I wouldn’t say blogging jobs are over exactly. I mean, that would be dumb considering I blog for a living. Many of my friends blog for a living. Deb posts blogging gigs daily over in writing leads. So no, blogging jobs aren’t over. I do however think that how you use your blogging skills to make money is changing big time.
You can’t just be a blogger anymore and expect to make a living. “Just a blogger” is not meant to be disrespectful either, all I mean is when you’re just blogging for clients you’re writing posts, getting paid, and that’s that. It’s still work but it’s not the same work I’m seeing available lately.
Example: When I first started blogging I was doing stuff like posting blog posts and… well, that was it. A client would hire me, give me access to some blog platform, I’d go in, write, hit publish, and get on with my day. That whole writing bit, where I’d just write and publish, didn’t last long. Now clients want more, give their bloggers more tasks, and expect more than simple writing know-how. Blogging gigs have expanded. You can find plain old gigs where all the client expects are posts but those gigs are rare and they usually pay squat.
If you’re currently in the market for a blogging job, you’re in luck, because there are plenty available. However if you don’t cultivate other skills as well, another blogger will get that gig you want. If you’re searching for a well-paying blogging gig, following are some basic skills you should already have, and if not, I suggest you get them quickly.
- Get on Twitter. Get on Facebook. Get on other social networking sites. Learn how to use them. Learn how to use many accounts at once. Over the last year every new client I’ve met has wanted to know which social networking sites I frequent and if I’m willing to use others as well.
- Become an image pro. Learn where to find images you can use for free (I’m talking legally). Learn how to find hard-to find news images (hint, connect with some good PR people). Get image editing software, learn to use it and learn how to redesign fun images – i.e. make an image collage.
- Speaking of PR folks, learn to use them to your advantage.
- Figure out how to work on more than one blog platform. WordPress is still king among most of my clients, but not all. I’ve held gigs over six or seven different platforms – some so bad I’d hardly call them blog platforms which brings me to the next skill…
- Know some HTML. It’s smart to know how to write an entire post in HTML because sometimes visual platforms aren’t an option. Also it’s not enough to know how to write and hit publish, now you really should know how to tag images, how to use custom fields, how to use SEO packs, how to build galleries and more. You should know all the ins and outs of platforms you work on frequently without having to ask the client.
- Learn how to find breaking news and hot new products.
- Learn how to review products usefully. Many clients I have LOVE blogger product reviews but not shoddy reviews.
- Learn how to run a successful blog giveaway or contest.
- Figure out how to handle forums. Most blog clients I have are crazy for forums lately. It’s forum this and forum that. Learning what it takes to use, promote, and moderate a forum are excellent skills to cultivate right now.
I have quite a few blogging gigs currently but not one of them is a gig where all I do is write. All of them include some or all of the aspects above. Since so few people make a successful living blogging, you may as well learn all the skills above to increase your own chances of success.
One additional tip – I haven’t come anywhere close to listing all the good skills you should have if you’re a blogger. Make sure you keep up with changing blogs and blogging trends by following some decent blogger-how-to blogs. I have many blogging blogs in my feeds, and while I don’t read each and every post, I do browse them daily.
Do you have any blogging jobs currently where all you do is write?