When you first start learning how to write a blog for money, you will be excited about all the possibilities blogging will provide and how it will change your life for the better.
However, it’s important that you ground yourself with realistic expectations, or you may find yourself getting discouraged.
Yes, blogging can change your life, and the extra money is always nice, but from where you are now, it’s a long journey to get where you want to be.
For starters, you have quite a lot of competition before you even begin. Did you know that, as of July 2017, there were more than 350 million blogs on the internet [link: https://www.statista.com/statistics/256235/total-cumulative-number-of-tumblr-blogs/]?
Don’t let the numbers discourage you from trying though, because to learn how to write a blog for money is not hard, and with persistence, you will find your voice and your audience.
However, it is going to take some hard work and time before you start seeing noteworthy results, especially if you intend to replace your income and eventually become a full-time blogger.
Start by Choosing a Niche
Starting a blog takes planning. The most successful blogs are the ones that focus on a subject and never stray too far from their core topics.
For example, consider the types of blogs you have come across which cover topics like cooking, home decor, or budgeting.
They are all tightly focused niches and have an audience hungry for that type of content. They are also niches where you will always have something new to say every week.
Your first task, therefore, is to decide on a niche. Choose something you already know about or at least one in which you are prepared to learn everything you can.
Name Your Blog
Spend some time figuring out the name of your blog. You want it to be catchy and easy to remember. You also want it to be available as a domain name so you can register it with your favorite hosting provider.
Expect to spend some time on this, because with more than 350 million blogs out there in internet land, there’s a good chance that whatever you first come up with will already be taken.
Establish Yourself as an Expert
If you want to see success in the blogging industry you need to establish yourself as an authority in your chosen niche.
People get online to either be entertained, or to learn things, and they will only pay for it if you sufficiently inspire them and fill them with confidence that you are someone in the know.
Your audience will come to you looking for answers, so make sure you provide them in copious amounts of detail.
The more detail you provide, the longer your audience will stay on your site and possibly browse around to see what else you have to offer.
Laughter is cheap on the internet. It may be the best medicine, but it’s tough to make a buck out of it online; don’t go for funny unless you’re really good at it, which brings us to the next point.
Establish yourself as an expert, and people who want to know what you know will be flocking to your blog to soak up every little snippet of information you publish.
A diverse portfolio on a wide variety of topics casts a wide net, but being a jack-of-all-trades on your blog is not the best way to build a loyal fan base.
Create a blog that is tightly focused around a topic that people are passionate about and they will keep coming back for more.
Promote Your Blog
At first, your blog will be bobbing about in a vast ocean of blogs. Simply put, it will be hard to spot, and you won’t have any traffic. Traffic will take time and a whole lot of promotion on your part.
First, fill your blog with great content. Fifty articles to start may sound like a lot, but it’s a good number to ensure you have enough material to keep visitors on your site and browsing (which Google loves).
Start a page on Facebook and link it to your blog. Connect every Facebook post to a post on your blog and then get traffic to your Facebook page. Get your Twitter account ablaze with activity and build your follower numbers.
Use curation websites like Mix.com and Flipboard.com to share your content. A lot of people see great success by linking their Pinterest accounts to their site, so get that going as well.
Create Your Income Streams
Most bloggers have more than one strategy implemented on their site to produce an income, but there are mainly two types: passive income and active income.
Passive Income Streams
Passive income is an income stream which you set up once, automate it, and then it continuously puts dollars in your bank account.
The money will keep coming in even if you decide to take a couple of weeks off from publishing.
Examples of passive income streams are selling digital products, training programs, premium memberships, and affiliate marketing.
Active Income Streams
Active income streams have parallels in the bricks-and-mortar working world. A person goes off to a job every day and gets paid at the end of the week.
If they stop going to work, then the income stops coming in. It’s the same with your blog’s active income streams. They are services you provide and get paid for, but you have to show up to do the work and get the check.
Providing a consulting service is an example of an active income stream. Many expert bloggers avail themselves to their public.
For a fee, they will spend quality one-on-one time with them (usually via FaceTime or Skype, etc.), such as developing business strategies or providing expert guidance on software such as PhotoShop.
Sponsored articles are another service you can provide on your blog where a sponsor pays you to write an article that promotes their products or services.
If you had a cooking blog, you might get asked to review a saucepan set or a new appliance in return for a fee.
Care needs to be taken in this area, so you don’t run afoul of FTC regulations.
You also need to be reasonably well established to receive sponsored offers, so don’t expect to be earning from these types of articles in your first couple of months blogging.
Don’t Give Up Your Day Job
You have the luxury of working on your blog whenever you have the time, but if you talk to any successful blogger, you will be told that it’s almost a second full-time job – at least in the beginning.
Remember, this is a temporary situation. After a couple of years of blood, sweat, and tears your blog will be earning a tidy income. Okay, that’s a slight exaggeration, but you will be challenged.
However, once you have those monthly income checks coming in, it’s nice to know that your hard work is paying off and that taking the time to learn how to write a blog for money is opening up many more options in life.