You’re a seasoned blogger, blogging as a hobby for a few years now and you’re ready to start making a real income online.
You’re a blogger who has tried monetizing by littering your posts, sidebar and footer with affiliate links and ads, with little success.
You’re a new(ish) blogger who already loves blogging so much that you’re ready to quit your full time job so you can have more time for blogging, but you still need to make money.
It doesn’t matter what your story is, these tips can help anyone go from blogging to beginning to build the business of their dreams.
*Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of these steps, they really are the foundation of a solid business.
Here we go.
5 Steps to go from Blogger to Business Owner
1. Change your mindset.
I talk a lot about mindset, but it’s for a good reason. If you don’t believe in yourself, you shouldn’t expect anyone else to either. The mindset shift that has to happen when you go from blogger to business owner has to do with your intent and your content. I’m guessing when you started your blog, you wrote about whatever the heck you wanted to. It might have evolved since the beginning, but most people start out blogging about their interests and they don’t necessarily worry about the ‘voice’ of their posts, the consistency of their posts, or even the branding of their blog. Blogging for pleasure is known as content for you. When you become a business owner and are writing a blog, you absolutely have to consider what your audience wants to read, keep to a consistent schedule and develop a cohesive brand. Blogging in business is known as content for your audience. Remember: you’re going from hobby to job, so you need to get in the Boss Mindset.
2. Reevaluate your audience.
Begin this step by asking yourself, “Is my current blogging audience my target audience for my business?” Sometimes we decide to go into business doing something similar to the hobby we’re already blogging about and maybe there will be a crossover in audiences. But you also might choose a completely different business niche and your current audience might not care about it at all. What I’m getting at here is this: you need to decide if you can leverage your current audience and turn them into readers of your business blog, or if you have to start building up an audience from scratch. I know the second option sounds scary, but trust me, it can actually be really beneficial to your new brand and your soon-to-be awesome conversion rates. I’ll break it down one step further: it’s more effective to provide valuable content to those who you know will appreciate and engage with it, rather than trying to hold onto a past audience out of loyalty. Your new content might not be aligned with their interests, which ultimately wastes time for the both of you.
3. Begin building your email list.
If you haven’t already, choose an email marketing software (I use Convertkit), and set this up to start gathering email addresses. If you don’t think that an email list is important, or you think you should wait to start building an email list, GTFO. I’m kidding, of course. I actually didn’t think it was that important in the beginning either, but now I see how wrong I was and how much time I wasted by NOT doing this step! I could have been working for myself a whole lot sooner! If you need a little help, my number one recommendation to get started with list building is to create a “freebie offer” (essentially something of value that you can give away for free to your target audience), and set up a landing page to collect email addresses in exchange for the free content. For some ideas on what kind of freebie to create and also a bunch of free ways to promote your freebie, check out this post: Fantastic Opt-Ins & Where to Promote Them.
4. Choose a product by repurposing content (if you can).
I’m going to say this now: DO NOT FILL YOUR SIDEBAR AND FOOTER WITH AFFILIATE LINKS OR ADS THINKING READERS WILL CLICK THEM AND YOU WILL MAKE A TON OF MONEY. IT’S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.
With that out of the way, the easiest way to choose an income stream to start making money with your blog is to evaluate what content you already have and choose a method of delivery. For example, you have a food blog and over the years you have posted your own recipes, provided nutrition information about a few diets you’ve followed, and you shared your personal story of struggling with weight loss. For product ideas you might consider creating an e-book filled with all of your best recipes, templates for recipe cards, a 30 day group diet challenge, or a 60 day bootcamp that teaches people about nutrition and the importance of healthy eating. Whatever you choose, start with only ONE income stream. Focus on ONLY the e-book or ONLY the bootcamp. You may eventually end up doing all of them, but work on getting just one of them up and running first, before you expand. Otherwise, you run the risk of getting burnt out quickly and not launching any of them!
5. Network like crazy.
Research the gurus in your industry. Follow the “celebrities” in your niche on social media and engage with them. Like their tweets, heart their Instagram photos, and share their Facebook posts. Even if they don’t reply to you or it seems like they don’t recognize you right away, do this regularly. Their fans will notice how often you interact with them and it will entice them to want to know more about you and they will find your page. And who knows, maybe when your brand begins to grow and some big name gurus in your industry do take notice of you, they might share your stuff to their audience, which can mean massive exposure for you! Also network with people who are in the same boat as you. Find other people who are also turning their blog into a business. A good place for this type of community is through Facebook groups. There you can find accountability partners, people in your niche who are willing to trade promotions (you promo their stuff to your audience and vice versa), support and advice, and maybe even your life long business bestie!
Be Bold. Be Boss. Be YOU.