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5 Tips to Make Money Blogging if You’re Flat Broke

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You see such a heavy emphasis on how to make money blogging if you’re broke but few bloggers focus on the “broke” part.

To cure a disease you need to find the root cause of the malady.

Yet you may banging your pretty little head against the wall because after following the advice of well-meaning, successful bloggers, you’re still flat broke and your blog makes enough money to buy a bottle cap each month.

Are You Blogging Just to Make Your Daily Bread

 

Goodness knows I’ve been there with you. I first intended to convert my blog into an ATM machine. Years later it still wasn’t offering withdrawals.

I eventually learned that when you’re flat broke you have a money problem that must be solved from the inside out.

How to Make Money Blogging

Accepting the truth of the prior line will change your life immediately. You’ll follow all the good, practical advice offered by profit-earning, successful, well known bloggers, leading to fabulous results over the long haul.

Follow these 5 tips to make money blogging. Even if you’re dead broke.

In addition to each of the five tips below, also be sure to check out these latest stats and figures from MyWorkFromHomeMoney’s make money blogging report.

Figure Out Why (and Make it Fun….and Freeing)

If you’re low on cash you have an energy problem. Stop resisting money. Start falling in love with blogging about a passionate topic.

During my “Broke Joke” years I blogged primarily to make money. When the money did not arrive after 1 day, or 1 week, or 1 month, I flipped out. I tried harder to make money through my blog and struggled even worse.

I moved away from a fun, freeing, passionate driver toward a strained, serious, desperate driver. This created an endless cycle of misery and financial heartbreak.

I referred to this as the meal ticket approach to blogging when covering common blogging mistakes recently. Blogging to just make enough cash to eat, today, sends off a desperate, strained, money-blocking vibe.

Blog your passion. Make having fun your predominant driver. What can you talk about all day long? Blog about it. The blogging fun becomes the reward so you won’t be as needy or desperate to make that sweet cash. This step alone will ease money-related anxieties.

Now it’s time to dive into some unpleasant but harsh realities connected to your broke-ness. Few bloggers take this step but the brave minority leapfrogs their money issues quickly.

Address Your Money Issues Immediately

Being broke has nothing to do with blogging. Nor does it have anything to do with your job. Being broke has nothing to do with the economy. Having no dough only has to do with some past trauma, anxiety, worry or panic you cling to related to money or something even beyond money, like the loss of a loved one.

If you skip this step and try to “practical tip” your way out of your money problem you tend to ignore sound, proven blogging advice. Meaning you’ll be blind to good blogging advice.

make money blogging

Look down at the following tips. Unless you address how you *really* feel about money you will ignore tips 3, 4 and 5. Not only that, you will move in the opposite direction. Manipulating people. Trying to do it on your own. Trying to build your blog on free, shared hosting platforms.

I know. I’ve made these mistakes repeatedly over my 8 year blogging career. But I turned things around by addressing my limiting beliefs and fears concerning money. Most of the lower energies were rooted in my childhood.

Practical Exercise

Spend time in quiet. Observe your earlier years on planet earth. How did your parents view money? Did they see money as scarce? Did they work themselves to the bone just to barely make ends meet? Write down the low energy, painful feelings you experience when dwelling on your money history. Feel the deep, dark emotions. Then, after a good cry, or maybe an intense burst of anger, take a deep breath and burn the piece of paper over the sink as a cathartic cleanse.

Burn the paper to release these money blocks/lower energies for good.

Regularly revisit your resistance to money based on your financial past to clear out the head trash. Tune into smart blogging advice by releasing the money lies that parents, siblings and the general public at large freely offered to you.

This may not seem like something you’d read on a blogging tips themed blog but following this advice has led to miraculous breakthroughs in my blogging life.

Focus Your Energies on Helping Not Manipulating

Broke bloggers often try to manipulate people to give them money, using trickery, dishonesty and other desperate approaches to force money from confused souls. The end result: either more financial struggles, a loss of reputation, legal troubles or all three.

Helpers get paid. If you have little cash to your name tap into the invaluable currency known as “help.”

Readers buy your products or hire you based on how freely you help them with their problems. Whether you have money or not means nothing to someone you inspired to crush a devastating problem or to live a stunning dream.

People hired me to coach them when I only had $25 in my checking account.

People hired me to coach them when I was making $3000 a month through freelance writing alone.

The individual could give a crap less whether I was a boxcar hobo or living in Fiji. I helped them. They hired me. Or they bought my eBooks or blogging audio course.

Check out a recent engagement from my Facebook Wall:

Facebook Chat

I simply asked a question and replied with in depth answers to each question. No agenda other than helping my buddies and getting ideas for future blog posts to help them. This keeps Sumit, Ravi, David and Lorraine tuned in to my updates and it also fosters our growing friendships.

How much does this marketing approach cost you? Zero. Zilch. Nada.

Help people by answering their questions through email. Ditto on Facebook. Ditto on Twitter. Be thorough. Be generous. Show off your knowledge. Your temporary broke-ness is usually indicative of holding back your help.

Blogger newbies should dive head first into learning, studying, implementing and tracking to become helpful to their readers. Consider using the 5 Hour Rule followed by billionaire icons like Bill Gates, Warren Buffet and Oprah to increase your skill set and helpfulness each week.

How to Help

  • publish blog posts
  • publish videos
  • share podcasts
  • offer advice through email or social media, answering questions thoroughly to
    help generously

Help. Attract money by becoming a trusted, helpful resource in your niche. Here are some of the best working tips to make money with a blog from Zac Johnson.

Make Friends to Go from Broke to Booming Blogger

Bloggers regularly state that I seem to know everybody online. Admittedly, I knew a few less folks than “everybody” but I am a connected blogger.

I’ve been blessed to appear on Richard Branson’s Virgin blog, Forbes and Neil Patel Dot Com. I even spoke about blogging at prestigious NYU. All because I made a bunch of friends. I promoted fellow bloggers, commented on their blogs and linked to their blogs via my blog posts. A healthy handful of these bloggers became my friends. Said buddies promoted me, endorsed me, expanded my reach quickly and their generosity allowed me to reach more targeted folks and to make more money through my blog.

As a rule, broke bloggers believe in publishing a blog masquerading as a cyber diary. If you build it, they won’t come. If you build it and make friends, readers will arrive by the boatload.

Make friends by promoting fellow bloggers on social media sites. Shout them out. Link to their latest posts on your blog. Refer your blogging buddies to other bloggers who may be able to help them.

Be generous. Become popular. Watch your blogging reach grow like a weed on steroids. Observe how steadily your blogging income grows.

Tor Refsland of Time Management Chef is a fabulous example of a connected guy who’s made influential friends in really high places. He’s grabbing the “make friends” advice and taking it to the extreme. In a good way.

He has been featured on 158 blogs in 14 months. Amazing.

Invest the Few Bucks You Have in a Self-Hosted WordPress Blog

I saved the best for last.

If you don’t have $10 to $30 to invest in a self-hosted WordPress blog per month stop what you’re doing right now. Go get a job. Build your savings. Then, invest in a domain and hosting.

Famous people like Seth Godin can get away with using a free blogging platform because he’s already gained the trust of his audience.

He could send out blog post updates by carrier pigeon and his loyal readers/minions would wait beside their windows for the latest Godin jewels of wisdom, delivered with a nasty little pigeon deposit or two.

Whip out your credit card. Buy a domain and hosting. Stand out from the crowd. Tailor your blog just how you want it. Own your cyber real estate. Maximize your branding and earning potential.

Set aside $120 to $360 of your money each year for a domain and hosting and say to yourself:

“Even though I am struggling financially, by investing this money I will position myself to earn thousands of dollars, then $10,000, then $100,000 and more over the next 5 to 10 years.”

Dwell on that statement before you even dream of attempting to make money blogging through a free, shared hosting solution.

Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income screams “branded blog.” No blog looks like Pat’s blog.

Smart Passive Income

It’s impossible to achieve this branded, one of a kind look unless you pay for a self-hosted, WordPress blog.

If you can’t afford a few hundred dollars each year to devote toward a domain and hosting you will have an extremely difficult time making money with your blog.

Conclusion

Take it from a guy who’s been down to his latest 4 pennies and who’s also traveled the world as a full time blogger over the past 5 years. Each of these tips works darn well if you’re trying to make coin as a bootstrapped blogger.

Are you struggling to make money blogging because you’re broke?

Do you follow any one of these tips?

What is your biggest blogging struggle as far as trying to monetize your blog?

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Ryan Biddulph is the owner of Blogging From Paradise. He's a blogger, author and world traveler who's been featured on Richard Branson's Virgin Blog, Forbes, Fox News, Entrepreneur Dot Com and Neil Patel Dot Com. Ryan can help you become a full time blogger with his eBook.

Blogging

4 Blogging Lessons Learned in Bali

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I have spent over a year collectively on the Island of the Gods.

Bali is a special place.

This popular island in Indonesia teaches you 4 clear blogging success lessons too.

Let’s dive in guys.

1: Expect the Unexpected

During a house sit at a huge villa in Jimbaran I:

  • faced down and helped slay a spitting cobra
  • dealt with a chicken killing dog
  • lost 2 of the pets (1 to cancer and 1 to likely thievery)

This list could go on forever. From this sit alone.

Bali is a fun, fascinating and sometimes wild place. Like most developing places; you never know what waits around the corner.

I am writing this guest post because the security certificate expired on my blog. I had no idea this would happen right now. Completely unexpected. But being a blogger for 10 years I know to expect the unexpected.

When my developer wakes up he addresses it and we move forward. Until then I am at peace with my blog being down. No worries. Part of the blogging game.

Expect the unexpected with your blog guys. It will happen.

2: Learn to Celebrate Everything

Balinese are an appreciative people who celebrate everything.

Staff at the villa in Jimbaran regularly took off for ceremonies, celebrating everything from cell phones, to papayas, to motorbikes.

Even cremation ceremonies are lavish, eye-popping celebrations of life and death.

Appreciate it all with your blog. Wins, losses, and all in between. Celebrating it all makes you appreciative of the internet lifestyle.

I celebrated big wins and tough losses because all these experiences made me I am the blogger I am today.

3: Step Away from the Herd to Be Heard and Seen

Kuta is a tourist trap. Ubud town center can be a bit too much.

But the rice fields well outside of Ubud and the Bukit region of the island are authentic, colorful, peaceful gems.

My wife Kelli and I stand out from many other bloggers because we tend to stay in more remote areas of the island. Even in the popular fishing village of Jimbaran we did a house sit in off the grid farm country and rented a place up in the hills, away from the heavily touristed bay. Our experiences are authentic; not many tourists in Kuta facing down spitting cobras.

Blog in your voice. Tell your story. Be genuine. Blog from the heart.

Step away from the blogging herd. All success lies well away from the herd of bloggers in your niche who tend to follow each other like blogging sheeple, blogging in 3rd person voice and never sharing authentic experiences.

4: The Best Experiences Happen Outside of Your Comfort Zone

We rented a villa in the rice fields outside of Ubud once.

We had to ride a motorbike 5 minutes into the rice fields to reach the villa.

Save 1 other human living on the other side of the compound no people existed for miles around.

The experience was amazing. Once in a lifetime deal. But we had to get used to snakes slithering inside of the house, using an open air bathroom as huge fruit bats flew over your head at 2 AM and roaches, mosquitoes and other insects regularly shacking up inside of the crib.

I would never trade in this amazingly fun, freeing and brilliant experience but of course I felt terrified at times. Definitely pushed me outside of my comfort zone.

A bit before 10 PM on a Wednesday night I’d be comfortable in bed. But since my site is down for a bit now I nudge myself outside of my comfort zone to write this blog post. All part and parcel with being a full time blogger who renders generous service for his readers.

All of my biggest blogging wins occurred because I went the extra mile; even if doing so felt highly uncomfortable.

Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Your greatest blogging success occurs well outside of your comfort zone.

What blogging lessons have you learned recently?

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Blogging

Top 5 Most Competitive Niches for Bloggers

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Finding the perfect niche is like a unicorn for many bloggers. The right mix of passion and competitiveness can be found in the most surprising places and isn’t always clear until you’re already well on your way. But the good news is that the harder you look, the closer you get — which is a cliche, but surprisingly true in this case. So before you give up on your dream of creating content about knitting dog pajamas or anthropomorphized helicopters, start by having a look at what niches are the most competitive at the moment.

Most blogs earn their money through affiliation. The good thing about affiliation is that it doesn’t require you to focus on one particular brand, unlike sponsorships. You’re free to place links in your content or not. And to write whatever you like about the brand in question. Money is earned through reader engagement, not through passive exposure.

Travel

Of course, the most coveted and stereotypical blogging dream niche is travel. Who would turn down reviewing hotels in the Caribbean or exciting jungle safaris? Only a few bloggers get to do this, however, but there are still a lot of sub-niches that are easy to get into and earn well in. Local guides and localized content is a great way to find perfect fits for valuable affiliation links and you can even make direct content advertising if you ask. The future is definitely localized.

Gambling

Making content about gambling is often as much about search engine optimization as affiliation links. This has made reviews and guides extremely competitive, but creating content only for SEO purposes can be a little monotonous. More localized information in a specific niche like mobile gambling makes mobile-casino.ca a perfect example of how to stay competitive without losing quality.

Health & Fitness

For ethically minded bloggers, this niche can be a minefield. Health and fitness bloggers can benefit from having a blog of their own in many ways — such as keeping themselves healthy and fit, while also inspiring others in the process. This niche market is also filled with misinformation, dangerous recommendations and straight up lies. Are you the one to finally inform readers about the one true way to stay healthy or get fit? Joking aside, whether you’re a zealot or a skeptic, there are affiliation networks for you. Just include a source or two, please.

Lifestyle

Including this niche might be cheating. It can cover so much — but that doesn’t mean that your blog should. Specialised content that you’re both passionate and informed about can be very valuable for direct ads. Everyone has some kind of lifestyle niche they’re focused on, whether it be simple admin improvement or urban hiking. Find out if readers are interested in the topic, either directly or related, before you go all in, though.

Blogging

With how competitive blogging is, blogs that explain how to succeed are more popular than ever. You’re reading one right now and you could write your own very easily. You don’t have to be the best or the most insightful to write an inspiring blog about blogging — it’s more useful than you think to write down what works and what doesn’t in your own humble experience. You can be an expert in learning.

Have you noticed any commonalities yet? If you look hard enough in any niche, you’ll learn enough to create content with a fresh and exciting take. And that’s the current trend for being competitive: Being both subjective and informed; localized and aware of international trends.

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Blogging

Do You Really Know Your Readers?

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See the featured image up top guys?

I know readers dig my eBook. Said readers dig my paperback too.

Enter this featured image. I use similar images frequently on Blogging From Paradise. Smart way to appeal to my audience.

But during lean years I did not know my readers because I:

  • did not listen to my readers
  • did not ask my readers questions
  • did not spot my reader’s pain points
  • did not read my reader’s comments carefully
  • did not spot patterns among my readers

Eventually I woke up. Easy to see this now. But back in the day I had a hellish time owning the fact that I did not know my readers.

Reader Red Flags

You do not know your readers if:

  • traffic stalls or disappears
  • blogging profits stall or disappear
  • engagement dies on your blog
  • nobody seems to reach out to you on social media

These are a few red flags guys. Own the flags. Honestly. Owning your mistakes is one quick way to turn things around, to free yourself of this common blogging error.

Do You Know Your Readers?

I mean; do you really know your blog readers? Be genuine before you answer the question.

I know my readers incredibly well now because every blog post, video or podcast I create meets their needs. No guess work, no writing and publishing because I want to write and publish a post and certainly no off topic posting here, on Blogging From Paradise or any place where I guest post.

The other day one of my blogging buddies endorsed my paperback with a YouTube review. In addition to feeling grateful I tuned into one other idea; his endorsement, emails from other book customers and smiling selfies from other book customers alerted me to the fact that my readers are beginning to buy my paperback too, in addition to my eBook. I published a post linking to my paperback and explaining how my book solves pressing blogging problems after spotting this pattern.

I know my readers better and better each passing day because I listen to my readers more closely each passing day. As everything expands with my blogging campaign I find it easier and easier to help folks, to come up with blog post ideas and to know my content hits the mark because blogging with my readers in mind has been the simplest way to connect with these folks.

Your blog is for you and your readers. Never forget this fact. Never forget that if you write just for yourself you are publishing a cyber diary. No need for anyone to read a blog if the blog does not solve their problems.

Knowing your readers genuinely requires you to be:

  • compassionate
  • empathetic
  • heart-centered
  • loving
  • caring
  • observant
  • present

Listen to the latest podcast interview I did with Alonzo Pichardo on his Sound Cloud channel:

He has invited me to chat on his highly popular channel – with over 300,000 listens between only 8 episodes.

Alonzo is a master at spotting the most pressing issues of his audience. My readers also suffer from problems related to these topics. Naturally, as he shares and builds his impressive tribe and as I build my tribe, we have well over a quarter of a million listens between only 8 podcast episodes.

If you get to really know your readers and patiently hit the mark with your content, over years, 10 listens becomes 100 listens, then 100 becomes 1000, then 1000 becomes 10,000 listens, then 10,000 becomes 100,000 listens, and upward from there.

Develop an intimate bond with your readers guys. Poll them. Email them, asking how you can help them.

Much of your blogging success rests on knowing clearly what your reader wants so you can serve it up to them.

Listen. Ask. Observe.

Prosper.

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