Angie Nelson, one of our customers, did just that!
Angie, has been a successful online business owner since 2007 when she took her future into her own hands and found a way to escape the corporate cubicle farm. Today she balances several successful online ventures and still manages to share her passion for home business with others on her blog, The Work at Home Wife.
We knew she was the lady to ask to write a guest blog on taking the step from part time hobby-blogger to full time publisher.
Here are her insights…
Not every blog begins as a business. And not every blogger wants theirs to become one. But, some do. That’s what the entrepreneurial dream is all about – doing what you love and making a living doing it. Many hobby-to-business bloggers quickly find that the process isn’t as easy as they had anticipated. There are a lot of things to consider and several bases to cover. Here is my guide to the key questions you need to think about in order to make your transition successful.
What are the Best Income Opportunities for My Blog?
Businesses are created to make money. As a blogger, you have several income options to consider; affiliate marketing, ad networks, sponsors, digital or physical products, donations, offering freelance services. The list goes on and on, and not every opportunity is going to be a good fit. You already have an established fan base. Consider their wants, needs and likes.
How Will I Incorporate Income Opportunities Without Losing My Readers?
You do not want to change the entire direction of your rooted blog. If you do, you risk losing your loyal following. Monetizing your online space may take a little trial and error to work out which products work best for you and your readership. I suggest starting with one avenue at a time and test the waters. Listen to feedback from your readers and gauge their interest. Maybe you had thought ad networks were your best bet to generate an income from your blogging. But what if your readership strongly dislike ads? Don’t be afraid to experiment and get creative with other monetizations options available to you.
What about Legalities and Liabilities?
With every business, there are rules that must be followed. You may already be familiar with things like copyright and trademarks. There are a few other legalities you should brush up on as well like defamation, privacy laws and FTC disclosures. It may be in your best interest to consult your local SBA or attorney about local home business regulations and possibly forming an official business entity.
What about Taxes?
If you are making money from your blog, you are required to pay taxes on that income. Consult your tax preparer about your projected income and tax liability.
What Is Your Plan? Is it Realistic?
Turning your blog into a business is not going to solve all of your problems. In fact, it is likely going to create a few new ones while you adjust. You are still going to be creating new content. You will still need to actively grow your community. In addition to these mainstays, you will face new business challenges. My best advice is be realistic! Be realistic about your time and timeframe to becoming profitable to avoid burnout and frustration.
Have you turned a hobby blog into a business? What is your biggest piece of advice to new blog business owners?