Everyone loves blogging. It’s a fantastic way to get on the internet to share your thoughts and ideas, but how exactly do you turn an innocent pastime like blogging into a fully-fledged business? It’s actually a lot easier and manageable than you might think.
Develop your own niche
The first hurdle to overcome is building a niche. If you talk or write about general subjects, then your niche will be difficult to find and you’ll most likely need to rely on your reputation or personality to build an audience.
There are plenty of bloggers that talk just about their own lifestyle, the things they enjoy or current affairs. These types of bloggers are easy to come by, but only the ones with unique personalities or followings will be able to turn it into a viable business opportunity. Everyone else is usually pushed into obscurity because they have nothing that sets themselves apart.
When you want to develop a niche, you need to pick something that will allow you to create quality content that will engage people. A good start is to pick something you are personally passionate about. This could be something like a book series you like, a hobby you have or even something that you’re skilled at.
For instance, if you work as a programmer at a tech company then you could write about your work, you could write about your daily life and the projects that you work on (assuming you don’t break any rules about leaking information!). You need a proper niche if you want to be successful in blogging, so pick something that you can personally connect with.
Move away from WordPress and other hosts
If you want to take your blogging seriously then you’ll have to self-host your website. While free websites are fantastic for getting started, people aren’t going to take you seriously if you don’t have your own domain name and a custom design for your blog. This will make it far easier for people to remember your website and it also gives your content an air of professionalism.
This can often be difficult depending on how much knowledge you have regarding hosting your own website. It might be worth your time and money to hire a web designer to help you out, but if you’re willing to do some research and learn how to set up your own website and domain name, then it could save a lot of money.
Learn how to make money from your blog
There are plenty of ways to make money from your blog, but depending on your content, the delivery and style you focus on, you may need to adjust your ideas.
The most basic way to make money from a blog is to use advertisements. By placing banner ads on your website, you can monetize your website with the help of advertisers. It’s simple because all you do is place banners on certain parts of your website and you’ll get paid depending on how many impressions they get. Most advertisers pay per thousand impressions you get on the adverts, so it’s slow income unless you have lots of readers checking out your blog.
Another fantastic way of making money on your blog is to place affiliate links in your content. You place links to the products you review or use, then you get paid a commission whenever someone uses your link to purchase it. You can set up affiliate links with general companies such as Amazon, or you could have private affiliates that also include discounts for your readers.
Lastly, another option is to attach your blog to a service or product that you sell. For example, if you’re a blogger that focuses a lot on the history of something, then you could write an ebook that compiles all of the information you’ve written and sell it as a non-fiction book. For example here's my book:
Understand the costs of growing your blog
When your blog starts to generate money, you’ll need to start improving your content, hiring people and also spend money on outreach. After all, no one’s going to notice your blog if you don’t spend money on advertising it and spreading your reach.
The best way to do this is to start taking your blog seriously and thinking of it as an actual business. The moment you make your first penny from your blog should be the moment you decide that you are now a business and no longer a hobbyist.
Start looking at professional services to help you grow your blog. For instance, recruit the services of a marketing agency to help you expose your blog to a wider audience. Consider risk management strategies to minimise the possibility of your blog losing relevance in your chosen niche. You can find more details from Equify here if you’re interested in professional services that can help reduce the risks in your business. Even though you’re not a physical business, there are still plenty of ways to ruin your blog and sink back into obscurity.
Starting your own business can be a difficult process that takes a lot of time, effort and resources. However, with the right assistance, you can make it much easier to handle especially if you’re turning something you love into a business.
However, it goes without saying that you should be careful when you turn a hobby into a job. Many people find that their love for blogging diminishes because it turns from being a pastime into a job, and some people often find that they lose their passion for writing as a result of it.
Make sure that you understand this risk before you turn something you love into a job. Try your best to pick a subject you feel passionate about, and treat your blog like a business as soon as you decide to take the plunge and turn it into something profitable. With a bit of luck and a lot of hard work, you can easily turn an innocent hobby such as blogging into a business venture.