Hey all. You probably noticed I’ve been gone for a while, or maybe not, but I’ve got work and life semi-organized currently, so I’m back hopefully now. With that said, I figured it was time we re-covered some basics. If you’re a new reader at Blogging for a Living it’s good to know that there are some absolute pros and cons of blogging for clients vs. owning your own blogs AND pros and cons vs. having a “real job.” Today some pros, and later this week (if my good mood holds steady) some pros…
You can be a problogger. It’s a valid career option. By the way, my definition of a problogger is someone who makes enough money blogging to actually live on. However, after having been a problogger for years now I’ve got plenty of great reasons why you might want to choose another career.
What “real job?”: My blogger pals know I have a real job and I think my son is convinced, but most of my friends and family think that blogging is a hobby. I think they keep hoping I’ll quit and get a “real job.” That gets annoying; especially after years have past.
You will be at it a while before you make decent money: I only blog and do blog related things for money now, but when I first started blogging I also wrote articles and did other writing for money too. Blogging just doesn’t pay all that well until you build up a large client base, have a decent following, and put in some major time. I suppose you could jump into blogging and make money to live on right away, but I’ve rarely seen this happen.
You won’t get paid on time: Got bills? Well, too bad. With the exception of a few select ethical clients I VERY rarely know when I’ll get my check, PayPal deposit, and so on. When I worked in the real offline world I got paid like clockwork. Not so for blogging. My contract may say I get paid the first, which would be nice since you know, rent pops up, but sometimes I won’t get paid til the 3rd, 7th, or later. In fact I’m still waiting on a September payment right now, and last year it took me about 8 months of bugging one client to get paid. It’s obnoxious, frustrating, and a total reality if you blog for a living. My tip, NEVER assume you’ll get paid on time, and save a backup collection of funds for bills.
Income is sketchy: Even if you make it as a problogger. Even if you’re pulling in really nice wages. It could all be gone tomorrow. Blog clients hate to admit their blog is going belly up so guess who is the last to know – yup, you. Blogs fail, clients change direction, there are cutbacks, and it can happen in an instant. Tip – again, save up some emergency income.
Competition is fierce: There are a ton of amazing writers who will never ever make a living at writing or blogging. Why? Because there are a ton of amazing writers out there and only so many blog jobs available. PLUS becoming a problogger is not just about the writing. You need technical blog skills, the ability to gather a following, networking skills, image editing software, and much more. Your attitude and who you know along with your ability to follow the rules all play a part in your ability (or not) to become a problogger and many people can’t cut it.
There’s almost no extra perks: A scant few blogging positions offer things like health insurance, time off, and sick days. I don’t get any of that through any of my clients. Bonuses – not likely. Holiday pay – ha. Pay raises like at a normal job – rare.
It’s more work than you’d ever imagine: Blogging is hard. It’s actual work. It’s actual work that takes up insane amounts of time. Every once in a while there’s a rush of articles in the news about blogging for a living and how it’s the next big thing. I don’t think any of these articles sufficiently cover just how hard it is. Are there pros? Of course or I’d have quit a long time ago, however, if you get into blogging you better do it because you LOVE it because doing it for the fame, money, or other imagined perks are not valid reasons to aim for blogging as a career.
Are you interested in blogging for others? What cons have you run into?