4 Mistakes That Keep Blogs From Growing Into Businesses
Ella Rucker, director of operations of #MentorMonday, co-founder of Weekend Startup School, and serial blogger has spent years collaborating with some of the most popular and revenue-generating online brands and has seen enough to conclude that it is not a lack of talent that keeps bloggers from becoming business owners. “Moving a blog to a business is really about mindset,” she says.
I had the opportunity to sit down with Rucker to find out what type of mindset separates bloggers from business owners. Here are four major ways that bloggers’ thinking stymie their business success.
Erroneously defining what a blog is. “It is understood that part of the definition of entrepreneur is someone trying to make money. That’s been the definition for years. However, since the term ‘blogger’ is so new, different definitions permeate our thinking. Blogs started out as diaries that were shared with friends; then they became diaries that made a little money on the side; now they are the basis or foundation of businesses.” Rucker says.
Bloggers provide a good place for marketers to spend their money.
“Sponsors need and want to pay us, and we should think of ourselves like businesses that aren’t necessarily being paid by them, but that are providing them our platform to make them more money,” she maintains.
Thinking small. According to Rucker, “Sponsors reach out to bloggers’ in order to leverage their audience; yet, they think that getting $100 or even $1000 per sponsored post is a good way to go. Only when bloggers realize they’ve built an army of followers who really want to support their leader (which is what they are doing when they support a sponsor we ask them to), who trust us just like they trust Disney or Pepsi, then they will start to see themselves as a business and businesses need products and services of their own.”
Hanging out with bloggers who don’t have business aspirations. Rucker has seen Social Mirror Theory play out in the blogger world. Network with people from different worlds in order to learn more about the money-making possibilities out there.
“I’m in groups with speakers, authors, PR professionals, and I work with a millionaire,” says Rucker. “Blogging is a platform for them to do other business and if you aren’t around people who foster that mindset you need to be.”
Not investing in their blogs. If you want to take your blogging to the business level, you have to make sacrifices to get real help from people who have done it. “My income is going to have to be such that I can live comfortably AND get the training, coaching, mentoring, legal advice, and equipment I need for my business,” Rucker says.
She cites the evidence to support this concept: the entrepreneurs who appear on the show Shark Tank. The people who appear on that show “give up chunks of their business to get quality advice and those entrepreneurs do exponentially better,” she says. “Bloggers need to think long term about their ‘blogging’ business.”
Kara is a life coach and founder of the personal finance and lifestyle blog The Frugal Feminista. Connect with Kara @frugalfeminista. Learn more about The Frugal Feminista at www.thefrugalfeminista.com Get your FREE ebook: The 5-Day Financial Reset Plan: Eliminate Debt, Know Your Worth, and Heal Your Relationship with Money in Just 5-days at www.thefrugalfeminista.com.