Making the Leap to Full-Time Blogger

Credit –

When it comes to the topic of blogging full-time, there are two types of people. Those that say, “well that’s not a real job,” can’t understand how anyone can make a living blogging, and imagine bloggers getting free stuff, sitting watching TV all day and claiming unemployment benefits. And those that work hard on their blogs put a lot of time, effort and money into their sites and want to make a go of things. These people know that blogging can be a full-time job and a successful career. They also know that the first type are just jealous because they probably hate their own jobs.

If you are already blogging, you’ll know that it’s not just as simple as quitting work, going full time and watching the money come rolling in. There’s an awful lot more to it than that. In fact, if you’ve been blogging for a while, putting everything in, slowly watching your readership grow and seeing your social media following rise painfully slowly, earning barely anything and only getting the occasional offer to review a product that’s not remotely relevant to what you do, you might think that it’ll never happen for you.

But, sometimes you just need to take that leap. To be able to earn a full-time income from your blog, you need to be able to give it full-time hours and commitment. For a while, you may have to fit these hours around earning money elsewhere, and there may be a time where you are giving it full-time hours but not pulling in the full-time money. But, it’s important to remember that you are effectively starting your own business and that this always takes time to develop. Many new companies struggle to make a profit in the first few months or even years. Don’t be discouraged. Take a look at what you need to do to make your leap to full-time blogger successfully.

Credit –

Get Saving

It’s probably best that you don’t rush out and quit your job as soon as you start thinking about becoming a professional blogger. Especially not if you’ve got a family to support. Instead, start increasing the amount of time you are working on your blog, while still earning from employment, or as a freelancer online. Save what you can to make sure you’ve got something to fall back on if things don’t entirely go to plan.

Work Out How Much You Need to Earn

Ideally, this is the amount you want to be earning from your blog before you quit your job. But, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the same amount as your salary. Sit down and carefully make a household budget. Make some cutbacks, cancel some subscriptions and reduce some contracts. Leave a little in the budget for luxuries and emergencies but work out what you actually need to earn to give up work. You might need to commit to a few tight months where you barely make that amount, but remember, it’s the minimum that you need to earn. You can always start building on it straight away.

Make a Commitment

Set yourself a deadline. Write it down. This could be “within 12 months I want my blog to be making my minimum earning, and I will quit my job!”. Tell your audience, share your goal on social media (perhaps not the figure!) and keep it written down where you can see it. Most people never make it as a full-time blogger because they never actually make the leap. At some point, when your blog is earning consistently, you just need to stop making excuses and do it.

Spend Some Money

You’ve probably heard the phrase “you need to spend money to make money.” This is definitely true when it comes to blogging. But, you don’t just need to rush out and spend money on everything you see that claims to help. You certainly don’t want to buy followers and likes. Nor do you need to.

When you are just starting to make money, and you are still earning elsewhere, your blog earnings are extra income. So, put some of them back into your business. When it comes to blogging (and most other things in life), you either pay with your time, or you pay with your money. You could spend hours scheduling your social media posts or pinning to your Pinterest boards. It’s certainly worth it and will help you to grow your audience and get more traffic. But, you could also choose to pay with your money by using a scheduler. You certainly don’t need to spend a fortune but think about the things that take time that you don’t have, or the things that you’re not very good at, perhaps logo design, and spend your money wisely.

Change Your Mindset

Many bloggers that do make a decent living still think of themselves as stay at home parents or hobby bloggers. They fail to see it as a career. If you want to go full-time, change your mindset first. If this is going to be your job, treat it like one. Tell people what you do, be proud of what you are doing and hold your head up. 20 years ago, blogging wasn’t a profession that existed, now it is.

Register as Self-Employed

If you plan to make money from your blog, you need to register as a self-employed sole trader and start tracking any income and expenses ready to file your tax return. You should do this as soon as you start earning money, even if it’s still just a hobby.

Check Your SEO

Credit –

SEO is vital. Without it, you are relying on traffic from social media and chance visits. Social media is great. It’s a wonderful way to build a loyal audience by developing relationships, and it’s much more useful than just being a place to share links. But, it takes a lot of work and can eat into your time. To get views from social media you need to be continually promoting, and your newer content will always be more popular.

If you want people to keep coming back, to come to your site for something they have specifically searched for and to keep finding your older posts, you need to spend some time working on your SEO. Once upon a time, search engine optimisation was basically a case of using the same keyword as often as you could in a post. Now, search engines have grown and evolved. They are much smarter, and they are looking for much more than keyword stuffing. Use this Step by step SEO checklist to make sure you are getting it right and spend some time improving your older content.

Be Professional

If you want your blog to be a money-making business that people take seriously, you need to be professional when it matters. Sure, it’s okay to be informal and chatty, you are a blogger, after all, your personality is a big part of what you do and why people enjoy your site. But, when speaking to brands and PR representatives about work, you should remain professional in your correspondence. You should also remember that your social media feeds are public, and brands and clients will be looking at them, so try not to swear.

Create a Brand

One of the most significant differences between newer and experienced bloggers is branding. If you want your blog to become a business, it needs to be a brand. But, you also need to remember that the key to this brand is you. You are your business, and you are your brand.

So, your branding should show off who you are. Think of a colour scheme that reflects the

tone of your writing and content. If it’s fun and quirky, go for bright and bold colours. Same with fonts. They should be clear and easy to read but reflect the tone you are trying to set.

You need a brand name, a logo, a colour scheme, a tagline, and fonts. You should use these everywhere. On your blog itself, on your social media profiles, your email header and signature, your business cards and anything else that you can think of.

Learn to Take Rejection

When we start out as bloggers, we often think that we’ll write a few posts and have hundreds of views within minutes. We think the offers will come flooding in and that everyone will know our name. After a few weeks, it often becomes clear that this isn’t the case, and if you’ve ever looked back over those cringe-worthy first posts it’s perhaps easy to see why.

But, in truth, it’s never that easy. Going pro isn’t going to be easy. You’ll have weeks when your stats are down. You’ll have posts that you pour your heart into, and no-one reads, and you’ll have plenty of rejection. It’s crucial that you go into this with your eyes open and your expectations in check. Learn from the rejections and disappointments and leave them behind and you’ll be fine.

Get into a Routine

One of the hardest things about blogging full-time can be actually doing it. If you’ve always been an employee, you’ll be used to working when you have to. Suddenly being able to work when you want to can be a shock to the system. Develop a working routine and stick to it as much as you can to keep you productive and protect your work-life balance.


Leave a Reply