Sunday 8 May 2016

Do you need money to blog? || Thoughts

*Prepare yourself for a ton of scrambled thoughts*
I've been thinking a lot lately about what made me first click the tab open to blogger and write a post, almost two years ago. It was partially because I was at the most anxious point in my life, and it felt nice to have some kind of release that didn't involve me actually standing in front of real people and voicing my opinions. Nowadays I don't tell that to any family member or friend who asks, because I've managed to move myself past all that, and right now I blog as a time capsule of sorts, or to be honest, to have something worthwhile to add to my CV if I do decide to take up journalism.
Aside from the obvious question of why I started, I often get asked whether blogging is an expensive hobby. I imagine blogging has evolved a heck of a lot over the years, but right now it feels as if without a little cash, blogging isn't all it can be, and I wonder if when I first started whether I knew how much I would invest in this little corner of the internet (my 'small distraction'.) In retrospect, I think I thought that typing away at a keyboard would be all there was to it; I've been writing all my life and it comes so easily to me, that I thought every aspect of blogging would arrive in just the same fashion. In reality, I would say that a good proportion of my money goes into my blog, with little return, and although I don't regret anything, it's interesting to think about whether pumping money into the hobby is integral to success and running a blog.
For me, especially since I've moved slightly into the beauty niche, I invest money into products to try and review. A lot of these items I think I would buy regardless of my blog, but the fact remains that if you're a beauty blogger without products to talk about in posts, the possibilities and opportunities are decidedly less. If you're a lifestyle blogger its probably less of an issue; lifestyle posts are some of my favourites because you take a topic of interest and just run with it as far as you can take it. No need to run down to Debenhams to grab the latest palette or stay up until midnight to secure a Kylie Lip Kit, just grab a thought and let it roll. This is true to an extent (although clearly I'm not saying being a lifestyle blogger is easy; lifestyle posts are ridiculously time consuming and difficult to orchestrate, especially on a writer's block kind of day), but since the whole concept of blogging has evolved so visually, I feel that nowadays blogging is very much photography-centred. This is great - I mean who doesn't love an aesthetically pleasing Bloglovin feed? But to secure a reputation of killer photography, there's got to be some sort of monetary fee. Ever since I started blogging I've moved from taking a haphazard photo of a dry shampoo and not really caring about aesthetics, to letting it determine when and what I post, investing in an Olympus Pen (no regrets) and a million assorted background props and products purely because they 'look good'. I personally see blogging as a worthwhile cause despite all that; almost every hobby has a price attached, and the creative product you get from a blog is rewarding and progressive.
On the other hand I've seen many popular blogs that don't prioritise pretty photos, which makes me consider that perhaps, money isn't essential. Social media is for all intents and purposes, free to use, meaning that with a stack of time and effort, success doesn't have to have a price tag. Particularly twitter, I think having a recognisable online personality and interacting with readers means that you don't need a fancy camera, you just need yourself. It's such a tricky topic to try and navigate, as each side to the argument can be justified so neatly. As long as you have an app on your phone to upload posts, you can start blogging and the rest of it you might acquire with time. For me though, what draws me in to a blog is the aesthetics - I can't deny it and probably a lot of other bloggers have the same outlook. I love white backdrops and marble, but I also love posts with a lot of heart and soul poured into them. I follow amazing people on Twitter (@alittleblogger3), and have found a lot of blogs to read through joining in chats and finding bloggers relatable to me, regardless of how much they invest in their hobby.
I can't honestly see an end to this debate, there's so much to think about! To start a blog, I don't see any reason why you would need any amount of investment, I personally went into it without needing to spend. As you progress however, and strive to increase blog views and popularity, I think that for most of us, whether its better products or a new website design, we do have to set aside some of our income to make the changes we want with our blogging. That isn't to say that popularity equals money, because we all know that that's not true (buying followers is just not legit, you see what I'm saying???), but to draw in readers from the get go and make your blog appealing for the initial view, I do think a bit of money can go a long way. Once you have people reading, its all down to personality and how you write, and that's the beauty of a blog! Blogs could have identical flat lays and convey totally different vibes, and that's what initially made me so fascinated with the idea of having a blog to convey what I couldn't in my day to day life. Did I anticipate how much time, energy, and I'm going to be real here, $$$ it would take? No. I don't regret this hobby though, its such a gem.
What do you think? Do you need money to blog? I would LOVE to hear some opinions, as I'm still so undecided myself on the topic.


  1. Since starting my blog I have paid for new products, props, a camera, blog layout, tweet schedule service etc etc it's none stop because I want to grow but I agree I have put a lot in and sometimes feel I get nothing back! Xx

  2. Such an interesting post. I've been thinking about these things a lot lately since I'm currently unemployed and not receiving any social benefits (aka broke). I think this sentence "If you're a beauty blogger without products to talk about in posts, the possibilities and opportunities are decidedly less." pretty much sums up my thoughts and feelings. My blog is definitely more on the beauty side and I find it so difficult to come up with new post ideas when I'm not able to constantly purchase new products I could review or talk about. I know I could just not blog about materialistic things and write more lifestyle type posts... but it's just not who I am as a blogger. I find writing about beauty so much fun and it's also what my readers are expecting to see. It's definitely challenging to produce unique and interesting content when you don't have almost any money to spend on products.

    I'm lucky though that my parents got me my DSLR (and two lenses) as a birthday present a few years back and they've also got me some backdrops and other photography gear, so I don't really have to spend any money on those things anymore.

  3. I think that you do need some money to have a blog, but it really is what you want your blog to be (like whether you want a domain or not) and how much time you invest into it as well! I don't invest loads of money into my blog as I'm only a student but I was lucky enough to receive a camera for Christmas which is great for photos - I also try and be creative with my back drops (eg using wrapping paper) x

  4. I have only just started my blog but am already feeling like I have to spend a lot in order for it to grow. But I think I'll first invest in a new blog design? Thats another thing, what are the best things to invest in for you blog to get the most out of and improve your blog the most?

  5. I completely agree with what you have said in this post. You do need a little bit of money if you want to go further in terms of aesethics, but you don't need all that much. I guess it depends on what you wish to invest in. I'm only a student myself, so I don't really have any income to use on my blog, except my pocket money, but I'm more focuses on the words that I write and the hearts that I may be able to touch. I definitely think this is a very interesting topic though and I think you have expressed your thoughts very well.

    Jade xx |


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