Interesting article on Nathan Hangen’s blog this week: There’s More to Life Than Blogging.
In it he asks why you blog and suggests you should know the answer before you start.
It reminded me of the number of times I’ve seen this question (or something like it) on Twitter:
“I just started a new blog – what do you think I should blog about?”
I guarantee that people asking that question will not be blogging 3 months from now.
If you’re going to start a blog you need to know why you’re starting it. If you don’t, it won’t be a blog – it’ll be a passing fad.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s for fun, your personal enjoyment or for business. Make sure you know what it’s for.
Here’s my reason for blogging
I started this blog specifically to enable me to attract visitors from the widest range of sources possible, so that I could introduce products and services that I market.
To date it’s doing its job, which is good, but as I’ve become busier I’ve started to wrestle with another problem that Nathan touched on: scalability.
I have a limited amount of time each day that I can devote to earning money: 24 hours, less some time for sleeping, eating and all the other bits and bobs. Let’s call it 8.
And blogging is not a very efficient activity if I look at it purely in terms of the amount of time I’m hunched over the keyboard versus the money it brings in.
My consulting gigs, which are one of the streams of revenue that my blog brings me, are not efficient either, because all I’m doing is hiring myself out for an hourly rate.
It’s a 1:1 ratio, whereas what I really need is something that’s a 1:many ratio.
So my plan, for a while now, has been to develop and launch a membership site off the back of this blog.
The membership site has an enormous amount going for it as an online business model:
- You get a regular monthly income from member’s subscriptions. Preferable (in my eyes) to the stop-start revenue streams you get from a product-launch model
- The bigger it gets the more you’ll be able to get keen, enthusiastic members to help with things like moderation and content development. Plus experienced members will help new members – it happens in all membership sites, and when it does you’re starting to develop scalability
- It’s a business you can constantly evolve to meet the changing needs of your members which, to me, is highly satisfying.
Blogging (as I’ve said before) is hard work. But having that end goal in mind is the reason why I push through the times when I just don’t feel like it.
It gives me the motivation and the kick up the butt I need to keep at it, when all I really want to do is go out and play.
So if you’re blogging for business what’s your end goal?
You need one, and you need to be sure it’s something that’s more scalable than simply blogging.
Let us know in a comment 🙂