“A simple man believes anything, but a prudent man gives thought to his steps.” ~Proverbs 14:15
When bloggers begin to look for ways to increase revenue and income online it can be a tough road when you don’t know who to trust. There is SO MUCH out there – some ok, some good and some out-right horrible. What it means for those who want to take blogging beyond “personal outlet” and turn it into a business is that some common sense business principles must apply. Here are some thoughts.
Read Every Blogging and Writing Contract Very Carefully
Are you writing for someone else? You should have a contract. If you weren’t given a contract, run away. Quickly. 🙂 If you were given a writing contract, READ IT. Carefully. And then read it again. Be sure to clarify any confusing points, especially when it comes to your rights.
Ask Yourself What Rights You’re Willing to Give and at What Cost
If you are ghost-writing content for another site, and your name is not on it, you should be charging a premium price. That is freelance copyrighting. Not “blogging”. If you get your name on it and a brief bio and even a link back to your website, that may be of value to you so you could consider charging a lower price. If the client is taking full rights and you are giving them the rights to the content forever, you would want to charge more than you might if you were able to reuse the content in print or on your own website in the future. These are all considerations you should be aware of before agreeing to a certain price.
If it Talks Like a Business, It Should Act Like a Business
I’m just sayin’. If you call yourself a professional blogger or say that you want to turn this into a business, than do not treat it like a hobby. If you want to blog for personal enjoyment, by all means, do so. Just don’t call it a business if it’s not. And by all means – if you’re calling it a business, please, please, please act professionally. This means your speech. Your financial dealings. Your disclosures. Your dealings with clients and other bloggers.
Of course, sometimes these things sneak up on us – that’s what it means to give thought to your steps. When you find yourself in the position to accept advertising, or begin using affiliate links in your posts, you’ll need to think carefully to your steps. Think of yourself as a business from dollar $1 and you won’t find yourself stumbling in the future. Step wisely, dear friend, and the prudent path will be before you.