“I can’t think of things to write, so that’s why I haven’t been blogging.”
“I’m busy. Just busy. So my blog doesn’t get taken care of.”
Have you ever said these things about your blogging life? I know I have — and my business revolves around this medium!
But here’s a simple truth about this kind of platform: You will never grow your blog into a business if you don’t treat it like one.
When you take blogging seriously, you’ll understand that being a blogger is so much more than just creating blog posts.
That’s right. Look around you and see the bloggers who are using their blogs as a business platform. They are doing so much more than just writing a blog post a day, and posting a sponsored Instagram post. I know what I am talking about, because in the six years I’ve been blogging in public (because I’ve had blogs since 2001), I have done sponsored posts, offered advertising on my blog and social media channels, been a brand ambassador, and now, I offer one-on-one blog coaching and consultations.
All these services became possible because I had built a brand through my blog. Building a brand is about building your authority and expertise, about earning your readers’ trust and loyalty.
Recently, I told you that I am killing the blog — or rather, the way I have been using this blog. Why did I do it? Because I have realized one important thing:
My blog is not the end goal. I don’t want to be known just as a blogger.
I know that blogging isn’t a “be all” for me. It’s just the beginning of many possibilities, one of which being business.
I’ve said throughout the years, this one phrase in all my blog workshops:
My blog is the storefront for my skills and services.
I said this about Dainty Mom, and I still say it about Make it Blissful. In other words, I understand that my blog is more than just a platform for other businesses to book so that I can talk about their business. By utilizing the blog and creating a brand around it, I have done two things these last six years:
(1) I have established a readership (or following) for my brand, and
(2) I have created opportunities to make money from the skills I’ve learned as a blogger and social media user.
About three years ago, I knew that the sponsored post business model would not be sustainable for me. I tried to make it work, and you know this if you’ve read about my struggles as a lifestyle blogger. I’ve tried to marry the “inspiring blogger” brand with the lifestyle blog brand, and it’s just not ‘me’ at all. I’ve been ridiculed and hated on for it, too, and I don’t blame those people. Why? Because I knew — just as they did — that I wasn’t being true to myself as a blogger.
I’m not a good brand ambassador, because I struggle with being advertorial. I can do it, yes, but it’s not my core strength.
I’m not an ideal lifestyle blogger, because the pace of lifestyle blogging isn’t a pace I enjoy or thrive in.
What am I good at as a blogger?
Well, I’ve been told I’m a decent writer, a consistent content creator and content marketer, and a good mentor. So why not leverage my blogging towards these strengths, right?
And I have. It’s why this blog is still here!
If you want to start your own business; if you want to build a blog that lasts; if you want to grow your income, then you need to think about more than your blog, more than featuring products, events and services, more than sponsored posts. You need to find your purpose for the blog, nurture a following around it by having a great message that people want to listen to and eventually offer a service or product of your very own, not another brand’s. I started a service blog coaching. It’s the product of my brand. By offering a service, I keep drawing people in to my blog, not away from it.
Instead of spending my time writing and taking photos and doing features for another business, I’ve decided to invest same amount of time in creating blog posts that build up my position on personal branding. I write blog posts that have to do with blogging as a craft, and then I offer workshops, one-on-one coaching, copywriting, speaking and teaching engagements.
For me, running my blog like a business is not about blogging every day, and being on social media to complement my blog posts and doing sponsored posts. It’s about using the blog as a way to create a community, a platform, a “storefront” for my services, a launchpad for businesses beyond the blog.
Remember: Your blog can be the launchpad of your business, so make your blog a solid foundation! Take care of it; own your brand and keep it respectable; have a clear message that seeks to help your readers; make your blog a pleasure for your readers to visit by taking care of how it looks and works.
Most of all, give it the time it deserves. Commit to post regularly, at least once a week as a practice. Your desire to grow your blog into a business should give you the motivation to write regularly and put out great content!
How are you using your blog? Have you ever thought about it? Did anything in this post strike up a question you’d like to ask in the comments below? Let’s talk!