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In common with many full-time writers, I love to blog. Blogging is not only a great marketing tool for your business, if you’re a writer, it also happens to be an excellent way of flexing your writing muscles. I like to think of it as a busman’s holiday. A refreshing change to the normal run of the mill projects that I have on the go.
Of course, it’s all very well blogging for pleasure. The question is can you make money from it?
The short answer is yes you can. But you need to know how, and as with any new venture, it is important to be realistic about what you can achieve.
Variety – the spice of life
You’ll likely have read numerous articles on the many ways in which you can get paid to blog:
- Your own blog: through advertising, sponsored articles, sponsored links and Google Adsense. In general, this is reliant upon you demonstrating that you have considerable traffic to your site.
- Content mills: which I’m against. Their main goal is to generate advertising revenue by attracting page views through cheap and often, badly written copy.
- Freelance websites: It pays to do some research beforehand. Have a quick browse through some of the jobs posted. If the fees appear too low, steer clear. There are, however, reputable sites out there which pay well.
With the exclusion of content mills, my advice would be to use a combination of these methods, if you have time to do so in between client projects. In fact, many of us as writers work hard on receiving multiple streams of income in this way, even if small and steady.
Connecting bloggers and brands
As brands continue to invest in smarter content marketing, there are a number of reputable agencies out there that have carved a niche by providing brands with a ghost blogging service. Note, this is slightly different to blogging outreach campaigns, where brands post a campaign, typically a review of one of their products, for bloggers to write up on in exchange for a free gift.
One service I stumbled across recently is Hire Bloggers a platform which matches talented writers and bloggers, with brands and clients looking to hire someone to blog for them.
Sign up with this platform and you’ll be assigned a paid project to work on for one of their clients, advertisers or sponsors. The client will either specify a specific theme with relevant key words, or you will be given a broad idea and its then up to you to create the article.
They currently have two scenarios you can choose from. You can either blog on the client’s site to provide the client with content, or if you have your own blog relevant to the client’s sector, you can post the article on your own site to give the client exposure.
If your blog is well laid out, targeted to a specific niche with great content and as a bonus, you’re well connected to social networks, you can see what a lucrative opportunity this presents.
Small Business Blogging
Of course, many small business owners – particularly growing businesses – are busy with the job of actually running their business. Once again, this is good news for bloggers. If you have a small business expertise, one of your Hire Blogger clients could be paying you to blog about it on their behalf.
How much can you earn?
A common complaint among writers is that content mills and in, some cases, freelance bidding sites, are pushing prices down for freelancers. Frankly, the only way around this is to steer clear of the ones that are not prepared to pay well.
Hire Blogger’s sign up form prompts you to enter in your expected rate per 300 words. For bloggers they haven’t worked with before, payment is upon receipt of the work. For bloggers they have worked with before, they’ll pay a deposit of between 30% to 50% upfront via Paypal, and the balance on completion.
I have to say that Hire Blogger looks to be a promising site and I look forward to seeing how it progresses.
In the meantime, I think it’s important to emphasise that while you can make money from blogging, as indeed I do, you need to be realistic.
- Your income from blogging is likely to gradually increase over time. Be persistent with it. It’s not a fast route to riches. But if you’re serious about blogging and you have a topic that you love to write about, it shouldn’t be too difficult to keep the momentum going.
- If you’re thinking about blogging full-time, focus on maintaining your own blog with great content. It is simply NOT true that you need millions of hits per month before you can start making money from your blog. A site that is engaging and shows true marketing potential is far more attractive a proposition to clients looking for exposure for their own products and services, than a site which appears to have 10,000 Twitter followers hooked up to it but which has poor content.
- If you’re a writer, do keep up your marketing efforts and have a variety of projects that you can comfortably manage on the go. Not only will you keep your skill honed, you’ll have multiple income streams in between regular client work.
What other tips would you add? How have your own blogging efforts fared?
To sign up to Hire Bloggers, visit their website at http://www.hirebloggers.co.uk/apply/