Sara Garska of My Think Big Life shares the “secrets” that made her blog traffic explode, and allowed her to start monetizing. By implementing these fundamentals, she grew her blog from 7500 monthly page views to 30,000 in just 2 months!
Most blogs fail to make money!
A profitable blog starts with building a strong foundation of quality content, a good reputation, and a social media presence. Building a solid foundation will help you beat the odds.
Let’s have some straight talk about blogging.
Blogging is probably one of the most romanticized professions out there. And make no mistake, it IS a profession. But most people jump into it and don’t understand how to build and develop their blog in a way that will lead to monetization.
And here’s the thing about serious professions; despite what you read other places — there are NO shortcuts to creating a profitable blog. It requires you to take it seriously and put in time and effort into doing it right.
It doesn’t happen in 20 minutes and it might not happen in 20 weeks. Though you can definitely make some serious progress in 20 weeks. Most profitable blogs take a year or more to become profitable.
But it IS possible to create a profitable blog
Blogging will be more difficult than you imagined and getting to profitability will probably take much longer than you thought it would. It just does. In addition, way more people start and quit blogging, than see it through to profitability.
Not only is blogging a tough profession to make money at, it rarely happens as quickly as any of us would like.
Not because the blogger is doing anything wrong. Doing a blog right, takes time, commitment, perseverance, and strategy.
Most people work months before they see any kind of return. Stacey was five months in and was thrilled to get a $50 Target card for her first paid gig. (However, within a year, she was making a living income.) I was in about nine months before I started seeing some affiliate income — but I didn’t get serious about it until about five months in.
The important thing to remember though, is that it IS possible to earn a living blogging. And it is much easier to do so, if you’ve got a solid foundation to grow from.
Why Most People Fail
One of the reasons that people don’t make a profit from their blog is that they have unrealistic expectations and they don’t build a solid foundation for profitability. They jump in with tons of enthusiasm, write a few posts, and then start panicking because they have no traffic and no income.
Then they haphazardly begin promoting a blog that just isn’t ready for promotion. Of course there are exceptions to this. But they are exceptions. Skipping the fundamentals of developing the skills needed for a successful blog leads to failure.
What it Takes to Succeed
Let me remind you again: It takes time to build a successful blog. You have to build the foundation first. That includes:
- Creating quality content
- Building a solid reputation
- Expanding your social media bases
Notice, our list doesn’t include scheduling tools, promoting posts, or even networking. You’ll do all those things but it is so important to have your foundation in place first.
Here’s one of the problems with trying to promote too soon. If you are promoting not-so-great content and graphics, your reputation will suffer. As big as the blogging world is, if you’re hanging out in it, you get to know what other people’s work looks like.
If you are putting out poor quality content, people will quit clicking on your stuff. It will become almost invisible to them. Trust me on this, your reputation is important. There are several bloggers that when I see something new, I’m excited to read. There are others, I won’t even click on their stuff anymore.
Why? Because for whatever reason, I haven’t found their content to be useful to me or to the people I like to share it with. This is really important. If you start sharing too soon, all people will have in mind is your beginning efforts.
I know, it’s not fair. But there are so many people who are etched in my mind as poor writers with poor graphics. And when I don’t see improvement in their graphics, I don’t click to go check out the content either.
The good news is that I have seen people who start digging in and improving their reputation by creating quality sharable pins/graphics. When that happens, I’m usually curious enough to check out their stuff.
Whether you like it or not, your content has to have value to someone. People are looking for answers to their problems in life. There might be a few blogs where people just follow because they are into that writer but in general people are searching for answers. That could be the answer to what to have for dinner or for how to deal with a toddler’s temper tantrums.
When I first started blogging it took me much longer to write a post than it does now. Put the time in to write the best post you are capable of. Answer a problem that someone has. And give a real answer.
Don’t worry, these early efforts will not be in vain. They allow you to get your writing and designing chops going. You will get better as you go if you concentrate on writing good and useful content. Notice, I’m not saying write EPIC or AMAZING content. Just get writing and get better.
Later on, you can go back and give these early efforts a makeover. I had one old post that I gave a facelift to and it became my most popular post ever—five months after I first wrote and posted it.
So, these old posts help you get comfortable with and better at blogging. They establish your presence and they provide a place for you to give the impression of creating new content later.
Your Social Media Base
As you are writing your quality content you will want to explore and build one or two social media bases. We always recommend concentrating on building your Pinterest account as soon as possible. Put thought and effort into creating your boards. Don’t worry as much about promoting your stuff; instead focus on building your Pinterest presence. In addition, it’s helpful to have a Twitter account, Facebook page for your blog, and even Instagram.
When you are ready to monetize your blog, you want these numbers to be as high as possible. We’re talking in the thousands. It’s daunting, but the sooner you get started the better. I could kick myself for all the years I had my Twitter account but did ZERO to connect and get followers.
Blogging is by its very nature a very lonely profession at times. As bloggers we absolutely need a place to share our work and our ideas and get support in return.
We have opened our private Banking on Blogging Facebook Group as a place for profit-minded bloggers to support each other in their quest for building high quality blogs as well as earning money.
In addition to joining our Facebook group, we recommend filling out our Blog and Social Media Metrics Tracker. Join the Banking on Blogging email list to get yours delivered to your inbox FREE!
Knowing your numbers is essential to growing your blog. At any time, you should know what your average daily page views are, how many followers you have on each social media platform, and how your blog is doing in comparison to the month before. You really need to know whether you are growing, going backwards, or stagnant.
I don’t compare myself to other bloggers; I compare myself to what I did last month. Since I’ve begun seriously working on my blogging and recording my metrics, I have seen my numbers go up significantly each month.
It’s not always fun to look this squarely in the face but it will help you in the long run. There is no shame here! We’re here to help you get your blog moving in the right direction. And that direction is towards profitability!
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We look forward to seeing you there!
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