Hello friends! Today our guest is Harleena Singh. She is owner of Aha-now.com blog and freelancewriter.co! She is a professional freelance writer with over 10 years experience in writing, education and management. She holds a masters Degree in English Language with vast experience in writing quality, unique and SEO Optimized content for companies and individuals.
If you found her on your blog I’m sure you noticed that her long comments. My friend Anis Chity said, Harleena Singh comments are very long more than my blog post. 😉
Interview with Harleena Singh Professional Freelance Writer
1. Please tell us something about yourself?
My name is Harleena Singh and I’m a professional freelance writer and blogger. Although I’ve been into freelance writing for long, I started blogging only when I created my own blogs in 2010, Aha!NOW being one of them. Besides, taking writing assignments and doing all that it takes to be a successful blogger; I manage my home and family too.
2. Please tell us something about your blog?
I initially started my blog as a family blog. Later with time, it developed into a life and self-development blog too with my increased contribution in these niches. I’ve now christened my blog as a SELFhelp blog, where SELF is an acronym for Self-development and Enrichment of Life and Family. My blog is all about solving life problems, learning to improve ourselves, creating awareness and understanding the world through the thought-provoking posts.
I want to develop my blog as a guide to happiness for everyone. The main aim of the blog is to help others, and create a Aha!NOW Blog Community blog community of like-minded people who believe in helping each other through thick and thin, and ups and downs. Especially, when all you need is a friendly suggestion, cues from experiences, and wisdom of others.
3. Who inspired you to start blogging?
Honestly, before I started blogging, I hardly knew of any blogger. Since I used to write for my clients, I thought of using my writing skills to share my knowledge and experience with others. I did not follow any particular blogger, but certainly did survey the then blogosphere to get an idea of how to be a blogger.
4. The first successful moment of your blog?
There were not one but many a moments when I smelled the scent of success of my blog. I remember the days when I wrote a couple of posts and did not get any comments at all. Those days I had my blog on Blogger. Getting a few comments in my first month of blogging was very encouraging.
By the time I wrote my 15th post, I was already popular and people hardly believed that I could do so much in so less time. In spite of not having the popular technology or blogging niche, I was thrilled when my blog crossed the 100,000 mark in Alexa ranking and that was the first major success.
5. Where did you manage to get your first guest post?
You won’t believe but I haven’t guest posted anywhere as yet! Although I intend to do so but it’s also true that I really am not getting that free time to start off with guest posts as yet.
I understand that guest posting is one of the best form of self-promotion and it boosts your blog traffic too. Now, as I’ve crossed the 50,000 Alexa rank mark, which was my target for this year, I guess I need to find time to guest post. However, I wonder where I’d go first as I’ve got so many invitations :). I guess I’d start from a friend’s place, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s a high ranking blog or not.
6. Have you ever faced failure in your early blogging career?
I believe failures are part of life and a crucial component of success. I’m sure everybody’s heard of the popular cliché that failures are the stepping stone to success. As I mentioned earlier, during my first month of blogging I hardly got any comments, and that was kind of a failure for me – at least I thought it was that time, though now one understands that it’s a very normal part of being a newbie.
Besides, my social networking member counts hardly increased in the first six months, and that was another failure for me. But all said and done – all these failures always taught me many things in return, so I am grateful for those times too.
7. What steps did you take to overcome this failure?
I took every failure as a challenge. I knew if I got down to doing the tasks sincerely and dedicatedly in the correct way, nothing could stop me from achieving success. So, I learnt the skill of interacting and building relationships with fellow bloggers, the art of commenting, and the techniques of leveraging the power of social media.
I developed my patience, kept making efforts, and got encouraged and self-motivated with every small success like increase in comments, more fans, or the hike in Alexa rank, even though I know all of these really aren’t all that important, but it surely does boost your morale. Soon I found my rhythm that was conducive to efficient blogging, and there was no looking back since then.
8. What do you think – SEO is important or social media?
My personal success has been majorly due to social media. Having said that, I believe one shouldn’t neglect search engine optimization (SEO). One shouldn’t keep all the eggs in one basket and should’ve a distributed and balanced traffic portfolio consisting of SEO, social media, direct referrals, and campaigns.
However, one thing is for sure that the SEO rules and strategies might change with time, but the basis and fundamentals of social networking through social media almost will remain the same, excepting for introduction of new social tools. The relationships you build through social media’s will never let you down.
9. How do you manage your time between blogging and family?
Ah… this is a very good question. Frankly, it’s getting a little tough now with the rise in comments and social interaction, and other blogging responsibilities like commenting on other blogs etc. But I guess the best way to keep a balance between work and home is to block some of your time and dedicate it entirely to the family, with no strings attached and no conditions whatsoever.
I’ve been a strong advocate of quality family time, and family remains my priority. I do take time off on weekends, while for the rest of the weekdays I have created a time table and religiously follow that.
10. How do you interact with blog readers and fellow bloggers?
My first rule is to treat everyone as a fellow human and a friend. Second rule is to always have the intention of helping the person, in whatever way you can. Intention is the seed of action, and I believe good intentions will always lead to good thoughts and good actions. Be friendly, always have the learning attitude, respect the blog readers and fellow bloggers for what they are, and be grateful to them.
I’m indebted to my blog readers for the time they take out from their schedule to visit, promote, and comment. And I never forget to visit their blogs too, even the new readers as that’s the way new connections are made. As a token of appreciation and gratitude, I make a note of such readers and bloggers and invite them to guest post on my blog. Blogging requires mutual cooperation and understanding, and you cannot succeed if you don’t honor your readers and fellow bloggers.
11. How you are helping others in blogging?
The only ways I can help others through blogging is by sharing my knowledge and experience, listening to them, giving my advice and suggestions, help promoting them and their blogs. Specifically with regards to blogging, I’ve shared my blogging secrets, as done here in this interview, with upcoming and new bloggers. I hope I’ve been able to inspire and motivate some of them to solve their own problems.
12. What are your views about blogging?
No doubt blogging is a great way to make money and can become an alternative and passive source of income. In this way, blogging has given financial freedom to many and helped people become entrepreneurs and self-employed. But I feel the special thing about blogging is that it brings people together from all parts the world.
Blogging has enabled people to open up, to express their views, and to overcome the obstacles of restrictions, distances, and boundaries to know, understand, cooperate, and help each other. Blogging has definitely made the world smaller and closer and helped people rise above their differences in religions, cultures, and nations and treat each other as fellow human beings.
13. What advice would you give to new bloggers?
Blogging can be fun, and you can only be successful in it if you take it seriously. Learn from the leaders, know what you’ve to do, and create a plan of how you’re going to achieve your aim. If you wish to rise in the blogosphere, you need to be regular, dedicated, committed, and selflessly help others with the best of your intentions. Remember, it’s always about others more than yourself
If you wish to earn money, that will happen too, but if you develop good relations, the probability of making money will increase. I believe in the karma theory which states that keep making your best efforts with good intentions, and don’t worry about the results. Also, every bit of your efforts will pay off, so never shy away from working hard. And never give up! Rome wasn’t built in a day, and even if things take time – hang on there, your time will come.
I need to thank you for having me over at your blog, Bashir. It’s indeed been a pleasure.
Thank you so much Harleena for wonderful interview.
I hope you enjoyed this interview and as always I look forward to your feedback and comments. Feel free to ask your questions I hope Harleena Singh will reply to you.