When you first begin, blogging is like fishing off a canoe in the middle of a tranquil lake. Most of the time, nothing happens. You’ll just feel some little nibbles here and there. But fish long enough and you might catch something big enough to eat.
I’m envious of all you new bloggers. Every post you publish makes an incrementally huge difference to your growth. Every new reader brings new excitement and maybe even a potential new friend. Cherish these moments if you’re just starting your blogging journey.
Some of us burn out too soon. Others start lagging after doing the same thing for so long. I’m here to say that if you can get through the inevitable dip, blogging just gets better and better over time!
WHY BLOGGING GETS BETTER OVER TIME
1) More respect. Less hate. When you first start out, nobody will give a damn about who you are because you haven’t proven yourself in the online world. They’ll question everything you say because you simply have no credibility. But over time, your readership will start realizing you actually do what you say. And if you do what you say long enough, the tide will inevitably turn where you will gain the respect you deserve.
When Financial Samurai first started out, many of my posts would get an impressive amount of hateful comments. Now, despite traffic being 10X times greater, those comments have declined by 90%. Perhaps one of the reasons is because I don’t write as many controversial posts anymore since they’ve already been said. But I truly believe the decline in hate is because people coming to Financial Samurai realize I’ve got an archive of 1,2000+ posts going back to 2009. They’ve gone from “who is this guy?” to “maybe he knows what he’s talking about.”
2) More reach with less effort. A lot of publishers burn out because they can’t keep up with a rigorous writing schedule. But the irony is that the larger you grow, the less you have to publish. And the less you have to publish, the easier it is to keep on going!
Instead of publishing 3-4X a week like I did for the first several years, I can now publish just once a week or every other week and reach way more people. Publishing less might actually help grow traffic more because the article has more airtime to get picked up and shared by more readers. But I continue to publish 3X a week because it’s fun.
3) A lot more revenue opportunity. Once advertisers realize you’re here for the long term, they’re more willing to invest more time and money in your site. With an established brand, you can command higher rates, covert at a higher percentage, and be more selective with whom you want to work with. The more established companies you work with, the more other established companies want to work with you.
Besides being bombarded with endless advertising opportunities, you can launch your own private consulting practice. You can also launch your own product to generate passive income and boost your traffic even further. The revenue opportunities are endless.
4) More ways to help other people. The #1 most rewarding thing about blogging is getting e-mails or comments saying how much an article has helped a reader. The more thanks you get, the more you want to help other people. It’s a wonderful virtuous cycle.
Given you don’t have to work as much, you can donate more of your time and money. You can also be a positive influencer to help change people’s lives for the better. All the insecurities you once had about your online reputation and financial security slowly dissipates the longer you can last online.
5) You’ll experience a lot more joy. I think the ultimate goal for everybody is to be happy. If you have respect, money, and the freedom to help others on a daily basis, you will inevitably feel much happier than someone who has none of those things. Further, you’ll have this gratifying sense of accomplishment that you created something from nothing that nobody can ever take away from you.
If you ever do move on, feel good knowing that your work will live on forever. Blogging gives you that much needed sense of purpose.
JUST KEEP GOING
Yakezie.com will be online for seven years this December. I don’t write much on here anymore and the forums aren’t working properly. But that’s OK. It costs hardly anything to keep this site up and there’s no maintenance. The site continues to make a passive ~$1,000 a month and there’s a nice archive of blogging related posts to help new bloggers get ahead.
For those bloggers stuck in the dip, I encourage you to just keep going. Build your brand online. Grow your community one by one. For those of you who are considering starting a blog, I strongly believe it will be one of the best things you’ll ever do.
I never thought I’d be able to quit my job in 2012 just three years after starting Financial Samurai. But by starting one financial crisis day in 2009, Financial Samurai actually makes more than my entire passive income total that took 15 years to build. If you enjoy writing, creating, connecting with people online, and enjoying more freedom, learn how you can set up a WordPress blog in 15 minutes.
Leverage the 3+ billion internet users and build your brand online. There are professional bloggers now who make way more than bankers, doctors, lawyers, and entrepreneurs while having much more fun, much more freedom, and doing less work. Get started. You never know where the journey will take you!