Is Blogging Legit? In a word, Yes! But…you may want to ask a few more questions if you plan to make money with your blog. Don’t misunderstand me. I’ve been blogging since 2016, and I’m a huge advocate. But there are some rampant misconceptions out there that I’d like to help clarify.
Just a few short years ago, the concept of blogging was totally alien to me. I was the one asking tons of questions. For example: Can you really make money with a blog and how does that work? You may still feel a bit of confusion today. If so, it’s best to walk in with your eyes wide open.
Wouldn’t you agree?
For the record, you absolutely can make money with a blog. There are various approaches you can use with the most common way being affiliate marketing. Ultimately, affiliate marketing works well, and I highly recommend it.
And yet, there are bloggers out there that paint an overly rosy picture that creates unrealistic expectations. In my mind, we need to avoid that scenario at all costs because I think it sets people up for failure.
Instead, I want to encourage massive long-term success! For that, we may need to set the rose-colored glasses aside and roll up our sleeves.
So. let’s explore some truths, and dispel a blogging myth or two, shall we?
7 Blogging Truths You Need to Know
To further set the stage, I’m writing this post on New Year’s day. The year 2019 is still fresh and essentially a blank slate. Moreover, I’m envisioning lots of new year’s resolutions that involve making money online and starting a blog.
Is a blog on your list?
As a dedicated blogger myself, I definitely hope so and I applaud that goal. Furthermore, these truths that follow will ensure you approach this rewarding task with the right mindset. In fact, that’s my mission today.
Truth #1. Making Money With a Blog is HARD work!
My main affiliate niche market is comprised of folks seeking to make and/or save money online. Between my blog (which holds more than 950 comments), various forums like Quora, and the online platform where I host my sites, I interact with thousands of new and aspiring bloggers on a regular basis.
Maybe this sounds harsh, but I do believe it needs to be said. I’ve met way too many starry-eyed dreamers in search of a piece of the “on-line pie” and thinking it’s just a walk in the park.
In one sense, why wouldn’t they feel that way?
I was on Pinterest this morning, and I spotted dozens of pins proclaiming that blogging is easy. Many talked about making $1K or even more the first month. I’m sorry, but stuff like that just frosts me. We need a reality check!
True Story – I got an email from one of my followers last week. She has a new blog that’s less than a month old with all of 6 posts on it. She asked me to take a look at her site and tell her what she’s doing wrong because she hasn’t made any money yet.
Sadly, this individual is not alone. “Build it, and they will come” might work for baseball but it doesn’t cut it in blogging. In a nutshell, here’s why. To make money with a blog, you need relevant traffic. By that, I mean real people who actually care about what you have to say.
Launching a blog is the easy part. But you need energy, thought, and time to create content worth reading. And then you need to promote your content using search engine optimation techniques and social media platforms so that prospective readers can find you when they conduct Google searches.
Answers will vary widely to the question of how many blog posts you need to achieve success (but let me assure you it’s more than 6, lol!). It seems you need to hit a range of related posts such that Google begins to see you as a legitimate source of worthwhile content.
Here’s the good news. If you follow your passions, it makes it a whole lot easier to stay the course and accomplish the work. Being your own boss and making your own decisions is a great thing.
It can be a sobering thought, but the only thing preventing you from making money is the person staring back at you in the mirror 🙂
Truth #2. Most People Will Quit Too Soon
So, here are my words of wisdom for you to chew on. New Year’s day 2020 will get here soon enough. When it does, do you really want to be stuck in exactly the same rut you’re in today because you gave up? Alternatively, you can invest in yourself and your future in 2019 and create something of value.
With the evolution of your blog comes a sense of accomplishment and pride that no one can take away from you. Be patient with yourself and the process while you build something worth having one blog post at a time.
Bear in mind that blogging is not a job where you exchange hours for a contracted wage. Your blog is an online business venture. Any and all profit generated from the business is yours. But as any new business owner will tell you, there won’t be any profits for a while.
One factor that contributes to delays in earning income is that you will not earn Google’s trust overnight. If you publish regularly, your trust factor will start to improve markedly around the six-month mark, and you may start to see a little income. But I would plan on giving it at least a year of concerted effort.
Can you make that commitment?
Truth #3. Writing For Your Audience is Key
By identifying the “ideal” person who will read your blog, you can (and should) tailor each article to address the needs and painpoints of that target persona. Remember, the typical reader is looking for a useful answer to their query. It’s about your readers, not you.
In most cases, you will fare better if you narrow down the focus of your blog. Google wants to understand what exactly it is that you’re an authority on. You can bolster your authority level by compiling a body of related and complementary offerings. And, you’re more likely to get repeat visitors if readers know what to expect.
Write with purpose rather than rambling because you only have a few seconds to make your point. This isn’t Facebook, and no one gives a hoot about the mundane details of your daily life. They want to know how you can help them.
Are you publishing quality content that adds value and is worth reading?
Truth #4. You Need to Break a Sweat Before You Earn Passive Blogging Income
Bloggers love to go off about the joys of earning passive income in your sleep. There’s some truth to the hype in the sense that certain posts will be popular and continue to rank (and convert) well long after their publish date.
I’ll share an example with you from my blog that has served me well. I wrote the post in September 2017. It immediately climbed to position 1 in the search engines and remains there today.
But, what they don’t tell you is how much work it takes to get to the autopilot stage. Blogging itself is not a passive activity,
I’m honestly not sure what suddenly triggered this comparison and got me wondering about how the size of my blog content might compare with a novel. I’ve been an avid reader all of my life, but I never thought much about word count. Perhaps because I was enjoying rather than writing :).
But, naturally, Google came through for me and supplied the fun fact above. I think it makes my point pretty well about the active nature of blogging because based on this stat, I’m well into my second (long) novel.
Related Post: What is a Passive Income Stream?
Truth #5. Accept the Fact That Not All of Your Posts Will Rank
Of all the truths we’ll discuss today, this is the one that can be most disheartening. You do your research, select a low-competition keyword, and crank out an article that you really feel good about. You publish it and anxiously wait to see the results.
And then….days or weeks later you can’t find it in the SERPs.
Unfortunately, it happens to all bloggers at times. It’s a bummer, but as long as you haven’t neglected SEO, you just need to accept it and get over it, You may have a powerful urge to chuck your laptop across the room. But, you’ll want to resist that temptation 🙂
The reality is that Google’s algorithm uses over 200 different ranking factors. Add to that the fact that the algorithm changes periodically, and you know that every post is not going to be a winner.
The best approach is to observe and learn what you can from the posts that rank highly and carry on by trying to duplicate those results.
Related Post: How to Rank My Site With SEO Basic Principles
Truth #6. Blogging Can Sometimes Be a Lonely Task – Who Knew?
Working from home (PJs optional) is a dream for many folks in the nine-to-five workforce. Things like being your own boss, no commute, and a flexible work schedule all sound wonderful, right? And they are!
But on the flip side of that coin, blogging is also a solitary task. You probably won’t miss the daily commute to the office at all. But you might miss chatting in the break room over coffee with your co-workers.
Fortunately, I belong to an amazing online community with thousands of other affiliate marketers and a 24/7 live chat feature. So, it’s not quite the same, but it helps. On the rare occasion when I’ve tried to talk about what I do with friends or family, they tend to glaze over pretty quickly, That’s when I really appreciate my online colleagues.
Truth #7. Anticipate a Classic Love/Hate Relationship With Your Blog
I have an undeniable affinity for all things affiliate marketing that extends well beyond the financial rewards. It’s a challenging and energizing environment comprised of researching, writing, and interpersonal connections that suits me perfectly. That said, everyone loses their blogging mojo from time to time.
The occasional blog-hating day (or week) is a natural outgrowth of some of the other factors already discussed. It is work and we do need to push forward and keep the faith even during times when progress seems slow or non-existent.
I encourage you to develop some coping strategies before this phenomenon affects your productivity or the quality of your content. Why? Because there’s a strong correlation between this and truth #2 above and what we don’t want is for your blog to join the abandoned blog landscape, right?
Try some of these approaches to re-charge on the days your inspiration starts to dry up:
- If your calendar says you’re supposed to write today but the words aren’t flowing (yeah, writer’s block is a real thing), don’t fight it and waste time staring at a blank screen. Switch gears and focus on something else. Do some keyword research, read some of your favorite blogs, or head over to Canva and create some graphic images.
- Blogging isn’t location dependent so take advantage of that and change up the environment by heading off to your favorite cafe. You can also pack your laptop and take a trip. Sometimes a change of scenery can help enormously.
- A flexible schedule is a huge advantage, so don’t forget to get out and enjoy the day by indulging in some of your favorite activities, It’s a great stress reliever, and your computer will be there waiting for you when you get home.
- One more thought is to try a new tactic for adding content. Sometimes, we can find renewed inspiration and motivation by stepping outside our comfort zone. For example, one of my goals for 2019 is to create some videos. Or, maybe this is the year to work on the ebook you’ve been talking about finally.
What do you do on those inevitable days when you can’t face your blog? Jump into the comments and let us know!
Blogging is one of the most engaging and enjoyable activities I’ve ever participated in and one I never expect to regret. As a senior, I love the fact that there are no barriers and I can do this indefinitely. Making money by following my passions and working from home is priceless!
For my readers who aren’t seniors yet, I see blogging as an even better opportunity. I wish I’d started years earlier because it does take time for your site to mature. Hence, there’s no time like the present to get started!
For my friends and readers who often look at me askance and inevitably ask, is blogging really legit, I want to assure you that it is. As these truths suggest, it’s rarely all sunshine and roses. What is? But if you launch your blog with your eyes wide open and persist, blogging is rewarding on many levels.
May 2019 be your year to achieve success!
Over to You
If you have any questions or a blogging truth you’d like to share, please jump into the comments below.