Every once in awhile there is chatter around the internet about "bloggers who blog for money" and with it comes a great deal of negativity and criticism. There is a giant misconception that if you blog for money, you clearly don't care about your readers, the only thing you publish is sponsored content, and at the end of the day you must be a terrible greedy person [certainly not a smart business woman who places any value on time, creativity, and influence]. In other words, if you make money off of your blog, your blog content most likely sucks.
And this bothers me.
Perhaps I find the whole topic very weird to me because for one, I have never been questioned on why I am okay with a collecting a paycheck from my primary employer. And two, I have never been scolded for "doing work" at work. I don't expect to show up daily for another person or company and not receive compensation for the time given. Nor do I expect to receive compensation from somebody without bringing attention and energy to their products or services. Shouldn't we treat ourselves and sponsors with the same respect?
While blogging is fun, it is work. And while I love organically mentioning shops and blogs, I also value the work and time I have invested into cultivating a community and influence through this blog. To some it may seem silly that I can help pay our bills from tweeting, posting a picture on Instagram, or sharing a link on Facebook, but when those tweets, Instagram photos, and links on Facebook produce real sales for real people which equates to real money..there is value in those silly mentions isn't there?
Do I believe that there needs to be a healthy balance between non-sponsored content and sponsored content to maintain a strong readership base that wants to come back daily? Absolutely. But do I recognize the fact that this blog is my job and with any job, I want to maximize my income opportunities to my full potential? Absolutely. While I would love to make money off of this blog and be able to talk about anything and everything I want every single day, I would also love to eat five pounds of macaroni and cheese nightly without gaining weight. Both of which are very unrealistic (and sad) truths. The pounds do come from the macaroni and cheese and additional work does come from sponsorship. I have chosen this path for my blog and I celebrate the others that have as well.
Blogging is a very real thing to me. It has provided countless relationships, awesome opportunities, and healthy paychecks. I am not ashamed of any of the above.
You are not a sell out when you put a price tag on your services. You are smart. You shouldn't feel guilty for using some of your blog's prime real estate to show off blogs and shops that you love, but rather grateful that you have the opportunity to do so. It is okay to make a career out of your once hobby. Own it and do not be ashamed.
Blogging is the best job I never knew I always wanted.
+ speaking of having the opportunity to work with incredibly awesome people/businesses, House of Bliss completely re-wrote my advertise page and I could not be happier with it. Charissa (find her on twitter here) is a genius // magic maker when it comes to helping your blog and/or shop make money by the words you use. Truly, I am obsessed with what she is doing. Hire her here.
+ that dress featured up above in the first picture--here it is in all of it's glory...
DRESS FOUND HERE // USE CODE LIY FOR 20% OFF
GorJess and LoveLee (clever right?) is a fabulous boutique I recently discovered and have been so impressed with the quality of their items. Just thought you should know!
Now go make that money ladies. #proudofyou