Kristi Hines – An Interview With a Part Time Blogging Superstar

part time blogging kristi hines

I can’t believe I pulled this one off.

If you are a regular reader here of this blog, you know that I’ve committed to finding and interviewing some of the top part time blogging and marketing experts in the World.  By this, I mean that these people have excelled and succeeded in their niche while building their business part time — just like many of you.

The first interview in this series was published last week —  11 Questions for Part Time Blogging Expert Jane Sheeba.

Today, as another Halloween has come and gone, I have one last tasty treat for you.

In fact, I am still amazed that I pulled this one off.

It is my pleasure to introduce to you a person who has had a huge influence on me as a part time blogger.  Until recently, she has balanced a full time job, family, and writing one of the most popular blogs in our niche.  She has always been there to lend advice or a helping hand, and for that I am extremely grateful.

 [Note: As this interview goes to press, Kristi related to me that she has just recently joined the league of the unemployable, having left her full time job for full time entrepreneurship. Congrats, Kristi!]

Today, I give you….

Kristi Hines – An Interview with a Part Time Blogging Superstar

Prepare to be blown away!  :-)

 

Q:  Tell us a little about Kristi Hines, the person and the blogger?

 My 160 character summary is that I’m a freelance writer, online marketing consultant, blogger, and social media enthusiast who enjoys photography, tennis, and salsa dancing. 

Q:  Your blog, Kikolani is hugely popular in the blogging world.  To what do you attribute this success?

 I attribute the popularity of my blog to three things – when I started out, I spent a lot of time connecting with other bloggers through commenting and social sharing. 

I always strive to create the best content possible for my own site, and in the last year, I have spent a lot of time creating awesome content for other sites which has expanded my reach considerably.

 Q:  As a Part Time Blogger, can you share with us your 3 top time management tips?

 The three things that have added more time to my already hectic schedule was learning to get up earlier in the day (adding an extra two hours a day), canceling the cable subscription (adding probably two to three hours a day), and learning to say no to things that are not absolutely critical (adding a countless amount of hours over the course of the week).  

 Q:  There are so many distractions to deal with on a daily basis.  What are your biggest distractions and how do you deal with them?

 I’m someone who works best in a library-like environment, so any types of noise will get my brain off track.  A quality investment has been some noise-canceling headphones (expensive if you want Bose quality, but at least it comes with easy payments) and RainyMood.com (free).

 Q:  How do you deal with overwhelm?

 I used to freak out about my schedule, and if I think about it as a whole even now, I’ll get a bit anxious.  Then I started to not think too far ahead and just order my projects in order of priority. 

Sometimes it’s good to know who you have to be on time for and who is able to make some adjustments to the schedule when you’re running behind.

 Q:  Do you use any online or offline resources that have helped you become more productive?

I’m pretty dependent on Google products.  I have a nice organizational system built up using:

  • Google Docs to organize all of my writing gigs, social profiles, income and expenses, etc. 
  • Google Calendar to set reminders for when blog posts are due, Twitter chats are scheduled, advertisements on my websites expire, etc.
  • Gmail to be able to search through all of my correspondence quickly and efficiently.  I have a LOT of labels and filters enabled so only the most priority items come through my inbox, and the rest can be saved for later when I have “free time.”

Q:  What has been the biggest setback in your business so far, and how did you rebound from it?

 My biggest setback thus far was coming down with mono.  I had a pretty good productivity flow going for a few months where I was cranking out a lot of articles a week. 

Then I spent a few months where I was too tired to do anything.  Fortunately my system rebounded, and although I’m not fully up to speed (lost that ability to get up at 5 AM and stay up till 11 PM), I’m almost there and caught back up again. 

The key was to be understanding with myself and not get burnt out again the second I got back in form.

 Q:  As a successful part-time blogger, you are a role model for many of our readers.  For those that are not yet successful, can you tell them the 1 or 2 most important things you did on a daily basis that helped you achieve success?

 Probably the most important thing is to do everything you do for people.  Search engine optimization and active social profiles are important to an extent, but if you aren’t creating your blog posts, status updates, and products with the intention of helping people learn, then you won’t get anywhere.  

People are smart now-a-days, and they can sniff out someone who’s only in it for the money right away.  If you are putting people first, then they won’t see your monetization as a bad thing – they will just see the value in it.

 Q:  Do you have mentors who have helped you along the way?  If so, where did you find them?

 I follow a ton of people online, learn various things from them, and then adapt what I see that works best to my own strategy. 

There are so many amazing people, I couldn’t point out just one that was my inspiration.  I have an RSS reader full of over 500 blogs, and I have learned something from people who have been at it for years all the way down to people who just started out a few months ago. 

If I could suggest anything to people, it’s that they don’t get stuck trying to emulate one person – follow as many people as you can handle and learn something from them all.

 Q:  For our readers who are struggling with their blog popularity, what would you say are the 3 most important things they need to be doing to improve their blog?

 The first is going to be content.  If you look at truly successful blogs that generate a huge readership, they aren’t doing so with barely 300 word posts or posts that are just regurgitations of what other people have written.  The blogs that are successful are ones with some crazy in-depth content that can’t be pumped out in fifteen minutes.  

 The second is promotion.  Don’t expect reciprocation, but promote content to your audience that you know they will like.  Once you become known for only promoting great content, you can promote your own in the mix and it will be regarded as high quality as well.

 The third is people.  Engage with people.  Create Twitter streams of bloggers in your niche and watch their conversations.  Don’t just retweets them, but answer their questions if they ask them.  Answering a question, whether it has something to do with your niche or is just random and personal, can make you a new friend faster than retweeting all of that person’s posts.  

 Q:  We teach our readers to focus their limited time on things that will matter most to their business.  What do you feel are the most important skills to master to become a successful blogger?

Aside from previously mentioned creating awesome content, learning how to promote your content, and networking, the most important skill could be finding a need in your niche.  If you want to create a business, you have to be able to offer something that no one else does.  Or if it’s something other people do, you have to find a way to do it better.  

 My first eBook was on blog post promotion.  Click here to view more details.

There are tons of eBooks out there on promoting your blog as a whole, but not as many on just promoting an individual piece of content.  That advice is extremely important if you’re entering a blogging contest or writing for a blog that pays you based on the social engagement of your post.

[Bob's Note: Kristi's ebook is probably the most informative book on blog promotion out there. If you are a blogger of any sort, you need to have this resource!]

  Q:  Monetizing a blog can be a difficult hurdle for many bloggers.  How have you monetized your blog and where is the best place to start for those that are struggling making any money with their blog?

 Monetization is a beast – it depends on a myriad of things including your niche and how much traffic you are generating.  

For me, I found that advertising and AdSense didn’t work as well for my site.   But in the process of just cranking out blog content, I built a great reputation that has led to a ton of freelance writing opportunities. 

So it is indirect monetization, but still income based on my blogging.

 Q:  Do you outsource?  If so, what?

 I don’t outsource.  I don’t want to bad-mouth it as it does seem to work for others, but I’m just not a fan.  If I can’t do it myself, it just isn’t going to get done.

Q:  Is there anything that you recommend people DO NOT outsource related to their blog?

 Don’t outsource anything you are going to put your name on. 

I’m always surprised when I see bloggers whose writing and commenting style I know very well all of the sudden “change.”  With the commenting, it becomes painfully obvious if I know the blogger lives in London but his comments start flowing in from the Philippines.  And with blog posts, you can tell when the English isn’t quite right anymore as when the blog started. 

If you want to buy posts for your blog just to up the content volume, at least don’t sign your name to them.  Make them guest posts.  And if you don’t have time to comment, just don’t do it.  But don’t let someone damage your reputation by paying someone to pretend to be you.

 Q:   If you had to start all over and knowing what you now know, how would you build an online business with limited time?  Would you change anything from what you did previously?

 I’m actually pretty happy with the way I did things.   I didn’t start out blogging with the goal of creating a business, and I think because of that, I spent the first year and a half just enjoying the writing process and talking to people.  

If I hadn’t done those things, I wouldn’t have learned so much and wouldn’t have as much to share as I do now.  All of the experience is going to lead to a lot of great eBooks and a few other projects I have up my sleeve for the near future.

 

Wow, we can’t wait!  Thank you Kristi for taking us inside your world and revealing your top secrets and strategies.

I’m sure I can speak for our readers when I say that you are an inspiration to all those who seek to break away from the 9-5 grind by building an online business…. on the way to living the life of their dreams.

You are truly a part time blogging superstar!

Your Next Steps

If you enjoyed this interview with part time blogging superstar Kristi Hines…

LEAVE A COMMENT and thank her!  

Tell us your story, your obstacles and struggles… and of course, your successes!

And of course, please SHARE with your social circle of friends and followers!

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35 Responses to “Kristi Hines – An Interview With a Part Time Blogging Superstar”

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  1. Mic says:

    Hey great interview, really enjoyed the read. I just started a blog like 2 weeks ago and I need this kind of advices. Hope we will see similar posts in the future ;)

    Mic invites you to read ..

    • Bob says:

      Cool, Mic glad we could help. Kristi is an awesome role model.

      Just curious, was there any specific “aha” moments you got when reading her interview?

  2. olivia34newton says:

    A job well done interview, I learn a lot.. We all now that blogging is not an easy job. I really enjoy reading this interview. Thanks for sharing! I am also a mom and a part time blogger.
    olivia34newton invites you to read..1300 numbers in AustraliaMy Profile

    • Bob says:

      As a Mom and Part Time Blogger, I’m sure that Kristi’s story was an inspiration to you. You also may want to check out our interview with Jane Sheeba, another inspirational part time blogger and marketer.

      Thanks for sharing your experience here, Olivia.

  3. James Buckley from Learn,Implement, Teach says:

    Great to see part-time marketers with full time efforts.
    I am so working on time management with ministry
    and other obligations that I am currently a part of.
    Looking forward to gleaming some tips & strategies
    from what is apparent as professional part-timers.

    In Christ & To Your Success
    James Buckley invites you to read..Yes “There Is Greatness In You”My Profile

  4. Great interview… This is very interesting and I enjoyed reading this… Thank you for sharing.
    Rachel Howard invites you to read..Chevy Radio Controlled Model CarsMy Profile

  5. Mirza Ejaz says:

    You have created an exceptional website, very much enjoying browsing the articles and also believe the site’s structure is intuitive! Keep up the good work! Best Rgds. Valarie Koles in Antalya
    Mirza Ejaz invites you to read..seo lincolnshireMy Profile

  6. Margret says:

    An inspiring interview .You did a detailed tips that could help a lot.Thank you for giving this out.Keep it up!
    Margret invites you to read..1300 numbersMy Profile

  7. Jimmy says:

    Hi Bob,

    Thanks for arranging this interview. As a new blogger, I am always looking around for advice from liked minded people who had walked the road.

    Kristi,

    You shared some amazing tips for us new bloggers. Things that I feel are really practical and easy to use. For me, that’s very important. Because I am an action guy – always wanting to know the exact action needed. If feel that beginners are often hampered by too much information and too little specifics that will speed up their learning curve. So when you mention three simple things to do on a daily basis, it really help us to focus for the day. We all are part timers with family, every second counts.

    Could you share a bit about how your blogging has expanded to your current business? I know you mentioned that in the interview, but again, I am looking for speciifics. Are there anything that needs to be looked into to scale our non-existent business in the beginning?

    Cheers
    Jimmy invites you to read..What is Personal Development?My Profile

  8. Maja says:

    I am regular visitor of Kirsti blog. She has won many writing contests.Her writing has magic and I always wait her new post as she writes unique contents.
    Maja invites you to read..Good Features of Fantastic SamsMy Profile

  9. Timo Kiander says:

    Another great interview!

    Thanks Kristi for sharing your thoughts. Your e-book is awesome too :)

    Cheers,
    Timo

  10. Anna says:

    Such a great and easy to follow interview! She is a blogging superstar in the blogosphere indeed! I enjoyed her wisdoms a lot! :) Thank you!
    Anna invites you to read..What is a root canal? Why won\\\’t the dentists tell us more about it?My Profile

  11. Bit Doze says:

    Interviews will known successful bloggers is always great in helping to understand more about what it takes to be successful. Kristi is a great writer and the articles written by her are filled with useful info.
    This interview it is very interesting, thanks for it.

    Dragos
    Bit Doze invites you to read..Best WordPress eCommerce Themes And Why Use WordPress As A eCommerce PlatformMy Profile

  12. Justin from Personal Growth says:

    Hi Bob & Kristi,
    I really have to agree with Kristi’s top three time management tips. I was telling my wife today to let’s cancel our satellite TV, I don’t watch much TV anyway these day because there are 50 other things that i would rather do.

    I have never outsourced anything yet and I probably won’t either. I prefer to know how to do everything, well, at least the best that I can.
    Justin invites you to read..Mazzastick.com’s Guide 4 New Bloggers eBookMy Profile

  13. Thanks Bob for sharing this great interview I really enjoyed reading it, and I have learned more few things from an experienced part time blogger.keep it up
    Salah Messaoud invites you to read..How To Encourage Readers to CommentMy Profile

  14. leigh says:

    Blogging is indeed a journey that offers you a lot of experiences. Until now, I found that trying to force things to come out will lead to a nice burn out- entire days in which it was hard for me to focus on creating content.Thanks for this valuable interview,
    leigh invites you to read..Murano Glass by NasonMoretti – Part 2My Profile

  15. Tudor says:

    I like her honesty. You can say how much she like her job by the way she’s speaking about it. You can’t get this excitement if you’re doing this only for money.
    Tudor invites you to read..I will do blog commenting for you for $50My Profile

  16. Radu says:

    Hi Bob,
    Congratulations for this great interview with Kristi.
    I discovered her blog recently which btw it is a wonderful resource for everyone who wants to learn marketing and have fun at the same time.

    Blogging is indeed a journey that offers you a lot of experiences. Until now, I found that trying to force things to come out will lead to a nice burn out- entire days in which it was hard for me to focus on creating content.

    Creating a balanced schedule is very important for blogging success and for your health as well.
    Thank you Kristi for sharing your personal experiences with pluses/minuses and also for the additional resources such as rainymood. Much appreciated :)

    Thank you Bob for putting your time and energy to share useful and inspiring interviews.

    Have a wonderful day,
    Radu
    Radu invites you to read..Blokube Review: Why on earth should you use it ?My Profile

  17. gracia19 says:

    Great interview! Thank you for posting it and sharing it for us! I have been a fan of Kristi for quite some time now, she writes great articles and some had inspired me to to the same. I’m a bit jealous cause you get to me her! But great stuff! Thank you again! Have a great November!
    gracia19 invites you to read..ADT Safewatch SecurityMy Profile

  18. Herbert says:

    Wow! This is really interesting, I have found about Miss Kristi’s stuff at a friend’s blog and the moment I check it, I was totally amazed.. She is really awesome and her writing really deliver what a reader wants

  19. malunggay56 says:

    Great interview. I must say that time is really important to built success in online industry. Blogging is very hard. | :P
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  20. Tracyann0312 says:

    Great interview. I must say that time is really important to built success in online industry. Blogging is very hard. You need to think different topics people will interest with. I greatly enjoy all of the interviews you share Bob. You inspires many people in doing such great things. Hope to read more from your blog! Regards!
    Tracyann0312 invites you to read..smsMy Profile

  21. Dan says:

    Great interview, I love Kristi’s posts, they are so full of detail, I’m sure she will do very well going for it full time. I was pretty surprised to find out she was only part time until recently.

    Dan
    Dan invites you to read..Twitter hacks for lazy peopleMy Profile

  22. Adrienne says:

    Great interview Bob!

    It was great getting to know Kristi better because I’ve heard nothing but wonderful things about her. To think that she does this part-time too! I’m so impressed.

    Enjoyed hearing how she goes about her work and what she believes is most important. I appreciate you sharing all of this with us Kristi.

    I am enjoying this interview series Bob so I appreciate you locating these part-timers and sharing their story with us. This is a great example of what people need to do with the little time they have. So inspiring!

    Looking forward to more.

    ~Adrienne
    Adrienne invites you to read..Why Free Information Is Sometimes More ExpensiveMy Profile

  23. What a great interview. I like your blog because it is totally focused on part time blogging. It is such a great niche because most people will start part time. In this particular interview what stood out to me was that Jane Sheeba found her way by just blogging for a year and a half and ENJOYED it. Her goal was to sell products, but the means to the goal was enjoyable. That shows passion and devotion. I also like her time management tricks of cancelling cable (a major distraction) and adding more time.
    Jane is a great example of how you can run a business part time.
    Thanks for this valuable interview,
    Donna

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