On Becoming a Top Blogger Vs. Building a Successful Business

Posted October 25th, 2006 by Wendy Piersall

I’ve been really blessed to have a fairly successful blog - and I have really, really enjoyed growing it and finding new ways to add value. I am a true learn-by-doing person, meaning I love the thrill of just jumping in and winging it - faking it until I make it, I guess!

At the same time, I have found that building a blog is quite different than maintaining a blog - and there are new challenges to be faced if I want to take this blog to the next level (which I do, and if you wanted to help me with that, would you please add me to your Technorati Favorites list? Nudge, wink?!). Additionally, I have found that having a successful blog can be both a blessing and a challenge.

And I think I am going to really enjoy writing this post, because I don’t have a clue as to where it’s going to go - these tend to be my favorite posts because I usually get a few Ah-Ha’s along the way!

So I am sensing I am on the cusp of a transition - not in topic or content, but more of how I approach working on this blog. It started as a fun side-thingy, took off, and then I was left wondering where to go with it. I made my decision, the blog really took off, and then I was again wondering :: what the heck do I do with this success?

In other words, I was shouting, “SHOW ME THE MONEY!”

To be frank, I did this whole blogging thing backwards. I didn’t plan on it being my business, so I didn’t have a revenue plan in place for it - then I switched gears and my monetization strategies started working… but to nowhere near the degree it needs to in order to even come close to what I used to make when I worked outside of the house. (To be fair, I am saving about 30K a year already while working from home by eliminating day care costs and travel expenses)!

So back to my topic here - I have a great blog, even greater readers, and I need to change my growth strategy. More like tweak it, because everything I did right before will still continue to grow my blog.

So here’s my list of transitions - things that will need to evolve if I am to take this blog, and my business, to the next level:

  1. Transition the following mindset:
    From :: “I run a Work at Home Parents Blog”
    To :: “I offer products and services that maximize revenue and productivity for work at home parents, which is supported by a popular blog on the subject”

    I hated to admit this to myself, but the backward-build wasn’t really working - I was trying to take something that inherently doesn’t make a lot of money and turn it into something highly profitable. There are great revenue-generating blogs out there - but as I have stated before, niche is KEY.

    I have had to let go of the Blog being the business - and once I did that, I found that a floodgate of ideas opened up to me. The Blog is now in its proper place in my business, a PR and lead-generation tool.


  2. Transition the following belief:
    From :: “I need to have and maintain a successful blog”
    To :: “My blog is just one of the many tools I use to grow my business”

    It’s too easy to get caught up in the whole blogging ego thing for me - I just love the attention of incoming links and the fun of traffic spikes soooo much. But they started to work against me when I would get caught up in the effect rather than stay focused on the cause.

    The effect is traffic and new readers
    The cause is a solid business plan and great content


  3. Transition the following approach:
    From :: “Seek to consistently give value”
    To :: “Seek to consistently share value”

    The wording is subtle, yes, and might even sound like the same thing. But the shift in mindset for me was huge. I used to approach this blog as a vehicle to give - but I wasn’t getting anything in return for my long hours spent on the site development.

    I believe that I am not adding value unless I am also receiving value. Now, I am talking in a true business sense here. And as a woman with a tendency to give, give, give, I realized I was taking my life approach - “give without expecting anything in return,” and transferring that in subtle ways to my business approach.

    (I think I need to break this out into a new post - I could go on and on about it!)

    The bottom line is that people who do a lot of giving need to be wary about how they give in business. I’m still ALL about making sure my readers and customers take away something truly valuable - AND I’m also ALL about making sure I receive something of value as well.


  4. Transition the following priorities:
    From :: “I must add X because my readers will love it [”X” being a podcast, an interview series, etc.]
    To :: “The projects I take on must build my business”

    Oh, this one is so hard for me to type! I simply love putting together things that I know you will love!

    Yet, my lesson learned from the BlogJolt project is that while it is immensely rewarding, it is a huge time drain for a new business to handle. I’m committed to maintaining it because I love doing it, and because I will force myself to find a way to justify it in a business sense - but be ye not so silly as I was, putting the cart before the horse.Business initiatives should have a strong foundation in a revenue generation plan and will hopefully be fun to implement. It’s not exactly business savvy to find fun things to implement that you then need to figure out how to monetize. (HHhhmmm, sounds a little like blogging, eh?)


  5. Transition the following intention:
    From :: “I want to take my blog and business to the next level”
    To :: “There is ALWAYS another level :: What can I do to consistently prepare for and foster growth?”

    This one may sound anal and like I’m being too much of an overachiever. And it sounds like a lot of work. But one of the biggest lessons learned in my NLP course is that change is so simple and so easy, if you can 1) access the right resources and 2) you have a recipe for success.

    In fact, after spending nearly 3 years working to rid myself of limiting emotions and beliefs, I was able to clear out more “garbage” in the last two weeks than in the last 3 years combined! Which leads me to wonder… what if we are making this much harder than it needs to be? What if success really is a simple process, if I just knew the recipe?

    To that end, I am working more closely with my mentors, taking time to master NLP, tapping into the minds of very successful friends, and rewriting my business plan. I am still a one woman show - so I must make every working moment count.

    My most successful moments have come from very simple ideas and processes. It boils down to staying focused, keeping the outcome in mind, and planting seeds for future growth at every opportunity.

So, what’s my outcome for this post? I’ve actually written it for myself more than anyone else - to remind myself of where my energy needs to be spent, and to put my business and blog back into perspective.

And also to plant some seeds for future growth… I’ll let the soil rest on those for now. ;)

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6 Comments on “On Becoming a Top Blogger Vs. Building a Successful Business”

  1. Holly Schwendiman Says:

    At the heart of all experience is experience isn’t it? I’ve always been a trial by fire kind of girl - I find the best learning happens this way. So happy burning. *wink* And don’t worry, you’re not alone in the concept of hindsight being something you wish you’d had from the beginning….LOL

    Holly’s Corner

  2. eMoms at Home » Blog Archive » The Results of Putting my Own Advice into Action = $$ Says:

    […] Holy cow. I mentioned yesterday that I have removed more limiting beliefs in the last three weeks than I have in the last 3 years combined. Also, thanks to my NLP skills, I was able to bring a whole new level of clarity, intention and purpose to my values, including eliminating old inner conflicts and a complete overhaul of my priorities. […]

  3. The Law of Attraction - It Just Works Says:

    […] Wendy at eMoms at Home has been showing how the Law of Attraction works, and her recent experience with it. You can see details in her post on Becoming a Top Blogger Vs Building a Successful Business, and the follow-up at The Results of Putting my Own Advice into Action = $$. […]

  4. The Blog Columnist » A Change of Focus in my blogging - and a sort of Goodbye Says:

    […] Other thought-provoking pieces I’ve recently had come across include posts and changes in direction from eMoms at Home, A Mindful Entrepreneur as well as the occasional blog burnout I read about almost on a daily basis. That and the recent PayPerPost conversation spoke volumes to me of what’s happening to blogging - I’m just not interested in that aspect of blogging anymore, reporting on it, talking about it and being a part of it. I’m starting to see blogging as a business in itself is very limited to only the few - early adopters and those that can just blog away hour after hour after hour. For the other 99% of bloggers the ROI (including your time) just doesn’t add up. […]

  5. Tom Bailey Says:

    I dont run my blog as a business, but if I did this information in this article would be a big help. This is my firs post to your blog . Great information is included here.


  6. eMoms at Home » Blog Archive » Plan a 2007 You Can Be Proud Of Says:

    […] I will continue to grow my business via blogging and mindful marketing, putting my 2006 successes and mistakes to work for me. […]