but it ruins the reading experience and therefore is a deal breaker for me.
9. What is your vision for your blog in 2016? Do you have specific goals?
I’m happy to have found my niche in 2015 (dog health achieved through raw food & exercise), and am excited to take my blog to the next level with more niche-specific content in 2016.
I also want to participate in live blogger events (hopefully the Blog Paws conference in Arizona), and network with fellow bloggers and brands.
10. You have the attention of the pet blogging community – is there one blogging challenge you’d like help with, or one aspect of your blog that you’d like input on?
I do need to focus more on building an email subscriber list – any input on how to build a strong email following is much appreciated! I also wonder what a good way is to create checklists and graphics?
Thank you for any advice you may have!