Blogging, especially if you’re just starting out, seems to offer you the chance to express your thoughts, reach other like-minded individuals, and achieve a sort of financial freedom that few other jobs can offer.
The truth is… well… blogging is not as easy as beginners tend to think. And it’s not even enough to create great content. Or to be consistent. Or to network with other bloggers. Or to guest post. Or to use other social media networks.
The bitter truth of blogging is that it takes time.
But how long does it take?
Well, read on if you want to find out.
I’ve always thought that any blog needs at least 6-9 months to establish itself, to build a proper community around its content, and to be able to monetize.
Why does it take so long?
Well, the answer is surprisingly simple: you need a lot of content.
But there’s one more aspect: you need to share that content over time.
Little by little, you get people addicted to your content. Not too much, not too often, and you’ve built yourself a loyal following.
I launched my main blog in April 2012. In November, I started earning enough to become a full-time blogger. If I am not mistaken, I had around 20,000 followers.
It took somewhere around 6-7 months for The Art of Blogging to also reach 20,000 readers.
Content + Time = Readers
If you were to add 156 blog posts on your first day blogging (considering you spent some time writing that content in advance) you won’t have to deal with an avalanche of readers.
In truth, almost no one would notice you even posted anything at all.
Content needs to be distributed consistently over a long period of time. That is it.
The dilemma of quality vs. quantity
Do not consider the advice in this post as a justification to post anything at all, just so you have more content.
Quantity undoubtedly helps, but quality should always be the main reason for releasing anything on the web.
Blogging is a balancing act. Spend too much time obsessing about quality, and you end up with a blog post once every two weeks, which, I am afraid, is not enough content. Focus on being productive, and the quality of your content decreases.
You need to figure out a certain rhythm, while also making use of whatever feedback you get from your readers. And, yes, no feedback is also feedback; the worst kind actually.
With enough time and patience you can build a successful blog, although it may take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years.
The key is to keep punching those damn keys: you need to keep posting even when no one is reading you.
Little by little, a little becomes a lot. Never forget it. And the road from 0 to 100 is the longest, most difficult journey in a blogger’s career; whether we’re talking about 100 followers or 100 blog posts or 100 comments.
Keep punching those damn keys!