I’m doing it. It can be done and you will survive I promise.
You can keep your paid employment and build your blog up at the same time. Whether that’s full-time or part-time, one job or many. I’ll show you how to blog and work ... and survive it all.
If you are pulling your hair out trying to get your blog to make money and still spending 8 or more hours a day at your paid employment then I can help you. Read on for my top 4 survival tips that you can try today.
If you are interested in one Survival Tip in particular you can use the Quick Guide below to jump straight to it.
I just want to say first up I know it sucks trying to build up your business and still having to work for a living. If you are gainfully employed and rely on your pay check to make ends meet it is probably not sensible to just resign today and start blogging full-time tomorrow.
You will get to your chosen income faster if you do that, but be aware that blogging for a living is not a get rich quick scheme. Realistically if you don't have 12 months worth of income to fall back on my suggestion is don't give up your day job (yet!).
You can still build up your online business and work in paid employment until your blog is paying you what you need to live the life you want!
If like me you want to give up your full-time job and become a pro blogger, as soon as humanly possible, you might need to make some sacrifices now. As you read down the list of my Top 4 Survival Tips please realise this stage is not forever.
There are ways you can speed up the process and get to your dream of a passive income, working in your pyjamas, no boss, and that mind-blowing income you want much sooner.
As always the choice is yours.
Survival Tip #1: What Is Your Priority?
Is your blog your top priority? No really is it or not? There is no right or wrong answer but you do need to give this some serious consideration.
It is OK if it isn’t but you need to acknowledge this and understand it will take longer to achieve the success you seek if your online business is second or third in line to other areas of your life.
I know what it’s like, we all have an “other life”. Kids, partners, volunteering, church commitments, sports, the list is endless. I understand completely, I have commitments also, and you can still make a viable business at the same time.
Even if your blog is not your #1 commitment right now, or if you are just starting a make money website make it your commitment for 3 months.
Yes I am suggesting you give up other things, just for three months, to really give this a chance to work.
Think about how you really spend some of your time now. Could you give up:
- Socialising every weekend
- Eating out
- Anything that takes away valuable time you could be working on your business
If you start and stop, there will be no consistency and your blog will suffer for it. Blogs need regular attention at the start to build them into money making machines.
You are slowing down your progress and lengthening the time until you can blog full-time. Worst still by not giving it your all you are probably setting yourself up for failure.
What will happen is you write a couple of blogs one week, and then life gets in the way, so you don’t do anything for a week. And then because you haven’t done anything you write one blog and think it’s a great achievement and do nothing for another week.
This goes on and at the end of the 3 months you have maybe 8 - 10 blogs written. It’s simply not enough to start seeing any return on your investment. You won’t be seeing any traffic and you won’t have made any sales.
So at the end of the first 3 months of half-hearted effort you will think “well blogging obviously doesn’t work” but in reality you didn’t work it.
Make a solid commitment to give this everything you have for 3 months and then you can make an informed decision about the potential of your online business.
Survival Tip #2: Time Management
The Work Groove
Everyone has a work groove and you need to find yours. This is that time of the day when you work best, are the most efficient, and your brain seems to kick into third gear.
This is different for everyone. For me it is first thing in the morning, I have a friend who works better at midnight.
When do you do your best work?
Once you determine when this is schedule time then to work on your blog. Make is a good solid 2 hours of uninterrupted time. You’ll be amazed at what you can get done in 2 hours when you are working at your peak.
I have chosen to limit my sleep so I have time to work on my blog. I don’t watch much TV and between work and my horses I have very limited spare time. But what I did have was 8 hours of sleep to play with.
So now I get up at 4.30am every week day and this gives me my 2 hours of uninterrupted time before I go to feed the horses. The house is quiet and I can get out of bed and get straight into the groove.
This works for me at the moment and I am prepared to get by on 6 hours of sleep to build my online business. I recognise this won’t be forever and I’m OK with that.
Location, Location, Location
For some it’s at their home office, I have mine set up in our spare bedroom. No dedicated office space for me yet but it will come.
I have read many others prefer to go to a cafe where there aren't the distractions of home. You know the sort, the dishwasher needs unpacking, the lawn needs mowing.
No-one needs those kinds of pressures while they work plus you get a good cup of coffee.
Obviously you may need to tweek your work groove to match your best location. As I said I get up at 4.30am and work in my home office, but I couldn’t get up at 4.30am and go to my local cafe.
Where do you do your best work?
Try a few things and see what works for you to get the optimum work groove in your optimum work location.
A Funny Thing Happens
I’ve been doing this routine for about 6 months now and I find a funny thing happens. Because I get the bulk of my work done in the morning when I do get some extra time at the end of the day I am more motivated to get in and do a little bit more.
I know I’ve done enough for the day but with even 20 - 30 minutes I can get a bit extra done, and it feels like an added bonus.
This makes me feel good and I know it’s extra effort that contributes towards speeding up the time it will take for me to be working for myself. Every little bit helps.
Write It Down
I’ve started carrying a small diary (you could use your phone) to record my blog ideas.
Your time to write blogs will probably be limited, what with having to work for a boss and all, so you don’t want to be wasting valuable time trying to think of topics, it is well … a waste of time.
I know when I’m with my horses I have great ideas for blog topics, but more often than not by the time I get home I’ve forgotten them. Now I write them in my diary before I leave the stables.
I’ve got about 30 new topics to choose from now and I’m never stuck for something to write about.
On Sundays I then decide on my topics for the week and which days I will write them, and they get written in my diary so I know exactly what I have planned for each day.
I have two websites so it’s important that each gets its fair share of blogs and by writing them down I can see how much I am scheduling for each one.
This reminds me to tell you about my biggest mistake, and give you a survival tip which will save your sanity.
DO NOT start a second blog.
When you are starting out stick with one blog and work solely on that until it is the best darn blog you could create (and it’s making you the money you want). You only need one blog to be wildly well off financially.
People with more experience than I told me exactly that when I started talking about creating a second blog only 6 months into starting the first.
Well I kind of blew them off thinking I could handle it and started the second blog, which coincidentally is the one you are reading right now.
I was wrong!
All I have done is divided my time, halved the effort each blog gets and doubled the time it is going to take to get them to a point where either of them are make massive money.
If I had stuck with one there is no doubt I would be seeing more sales than I am at this point.
So I have put the first site on the back burned and I am now concentrating on this one, which is why you are reading this blog and not one about horses (my other niche is helping new horse owners).
Survival Tip #3: Do What Matters
During your Work Groove do the most important things only. If you are not sure exactly what the most important things are for a new blog then let me share with you my thoughts.
I do other less important things outside of my groove, when I have those spare 20 - 30 minute blocks. This is usually things like designing graphics, catching up on social media interaction, changing the layout on my site etc..
But for my 2 hour work groove time it is always content first and then promotion of that content second.
You’ve probably heard the saying “Content is King” and this is absolutely true. Without content you don’t have a blog and you don’t have any income. Simples!
So you need content but not all content is created equal. When starting a new blog I recommend concentrating on posts that bring you the best bang for your buck.
What are those I hear you ask - check them out:
Best Of or List Posts
Blogs like Best Widget of 2019, Top 10 Bloggers, 5 Ways To Brush a Cat. You get the idea.
There is some evidence that the more massive the list the better. So instead of 7 colour combinations you can paint a feature wall you’d write a blog covering 48 colour combinations for feature walls.
7 ways will get a lot of people, 48 ways will get more people who see your post headline to click through, it’s just human nature.
Also as long as you have engaging content, to keep them reading all those 48 ways, it is going to take your readers longer to get through the post, so they stay on your site for longer, which is good for rankings.
This is where you email a heap of well respected people with a question and ask them to provide a couple of paragraphs in response.
These rank well and you really only need an intro and an outro and copy and paste the responses and your blog is finished and ready to publish.
Plus you can then do some outreach. I've covered that a little further down. Outreach is gold so keep reading to learn how to do it.
Sorry to bring this up guys but in this department bigger really is better.
You should have at least one Super Duper Ultimate Guide that is relevant to your niche and on a topic which is highly sought after by your visitors.
This could be anything from 5,000 to 15,000 words.
Yes it does take quite a bit of time to get something of this detail together but in the long run it is time worth spending to then have it available on your blog.
This sets you apart from the rest and helps you stand out from the crowd..
It shows that you do care about providing quality to your readers. Your readers can feel this in your content and the more in depth and relevant to their problem the better.
Mine is the Ultimate How To Affiliate Marketing Guide at almost 7,000 words. Eventually there will be the Ultimate How To Social Media Guide and probably others also.
Which brings me to ....
How To Blogs
Tutorial blogs are always well received by visitors. They have a problem and you are going to show them how to fix that problem.
There are usually lots of opportunities within these types of blogs to recommend products or services and then link to your product review pages.
Particularly in the make money niche product reviews are essential to your success. They rank well (assuming you are using the correct keywords) and they target visitors who are well into the buying cycle. These people are already hot prospects because they are ready and searching for a product to buy.
There are literally thousands of products you can review. The good ones you will have an affiliate link included so your readers can purchase the product, the not so good ones you will have an affiliate link to a better product that you do recommend for them.
Give your readers options, they came to you with a problem you need to help them fix it, not leave them thinking they need to go and look elsewhere for the answer.
Speaking of which if your problem is that you don't have enough knowledge to rank and monetise your website then you can join me on the #1 affiliate marketing training platform available.
They offer a free Starter membership so you can check it out. You don't have to put in your credit card, there are no upsells, no risk and no obligation to stay. They offer the best training you will find anywhere, full stop.
Honestly if you don't check this out you are bonkers!
OK so once you have those blogs you need to promote them.
Don’t be shy. Now is not the time to be a shrinking violet. You’ve spend all that time and effort writing your blogs, and they are fantastic, the world needs to see them.
Using Social Media
Don’t just post your main feature image on Pinterest - pin every single image from the blog with a link back to it. Using Tailwind you can schedule your pins, so one blog might give you a new pin every day for 5 - 7 days with all the images you have used within it.
Don’t just post your blog to your Facebook home page, create a dedicated page for your business, share your blog from that business page to every relevant group you can.
Note some FB groups specifically prevent and monitor spam. Don't use direct affiliate links in your social media sharing, refer readers back to your blog post and let that do the selling.
One word of warning though, choose one or two social media platforms for your promotion. Some are better than others depending on your niche so you will need to do some homework, but only choose two to work.
Social media takes a lot of time to do properly. It's much better to do 1 or 2 platforms really well than 5 badly.
Believe me I speak from experience you just don't have the time to do them all justice. You think you can but you won't, so make a decision on which ones are best for your business and stick to using them only.
Through social media you can start to interact with with Influencers. They need to be prominent, well known people within your niche who have a good number of followers already.
Follow them and start commenting on their work. Do this regularly and with no thought for what you might get out of it. You are building a relationship at this stage.
Once you feel you have developed some rapport with them you might then send them an email with a link to one of your blogs that you feel is perfect for their audience.
You would do this with all the experts you used in your roundup blog as soon as it is published. Email them a copy of your blog and ask them to share it if they would like too.
Once you build relationships with these pro bloggers and you have a question that they can help you with drop them an email and ask.
Yes I know they are busy people, but you never know if you don’t ask, you might just get lucky and get a response that can really help you. I have actually found those who are doing really well are more than happy to help out budding entrepreneurs.
They know what it's like, they were in your shoes once, and more often than not they are prepared to take the time to help out someone who shows they are striving to make it to the top.
I did a blog showcasing my Top 3 Super Affiliate Mentors a while back. I emailed all three with a link to my blog letting them know that I consider them my mentors, that they inspire me and that I am learning a lot from them and appreciate it. I also suggested they might like to check it out if they had a spare minute.
Two of the three super affiliates promoted my blog on their Twitter following and I got a huge spike in traffic. Do enough of these and you are getting more eyeballs on your blogs.
More traffic equals more sales, and means you get to pro blogger status faster and can stop going to that job you don't like so much.
Survival Tip #4: Invest In Your Business
You can start out for free with affiliate marketing and you can stay doing it for free but you will greatly speed up your progress and be able to make an income greater than what you make at your job if you invest in yourself and your business.
If you are new to blogging as I was you need to know how to do it right. You can put all your best efforts in, really commit and work hard, but if you are not doing the right things in the right order you are slowing down your progress and may possibly never make money.
Boo we don't want that!
This is directed to those who want to make money obviously so they can stop working full-time. If you are blogging for fun then you can just go on typing but for those who want to make money, replace their current income and do this for a living, you need to be doing it right.
You can learn everything you need to know to make a successful money making blog on the internet. It is all there for free IF you know what you're looking for.
But how will you know what it is you need to learn and in what order you should be doing things?
This is where investing a little money in yourself will pay off. Find a teaching platform that will walk you step by step through the process of setting up a monetised blog.
There are a few reputable platforms that can do this for you I have already given you a link above to where I recommend for training. As I said you can check out their training for free to see if it is something you would like to pursue, but there are others on the internet that you can check out also.
I will put a link down the bottom too my free Ultimate How To Affiliate Marketing Guide which will give you additional training hints and tricks.
You might need to consider spending some money at this point. The really good education platforms usually have a membership fee attached to them. Obviously they are not going to give you all their best training for nothing.
You have decided by now if you are really committed to blogging to make income. If you are, then invest in your education so you are moving in the right direction and not sabotaging your efforts by doing it all wrong.
You wouldn't open a carpentry business without the skills and knowledge to do the work and expect to make money. Why would you think you can build an online business without the skills and knowledge to make it profitable?
Your website is your vehicle to making money. Initially you can get away with a lot of free stuff eg. free themes, free plugins but one thing you shouldn’t skimp on is good hosting.
Your site needs to be fast and available 24/7. Free or cheap hosting is invariably inferior quality, slow and glitchy.
You will probably need to pay a little bit to get some of the essentials for a profitable site. You need site security (SSL certificate), you need it to be fast to load, you need tech support for when things go wrong as they invariably will and you need your site to be live on the web at all times.
Once again you will be wasting time if you don’t have a responsive site. Your visitors won’t stay long if the site doesn’t function properly and they won’t buy anything either.
When you are deciding who will host your site make sure these areas are covered.
By investing a little money now in yourself and your business you know you are on the right track to making a full time wage. This will shorten the time you need to be working full-time and blogging.
Hang In There It Will Get Better
I hope you enjoyed my survival tips on how to blog and work full-time. My biggest advice is to hang in there, you don't want to stop 3 feet from gold!
The Three Feet From Gold story comes from Napoleon Hill's classic masterpiece Think and Grow Rich. This book is simply profound and has the capacity to change your entire life. I have found a full copy as a free audio book just click on the video below to listen.
I know it can feel like tough going when you are starting out, I've been there too. Just know that your blogging will get faster the more you do, everything will start to take less time, and the pieces of the puzzle will start to fall into place for you.
And then one magical day you will be earning more money than you ever thought possible and you will be able to give your boss the flick. Don't you think that day is worth a little effort now?
If you need more training or better hosting for your business check out my Ultimate Guide below. It has all the details of the platform that I run my business from and you can check it out for free to see if it can help you.
If you are struggling to survive tell us about your biggest challenge or if you have a survival tip that is working for you share it with us in the comment box below.
As always if you have any questions about how to blog and work please drop them in the comment box too, I'd love to help you out.