Last week I was at the hairdressers and my stylist asked what I did for work. “Well actually I have just handed in my notice at a hotel to go freelance full time” Doing what? he asked “Writing a blog, and managing social media for businesses’ end of conversation, though he did congratulate me. As I was leaving, swishing my new shiny & short hair about the place the stylist who had been at the next chair asked if I minded telling her “how you make money from home” as her relative had a condition where she couldn’t leave the house much and she’d love to earn money from home.
I was a bit stuck for words and said something like “well it’s not that easy, my blog is in its seventh year and you have to put a lot of work in before you get anything out…” but she clearly wasn’t listening as she carried on saying things like “imagine working in your PJs” and “being paid to update facebook, so easy!” I gave up trying to educate her and as I was on my way home I got a bit annoyed about how she assumed it was so easy to do. Another conversation with a colleague last week when she found out I was leaving was “If I got all the free things you do I’d leave too, I’d eat for free every night!” I didn’t even bother trying to explain about the work that went into my blog to get to the position where I get offered ‘free things’ let alone explain that they are not free, they are given in exchange for a review and/or publicity. I and had a little rant to a few friends, and I wanted to put together a post about what blogging is NOT, so when things like this happen in the future (and you can be sure they will!) I can just direct people to this post!
Personally I feel that blogging is not as rare as it used to be, most people will know what a blog is these days, and I think that’s a great thing! I didn’t tell anyone I blogged for years when I started, partly because I liked having something private to concentrate on and partly because I thought it sounded incredibly self centered ‘Oh yes, I write all about myself’ but it is so much more than that, of course. Blogging is also NOT a get rich quick scheme, bit of a bummer that! You actually have to pay out money too, for domain names, hosting, maybe a designer, and lots more too. I love it though, and I am finding getting the balance between sponsored content/reviews harder as time goes on but I am hoping that giving up my day job means I can concentrate on writing for me a bit more. I am also having an overhaul and name change later this month, which has got me all excited, but of course means spending money and a lot of time getting everything ready to switch over!
So no, blogging is not easy! I turned to a few of my fellow bloggers, many of who also would be writing ‘blogger’ for their job title and they’ve all worked bloody hard on their blogs. Here’s what they have to say:
…a sprint – it’s a marathon. It’s something you have to work at, take time at and persevere with – it isn’t a quick win and there aren’t instant results. Donna
…Just about the writing, in fact I spend the least amount of time writing. There is so much more that comes with having a blog and not all of it interesting (I’m looking at you broken links!) Laura
…about getting free stuff! It takes hours of hard work Mary
…a game of luck. So many people think that I’m ‘lucky’ to get the opportunities that I get. They don’t realise the amount of time that it takes to build your blog and your readership. The amount of effort that goes into reviewing those ‘free’ tickets that I was ‘lucky’ enough to receive. Leanne
…a part time job. It’s usually a full time job squeezed into part time hours, and is definitely not an ‘easy way’ to make money from home. You do it for the love of writing, not to make your fortune. Kate
…what I thought it would be. I thought it was just typing a few words and pressing post. But there’s just so much more to it – and I love it! Emily
…an easy ride. It’s not just writing a couple of bits, trying out some products, getting paid and taking a random photo. It needs professionalism, hard work, good writing, content, grammar, networking, promotion, web knowledge. And usually takes full time hours (often alongside a full time job) and even then you don’t guarantee monetisation Emma
…one job! It’s several rolled into one. Bloggers are amazing multi-taskers. As well as writers we are photographers, designers, social media managers, influencers, negotiators & business women (and men). The list goes on. Polly
…for everyone! I say this because although there are many, many ways to blog and people come to it and fall in love with it for many different reasons, it isn’t for everybody. Some people will naturally feel more comfortable connecting with people via Facebook or Instagram or Twitter or any other number of things – you don’t have to blog to connect with others. Amanda
…For the sensitive! If you’re putting stuff out there – be prepared for people to have a differing opinion. Sometimes they can be pretty mean so a thick skin is never a bad thing to have if you’re wanting to make it. Beth
…everything. Remember to live life too. Chelle
…about making money. There are hundreds of thousands of blogs (probably) and only a very small percentage make a good income from them. There are easier ways to make money from home than blogging. Kate
…Easy and a way to get freebies. It’s hard work and you have to be able to generate your own work etc It is however, brilliant and you can make wonderful friends. Hannah
If you’re a blogger, what would you add? And if you’e ever thought about blogging hopefully this will give you an insight into what goes on behind the shiny exteriors!