Blogger For Hire: Can You Make Money?

A big chunk of my freelance writing income these days comes from writing blog posts. I’ve found it pretty easy to find positions blogging — as long as you have a pretty solid online presence yourself. But there’s trouble in Paradise: the money from blogging isn’t always that great.

The Per-Post Trap

It’s not uncommon to see a company advertising blogging positions paying $5, $2 or even $1 per post. You just can’t make money at these rates. The fact of the matter is that even if you are an extremely fast writer, it will take you a minimum of an hour to write a 300-word post — and if you have to find pictures, links and other matter beyond your writing, it can easily take longer.

There’s nothing wrong with taking a few low-paying gigs when you’re starting out, but low-paying blogging is a trap. It seems great to have a solid, reliable gig, even if the pay isn’t great — but it’s easy to find yourself still working at the same low-paying blog months later. It takes a surprising amount of will power to walk away from a gig that keeps paying reliably.

It’s even worse if you have some sort of revenue share. If you put hours and hours into promoting a site, even if it doesn’t pay off, you’ll be reluctant to leave. I’ve been in that position. Giving up is nearly impossible.

Sometimes, You Just Have To Move On

Over the past six months, I’ve been working on reducing the low-paying blogging gigs I take. I have fewer opportunities in the area because I’m looking for a higher per-post rate — something that’s more in line with my preferred hourly rate. I’ve actually started working on a few blogs of my own: if I’m not going to get paid that much for my time, I’d rather work on my own projects.

Don’t get me wrong — there’s money to be made in blogging. But it doesn’t come from $5 per post gigs. If you’ve got more than a month of blogging under your belt, it’s time to start chasing those bigger deals. Dream bigger — look for $30, $40, $50 per post!

Blogging For Hire? Let Me Know

If you’re a blogger for hire, please let me know in the comments. I’m putting together a list of bloggers interested in taking on work, and I know there’s some amazing freelance bloggers hanging around here.

17 Comments

  1. Nora Dunn   •  

    I have certainly found that blogging is a great way to “cut your teeth” in the business of writing. However it must also be noted that blogging (and writing for internet publications in general) tends to use a different style of writing. You write for short attention spans, make use of bullets and bold type, and most often a paragraph comprises a lonely sentence or two.

    For myself, my “living” has been made largely online, and without various blogs and webzines, I don’t believe I would have established the online presence I have today. I am also making the leap from the lower paying gigs to the higher paying ones. In some cases this leap has been easy; in others – such as to delve into the world of print publications – editors haven’t exactly been banging down my door.

    Which begs the question: does blogging help or hinder your writing – both in style and reputation?

  2. Scott Cheatham   •  

    I’ve worked in writing in some form for years..First in news and now spiritually as a minister. I’ve recently started blogging regularly to get myself back in the habit and would love to consider options for writing. Please add me to your list and any critique is welcome. I always enjoy your posts on Lifehack and here and link to them regularly.

  3. JR Moreau   •  

    Blogger for hire here. Doing lots of small paying gigs right now. Looking to make the jump to higher paying gigs. I’d appreciate any advice! I’m starting to find more leads, so any help is great!

  4. Dina Santorelli   •  

    I actually just started looking into sponsored posts — late in the game, yes I know. But I was very surprised at the low rates offered — $1 or $2 per post — and wondered how someone can make a living on those fees, considering all I hear about these days is how much money everyone is making from blogging. You mention that we should be “dreaming bigger” and looking for jobs that pay $50 per post. Where are earth are these opportunities? Hmmm… I guess I need to be looking harder.

  5. Craig   •  

    I’d consider sub-US$50 pieces as low-paying gigs and I do some of those at the moment. I’d be interested in being on your go-to list, especially in the travel sector.

    At the same time, I’m trying to build my own website portfolio up to a place where I can start paying that kind of money too — and as an independent that isn’t easy.

  6. thursday   •     Author

    @Craig, JR, Scott, Thanks for your responses! I’ll include you in my list!

    @Dina, I know that the higher paying gigs seem pretty hard to find. I’ve had a lot of luck with corporate blogging opportunities (running blogs for companies as part of their PR team), as well as working for larger blogs and those run by companies used to working in other media. Freelance Switch is a huge blog, for instance, and it pays $60 per post.

    @Nora, I think blogging is certainly a very specific style of writing — I think that as you get used to blogging, your style changes to reflect that fact. But if you were writing poetry every day, I bet your style would reflect that as well. As long as a person is making the effort to improve their writing, I think blogging helps in both style and reputation. Of course, it does require a certain level of effort: writing a short story every day wouldn’t help if the writer ignored any attempt to improve on his or her writing.

  7. Nora   •  

    I think one thing I forgot to say about blogging that is so very rewarding is the instant gratification factor; you write an article, and within minutes you can have it posted online and can interact with readers about it. (And earn money too)! Hoorah for blogging!
    PS – Please add me to your list too. Thanks!

  8. Mel Edwards   •  

    I’d be honored and delighted to be on your list of bloggers who are looking for gigs. My specialty is related to education, training, and starting a creative business, but have written on a variety of topics. I currently have two blogs: VotreVray and SchoolRoomtoBoardroom (both are .blogspot.com).

  9. Sharon Hurley Hall   •  

    I’d love to be on your go-to list. As well as my own writing blog, I blog on travel for a corporate client, on tech news for another client and have previously blogged on blogging and parenting. I love to blog, and it’s a great way to make money. Like you, I’m looking at get rid of some of the lower paid gigs – in fact, I have requested one client to increase the rate, which he was happy to do.

  10. Natalia R.   •  

    What a kind and friendly offer! Let me offer my services as well.

    I have mostly worked with print (newspapers and magazines), writing about music, nutrition, hard news, and so on. However, lately, I’ve been writing for blogs: I used to write and edit the blog at Coggno.com (elearning, LMSs, etc.) and next week I will start writing for an environmental news blog. I am also a copyeditor and translator (SP-EN/EN-SP). I can be reached at natalia . real at gmail dot com.

  11. Pingback: a make money blogging carnival - January 9, 2009 : SuccessPart2.Com

  12. John Peltier   •  

    Looking to make that switch here, I have a work related blog (linked) and I’ve done entertainment and politics at BlogCritics. Published in an academic journal as well.

    Where are these higher paying gigs you speak of?

  13. Robin Farmer   •  

    Hi,

    I’m on my way to Egypt and would love to blog about it! I’m a veteran journalist with 23 years of experience, most of it at the TD.

    Bonnie D told me to check you out.

  14. Vistehoseme   •  

    Very Recently, there has been a great deal of inquiries by the
    US Federal trade comission against blogs and website owners
    for not revealing advertising revenue, or potential
    connections with ad networks.

    What are your personal thoughts about how this could effect
    the blogging world?

  15. Lingerie sets   •  

    certainly, the environmental news theses days are not so good but there are other good news too like opening of new forest reserves ;-~

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *