Recently, I read a report that in the United States there are 500,000 people who claim that they are professional bloggers and they make a living by blogging.
I also came across many articles saying that blogging is a hobby.
Is blogging a business or a hobby? The answer is both.
Blogging is both a hobby and a business, and if it is a source of income to make a living, then it is a business. A hobby is an activity that a person enjoy doing. While a business is the provision of goods and/or services to society for a profit.
In blogging, either you blog for a hobby, just for self expression, or you blog for money. In either case, you provide a product called a blog or “Web” log, which is online diaries with articles, writings, photos, Web links, linking your blog or website to the entries made by the other creator of blogs, called bloggers.
If blogging is a business, can a blogger make money? Of course! Based on my informal poll, there are many people who blog for income, that is, by becoming entrepreneurs. A business requires tactical planning and making strategic decisions, and to earn from a blog you must apply business tools, like marketing your blog or website to Google to make it known to your target audience or readers, joining on-line communities, making a mailing list of subscribers (like loyal customers and friends), promoting your blog to friends or network of on-line friends or chatmates.
Blogging for business means monetizing your blog or website by putting advertisements in your web pages, like Google Adsense, for example. A blogger for money must know how to generate income from his blogging business to make a profit.
In order to generate income from blogging, you have to consider your blogging as a business, and you have to think like an entrepreneur.
When you blog, you spend time to develop your ideas and write your content, time which you can also use for other pursuits, because time is limited and economics teaches us that being in fixed and limited supply, time has alternative uses.
When you blog, you also incur expenses, like electricity to run your computer, internet connection, web hosting, in case your site is self-hosted, although there are many free blog sites now. And you need to eat to continue blogging. If you blog for self-expression, to express your thoughts and feelings, your blogging by itself won’t pay your bills or make you generate income for livelihood.
Reading the blogs of other bloggers, I noticed that many of them don’t know how to think strategically about their blogging businesses.
They think it’s all about writing high quality content in their blogs and updating it frequently, like daily, four times a week, or weekly, which is a good practice. After all, no readers would like to visit a blog which is static, with the update done 6 months ago.
However, while a good quality content and frequency of posting are important elements in blogging, they are not enough by themselves to attain financial success. Content is only one side to a coin. But good quality content alone cannot bring income.
It is only when business and management principles are applied to blogging that a blogger can make money from his blog, making his blogging his source of income and wealth. In this case, he becomes a professional blogger.