If we ever have kids, I’m going to be a stay-at-home mom.
That’s what I told my husband many years ago. He kind of gave me a look like he didn’t understand what I meant so I explained it further.
I didn’t want to miss out on moments in my life or feel like my kid was being raised by someone else. I didn’t want to stress about a job and stress about my kid as well.
Basically, I wanted a way to control the life I could have with my child.
He understood but you could see in the back of his mind the gears were turning. How in the hell were we going to pull this off?
We aren’t exactly the type of couple to lock down the finances and life the super frugal life. We don’t want to spend money like crazy but we don’t want to feel held back by finances.
That’s a possibility when you’re only dealing with a single income.
I used to work for a Fortune 500 company and I was burnt out.
My husband was tired of the grind as well so he told me that he was going to figure out a way that would allow us to never enter the rat race again. Not sure why I said rat race since I never use that term but I guess you gotta say something at least once in your life.
His Idea Was Blogging
Admittedly over the years my husband has tried a lot of different ways to make money. It’s just the type of person he is. When he told me that we were going to start a health and fitness blog I kind of just nodded my head not knowing what he was really talking about.
I mean I had heard of blogs but didn’t quite understand them.
I knew people wrote on blogs but it didn’t seem like the kind of thing you would make money from. My husband tried to explain the different ways to make money blogging but in all honesty, it was flying over my head.
So he figured the best way was to just show me and so we started a blog and to be honest, I hated it.
That’s probably not what you were expecting to hear but it was the truth.
I’m a perfectionist when it comes to almost everything that I do so the idea of writing for complete strangers was paralyzing. It would take me days to finish a post while my husband could pump out a couple a day if he wanted to.
I didn’t see how any of this was going to give us the freedom that we really wanted.
Then one day he showed me our analytics (this is where you see how much traffic you’re getting) and there was a huge spike. This is what it looked like:
A couple hundred people had come to our blog in one day. That was awesome!
Unfortunately, we didn’t make any money from that. I thought when people came to your blog you made money? Why else was I stressing about writing perfect blog posts?!
He explained that we needed to get enough traffic to join an ad network so we continued to work on content and a couple months later we got accepted into AdThrive.
Making Money Changes You
Let me tell you something, there aren’t many things that feel as good as making your own money.
After the first day of ads were put on our site, we logged into the dashboard and saw that we made over $100. That was our money!
For the first time it felt like all of the stress and worry was worth something.
Over time I learned the types of posts to write and what things people liked to read. When we started doing well with Thrive/Strive my husband suggested that we could make even more money if we created our own product.
Whoa, whoa, whoa.
What was wrong with just coasting on ad money? All we had to do was write posts, get traffic, and then get paid.
He explained two things to me:
- It’s better to have multiple streams of revenue. This seems completely obvious in hindsight but I was happy in my blogging shell and didn’t want to risk losing that.
- You can make so much more when you control everything.
So I said let’s do it and we decided that we were going to create a membership site based around the ketogenic diet.
We had been doing it for a couple of months at the time and loved it so much we wanted to share it with the world.
So he did his computer things and built up a wonderful site and I laid out the features that I thought it should have.
When we got read to launch that fear of starting something new came over me again.
What if people hated it?
What if we wasted our time?
Did we mess up by taking time away from the blog to focus on this?
My husband is the type of person that is always calm. Me? I try not to show my stress but inside I worry. It’s just how I am.
Not too many people joined the first month and I really began to wonder what was the point.
Then the next month a couple more people trickled in.
Each month things started to improve.
Now? Things are great!
Everyday I get to interact with wonderful people from all over the world and help them on their journey. My husband says I’m a community manager which sounds like a cool title but I don’t feel like I’m managing anything.
I just sit down and interact with people over email, Facebook or our Slack group. It’s fun and most important I can do it all on my own time.
I’m not going to lie, I probably wouldn’t have done any of this if it wasn’t for my husband. He’s always been a computer guy and has no problem taking risks. I’m happy he pulled me along with him because I couldn’t imagine my life being any different now.
I’m sure you’re wondering how much money we make and instead of trying to explain everything here (my husband kind of went wild and built a whole empire) it would be easier if you went and read one of his blog income reports.
Blogging Advice from a Mom
It’s important to note that I’m no blogging expert. My husband is the blog genius and I just follow his lead. However, there are some lessons that I’ve picked up that I want to share with you.
Your Topics Matter
When we first started I was adamant about writing whatever I wanted. If I was going to spend a lot of time writing something then I wanted it to be what I wanted it to be.
Unfortunately, that approach sucked.
I was writing posts that nobody was reading. Let me tell you, you don’t want to spend months writing content and feeling like you are getting nowhere with it.
It’s a hard lesson to learn but it’s important that you write about the things that people are searching for. I know there are a lot of great bloggers out there that only write opinion pieces and you share them on Facebook with your friends but most of these awesome women have been blogging forever.
Nowadays if you want to get traction you need to pick the right topics to write about.
My husband (I talk about him too much) wrote about the 7 blog niches that he loves and help us make money.
Write for Them
When it comes to blogging it’s very easy to talk about yourself but guess what? Most of the people that come to your site aren’t there to read about you. They are there to get the solution to the problem you promised to help them solve.
If you’re telling them you have a way to increase their breast milk supply then you better show them the way.
Sure, you can interject your own little story to help build a connection but at the end of the day you have to make your content about them and not about you.
If you keep that little tidbit in mind you’ll go far.
Set Your Schedule
Blogging really isn’t one of those things that you can just say you’ll get around to at some point in the day. I’ve found that having a routine is very important.
For example, I know the exact time my son is going to take an afternoon nap so that is my time to work on this blog. Blogging at the beginning really is about consistency and building momentum.
Too many moms have big ambitions with a blog but they fizzle out because they can’t maintain momentum.
You don’t need to write every single day but you should make sure that you do something every single day that can contribute to the growth of your blog.
It’s like cleaning your house. You have to start with one simple thing to build momentum. It took me a while to find a schedule that I could stick to every single day that allowed me to help grow our business.
It’s tough at the beginning but when you understand the small tasks that you can knock out in small timeframes it gets a lot easier.
Surround Yourself With Other Bloggers
I like to tell my husband that he is the only best friend that I need and while that is true. I still think it’s important to surround yourself with others that are on the same journey.
Paul (I gotta stop saying my husband in this post) runs a pretty cool blogging community but you don’t need to join a paid blogging community to find other bloggers.
There are a TON of free blogging related Facebook Groups where you can ask questions and help others.
I Can’t Believe I’m a Blogger
3 years ago if you were to tell me I was going to become a blogger and someone that owned an online business I would’ve laughed at you. I hate computers. I hate putting myself out there. I just hated the whole idea of blogging.
While I’m still not totally comfortable with being out in the open, it’s something that I now understand the value in doing.
Now that we are at this point there really is no turning back. I couldn’t imagine a life where I didn’t get to choose my own schedule and spend as much time as I want with my baby.
It’s something that I really wish for every mom out there.
Paul is looking over my shoulder so I think he wants to say some words.
Paul takes over the keyboard…
Hi! My name is Paul. I refer to myself as Scrivs online so if you see that name then just know it’s the same person.
Elisa (the wife) has done a killer job of sharing her perspective on this crazy online business that we’ve created and that is exactly what blogging is. A blog is a business.
It’s not a hobby. It’s part of our business and that’s how you need to treat it.
If you don’t fully understand the concept of blogging and how it all works then I’ve put together an awesome and free 12-Day Blogging Bootcamp that will get you up to speed on things.
I think that’s all I wanted to say.