I love blogging and have even had a go at vlogging – something I want to work harder at. Either way blogging (the focus of this post) can be a highly enjoyable hobby, perhaps even so far that it could become a career path. Actually, blogging is a career path. Many companies hire bloggers on a full-time basis to create content in relation to their brand and consumer base.
In my personal point of view, aside from the multi-author blogs like techcrunch, HuffPost and other news sites, blogging gives you the freedom to create your own content. It allows me to utilize my voice, my own ideas, and allows one to distinguish yourself in a specific field.
Now coming back to my earlier point around blogging being a career path, aside from actually being hired to write for companies’ blogs, if your successful with your own blog it too can be highly lucrative. I don’t want to create an illusion here of rags to riches, but as with all things in life, a little bit of hard work and it just might pay off.
I came across an interesting article, a bit outdated and I have not done any further research however according to an infographic published by WPVirtuso, the internet is home to more than 152 million blogs. This was 2013. It also states a new blog is created every half second. I finally got my geek brother to start his!
Lets do the math.
If a blog is created every half second, that would mean that we would need to calculate 365 times 24 times 60 times 60, no? That gives us 31,536,000 seconds per year. That number we multiply by two as a blog is created every half a second which equates to 63,072,000 million blogs created per year. Times that number by roughly 3 since that post on WPvirtuso is from 2013 and we are in 2016 – this would mean that since then 189,216,000 million blogs have been created since that post. Include the original number of 152 million and in theory (hypothetically) we can say that over 341,216,000 million blogs exist on the internet today.
They may not all be top blogs or very active. Some may be blogs just for family and friends, others may be on niche topics while others just want to post random collections of findings.
Either way, in my personal point of view, its a great hobby/career regardless of what your intention is.
This is also very true for businesses. Business who blog regularly show their consumers that they want to provide valid information on their specific industry relevant to their consumers. Statistics have shown that those business that blog more than 20 times per month are more likely to increase traffic than blogs on company sites that blog fewer than four times per month! That’s serious business. Imagine all the leads you could generate which would equate to sales and revenue.
You need to read my content
Again, the math may sound obnoxious and most businesses today still don’t do a very good job at branding their blogs and harnessing the power of blogging’s marketing capabilities, but lets stay realistic here. Achieving lucrative numbers takes a lot of hard work, requires determination and tenacity to stick with it. Something I have been learning over the years.
Whatever the reason for you to start a blog take into account that you’ll need to deal with opposing views, you may face a lack of creativity or writer’s block. There will be folks that just dont like your content and will give you negative feedback at best. Also consider that your giving away personal information. Example: See my post on our Easter Weekend – you’ll find personal photos and I share a bit about what we did. The post is meant more for family and friends than anyone else but as soon as I publish it on the internet – its out there.
As much as Id love to convince you to start a blog, here are a few things to thing about (at least what I’ve been pondering when looking at my own):
There are thousands of blogs being created every day. If you’ve read until here than you’d know that from our math above. While blogging to me isn’t about competition, it often is. Depending on who your audience is, your vying against numerous other competitive blogs for exposure, for any type of traffic, for any eye balls willing to read and look at your content. This can be extremely difficult. Attracting traffic to any website regardless of blog or not is often a difficult task.
Unless you are blogging for fun, creating a source of income through blogging takes a lot of hard work and will require a lot of time investment before it begins paying off. Here’s an example: Mark’s Daily Apple is a site/blog that revolves around the topic of primal living – health, nutrition and so forth in our modern world. The blog was started by Mark Sisson in 2006 and it wasn’t until 8 years later that it started becoming a household name for folks living the paleo/primal lifestyle. That is a lot of diligence on the part of Mark. However, his diligence and perseverance have now created a business around what initially started as a blog.
With that being said, consider the purpose of your blog. Mine is to dispense my thoughts and ideas around a variety of topics from Leadership to technology and give folks a small glimpse into my personal life. Im not aiming at a specific niche. Take into account the mental energy required to get a blog going as well as the physical work that goes into it.
Here’s an example of a vlog:
From purpose to actual why?
This may sound similar to the above, but consider this – why are you starting your blog in the first place? Are you wanting to make money, provide free advice, showcase your writing ability, tell stories, make a political statement, establish yourself as an expert or something else? Whatever the reason the reason should be one that your passionate about. If you are not passionate about it, it will dwindle away and like many other blogs and plants that are not nurtured, it’ll just whither away.
Great for business
If you are a business owner than you need to be blogging, period. As I previously mentioned many businesses still don’t do this. I come across websites time and again where I’m surprised that a business like “this” wouldn’t blog. Blogging is great for business. It drives traffic to your site, attracts more customers, is critical in retaining clients, can lead to leads and sales which results in revenue and increases your bottom line.
Blogging is also an important part of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy. Search engines like Google love blogs. Keep an updated blog for your business will help search engine find you quicker which again leads to higher search engine rankings and more website traffic.
Give that a thought.
You don’t need to be a writer
Many people assume you need to be a born writer like Shakespear or John Grisham to write. Completely false assumption. Just because you can write well, in other words utilize conventional spelling and grammar doesn’t mean you’ll automatically have a successful blog. The other way is valid as well – just because you may think your not a good writer doesn’t mean you wont be a good blogger.
To me a blogger is the following: creative, funny, clever, motivated, insightful, innovative, forward-thinking, self-motivated, positive, willing to make mistakes and learn, passionate.
These to me are the adjectives that make up a very generic group of people, no? The same goes for both you and I. I’m not a fantastic writer, never was. I just love writing. Its a way for me to vent certain topics while sharing on others.
Blogging is free (almost)
Blogging is a great hobby and depending on how you want to do it, doesn’t need to cost you a cent! Thats right. Unlike other hobbies, it can be free. Utilize great platforms like wordpress.com or blogger to start a free blog. Yes, those platforms may be limited to what you initially picture your blog to be, but its a great way to improve your writing and communication skills, gives you an outlet to express yourself and allow you to stay in tough with folks on your life and happenings. And if you have a lot of free time a great way to be productive.
Now if you want to up it up a notch, and be semi or fully professional in terms of website address and design (like this site), than you’ll need to purchase your own domain name which often can be as low as a few Euros and utilize a hosting partner. I’d be more than glad to help you out here, just drop me a line.
This brings me down to my last point, which will be a different post altogether around “How to start a blog”. That being said, keep in mind that maintaining your enthusiasm as your blog grows and develops can be hard. Before you start blogging make sure its a hobby or eventual profession you want to carry out.
What are your thoughts on the topic? Have you/do you blog? About?
Any tips or things you want to add to my statements above? Utilize the comments below!