Had I been able to fly to DC, this morning, I would have attended BlogPaws. My session? Pet Blogging: Your Next Career Move.
I would have given people the raw facts: bloggers don’t make much, we all carry too much debt, it’s a tough business, advertisers don’t want to pay you, and everyone is a competitor.
Then I would have talked about content generation, different marketing strategies, and how to stop thinking of yourself as a ‘blogger’ and start thinking about yourself as a business proprietor and marketing professional. This means that you need to stockpile some cash. Come up with a business plan. Understand your unique value proposition. Find your voice. Create a portfolio. Build an audience. Create a community. Find people who love you and ask them to be your advocates.
And that’s just the first couple of years.
You’ll also need to take on side writing jobs, speaking gigs, webinars, and probably write about things you don’t want to write about. As a chick who blogs about work, I’ve drafted content on everything from holiday party office tips to fat discrimination at work to facebooking 101 for dummies. And work that took me hours to complete paid $50 an article. And some of it is written anonymously, just to generate content for mainstream websites, so I’ll never get public credit for my work.
It’s not for the faint of heart.
But it’s so awesome to say, “I’m a blogger. Yes, I make money.”
You have to work hard and build to the awesome, of course. You need a plan. You can’t act on a moment of irrationality.
Nothing good comes from an impulse to run from one bad thing to another. That’s just good life advice, by the way. You can’t run away from anything. Ever. Whatever you despise and fear? It catches up with you. And it’s worse.
But if you want to make money as a blogger, it can be done with a plan.
Here’s the presentation.
One more thing: give credit to those who help you along the way. Lizzie Smithson made my presentation. She is so great. She is working hard to beef up the Starr Tincup facebook page. Have you liked it, yet? Please do.