This is a rather simple story about triumph and disaster, two elements that can often be found close to one another. So close, in fact, that at times they touch.
The story concerns to young bloggers. They both started their blogs on the same day. They were friends. They’d read each other’s work and offer feedback. They’d brainstorm ideas together.
And they’d both struggle to grow their audience, properly monetize their little online places, or even build a network of other content creators.
However, one day one of these bloggers, frustrated by the lack of results, began to invest more and more time towards acquiring the right kind of information that would allow them to achieve success as a blogger.
They’d spend less time procrastinating, and more time acquiring knowledge. They’d read everything and anything they could get their hands on.
Thus, they began to invest in a custom domain, a professional email address, an email service provider. Soon, they’d invest in blogging courses and tutorials.
A change took course in his attitude: not wanting to consider the time, energy, and money he had invested, he began to punch those keys, writing each article with the clear intention of it being one of the best available on the web.
Slowly building momentum, our blogger wondered just how much was possible, if reaching the blogging stratosphere was actually possible.
A year passed, and the results were in: he had managed to outgrow his friend 10 to 1, and had managed to earn a bit of monthly income from selling advertising spots and affiliate marketing.
Naturally, his friend was envious. It came like a shock, the story of his friend’s overnight success.
Yet, what this blogger couldn’t see where all the steps that his friend had taken, the behind the scenes work, the hundreds of dollars invested in the right tools and the knowledge to take full advantage of those tools.
Within one short year, just by looking at the two blogs, one could certainly feel that the two were vastly different. One of them enticed readers to engage, the other begged for attention at the most inopportune of moments.
This, my friend, is why you should invest in your blog, and it all starts with this…
Your Own Bit of Virtual Real Estate
I launched my first blog in April 2012. Like everyone else, I started with 0 followers and no idea whatsoever about what was required of me to make it as a blogger.
And it all changed when I decided to invest in my own domain name. Simple, right?
You see, I was telling the world (and my own inner demons) that I was serious about blogging, that I wanted to own a bit of virtual real estate. I was there for the long run.
If there’s one thing I’m vehement about, it’s not investing in a blogging course (even though I highly suggest it to you), but rather buying your own domain name.
What does this mean?
It means that you’re serious about blogging, that you plan to stick around, both for the good and the bad, that you are a professional, or well on your way to becoming one.
No One Likes To Fight a Losing Battle
It took me an awful lot of time to figure this one out, but the more I invest in the right tools, the more enjoyable of an experience I am able to design for my readers.
It is what it is.
And it’s not the tools themselves, but rather the fact that I do not want to fight a losing battle. And odds are, neither do you.
That’s something I’ve been noticing.
The folks who enroll for free in my courses, they never get past a couple of lessons. It was free, thus they don’t go through the course material, no matter how good it is.
On the other hand, the bloggers who pay full price (let’s say, $199 to enroll in the 0 to 5,000 Readers) will go through all the lessons, join our community, and download all the resources and eBooks).
Of course, there are exceptions, but this is a trend I’ve been noticing.
And it makes sense…
The Struggle Alone Pleases Us
I’ve always strenuously believed that the struggle alone pleases us, and not the victory.
Yes, it’s a tired truism that we don’t appreciate what we obtain easily, but the fact that struggle alters our attitude in a positive manner cannot be overstated.
I’m not trying to sell you something, because if I were, I would try to sugarcoat all this, even just a bit.
No. Not going to tapdance around the truth.
The more you invest in your blog, the more dedicated you become. It no longer becomes a battle of “how much you want to win,” but also one in which you are doing whatever you can not to lose.
In effect, you are placing a hedging bet on yourself as a blogger.
And, yes, it all starts with the decision to invest in a custom domain, a custom email address, an email service provider. It all comes down to various subscription to certain tools, or enrolling in courses, programs, becoming a part of a private community, or just investing your hard earned money in a book about blogging.
Nine Years Later…
After nine years of blogging, I can tell you this: I regret not investing more and more time, energy, and money towards becoming a better blogger.
Because that’s what I’m doing right now. The Art of Blogging costs a minimum of $1,000 every single month, just our tech stack.
Is is worth it?
Of course. It makes me work more, better, faster. It makes me want to win, it makes me want to add value, to build a community of aspiring bloggers, and to genuinely help others.
It is what it is.
The blogging ecosystem has becoming ultra-competitive and over-saturated. The bottom is overcrowded with amateurs who aren’t serious about blogging, yet hope for success.
I’m afraid that you’re going to have to fight for your dream. A lot. You’re going to have to invest in your blog.
The dream is free. Yes. Starting a blog costs $0.
But everything else has to be paid for upfront, and oftentimes in full.