How Long does it take to Become a Successful Blogger?
I was having a conversation last week with Kane at the gym in-between pushing the prowler (horrid thing that you push along weighing maybe 60kg!). We were talking about the reality of building a business and how long it takes to get going making a real living for yourself. I thought I would reflect on the amount of time it has taken to get to this point of earning a living. Because it’s taken a while!!
I want people to realise all the time and hard work it takes to become a successful blogger. It’s not a get rich quick kind of job, it takes time to build, a bit of luck (but you make your own luck, right?) and hard work on your own behalf.
Mrs Mummypenny is born
Mrs Mummypenny was born in June 2013, 4 ½ years ago. I was on maternity leave and was bored. The blog was born to keep me amused for a few months before returning to work full time at EE. I returned to work a few months later and the blog continued as a hobby. Fortunately, I had the foresight to sort out a few things early days. I came up with the blog name, designed a logo and grabbed the .co.uk and .com and all the social media handles. And I started to write content. That’s was pretty much all I did for the first year, was to keep writing a piece of content once a week. I would share a money saving tip on Facebook every day, and keep the Twitter account building.
I was working in a very busy full time stressful job so didn’t have much time for the blog. It was never picked up by brands and didn’t earn a penny
A mental health blip
There was a gap of 6 months for Mrs Mummypenny from Sept 2014 to March 2015. I was going through an extremely tough time at work and fell into a depression. There was no mind space for anything let along keeping a website updated with content. The work issues were resolved with me having redundancy agreed. This was the biggest gift I could ever have got, some money to set up my business and really focus on Mrs Mummypenny. The blog was brought to life again and the serious work started to build the blog once I left my job.
My Official Yr. 1 where I started earning money
I set up a limited company in Sept 2015 for the business. In the couple of months leading to this I planned a proper business start-up. I wrote a business plan, got a grant from the government and went for it building up my social numbers, learning about SEO, attending every event I could, writing about brands I loved, discovering the world of blogging in Facebook groups. I learnt a lot!
Alas my first official year 1 netted very little money. It was the year of self-promotion and getting out there. The year of creating engaging content. The year of building up my social media. Things did start to happen with brands. Looking back 2016 was the year I started to work with Aldi. I did some sponsored posts with brands such as Love the Sales, McDonald’s and Standard Life. But the fees charged were pretty low. I earned a grand total of £1,500 in my first year. This income was not going to set the world on fire. Luckily, I had my redundancy money to keep us going and pay the mortgage and bills.
Year 2 Sept 2016 to Aug 2017
This was where Mrs Mummypenny really went boom. The hard work from year 1 was paying off. PR agencies knew who I was, I had made my way onto all the PR firm databases. Brands started to choose me for campaigns.
At the beginning of this year I wrote my book Blogging Your Way To Riches with Emma Bradley and this really pushed me up many levels as a blogger, I became known in all the blogger circles as well. Newspaper and magazine work started to happen. The social media numbers continue to grow hugely along with traffic. And there was so much fabulous content on the website by this point.
It’s a perfect storm of all the hard work coming together and then the money starts to flow. Income was consistently growing every quarter and I was now able to cover my share of the bills. But it was touch and go. I remember meeting my friend Heather in the January and talking about it being the crunch moment. The redundancy money had run out and I wasn’t sure if Mrs Mummypenny would make enough money.
I just needed to believe…by May and June I had earned £2,500 in each month alone.
Year 3 Sept 2017 onwards
The business continues to grow more and more. I work regularly with many big brands including Pensionbee, Asda Finance and Smart Energy GB. I have worked with some of the biggest financial companies in the UK, for brands like Zurich, Fidelity, confused.com. To diversify the business, I have also worked with several brands on blogger outreach.
I am only four months in to year 3, but it’s already looking like my turnover for year 3 will be double the turnover from year 2. I am earning more money than I need to I can finally put money into savings and pay off bigger chunks of my debt.
It’s been a hard slog
You can see it’s taken time. Lots of time and perseverance. There has been a gradual build of content, social media, contacts that eventually turns into money. Have faith, keep going and working hard at it and it will happen.