Since starting this blog, I’ve learned that I really enjoy it. I’ve been reading lots about blogging: best ways to share your posts and when is the best time to share them, how to gain a loyal readership, social media tips… loads of articles. And some of the big things are being consistent, sharing a lot of content (even more than just your own) and really engaging with your target audience.
I’m finding all of those things to be quite difficult on the ship.
Firstly, engaging with my audience is a struggle. As I’ve said before, we have very limited access to reliable internet. Wifi on the ship costs $3.99 an hour and while, yes the cost annoying, actually the worst part is that the quality is mediocre at best. My target audience is professional dancers. Dancing is visual. Most of what I want to engage in is probably a video. Good luck with that on the ship wifi. All I can really share and engage in are articles and photos, so I take what I can get.
Even when we do get good wifi, we can't really browse the way we could on land. We do have a lot of port days and many places offer accessible, decent wifi. But then I find myself trying to cram everything in. Downloading whatever dance videos I can find, saving articles, checking my bank account, talking to mom. Hurry, engage engage engage! On land, I would get so deep into YouTube and randomly find amazing SoulEscape dance pieces from 2008 or get lost in all the famous Fred Astaire dance scenes of the golden age. I can’t do that here. I can’t even simply spend a half hour sharing things on Pinterest, for example, to work on gaining a following for my blog.
Casually browsing the internet just isn’t a thing when you live on a ship, so authentically engaging hasn't been the easiest task.
There's not really a way for me to plan out an optimum posting time either. Social media gurus have lots of tips about posting at peak times when your readers are likely to be perusing the internet. Well, I have to just post when I can. It's more about the ship's schedule than my reader's schedule.
Another one of my biggest challenges. The iCloud. I won’t bother asking what even is the cloud, because literally no one knows. Essentially, it stores everything somewhere in the internet to get you more space on your devices. Well that’s nice. If you have constant access to internet… Catch my drift? I’m looking forward to, not only engaging in other people’s content, but having full access to my own. What a concept.
Ok, this is probably enough venting for one post. Can you tell I'm looking forward to 24/7 internet access? One week!
So how do I make it work?
I just do my best with what I’ve got. I make a list of all the things I want to do on the internet and then go to a coffee shop wherever I am in the Caribbean and download it all to watch or read later. I still comment on things that excite me and I share things I stumble upon and I do my best to stay in touch. Living on a cruise ship definitely makes this whole blogging endeavor a little more difficult, but do I ever do anything the easy way?