The web is a hotbed of opportunity. While the press understandably spends most of its coverage on the Facebook’s and Google’s of the world, the really interesting stuff is actually the many new ways that regular people are able to earn a living and build businesses online.
Blogging as a Business
Approaching blogging as an entrepreneur looking to build a
business, is very different from the view taken by a hobby blogger.
From the very beginning, you will be planning and thinking about
the blog as a product: what it will cost, what it might return, how it
will grow, and where it’s heading. You might be alone, or you might
have partners and investors. You might begin with a lot of capital,
or you might bootstrap the operation with whatever resources you
can find. Most importantly, as someone looking to build a business,
you will always have your eye on the bigger picture, and that’s what
this chapter is about.
Opportunities in Blogging
Publishing is changing quickly as more and more readers migrate from paper based products to electronic media, whether it’s a computer, a tablet, a mobile device, or an e-reader. Change of this sort always creates opportunities, and in the last few years it’s become clear that professional blogging is one of them.
The last decade saw a generation of blogs grow from being side projects and hobbies, into sites with enormous readerships and real revenues. Very quickly blogging has become a legitimate publishing business, and today a survey of the top 100 blogs shows that with a few notable celebrity exceptions, almost all of them are backed by real publishing businesses. While today the blogging industry has some very professional outfits operating, there is still lots and lots of room for the newcomer.
To start with, there are very few household names in blogging. While most people might recognize and know names like Time, Wired, Vanity Fair, and Vogue, there are significantly less who know Gawker, TechCrunch, Huffington Post and PopSugar, which are just three of the more high profile sites. There are still many, many people who don’t read online but who will eventually. These folk mean that blogging is an industry with a lot of growth ahead of it, and growth is good for business and good for newcomers.
Opportunities in blogging
Opportunities in blogging also arise from the many niches and topics that are still wide open. If you walk into any bookstore and look through the myriad magazines that line the racks, you’ll find there are audiences interested in reading about everything from sewing to tattoos, boating to cooking, movies to shopping. Can you name the blog to read on tattoos? How about a great blog about boating? Think you can find one? Moreover, for every niche that is big enough to sustain a real paper publication, there are dozens more that are too small for print but big enough online. Where the distribution costs are small and even nil. This is site of how to build a blog business.