Author Topic: Why start a Blog?  (Read 1933 times)

Auckland Stubble

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Why start a Blog?
« on: June 30, 2016, 11:50:23 PM »
Why do you personally or people close to you write a personal finance blog?

I quite like the idea of staying anonymous online and wouldn't like friends, family or colleagues not really close to me knowing everything about my personal finance situation.

So why do you blog?

ahoy

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Re: Why start a Blog?
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2016, 01:51:40 AM »
I completely agree, I would want to stay anonymous too.  I wouldn't be airing any laundry like some seem to.   And I don't know anybody that has a blog.

jan62

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Re: Why start a Blog?
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2016, 02:06:41 AM »
Years ago I started a personal finance blog, anonymously, to track some financial goals and 'meet' others with similar interests. It started as being just for my own interest, then got more popular and I monetised it. It did reasonably well but then the trolls started - and people really can be nasty online! I ended up shutting down because it no longer was an enjoyable 'chat' with like minded people. The first few years were great though, I really met some nice people online and it really made a difference to my motivation to get my financial house in order.

MoneyCat

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Re: Why start a Blog?
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2016, 07:10:37 AM »
I started a personal finance blog to try and get a little beer money in exchange for sharing tips and tricks with people who need information. However, it ended up being a big time suck and I made no money from it due to Ad Block Plus. In addition, most people don't want to know about how to handle money. They think it's boring. So I no longer blog about it.


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plog

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Re: Why start a Blog?
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2016, 07:41:18 AM »
Quote
So why do you blog?

Don't blog myself, but I read a lot of them (for the schadenfraude) and here's what I see:

1.  To keep themselves accountable.  Never works, but they think if they have to write a blog every Friday it will help them make good decisions throughout the week knowing that post will have to be written.

2.  Attention.  People like to know others have an interest in their life.

3.  Support.  It's like a circular system of blowing smoke up asses.  Personal finance bloggers comment on other blogs saying they are good writers, that their bad decisions are ok, wishing them well in these hard times, etc.  Then they return the favor by commenting the same on the other person's blog.

4.  Money.  Everyone and their sister is making tons of money of Google ad words?  Right?  Of course.  Has to be.  So they need to get in on that easy money.

5. "Helping Others". I put this one last and in quotes because its not true.  Its what they say--kinda like how people "support the troops" or "want to end world hunger". It's the lip service answer they will give.       

« Last Edit: July 01, 2016, 07:43:26 AM by plog »

notactiveanymore

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Re: Why start a Blog?
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2016, 02:24:54 PM »
I've had a blog off and on ever since I first learned html when I was 14. I enjoy writing for fun and my mom and sister-in-law enjoy reading what I write ;). I've never monetized or really promoted it much.

Since November 2014 when my husband and I got home from our honeymoon, we've been working intensely to pay off $55,421 in debt. $1600 was leftover from the honeymoon 0% credit card and the rest was my husband's student loans all at 6.8%. People were asking us a ton of questions about when we were going to buy a house, etc. after the wedding. So when we responded that we were going to pay off student loans first, they had a lot of questions. And skepticism.

Mostly over the past 20 months, I've blogged about our progress and things we'd learned to help our budgeting go more smoothly. I occasionally did a bit more general finance blog about financial health metrics or money decisions in relationships. I do a couple posts a month usually and I'll share a link on my facebook or twitter and call it a day. I'm not jonesing for hits, but to satisfy curiosity, a post will get 50-80 hits in the couple days after I post it. So it's not been anything to write home about by any means, and that's how I prefer it.

Why do I blog? I wanted a record to look back on throughout the payoff and after it was over. It was nice to have somewhere to record our thoughts and feelings and also to share what we'd learned. It's cool seeing a post from month 2 about how we had to keep a running total at the grocery store on our last trip of the month to make sure we didn't go over, then write in month 20 about how these 5 changes in the way we bought food and toiletries have made our grocery/toiletries budget feel spacious. It's fun to see that progress in ourselves.

As for "helping others" as referenced above, I've had long conversations or ongoing dialogue with 7 friends who've asked for help with budgeting or figuring out a cashflow problem or strategies for paying off debt. They all read one of my blogs and then asked me questions privately about how we handle X situation. My sister (not included in the 7) was inspired to pay off a loan early to save on interest and free up cashflow. I'm not intending to change anyone's life, but I think people have appreciated following our debt payoff and maybe it has helped them realize they can take control of their finances too.

We're going to be debt free July 8, so I'm not sure what I'll do with the blog after that. I might keep it up for another couple months as we figure out how we're going to allocate the $2700/month that will now be freed up.

ETA: We keep it somewhat vague on actual numbers. I post at the top of each blog how much debt we have left, so someone could theoretically do the math and figure out about how much we put towards debt in the time between blogs. But we don't put anything about our salaries. In some of the posts about our budgeting, I did include percentage breakdowns of where our money goes.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2016, 02:26:48 PM by theotherelise »

FIREdancer

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Re: Why start a Blog?
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2016, 02:47:31 PM »
I agree with you about wanting to stay somewhat anonymous and not wanting people I know to read my blog, so I haven't promoted it to many people.  I've only shared it with one or two close friends/family.  And I just started my blog a couple months ago for two primary reasons:

1. To track my progress to FIRE (mostly for myself, but if anyone else out there in the world finds my tips useful great, if not no biggie)
2. To keep up some of my HTML skills (I've learned basic HTML, but rarely use it so this is a good way to keep up some of those skills by messing around in the backend)