WHAT IT TAKES TO BECOME A PROFESSIONAL BLOGGER

What it takes to become a professional blogger

At the beginning of this year, I posted about my blogging journey and how I had started considering myself a professional blogger. I realise that I have found my place and I’m thriving where I am. It’s not easy, it takes a lot of investment but like with so many things hard work does pay off. I have days where I doubt myself, I question where I’m heading, what I’m potentially giving up getting there but at the end of the day doing what I’m doing is making me happy and very fulfilled.

I always thought that I belonged on the stage. Not for the fame, but for the creativity, the intensity, the passion. Theatre is my first love, but blogging is becoming the love of my life.

Having talked to enough fellow bloggers over the past year I know that it is hard for people around us to understand. Comments about getting things for free come frequently. Loved ones might think we are simply wasting time on social media when in reality we are working. It can be even harder to carry on if you don’t feel like you have the support of those closes to you. You need those people to champion you!

THE MANY HATS OF A PROFESSIONAL BLOGGER

The other day I started listing the many roles I play within my business. I’m aware that I’m reaching a stage where I should ideally be outsourcing certain tasks as it would free up more of my time to focus on what I do best. I do full-time work crammed into part-time hours. As a professional blogger, you wear many hats. People don’t realise so they might not value it. On a weekly not to mention often daily basis I…

  • send and respond to emails (from PRs, brands, other bloggers and even fans occasionally, which is lovely)
  • negotiate (campaigns, fees, brand ambassador roles, terms & conditions)
  • schedule (social media, meetings, phone calls, giveaways)
  • grow and promote (social media channels, the blog, the business as a whole)
  • plan (shoots, posts, deliveries, collaborations, campaigns)
  • create (text, images, videos, website, branding, designs)
  • style (photos, interiors, fashion, food)
  • edit (photos, videos, text)
  • travel (in and around London and abroad)
  • cook (recipes, dishes for specific campaigns … and of course for my family when I’m not working!)
  • budget (as self-employed you need to keep on top of things and there’s a lot of admin involved)
  • maintain (my site, my equipment, my sanity!)
  • network (face-to-face, on social media, via email)
  • market (my business, my brand, myself)
  • design (website, logo, business cards, banners)
  • review (items, places, restaurants, events)
  • follow up (emails, briefs, connections, interviews)

My life can seem glamorous. Part of it is. I choose to show some of what we are, and I keep other things private. I still hope that if you meet me in real life you would feel like you knew me already through what you see on here. That I’m not a different person, I don’t want to be acting! When I work with brands I give all of me. I choose carefully who to collaborate with and push the passion so that it (hopefully) shines through and you feel that is it more than just an #ad. It is definitely a balancing act between being my relaxed self and ensuring I’m always professional.

AN INDUSTRY THAT IS CONSTANTLY EVOLVING

At a YouTube event the other day a group of us were discussing if you can succeed without investing. Someone pointed out that you can create far more as a blogger on a small budget then as a vlogger where you might want to invest in better (more expensive) camera equipment. Not only to shoot beautiful footage but also to make your life a little easier; smaller and more handy cameras are worth it if you are shooting out and about. It’s easy to fall into the trap of wanting the latest gadget, app, camera.

As much as I believe that blogging is essentially about good writing it is much more than that if you want to turn it into a career. In the two and half years I have been here I’ve seen huge changes. It can be hard to keep up. I know I would do things differently if I was starting out now, especially if I wanted to create a business, which wasn’t my initial goal back in 2015 (at least not officially).

WHAT DOES SUCCESS MEAN TO YOU?

The first thing to evaluate is what success means to you? Set yourself clear and manageable goals so that you don’t get overwhelmed. It won’t happen overnight, but if you dedicate yourself you can get there. You can become a professional blogger.

If you are thinking about starting a blog then make sure you check out Aby’s blog and courses. Her site, You Baby Me Mummy, is full of invaluable (and often free!) tips on how to build a successful blog and perhaps even turn it into a career.

And in case you were wondering… I wrote this at 00:15. It’s not easy, you don’t get there sleeping (although rest is important!) but it’s worth it.

Please follow and like me:

38 thoughts on “WHAT IT TAKES TO BECOME A PROFESSIONAL BLOGGER

  1. You said if you were just starting out now, you’d do things differently. What would you do differently?
    One of my favourite things about blogging at the moment is playing with flatlay photos.

  2. Lovely post, thanks for sharing 🙂 I’d also be interested in reading about what you’d do differently if you were starting up now? I found that too, and the first blog I started wasn’t great and I started over within six months. You make it look so easy x

  3. Loved this – especially your “many hats” list… I hadn’t quite appreciated exactly how much we do until I read that! I get a lot of “what’s the point” and “must be nice for the free trips” kind of comments, but mostly from people I don’t really care that much about so I don’t let them bother me (or try not to anyway!). I don’t count myself as professional as such, I have been blogging for 8 years now and it’s just a part of life! 😀

  4. Ah tell me about it. Specially the growing stereotype that us bloggers always receives freebies, but hey nothing is free duh! In my country, there is a heat conversation about bloggers versus mainstream media, the latter wants to monopolized the media.

  5. Although I’ve been blogging for a few years now it’s mostly been a hobby. Recently I’ve been thinking of taking that leap and going more full-time with it. I’ve signed up for Aby’s courses and just need to get a move on and actually do them.

  6. This is an interesting read. I only started blogging a few months ago. I love reading people’s tips and success stories. Gives you incentive to carry on.

  7. I went self employed and found that I (as a single, childless person) tend to work until 3/4/5am because I just can’t switch off. Full time blogging (I’m a photographer too, which helps my sanity) is NOT for the faint hearted, but it IS amazing.

  8. The comments about getting things for free really annoy me. I love this and I think it’s actually a great reminder of how much we do as bloggers and how transferable those skills are x

  9. Thank you for sharing your experience! Such a lovely read. I’ve always been wondering, can you make a living with blogging? Or in other words, how much can one make with blogging? I know there is a huge range… But still, am curious 🙂

  10. I enjoyed reading this post and it is true the life of blogging involves wearing many hats. I pretty new, 11 months in and still enjoying it! It is hard work but I do enjoy it and hope to grow in this area!

  11. this, this, this. I have shared this all over the place because it could not be more true! Your list of tasks literally sums up my life and I am usually working until 1 or 2am to get stuff sorted for the blog around my “other life” parenting etc. It can be so hurtful when others don’t understand that for many of us it’s a business and we put the effort into it that we would a traditional business.

  12. Great post and I could probably add another 10 jobs to that list every single day, none of which I ever get done or anywhere near most of the time! It’s hard work blogging but I also know it has given us more financial freedom and more opportunities than we had without.

  13. There really is so much to blogger! I don’t earn my income from it, but even just doing it as a hobby is hard work. People definitely don’t realise what kind of work goes into blogging!

  14. This was a very interesting read: I went full-time with my blog three years ago and have actually gone back to work just recently using some of the skills I learned (some of which were listed in your very long collection of roles!!) – it’s crazy how much you can learn but how people do just think you sit at home, watching TV and getting stuff for free. Well done you for putting in the time and getting what you want from your blog.

  15. Great post! I always find it difficult to say “I am this, I am that” I think it’s best to do what you do and let others talk about you. As another above commented, my old desk job was very much a left-brained, logical affair. So this world of creativity as a tonic! Keep up the blogging – it’s very good 🙂

  16. Great words. I have too felt for so long that my creativity has been held up for lack of a better word. But my website gives me the freedom to think and say exactly what I want. It is for sure a learning path and asking for help and learning from others is a must. But I have also found that this community of people we have immersed our selves into is so passionate and helpful. Not once have I run into someone who is not willing to show me how they did something or offer advice. I feel so blessed to have found my passion.

  17. I’ve been blogging for nearly 2 years now – but I’m definitely not what I’d call a “professional blogger”, sadly. I need to learn to be more timely with my posts, and there are a few other tips here that I should really take on board! So thanks for sharing! X

  18. Indeed, it takes a lot to become a professional blogger, handling so many tasks makes me feel sick sometimes, since I had lesser tasks to do in my job and got home a hefty salary. But then Blogging keeps on the creativity inside you alive. Great post

  19. Such a great post, especially for those who think “but, it all looks so easy” I’m a food blogger and for the first four years, I simply cooked, too photos, and wrote posts. Then I thought “huh, maybe I’ll market my blog a little” and truly had no idea the amount of work it would take to build an audience. I have such a reverence now for those who persevere, day in and day out. x

  20. I had no idea that you used to do theatre, I used to do musical theatre when I was younger. I know what you mean about blogging though we really do have so many roles to fufil and most days I fall into bed exhausted but at the same time, I like you love what I do! I am glad that you have found your groove, keep being awesome x

  21. Blogging is hard work. I didn’t realize that when I started my blog! But now I find myself working late into the night after my day job is done. Sometimes I wonder why I do it…so yeah, understanding what success means to you is very important.

  22. Oh my! Been doing it for one year and half and still feel like I don’t know anything sometimes, things change at a speed of minutes and hours it’s so hard to keep up. Would love to be a full time blogger but really can’t see how with so much things that it takes every day!!

  23. Interesting thoughts – I wouldn’t classify myself as a proffessional (yet) but I would like to head in that direction, so its interesting to see what types of skills I should develop for the future. Thanks for the input!

  24. There’s no question that friends and family who are not bloggers and don’t see what goes into all this work “behind the scenes” really have no clue how hard it is to get started, established, and grow one’s blog. But that’s OK, fellow bloggers get it. I would add to your list: reading other blog posts regularly from bloggers you admire to maintain your learning curve.

  25. I’ve just realised why I am so damn tired all the time lol! We do so much as bloggers and it is so hard to explain to others what we do isn’t it! Even though I now have a slightly different focus than other bloggers, I have definitely learnt a lot over this past 12 months and you are doing amazing at what you do and I am so proud of you xx

  26. Brilliant post! Lovely to see it all written down and realise I do all those things too, even though I don’t necessarily do the all every day like you. I love your blog, your photography is gorgeous and the whole site looks gorgeous it’s a pleasure to come and read your posts and you are definitely a very relatable, friendly blogger who supports others along the way xx

  27. Brilliant post! I have an online business and it is pretty much like what you just described! 🙂 But I love it that it allows me to explore my creativity which was stifled for so long in my desk job !

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *