Just like bike riders love the long roads and the wind in their hair, financiers love tons of messy papers with confusing numbers, I love blogging: I love the sound my keyboard makes when I type faster than the thunder, I love the rush of ideas that sometimes I can’t keep up with and I even love those blocked moments when my brain puts a stop on itself, because what follows next is the best. And I’ve been wondering for a while whether it was possible to do what I love, blog, and make a living out of it.
And it turns out that you can actually do what you love and still eat at fancy restaurants from time to time and have a roof over your head. The conclusion I came to is the following: there are two roads you can take. The first one is that you can work as a freelance content writer. And the second one, which is usually the goal for every one of us bloggers, is to run your own blog.
Let’s be honest, becoming a well-paid blogger, or an influencer is not going to happen overnight. Yes, you might write something incredible or something very contradictory and get the attention of social media all to yourself for a day or two. But you still have to put all of your time, effort and sweat if you want to get somewhere special.
An Everyday Writer
And when I say everyday writer, I mean, EVERYDAY writer. Seriously, if you decide to be a freelance blogger for different companies and organizations you’re going to write every single day to make a decent living. You’re gonna have to write a lot of powerful, well linked, and properly formatted, not to mention, well-researched blogs. And the trick is to never run out of story ideas. I know, sounds easier than done.
But the truth is, it’s only the beginning that goes slowly by killing parts of yourself. After you’ve pitched to a couple of high-traffic sites and convinced them to become a regular writer for them, other clients will find you themselves.
A great tip? Read as much about marketing, branding, messaging, positioning, understanding a company’s target audience as possible, because that’s what’s going to make you a great blogger. Everyone can write pretty sentences. And almost everyone can do great research. But to be able to understand what your client needs to say and to say it in a way that their needed audience understands is a tricky thing to do. As soon as you reach that, you’ll grow the list of your stable blogging clients.
But the thing is, at the end of the day, doesn’t matter how great you write or how well you get paid for it, you’re still going to have to write a lot of content. So this is the everyday, working-class sort of way to earn from blogging. No worries, though. That’s what you love to do, right?
The Moonshot Way: a professional blogger
And then there comes the moonshot way of earning, the way that so many of us are dreaming of: creating your own blog. We know the path won’t be easy: a lot of thoughtful optimization, strategic marketing and more.
I know it takes some guts to create a blog, put all of your efforts towards making it shine: after all, you might starve for a while there. But here’s how you can do it.
The Website Part
Now, the first step and the one that you definitely can’t skip is creating a website.
Define your industry and what’s your blog going to be about, so you’ll have some clue who your target audience is. After you have all of that figured out, you can think about the design of your website.
As a writer, it’s pretty normal for you to be far away from understanding design, coding and everything else connected to it. And I’ll be honest with you: you probably don’t want to get into all of it. That’s why it’s better to turn to a website builder, like Ucraft, for creating a simple blog website: you can craft it yourself and you won’t spend too much.
And Everything Else that Follows
Make sure to think about your domain name before foolishly choosing something that doesn’t make sense or is hard to pronounce or even spell. Remember that you’ll want to be as easy and reachable as possible. So if I hear from a friend about your blog and how awesome your articles are, I should be able to go home and type the domain name and find your website. Get me?
Images, I almost forgot about them. You got to have engaging images in your blog posts. Otherwise, it’s a bunch of text your readers will sleep during reading.
Those catchy headlines
As a blogger, I’m sure you already know that you’re headlines have got to be catchy and kind of intriguing. If you’re looking for tools here’s what I use: Coschedule Headline Analyzer, since it tells me how well my headline ranks (sometimes something that sounds perfect in your head might not be even a little good in others’) and Portent Headline Generator (it generates crazy ones but helps think outside the box.)
Very important for a website. Your Domain Rank and URL Rank have to stand out in order for you be something of value. Google will think of your website as a good one only if you be smart about your link building. Just read about it.
Your SEO! Thought about that?
Oh, and another important thing for you would be doing outreach: making connections, making friends with your industry influencers will pay off, promise.
And of course, don’t forget about social media: that’s where you’ll promote your website the most and that’s where it will not cost a penny, or at least it won’t cost a lot. Find out where your readers hang out the most, I don’t mean physical places, like cafes or pubs but social media channels. Then promote your website there.
Well, that’s it. So which path are you going to choose?
About the Author: Kristina Poghosyan has been into blog writing for a couple of years now. She has produced dozens of blog posts on various subjects in many platforms. An enthusiast, optimist, all-rounder, and a fan of skyscape and the universe.
How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.