A fascinating conversation has started about the reality of blogging and money, started by that smart lady Alli Worthington. In a recent post, she makes the rather bold statement that bloggers should stop trying to rich blogging. Alli talks at length about the various realities of blogging, such as the failure of traditional ads to draw revenue, and then goes on to issue a challenge, of sorts: just blog because you want to.
Sometimes I think we just need permission to do the things we love without having to make a living at it. So I’m giving you permission. I’m telling you it’s fine for you to have a blog that gives you an outlet for your creativity, allows you to talk about things that are important to you and lets you stay connected to friends and family. You don’t have to try to monetize your joy.
Do you consider blogging your occupation? Are you attempting to make a profit? Are you making any money at all? If you answered yes to any of those questions then your blog is a business. Even in the world of hot start-ups and news stories of companies being purchased for hundreds of millions of dollars, there are plenty of small business owners who are working hard to turn a profit. Most companies do not generate a profit for three to five years.
In an article in Forbes last year, well known social strategist Maria Bailey of BSM Media said 10% of mom bloggers are earning six figures or more. In Mashable’s (highly annoying) infographic last year about the rise of the mommy bloggers, they stated that there are currently nearly four million mommy blogs out there (I’ve heard numbers ten times that from other sources). That means there are 40,000 mom bloggers earning over six figures through blogging. Does that seem realistic to you?
Personally, I think there might be an issue of semantics here; for instance, you might look at someone like me and think I’m earning a living blogging. In reality, however, my personal blog doesn’t even buy me a bag of groceries each month; my writing here at Babble, my outside writing clients, and my social media clients are how I earn my living. But, naturally, none of that would be possible without my blog at the heart. So does that mean I earn a living blogging? I don’t know. But I do know this: I don’t earn anything like six figures (as much as I’d like to).
What do you think? Are those of us blogging chasing the pot of gold at the end of the blogging rainbow, or are we moving toward raking it in? I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Hat tip to my buddy Yolanda for alerting me to this discussion.