How You Can Make a Career Out of Blogging

This post was guest blogged by Jim from TheNetFool.com.

Do you have a passion for writing? Do you have lots of spare time on your hands? Whether you are a student, stay-at-home mom, fully employed, part-time or completely unemployed, you will certainly be able to put your personality, ideas and free time to good use… all thanks to the wonderful world of blogging!

While a lot of people have made use of this online phenomenon to rant about their lives or talk about the little things that happened in their day, there are actually people – lots of them – who have been making use of blogging as more of a marketing tool rather than just a way to express themselves. Do you want to find out how you can get in on this cash-earning trend? Here are tips to get you started:

Tip #1: Know Your Passion and Use It!

If you are an avid follower of fashion trends, then the best kind of blog that you can come up with is of course, a fashion blog. When you are going to start a blog, one that you will also be using for work, make sure that you will be able to churn out witty write-ups that will give people the impression that you are highly knowledgeable about the subject (even if this isn’t entirely true). Of course, there would be similar blogs up your alley… but if people will see that you really know your stuff through your creative use of words, then you surely would not have a hard time convincing them that your blog is the one which they should keep coming back to.

Tip #2: Keep Things Fresh

Once you are able to establish a niche market for your blog, the next thing that you should definitely do is to make sure that you will be able to keep your audience’s interest. While you may be good at writing and you are very knowledgeable about the topics that you are discussing in your blog, you should still find a way to keep things fun, exciting, and new. Be mindful that there are a lot of different blogs out there fighting for attention; make sure that you always stay ahead of the pack. I write as the “Net Fool” to keep things a bit off the wall… while John Chow here writes more from a professional and authoritative position. At any rate, once you have a steady flow of traffic coming in to your blog, that is when the money will start rolling in.

Tip#3: Know The Two Kinds of Blogs

There are actually two kinds of professional blogs out there. Early on in your blogging career, you need to establish which one your blog going to be. First up are the bloggers who are being paid to blog. This is probably best suited for people who are just good at writing, those who have the skill but do not really have any intention of making a career out of it. Bloggers who are being paid to write usually have a set of topics that their clients will pay them to write about. One need not be passionate about it, the important thing is to just do it. The second kind of professional blogger are those who start a blog hoping to attract clients to advertise on their blog – for a fee of course. This kind of blog is fueled more on how passionate the writer is about the topics she is writing about. Of course, when one is passionate about something, it just follows that he or she will also be working hard to maintain it and be good at it.

Tip#4: Think of Innovative Money Making Extras

Aside from being paid to blog, another great way to make your blog earn more money is by putting advertisements or affiliate offers on your site. While there are clients who will pay good money just to have their advertisements on a popular site, there are also those commission-based web advertisements where you will get paid depending on how many people click on the ads from your blog.

Tip#5: Offer Special Services

Direct this to clients, be confident about your work and surely more people will get enticed into hiring you for possible blogging jobs. Put your e-mail on your blog just in case there are people who will be interested to ask you to write for them in your blog, it depends on you on how much you want to charge them of course. Keep your network strong and your viewers will stay with you. You can use your network as leverage farther down the road to tap into even more profits as a blogger!


71 thoughts on “How You Can Make a Career Out of Blogging”

  1. LotusJump says:

    I think the hardest part is keeping it fresh – most people can spend 3 weeks blogging daily and then claim to have nothing new to write about.

    The best tactic I’ve found is to stay active in your community and follow some community trends. Then inspiration will hit and you will occasionally do something new that will inspire other people.

    1. I agree and that is why they say a successful blogger is someone that is up to date with new innovations. Every new topic that hits the media and is a big hit is a chance to write a successful blog story on. At least that is my take.

      1. FixThePig says:

        I think that the biggest key to keeping your blog current with content is to find something that you are passionate about. It could be a sport, it could be pets, or in my case it’s money, finance, and fixing what’s broke in America.

        1. You mean there is something broke in America? 🙂

      2. Ryan McLean says:

        Yea, keeping it fresh can be hard sometimes, especially in the MMO market. But thats what makes the big MMO blogs fun to read, they are fresh and different. Each person has a different personality, use it.

        1. Caleb says:

          Each personality makes things fresh. It’s sort of like from Pennies For Your Thoughts:

          “This explains why once you learn how to sell -which involves thinking- or the psychological art of selling you’ll be able to sell anything. It’s not the particular product or service,it’s the thoughts of the seller of those particular products and services that matters most. This is why when different people sell the same stuff certain sellers will always make more pennies than the rest…the difference among them resides in their different thinking styles.”

    2. Kok Choon says:

      Keeping fresh is the heart of blog, if you are busy, just post something, a reference to some other blog post or an interesting link will do.

    3. Writing Jobs says:

      I wanted to get a blog so that I could do paid to post in order to make money. Think about it, if you can crank out at least 10 reviews a day (which is not much) you can make at least $100-$300 a day. To me, this is how you really make your money blogging rather than with affiliate programs. I have been having a hard time finding legit and trustworthy affiliate programs that are registered with the BBB and don’t have a high amount of complaints. That is why I’m going to buy a domain name for my blog and just use programs like payperpost,etc.

    4. Writing Jobs says:

      The way to overcome this problem is to find things to write about rather than want you ate for dinner or what your favorite snack is. The best bloggers blog about news and new innovative ways to make money online. 😉

  2. judge says:

    Good tips but regurgitated on a million blogs a million times before.
    Something new please…

  3. Yes I agree and I run three different websites and now have started a blog which I think will be another part that will generate me income. I love the advice. I am very passionate and hope that my blogging career is a success like yours.

    OOBR
    http://www.officialonlinebusinessreviews.com/

  4. Michael Kwan says:

    As a freelance writer, I resent the third tip. Just because I am paid to post on someone else’s professional blog does not mean that I am “usually” not passionate about the topic. I happen to be quite passionate about mobile technology and that’s why I choose to (get paid to) write about it.

    Realistically, the bigger reason why people do this is so that they can focus solely on the writing and not worry about marketing, advertising, and all the other things that go along with running a successful blog.

    1. FixThePig says:

      Great point Michael; it boils back to the fundamental key to being successful. Find something you love and have passion, the rest will take care of itself. (Granted you might need a little coaching and help along the way)

    2. Kok Choon says:

      You are right Michael, as a writer you must have some passion on the topic or your work will not be good, and the readers know that.

      1. I agree, passion is key, without it the blog will be dead quickly, and ideas will be hard to find because it is not a topic of interest for the blogger. I also think it is not good to pick too narrow of a niche for blogging, a broader subject will allow for lots more posts.

  5. Andy says:

    I think keeping it fresh in one of the hardest things if you have been blogging for a while. That is when you need to get creative with some of your posts.

    Andy

  6. I’m not paid to blog and blogging isn’t where I want to make my cash BUT it sure provides a great platform to introduce people to your network doesn’t it ?

    If you’re passionate enough about writing the money will come almost on it’s own in time. I enjoy coding more than blogging, learning new things more than teaching them and seeing new ideas through to their (sometimes amazing, many times disasterous) ends.

    Put a disclaimer on that post, blogging is all powerful but NOT for the weak of heart and definitely not for the lazy!! great post.

  7. Very true that it takes more effort than ever before when trying to keep a constant flow of fresh information. It seems that everything has been done before and gets increasingly tougher to be creative, but you have to be able to look at things from a different angle and go from there…

    We all have something that no one else does – our own perspective, so really delve into the uniqueness that we each bring to the table.

  8. Josten says:

    i must say im tired of reading the same topic’s on certain blogging topics over and over
    The last one you post with the guy from wine library tv was the only one i enjoyed it meant something to me it was so good i blogged about it on my blog

    1. John says:

      I agree Josten. How many times can the same thing be blogged by hundreds of bloggers before it gets old?

      Doesn’t take too long I guess, although I can understand why Jim would want to do a guest post on this blog, so for that, it’s worth it.

      1. The Net Fool says:

        Hey man, don’t hate the player, hate the game, eh? You’ll fine 100% non-regurgitated information on my actual blog. The point of a guest post is to get exposure and little more. If I have to regurgitate information to get it listed… then I’m more than happy to do it. I understand the confusion, but in all it’s a fantastic learning post if you aren’t as experienced as other readers and I think it definitely serves its point. Feel free to contact me and talk a bit more about making money online, eh? 🙂

        1. John says:

          Good points 🙂 At least you interact with readers 🙂

  9. Douglas Karr says:

    Some folks might think you’re blowing smoke, but you’re dead on! I built up my authority over the last few years with the success of my own blog. Now I’m the VP of Blogging Evangelism with Compendium Blogware.

  10. AverageGal says:

    It’s good to review the basics, even if it does get repetitive at times!
    Thanks!

  11. Brandon says:

    I’m purposely not making a career out of blogging – it’s just a side thing, so i have a blog as my “playground” and I also offer blog-copywriting on certain subjects. It may be good to have both in place since one feeds the other. What I discover working on my own blog expands what I can offer clients, and visa versa.

  12. Charles Peng says:

    Well, it’s hard in China. We have a very low payment on Google Adsense.

    1. Kok Choon says:

      m…China online sales doesn’t seems good, hopefully will improve in few years time. The law and regulation to control online fraud still not complete, very hard to make money online for Chinese market…

  13. Keeping your content fresh isn’t really all that hard depending on the kind of blog you have.

  14. supergeek says:

    That’s all interesting, but you are forgetting that most people have to start somehow, and starting with content blog this days is a hell of a business :/

  15. BloggerTests says:

    If you’re passionate about the things you write and you have certain level of expertise in the field, there shouldn’t be problems with ideas for posts. With every new post idea you’re “opening a whole new can of worms” – it never stops

    The problem, in my opinion, is when people pick a niche that they think is hot, instead of the one they’re passionate about.

    Just my two cents

    dan

  16. It’s been hard for me because I am passionate about so many things. It’s hard to write a blog based around politics, martial arts, video games, and all of the dumb funny stuff that has happened to me. Finally, I just accepted that my blog is varied, and to market my persona through my writing, rather than trying to be a promotional writer. As John Chow said, don’t have a niche.

  17. Keral Patel says:

    If you have a blog that is about the topic you are crazy about 🙂 then there is no scarcity of unique content.

  18. Travelinator says:

    blah blah blah, read this post in many versions for years.

    zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Blogs are the worst way to try and make money for 99.9 % who try.

    1. Kok Choon says:

      Wonder why you still post comment here…?

      1. Keral Patel says:

        LOL 😉 Nice catch.

    2. That couldn’t be any further from the truth, but I’m not surprised to see a comment like this coming from someone like you.

    3. CoolProducts says:

      You did take the time to comment on a blog entry that is the “same post in a different version”, so it is still getting out there and being effective regardless. Good job on the tips OP, I’m kind of new at this and even if you have talked about these tips in previous posts, it is nice not having to go searching through the archives to get some great tips on blogging.

  19. Mike Huang says:

    It really isn’t easy to make a career out of blogging now…especially when everyone is writing about the same thing. It’s like saying “you snooze, you lose”.

    -Mike

    1. I think that depends on the content you come up with. There’s still plenty of things people haven’t touched yet.

  20. Ben Pei says:

    Some nice guide lines there..Everyone wants to make a career out of blogging but not many made it I believe..

    1. phobos says:

      yeah, suer, but after all, isn’t it all so much self-evident?

      1. The Net Fool says:

        Maybe you are just smarter than the average bear 🙂

        1. Ben Pei says:

          Lol.. well said The Net Fool!

    2. phobos says:

      yeah, sure, but after all, isn’t it all so much self-evident?

  21. TeRaBai says:

    well, its kinda hard for new bloggers though especially when looking for advertiser on their blog. Apart from that, SEO technique had to be learn. But paid post are much easier though.

  22. Here he should be an good content writer too.

  23. Know Your Passion and Use It! Yes! A lot of blogs are nothing but a rehash of the same old stuff. Gotta be passionate about what you do.

  24. MLRebecca says:

    Great tips, Jim. Not enough can be sad for being a professional blogger. Anyone who really focuses on great content, and builds a community has their opportunity to be a writer! I enjoyed reading this because I know you are someone who is personally making this happen. Thanks for posting!

    1. Travelinator says:

      Passion goes a long way in anything you do in life but when the almighty search engines keep you buried like a needle in the haystack your passion gets crushed.

      I bet some of the best blogs out there will never get read because the authors spent all their time on their passion and not the black hat shenanigans that get allot of crappy blogs on the web into the lime light.

  25. Well, the best part of a successful blogger is that – he would be able to provide fresh content on a daily basis. Also, he would be having some sort of inborn talent in writing by which he attracts readers – so that they come again and again at his blogs.

    And i don’t think its that difficult to become a pro blogger – or a successful blogger – Here is my tips :- Start a blog on a topic that is related to your profession – and if you are a student then it is better to write about your favorite hobbies or interests like programming, designing , or even blogging – this way what are actually doing is – you are actually writing things in your blog about things that you did each day – like if you are a student who is brilliant at programming and suppose if you had a chance to learn a new programming language – then you may describe about it in your own words (that the best part – rather than copy pasting ) – and most probably you would be getting good ranks in search engines as well …. And search engine considers Unique content – and things that happens in our life are mostly unique to us right ?

  26. BusinessX says:

    I agree that this post has been said before but much of it needs to be said again and again. I am particularly a fan of tip #2- keeping it fresh. How many blogs have died within two months? Maybe after people ran out of tip #1- passion.

    John Chow has spoken often about staying consistent, and I take it as gospel when he says he does not know anyone who is not successful after staying consistent over a year.

  27. I guess it is time to add a forum to your blog John

  28. David says:

    If youre gonna make a numbered post might aswell title it “x ways to make a career out of blogging”, those kinda titles are more catchy, but im sure you know :p

  29. Linn says:

    true that, that’s very educational.. thanks for sharing.

  30. hairsols says:

    great info thanks a lot for sharing….

  31. hairsols says:

    thanks for such a useful information
    i think now i can be better blogger…;)

  32. The writer has summed up the topic very well and i appreciate the simple style of presentation. I have seen blogs that can be categorised as static or stalled as no posts are being written now. Blogs are not play thing as like plant there are also nurtured with personal care. Consistency is the key to keep the interest of the visitors on a particular blog. Further there should be effort to keep them in good humor as visitors of unique and loyal type is one more key to successful blogging. Furthermore a blogger should also live with his network. But network should be of same niche other wise the loyalty is not that loyal and sincere. Thanks to the guest blogger.

  33. Tony says:

    Well said Jim! Could not have said it better myself!

  34. nmnoob says:

    Is it common for the comments to be a better place for information than the actual post? Kinda seems that way…

  35. This is good advice – I think after reading thousands of comments more people need to jump in take a risk and just do it. Decide on a niche and blog daily for 2 years, gain 30 blogrolll exchanges and get links from 4,000 different websites – if you choose a specific niche you will raise to the top and start getting consistent consulting offers and advertisers asking how to use your site to get new business. I’ve done this within many niches and know it works.. The secret is hard work and tenacity. Less time looking for shortcuts and more time working hard is what has worked for me.

    – Richard
    Richard Wilson
    http://richard-wilson.blogspot.com

  36. Arfan says:

    I am giving it a try and lets see how stuff works out….

  37. This post has been done so many times I’m surprised JC even approved it, despite his belief that re-hashing old content is a good strategy for blogs with lots of posts that most readers never see in their entirety. Everyone is talking about keeping stuff fresh…and they’re talking about TEXT. How lame.

    They’ve failed in their thinking. Their thinking is sound, but the conclusions they draw will be false.

    My current thinking on this point is to STOP TYPING and start TAPING yourself.

    People are tired of reading. They want REAL people. To WATCH. Get a web cam and get honest with your self and with others and your readers. But do it in HIGH quality. Both in production and in content.

    Don’t ramble. Talk about what’s passionate to YOU like you mean it. People will follow if you’re passionate about ANYTHING. It’s the reason that the self help guru’s are all multi millionaires. They are INTO their topics. If you don’t believe me, do a search on Gary Vaynerchuk RIGHT NOW (before reading the rest of my comment) and I PROMISE you will start drinking wine after watch a few of his WINE TV video posts.

    You WILL become a Vayniak!

    I am willing to bet that if John Chow were drop shipped into the blogosphere today, with no prior experience, that he WOULD NOT be anywhere near as popular as he is. I will give him one thing – and this is that he was way ahead of the curve with “make money blogging” angle.

    But he sure as heck wouldn’t be cranking out 30K+ a month. He’d be lucky to pay his bills, he would be flying out to hang with the likes of Monica, Shoe and the crew in Florida and Market Leverage.

    Video is the future and it is going separate the loser, copy-cat bloggers from the AUTHENTIC, transparent REAL people like Darren Rowse, Yaro Starak and a few other’s I’ve been following who aren’t afraid to push that medium and are doing it PROPERLY.

    On second thought….I do owe John a second, full, point – he HAS taken advantage of this medium, but he HAS not got a transparent, candid video of himself on the front page of this blog…one that is real, honest, funny, sexy and edgy…capturing all the salient points of the JC brand. It should be accesible on everypage. This is where you’ve failed JC……

    You’ve missed the opportunity to connect with REAL people like you who want to be alone in a park in the middle of the day pushing their kid(s) around in a stroller…BECAUSE THEY CAN… because they’re earned that right through blogging.

    You’re a person, but you’re also a pro now. And you need to show the world this. The simple person vids like the Dot Com Pho’s, etc. are all fine within the posts, but your home page HAS TO BE THE MOST VISITED AND EXITED page on the whole site if you’re like every other blog, so why not BETTER CONNECT WITH THOSE who are about to abandon…with a REAL vid of you!

    With this and your great current readership, you could probably be doing 40k a month or more…much more….people want to FEEL that they know you personally. That you are always there for them…and being able to watch a vid like that will close that gap…push people off the fence…come back to your site more often…and convert at higher percentages. Do you the math. Check the stats. REAL vids like this convert 2x to 5x better than text or the BEST WP theme EVER.

    I bet that it would endear your further to your traffic and convert even MORE traffic, whatever conversions mean to you these days…..

    In fact, I’m willing to put my money where my mouth is – JOHN …ARE YOU LISTENING??? I will come to Vancouver and shoot a pro vid for you to put on your pages that is properly edited and funky which showcases YOU and your unique style.

    We’ll laugh, we’ll cry…we’ll be serious…but one thing is for sure…you’ll be proud of the finished product and it will further your brand and your readership will enjoy it.

    We will extract some of the key elements of this ‘make money’ vision you’re selling and distill the critical points out of your book (which I’ve read by the way and is pretty good – too bad dozens of other have copied it online, diluting the value of it)

    I have all the pro gear for a portable studio (lighting, mics, cameras, etc.) and have a background in film (Stargate SG-1), TV (was an extra with Will Smith in i-Robot) and stage (co-produced and acted in my own production called P.S. Your Cat is Dead at the Havana Theatre on Commercial Drive with Sonja Bennett of Cold Squad fame, directed by Mel Tuck who launched Eric McCormack’s career). Don’t believe me? Come to my site for the proof…

    In addition, I know how to interview and ask questions like Barbara Walters to elicit responses from you that few others know how to do (or have done at the blog expo’s you’ve been to – I think I’ve seen them all on your site).

    I’ll deliver it in Flash and optimize it for the web. This is the single most important thing that was missing from your theme re-do in my humble opinion. It is the reason why my blog (and most others) totally suck – text and images are dead.

    People want INFO TAINMENT! …and I think that you can give it to the masses.

    You’d be better off doing this AND the annoying list building pop up that you have when visitors first come to you site, than just the annoying pop up routine.

    I’m game if you are JC…let me know.

    ping me here:

    [email protected].

  38. Emjei says:

    i’m getting a hard time earning by advertisements/ads on my site, i guess i have to learn more on how to gain more traffic, i do paid posts instead and is earning well through it…

    http://earnforaliving.blogspot.com/

  39. Önder says:

    thats the thing that i want.

  40. peter says:

    passion is all well and good but that just usually gets you started (or sends you to the clinic with a mysterious rash). you need consistency which, in my opinion, comes more from the heart and brain than from the gut and testes/ovaries. the “long slow burn” kinda drive that is motivated by a need, a basic need that MUST be fulfilled. eating, sleeping, breathing. of course if you happen to have an aptitude for this sort of thing, and can crank out all sorts of provocative “crap” (i say that in the best possible way). crap that pushes peoples buttons in both positive and negative ways. if it comes easy to you…then you have it made. you will make money -playing- having fun- and that’s the realization of the ultimate dream.

  41. Dave Hamlett says:

    Another concept is to offer information that changes perception on something people thought they knew (i.e. Black Magic Woman was not written by Carlos Santana; it was writen by Carlos’ and many other guitar players favorite, Peter Green of the original or first generation of the band, Fleetwood Mac). You can also supply background information on icons (i.e. I’m old enough to know the history of 3 members of Foreigner).

    There is some great information here, some gives me new ideas while others confirm what I am doing (affilitate programs and as soon as I have enough songs preped, I will open a store on my myspace to sell them). I deifinitely will be coming back to make certain I am taking advantage of this great information.

  42. Dfunda says:

    this are the things a blogger should concentrate on

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