While most amateur bloggers don't earn much, serious bloggers can cover their bills or even live comfortably.
A 2012 survey conducted by Blogging.org found that 8 percent of bloggers generated enough for basic living expenses, while 11 percent earned enough to live well from part-time blogging. In some cases, bloggers earned more than $150,000 annually. Some fashion bloggers earn more than employees of high-profile fashion magazines, according to fashion blogger community IFB, and Business Insider reports that Apple blogger Jon Gruber earns around half a million dollars a year.
Of course, not all bloggers enjoy such success, but if you have specialized knowledge in a practical area, you can earn significant income from sharing what you know.
Set up Your Blog
Among Technorati's 100 most successful blogs, 48 percent used WordPress, a 2012 Pingdom survey found. Custom blogs were also popular, followed by other blogging and CMS platforms such as Movable Type and Drupal. Nearly 40 percent of the top WordPress blogs were self-hosted, illustrating the value of hosting your own blog.
When setting up hosting, server selection is critical for supporting a good visitor experience. Choose a high-speed hosting package from a satellite Internet provider with a fast broadband connection. Dedicated or virtual private hosting options are optimal and preferable to shared networks.
Position Yourself as an Expert
Celebrity financial advisor Suze Orman blogs as part of her successful multimedia publicity strategy. Other experts use the same tactic to promote their name within their market.
Build your reputation as an expert by blogging on topics relevant to your audience. Talk about frequent challenges and offer solutions to showcase your expertise and keep visitors coming back for information and assistance.
When selecting subjects, perennial topics covering basics will appeal to beginners. Go deeper into specific points to speak to more advanced audiences. Industry news can alert you to contemporary trends of interest.
Finance TV host Jim Cramer currently has more than 66,000 Twitter followers for his Mad Money on CNBC show. His account's profile points back to his show's blog on CNBC's website. There, visitors can subscribe to the station's mailing list, simultaneously promoting both Cramer's Tweets and CNBC.
Use a similar strategy to attract followers to your blog. Post content offering valuable information. Syndicate it through social media to attract readers to your blog, and build a mailing list.
Promote Your Products
Visitors to bestselling financial expert David Bach's blog are currently greeted by an offer for a free audio session as an incentive for joining his mailing list. They also see an offer to buy another one of his books. Offering valuable free information to visitors gives you an opportunity to build a mailing list and promote your paid products and services. Use a free offer to get visitors on your list, and then use your list to build your relationship with them and let them know about offers for seminars, books, videos and other opportunities for them to learn more of what you have to share.