One of the presentations that I made a point to attend while at BlogWorld Expo 2010 was “Treating Your Blog Like a Business” with David Risley, Lisa Morosky, and Nathan Hangen (and moderated by Jordan Cooper). This topic is especially important in my opinion and where a lot of bloggers seem to fall short. You can blog and blog and blog until your fingers are bloody little stubs and not see a dime from it. If your business model is “blog as much as possible,” you’re not going to be able to afford groceries. Why? Because you’re running a blog, not a business.
“You can’t feed yourself on comments and retweets.” – Nathan Hangen
As these four made abundantly clear at their panel, step one of making more money from you blog is to stop blogging.
Ok, so I’m not suggesting that you never write another post – I don’t think that’s what they meant. However, have you ever noticed that the most successful bloggers don’t post more than once or twice a week? Sure, some have built empires on frequent updating, but I think it’s been more than proven that you don’t need to blog your butt off to have an audience. It’s about quality over quantity.
You need to get away from blogging as a business model and instead think of your blog as just a part of the package. If you blog, you can build a community, but if you have no call to action, does it really matter? Not if you’re trying to pay your rent this way.
So what’s your call to action?
- Support my sponsors
- Buy my product
- Join my private membership community
- Buy stuff through my affiliate links
- Sign up for my mailing list
Or maybe a combination of the above…or something else entirely. The point is this: if your blog is just a blog, not a marketing tool, I’m not sure how you expect to make money. Great, free content is just the first step to making this a viable business. There’s nothing wrong with blogging for the love of writing, blogging to get your ideas heard, etc…but if you want to make money with your blog, realize there’s a lot you need to do beyond writing great posts to make that possible.
Thanks to Jordan, Nathan, Lisa, and David for a great BlogWorld session!