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I normally don’t discuss things like the business side of blogging.
But in light of how many of my colleagues (and myself) are experiencing many negative comments on our blogs and social media pages recently, I felt inclined to discuss the business side of blogging publicly today.
The other day, I posted about this on Facebook and the supportive response was overwhelming (in a GOOD way!).
I am not discouraged and I am not giving up on anything, so don’t worry, I am here to stay. 🙂
I just wanted to take a moment to open up and share about the business side of blogging. This is something that bloggers don’t often talk about, but I think it’s important for our readers to understand some of what goes on behind-the-scenes of sites like this.
The Business Side of Blogging
Blogging is hard work.
Do not let anyone tell you otherwise.
For some bloggers, it’s a hobby (and there’s nothing wrong with that! I started out like that).
For others, like myself, it’s a business. My blog is what helps me pay the bills and ensures that we have money to put food on the table. My site (and surrounding products/ventures) is my sole source of income.
Bloggers work hard every single day to provide tons of FREE content on their sites, social media pages, and newsletters.
There is time involved in:
- Recipe development
- Photography and editing
- Maintenance of the website and software used to run the site
- Answering emails
- Answering blog comments
- Social media management
- New product development
- Networking and business development
- Research on IRS, FDA, FTC, etc., laws that affect our business and websites
- and much, much more
For many, this is a full-time job. I personally spend well over 40 hours a week working on my site and all related projects. Up until August of this year (2014), I also worked a “real” job (45 hours a week) to pay the bills and was consistently working 75-80 hours per week total between my “real” job and my blog.
No wonder my adrenals are pooped!
But, I love every minute of it. It is hard, hard work, but it means that I am able to work from home, doing something I love.
And, even MORE importantly, I am setting myself up to be able to stay at home with my children when the time comes to start our family.
I want nothing more than to be able to be home with our children, homeschool them, and watch them grow into the amazing individuals I know they will be.
I am not alone in this motivation either.
I have countless friends and blogging acquaintances that are all trying to make a living doing something they love. While their motivation may be different from mine, but we are all entrepreneurs who have a desire to make a difference in the world.
This is the avenue we have selected to make that difference.
So, when you see a blogger promoting a product, a new book, or a service on their social media or blog, understand that they are promoting something they believe in, they are helping support other businesses that they love, AND they are helping their family and their dreams.
This is no different than any other business who promoting their products and services, or products and services that they like.
As many of you know, I ONLY promote products and services that I have personally tried and love.
If I don’t love it AND use it in my own home, I WILL NOT promote it. That is the standard that I set for myself and the site.
Thanks for listening and thank you for your continued readership of not only this site, but the sites of my friends and colleagues who are trying to make a difference in our food and health systems.
Thanks for putting this out there, Jessica. I have heard complaints that bloggers are always an affiliate for something and “it didn’t used to be that way”. Some people even seem to resent the fact that a blogger discloses their affiliation. The fact is being an affiliate for favorite products is one way bloggers make money. When I started blogging in 2007 affiliations were rarely admitted. In 2009 the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) cracked down on bloggers and we can get in trouble if we don’t make folks aware that we are affiliates. So it might seem like no one was “ever an affiliate before” and now it’s “in your face” because bloggers are following the rules. I am a blogger and since I understand how this works I make a point to try to order through affiliate links because I know someone will gain a little from it. I mean it’s not like we earn a huge percentage, it could be as little as 4% of the product cost but every little bit adds up. When I click through someone else’s link I feel it’s like paying it forward in a way. I’m glad you are here to stay, you provide so much quality for the community. Thanks for everything you do.
Thank you Starlene! 🙂 <3
Love this! Thanks for sharing and explaining so well! Pinning! 🙂
Thank you for sharing Megan! 🙂
Thank you for this! Great post. I am an amateur blogger at best. I get write a few clicks and opens on my posts but no one ever comments. Is that bad?
Hi Lori! Comments are tough. I think it really depends on the blog. Some blogs get tons of comments and some don’t. Of course, the experts say if you’re writing engaging content that people will comment, but I have not found that to be true all the time. I would say keep putting out quality content that helps your readers and over time you will see more engagement. Have you ever polled your readers to see what kind of content they are looking for? That is a great way to ensure you are writing about things that make a difference in their lives! 🙂
Hello! Yes you no doubt spend a considerable amount of time dedicated to this. Your commitment to promoting healthy living and eating is admirable. You say that you are open to discussion, but opposed to hate, threats etc., as you should be. But what is your policy on criticism? Criticism certainly should be considered to be discussion since without criticism we cannot learn and grow. Why then do you seem to be blocking any and all criticism?
Hi Stuart – We are all entitled to our opinions and I am always open to discussion. I even accept criticism because this is how we all grow. However, when you attack my intelligence and also start calling me names (i.e. a “predator”), I refuse to engage. I appreciate how diligent you are to spread your opinions, but the method in which you do so is very off-putting and unprofessional. I wish you the best in your journey, but it is highly unlikely that you and I will ever see eye to eye on things, as your opinions regarding health are vastly different from my own (as gleaned from the sites you have linked to in your comments prior to this). Have a great night.
If I don’t agree with the views on someone’s blog…….I don’t follow it. Also, unless they asked for the feedback, it’s kinda’ rude to criticize someone’s passion.
Thanks Maura! I agree! I don’t follow sites that I don’t agree with. I know a lot of people enjoy debating over opposing views, but I frankly do not have the time to debate or argue. I have a business and household to run! Thanks for stopping by! 🙂
Critique would be reserved for peer to peer interaction. Name calling and insults should be reserved for the playground. I personally would not continue to follow a page or read a blog of which I am not interested in or did not find value in. And from the side of a blogger, it is no different than a business. A reputable business would not publicly dispute or engage in negative interactions in their place of business. It is your right & not necessary to engage with squeaky wheels who seem to have a need to fill by going to pages & blogs to “critique” their work. I have never understood why people attack like this. I guess it is because they don’t have to have the courage to speak with you face to face. I value the opinions of those who can & do take the time to research products, create recipes and discuss issues as you have. I refer people to your site all of the time because I know you to be transparent & to have a great network of resources. As demonstrated, it is easy to click on a link & have an opinion, but it takes talent & intellect to build up a blog & network as you have.
Thanks Sandra! I appreciate your support!