Author Topic: Blogging: How did you start?  (Read 861 times)

deek

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Blogging: How did you start?
« on: December 22, 2018, 07:41:56 PM »
I have a blog idea that I feel people would be able to relate to, and hits two different niches. For those here who have a blog, how has it benefited you? Have you made any new connections with people/businesses as a result? Did you have a plan when you started? I'm a content professional and would enjoy writing things outside of work and forming a little community if I was able to get this blog idea off the ground. Any tips??

Syonyk

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2018, 08:07:42 PM »
Well, I started with the first post...

My blog has mostly benefited me in terms of finishing projects.  I tend to be the "90% done... oooh, new shiny!" kind of person, and blog posts of finished projects helps cure me of that.  I've met a few interesting people as a result, and have a corpus of "Hey, I know what I'm doing in a range of areas..." material out there, plus... oh, beer money, ish.  I average about $40/mo, which is pennies an hour for the work that goes into it, but I learn new and interesting things.

My plan?  "Post about things I was working on or found interesting."  So far, so good!

But, in general, starting a blog with high expectations leads to disappointment.

Zikoris

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2018, 08:35:34 PM »
I blog, but only for fun, and I don't make any money off of it. I started it in 2013 to chronicle our journey to retirement. It's mostly numbers and pictures. And labyrinths. Sometimes journalists stumble across is when they're doing a piece about frugality or retirement or other financial topics and contact us for quotes or interviews - once the local tv station came grocery shopping with us and followed us around in the store with a hidden camera, which was funny.

I think the main benefit has just been building that really solid record of progress, so if someone were to start at the beginning they could follow pretty much the step-by-step process on becoming financially independent. We also met a couple who we're now good friends with, who immigrated to our city from overseas and found our blog when they were trying to figure our how to save money, since my city is considered expensive. I think our blog actually comes up pretty frequently if you google all sorts of variations on "How to save money on ___ in Vancouver", or if not our blog, then likely an article or video clip with us in it.

CCCA

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2018, 10:36:06 PM »
Well, I started with the first post...

My blog has mostly benefited me in terms of finishing projects.  I tend to be the "90% done... oooh, new shiny!" kind of person, and blog posts of finished projects helps cure me of that.  I've met a few interesting people as a result, and have a corpus of "Hey, I know what I'm doing in a range of areas..." material out there, plus... oh, beer money, ish.  I average about $40/mo, which is pennies an hour for the work that goes into it, but I learn new and interesting things.

My plan?  "Post about things I was working on or found interesting."  So far, so good!

But, in general, starting a blog with high expectations leads to disappointment.


I'm very much the same way.  I'm an 80% person and the blog definitely helps push me to finish up things for public consumption.  It's been nice to have additional motivation to create things.

JoJo

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2018, 12:10:02 PM »
I had some content on a free travel blogging site that was shutting down, so I moved a bunch of it over and created new content.  I subscribed to 3 years of bluehost hosting because it was cheap.  Unfortunately, I wasted 6 months of that by not working on it.

If I could go back, I wish I never started blogging.  Now I'm on the fence of deciding to quit or keep going.  Quitting means I toss my 100's of hours of work and learning and $100s of dollars spent down the drain. 

I earned about $70 in affiliate sales this year.  I also got about $40 in referral money and $12 in free admission (asked for quite a few, and only got one). 

Here's my site:  https://thehotflashpacker.com/

Syonyk

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2018, 12:27:50 PM »
If you're not finding it useful anymore, just stop, switch to cheaper hosting, etc.

I've been making $40-$50/mo on a combination of ads and eBay affiliate links (I review goofy little stuff that is hard to find reviews of), so it pays for new little gizmos to review, at least.  However, next year, I'm dropping back from posting every week to posting every other week, simply because I have too much stuff to get done and I'm not sure I can fit in my typical few-thousand-word posts with everything else I want to take care of.  Plus, I may switch back to doing a bit more "gizmo review" and less "long form research posts," simply because of the time involved.  Putting together 11k words on lead acid maintenance and care was a great project, and I learned a ton, but it was close to a year of intermittent research going into the project.  Same for some of the other stuff I wrote.

The_Dude

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2018, 11:55:11 PM »
Iíll echo what Iíve read on other sites about blogging. Start a blog because you are so passionate about a subject that you want to write about it all the time. Donít start a blog because you want to make money.

Iíve started two blogs. The first time to try and make money. It didnít work. The second time as an outlet for writing about stuff I already wrote about on certain internet forums. A combination of those forums getting shut down and blocked from work was my catalyst to start a blog.

Out of all the posts Iíve made Iíve only made one with some amazon affiliate links. Iíve generated enough revenue from that to cover my hosting costs which is nice. The blog has also helped me land some sponsorships and reward existing sponsors in my hobby. So there has been some indirect benefit from that. But I could make far more money focusing on my corporate job. I happen to enjoy blogging about my chosen subject. And because itís not a source of income I only write when I feel like it rather than maintaining a set posting schedule.

Syonyk

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2018, 09:34:32 AM »
Even though mine is beer money at best, I still hold myself to a regular publishing schedule.  Part of the goal was to get better at writing on short notice (and long form) - it's a useful skill in some career fields.  "Hey, can you write me up a few pages on...?" questions are now a "Yeah, I should have that to you end of day" type thing, instead of a long process to drag out words.  I can bang up a few thousand words in an evening if I'm really behind on my schedule, though I think readers can tell the difference between a "Crap, it's Saturday afternoon, I should write something..." post and something a bit more planned.

I do try to work eBay affiliate links in where reasonable (that's >50% of blog income), and since a lot of my posts are absurdly in depth reviews of cheap hardware from eBay, it fits with the blog.


deek

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2019, 12:32:42 PM »
Thanks guys! I'm buying a cheap domain and launching the blog today. Excited to start sharing about one of my passions :) (albeit, unmustachian)

patrickza

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Re: Blogging: How did you start?
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2019, 06:08:21 AM »
I started a blog in 2013 because there was pretty much no personal finance blog in my country (South Africa). Happily I started a trend as there are now quite a few, all giving much better advice than any of the mainstream media.

I did puts ads on, but it pretty much just covers the hosting costs which of course I keep very low thanks to a digital ocean self managed virtual server.