A lot of bloggers start out with zero motivation to make money. People start blogs to post pictures, keep an online journal or just for a place to store their writing. At the beginning these bloggers see no real need to make money blogging and might even be unaware of the fact that you can monetize a blog.
A lot of bloggers start out this way and upon finding out that they can use their blog as a source of income have already done a huge percentage of the groundwork involved in making a blog marketable. If that’s the case, and their blog is already a few years old with all the pieces in place, it’s just a matter of placing some AdSense ads or selling your own products.
However for the blogger who starts from scratch with the intention to generate an income, they’re walking a much thinner line in terms of their motivating factor.
The challenge this aspiring blogger faces is that they must stay motivated in the face of zero returns on their investment, probably for the first one or two years.
Even with the intention to make money eventually, a blogger’s motivation needs to come from the same source of those that blog purely for pleasure.
Now it’s true that there are ways and methods to market your content that might elude the casual blogger, but overall you need to work hard to stay authentic, even if financial gain is your primary motivator.
Know that your content will drive whatever income you do end up earning, which should free you up to concentrate on that for the first year or so while leaving your stats and earnings reports tucked away until they’re generating bigger numbers.
Working for Free
If you’ve ever been sold the idea that blogging for income is a get-rich-quick solution, you’ll know very quickly once you start that you were sold a bunch of non-sense. Blogging is tremendously hard work, requiring a lot of thought, self-motivation and creativity on your part. Instead of getting rich quick, what you’ll ultimately have to do is work for free for a very long time.
This is part of the reason so many blogs fail, because people don’t have the patience to maintain a steady flow of good content for such a long period of time. A big part of the battle is staying patient while putting time and effort into something with no visible return.
The best way to make sure this happens is to keep your early expectations low. Do some research and read some stories written by successful bloggers about how they got to where they are. You’ll find that almost all of them had to trudge through the first couple years before they really started to get their footing.
Those stories of eventual success will definitely be a motivating factor for you while you’re in the trenches.
Keeping Your Head Down
A blog is essentially a business venture, with very little overhead, flexible hours and you immediately become the CEO. It’s a great deal on the surface, but you need to be able to put the work in and treat your blog like a business. Like any business, it takes years to get fully off the ground, but know that if you keep your head down and work hard like you would any job, you absolutely will see the fruits of your labor.
If you’re just starting out, make sure you press hard and stay focused through those first couple years. Try to avoid getting too hung up on stats or the trickle of income you have coming through your AdSense account. If you revisit it after that two-year mark, chances are you’ll be met with a much brighter outlook.
Jason Bayless is a professional blogger that gives small business and entrepreneurs SEO advice. He writes for BestSEOCompanies.com, a nationally recognized comparison website of the best SEO companies in the United States.