Are you thinking about ditching your 9-to-5 job and becoming a full-time blogger? It can be daunting, however, congratulations for making the decision!
As you probably have read all over the internet, nowadays it’s possible to pursue blogging full-time as a business. And since it’s a full-time job on your own, it’s important to acknowledge that you are committing to starting a small business. Whether you realise it or not – you’re an entrepreneur!
As such, it’s important to equip yourself with the knowledge and resources to pursue your new business.
6 Steps To Follow If You’re Thinking About Blogging Full-Time
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Step #1: Minimise your spending
Leaving your monthly paid job to go blogging full-time is difficult in the beginning, since you will, for sure, not be able generate any proper income in the first few months. If you’re extremely lucky, it will come after 3 – 6 months depending on your niche and how hard work you’ve done.
So, it’s smart to try to minimise your spending as much as possible. It can be anything from eating at home, moving to another place with cheaper rent, stop buying unnecessary clothes and items, etc.
Reduce your fixed costs (rent, bills, monthly repayments) as much as possible in these early months and years of full-time blogging.
It will grant you freedom to develop your business from a creative and authentic place.
Step #2: Invest in your blog
So let’s say you’ve saved some money from step 1 🙂 What to do with that money you’re saving on your overheads? You’re a business person now, meaning you need to invest!
Some of the best money I have ever spent on my blog has been:
- Going self-hosted with SiteGround (since 2016) and never look back.
- Equipment, including a new laptop and camera. All of which I bought over time as I saved up my money.
- Editing software including Photoshop and Lightroom, and annual payment for Canva.
- E-books and e-courses to educate myself about the whole blogging thing.
- Beautiful Genesis themes from 17th Avenue, Bluchic, Studio Mommy and so on, since I run several blogs and blog-related services so I need a lot of them.
- Licensed style stock photos, so I don’t have to bother searching for photos online and worry about copyright anymore.
It may feel like a sting to invest your money in your blog, but think of it exactly as it is: It’s an investment. You can expect a good return from it.
Step #3: Develop an editorial calendar & post consistently
Whether you post once a month, daily or a several times a week, try to maintain consistency with when you post.
Consistency helps your readers to know when to check in with you, fosters trust, and builds anticipation for your next article.
I know it’s easier said than done, especially in the beginning since you have one million and one things to care about. If you feel overwhelming, try these:
- Write down how often you want to post. For my travel blog, I always post on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday, meaning three times per week.
- Then times that number by the amount of weeks in a month. So for me, that’s blog posts per month that I need to plan, shoot (optional), write and publish.
- Try getting your ideas on paper ahead of time, so that you’re not stuck for what to write. This will also help you plan the photography stuff (if you have to), for example, if you’re running a fashion blog and have two posts featuring outfits, you can shoot these back to back.
Step #4: Education or inspiration
Every time your readers interact with you, they want to be getting value from your articles. It means either they want to learn something or feel something, or even both.
If your writings don’t be hitting the education or inspiration mark, consider reformulating them. Instead of writing an article on “My Lisbon Diary” you can try reframing your piece to read “5 Places You Have to Visit in Lisbon”.
By altering the title, immediately you’re alerting your audience to the value they can expect from interacting with your Lisbon article, rather than simply sharing your photo diary.
Step #6: Use social media (SoMe)
Love it or hate it, nowadays, you have to be on SoMe to really “exist”, especially if you’re running a business of yourself out from the blog. This will help you to develop invested followings on various platforms, and to cross-promote across them as well. So, be sure to share your latest content across each of your channels.
However, SoMe takes time, so allocate it. There are no two ways around it, you get out what you put in. If you want your Instagram to grow, you need to be on the app often, uploading and fostering a community. Just as you need to be writing newsletters/pinning/whatever it may be.
Social media is an extension of your brand, and nowadays it is also a secondary element of your brand which you can monetise.
Step #6: Know your worth
By this point, you will be well on your way to having a focused, beautifully-designed blog, which posts regular valuable content and has kick-ass social media channels to support it all!
In other words – you have a destination site! And a brand people want to work with.
Before you get tangled up in a myriad of questions about followers, numbers and metrics, let me be honest: Having built up a following is important. After all, if brands are paying you to promote them, they want to know that you’re reaching a certain number of people.
More so than ever, however, brands are looking to work with influencers who have an invested audience, meaning people that have people following them who will convert into paying customers, meaning you need an engaged community.
If you’re sticking to the key points above, you should be well on your way to cultivating a group of awesome followers, who are sharing your journey, because you’re developing valuable content to share with them. With this in mind, you absolutely can charge for your work!
If you’re curious about what to charge, this article is an informed one about what to charge for an Instagram post.
And remember to reassess your fees as your site and followings grow 😉