Ok, so I think we all agree one can’t really earn a livable wage blogging for a network. As mentioned here before, there Are perks, but it’s best to start out with a network and take that experience and use it to start your own successful blog.
First things first though…
Blogs don’t happen over night. It can take years for a blog to become successful and turn a profit. When it hits however, there’s no better feeling. So enter into blogging with the mindset that you will not be an overnight sensation. It’s happened, but it’s rare. Look at it as an investment that will pay off if you’re dedicated enough.
How to Start a Blog
You can start your blog one of several ways. You can use a free platform such as Blogger or WordPress.com or you can host a WordPress.org blog on your own domain. The blog platform is still free, but you’ll need to pay for hosting.
Here’s what I did, and it worked out well:
I started a blog with Google Blogger because it was so user friendly. You can use Blogger on your own domain too, if you’re so inclined. After I built up a readership and traffic, I switched over to WordPress on my own domain. I recommend a Blogger hosted blog because if you’re not serious about blogging or if it doesn’t work out, you didn’t spend money on your own domain. When it DOES work out, you can move your blog.
Before you begin blogging, research the various platforms. In addition to WordPress and Blogger, there’s TypePad, Moveable Type,Drupal and others. Some allow ads, others don’t. Some are user friendly, others aren’t. Read the reviews and figure out which one works best for you. I love WordPress, but I’m glad I started out using Blogger as it allowed me to learn the ropes and earn a bit of money without commiting to my own domain. After two years, I knew I was in it to win it and moved to my own domain and switched to WordPress.