There was a short time when at a previous Startup I moved out of Sales and into Marketing. I had to produce a lot targeted content in a niche market and that’s how I earned my living. A lot of the content I created ended up on the company’s blog, video library, or community boards so I considered myself a Professional Blogger back then. Now that I’m back in Sales and I Blog here for fun, I consider myself a writer and a Semi-Professional Blogger now.
What does it take to become a Professional Blogger in 2020 and beyond? Can you make a career out of blogging? The short answers are a lot and YES!
BUT…. It takes a lot of time and effort.
If you’re just starting out it can feel overwhelming but have heart and don’t be discouraged. It can be done! For some handy tips on how to brainstorm up a blog, visit my ‘Blog Yourself to a New Life’ post.
Professional Blogger - 5 Tips
Being a Professional Blogger is not just about making content. It requires technical skills as well. You’ll need be become a top notch content creator, an SEO expert, a website/blog hacker, and a social media maven just to break into this field. Here are 5 Tips to help you start out in your career as a Professional Blogger
Tip 1 - Create Content
Creating Content is the reason why you have a Blog and it’s what you have to say to the world. Making great content is 80% of the effort in becoming a Professional Blogger. You shouldn’t ‘half ass’ this step and spend the time to make a quality post, an engaging podcast, or entertaining video. Whatever the channel you decide to publish your content on, take the time to create something of value to your readers, listeners, or viewers.
Tip 2 - SEO Strategy Expert
You will need to know how to optimize your Blog and content for SEO. Things like optimized post urls, responsive images, page speed, all matter for how Google indexes your content. When your Blog and content is optimized for SEO, you will start ranking higher in the search page results and you’ll build up your authority over time. Hopefully you’ll start building a community and have regular visitors to your site!
Tip 3 - Website/Blog Hacker
If you have a WordPress blog, chances are you’ll have to tweak the PHP code at some point in time to customize your site. If you have a Hugo powered blog, you’ll need to know some HTML and Golang. Whatever CMS you end up choosing, consider one that let’s you ‘hack’ the themes or templates so you can customize them later one. That will require you to learn some code. It’s not hard to do and there’s ton’s of great tutorials on the Web, just start small and learn your way up from there.
Tip 4 - Social Media Maven
In the old days of Blogging it was about feed readers, now it’s about Social Media. Having a well thought out Social Media strategy will help you grow your brand and community. You’ll need to figure out what are the best channels for you to distribute your content (i.e. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc) but make sure to keep engaged and post relevant and consistent content to your community.
Tip 5 - Monetization Strategy
So, you want to live, have heat, and eat food. Well to do that, you’ll need money. Once you start earning money from Blogging you can call yourself a Professional but making a living from it is a different story. Your content and evergreen content can help you build up income from affiliate links, ads, or even selling courses. You’ll need to come up with a monetization strategy so you can make a living at blogging.
Things were way easier back in 2005. I know many bloggers that have become Professional Bloggers because they had the first mover advantage. Just because they were first doesn’t mean they have an easy time today. More savvy and interesting Bloggers are hitting the Internet in droves and are capturing attention. They approach blogging as a career and actively manage and cultivate it, and you should do the same. This will take effort but it can be done in today’s crazy world and into the future.
Good luck and see you on the Interwebz!