How To Turn Your Blog Into A Career – My Top 5 Tips

My top five tips on how to turn your blog into a full time job!

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Last weekend I attended the wonderful #BlogCon hosted by my babe of a friend Scarlett; over 500 bloggers turned up to listen to talks hosted by bloggers, meet one and other and mingle with brands. It was a fab day all round and a HUGE success! Scarlett asked me if I would kindly do a talk on how to turn your blog into a career and I gladly obliged, I've done a couple of things like this before and really enjoyed them! The talk went down really well and I actually ran out of time for some questions (okay, so I love to talk - who knew?! Haha), so I thought I'd share my top five tips in depth here...

1.) Stay true to yourself - One of the most important factors when it comes to blogging full time; make sure that you stay true to YOU. Don't change or conform because a.) everyone else is or b.) to earn more money; it's transparent and your readers won't feel like you're being genuine to them anymore. Stay true to yourself and your content and your best work will be produced, your personality will shine through and your following will grow, which will in turn bring in more work as you'll become more recognised within the industry. Don't worry about having a nice; YOU are your niche!

2.) Treat your blog like a business - I truly believe that it's so important to treat your blog like a business; first of all make sure you have a professional website design (not necessarily expensive), but one that is easy to navigate and looks good. Start to see your blog as an online portfolio that brands will look at when they're decided whether to reach out and work with you. Also, put together a media kit that contains your stats, followers and fees for sponsored posts (you can find templates online for free/small fee if you're not big on design). Keep on top of your finances and work coming in with spreadsheets; and be sure to keep on the ball when it comes to your tax returns, I chose to get an accountant as I was unsure on filing my return!

3.) Networking is key - Attend as many events as you can, whether is a conference, networking event or a product launch, YOU are your brand so be sure to meet and engage with people as much as you can. Get business cards printed and always keep a handful on you wherever you go as you don't know who you'll meet along the way that you'll want to connect with. I met a guy in a bar in Thailand who was opening a new hotel and wanted to work together; I met another lady at an event I attended who was the CEO of a company in New York and we've stayed in touch - it's always when you're least expecting it!

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4.) Save when you can - Sorry for the boring/realistic point but I would honestly say that if you have a goal to be a full time blogger in six months time then save as much as you can, when you can. There is no set amount but any amount of money would be a help, a cushion to remove any stress for when you first take the jump. Life as a freelancer is so unpredictable! When it's good it's really good and when it's bad you're like 'OHMIGOD I can't afford to eat', the first six months will always be the hardest as brands can take up to 3 months (my longest payment took 6 months to be paid), so it takes a while to get the cash flowing but once you've got it keep that ball rolling, having a bit of money saved helps to remove some of the stress in the initial stages!

5.) Understand WHEN brands should pay you - I think this is one of the biggest things when you go full time is understanding exactly when something should be 'sponsored' and paid for. To me, something is sponsored when a brand asks for a set requirement i.e a certain amount/style of work and a deadline. I.e '2 blog posts and an Instagram' with a brief to accompany the requirement which gives you guidelines on how/what to shoot, if a brand simply wants to send you something to try out or attend an event; this to me wouldn't be sponsored, but I guess it's something you just figure for yourself!

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Dress - Primark | Jacket - New look | Watch - Daniel WellingtonPictures by my favourite lady Kat <3

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Are you considering making the jump to becoming a full time blogger? Did you find these tips useful? Is full time blogging something you would consider?


*Please note that this post is NOT sponsored, these photos were however taken for sponsored Instagram posts but I just loved them SO bloody much I wanted to use them for this post! 🙂 

24 Comments

  1. Josie 9th April 2017 / 10:41 am

    These are some really great tips thanks so much! I’ve been blogging as a hobby for a while now but haven’t really considered it as a job until recently! I’ve got a long way to go, and want to invest in blogging a bit more but these tips are perfect for getting started, treating it like a business is a great one – I’ve never really thought of my stats and things before but I guess that’s important when working with brands!

    JosieVictoriaa // Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle

    • Hayley 9th April 2017 / 3:02 pm

      Thank you lovely – so glad you found this post useful 🙂 x

  2. Laura 9th April 2017 / 9:23 pm

    This is super useful Hayley, thank you for sharing! I would love to one day be able to do full time blogging, or even be able to just work part time and put more effort into my blog! That’s the dream 🙂 I’ve seen a few posts about how it’s good to make a business plan for your blog, so I think I might do that over the Easter holidays too! xx

    Laura // Middle of Adventure

    • Hayley 11th April 2017 / 7:16 am

      So glad you found it useful love! 🙂 Yes definitely do, you’ll find it super helpful and will be able to stay on track easier! x

  3. Sophie Cliff 10th April 2017 / 9:21 am

    These tips are sooooo useful Hayley, I really do need to start treating my blog like a business! x
    Sophie Cliff

    • Hayley 11th April 2017 / 7:16 am

      Thanks girl – so glad you thought so! I think that was the biggest step for me to start taking it more seriously! x

  4. Charlotte 10th April 2017 / 9:28 am

    I find your blogging journey so inspiring babe! I am at the point where I am making the same amount of money from my blog as my day job, but as you say it is so unpredictable as freelance I am too scared to take the jump right now but full time is definitely my aim so I am currently doing your trick off saving before diving in! xx

    • Hayley 11th April 2017 / 7:19 am

      Thank you lovely lady! That’s such great news love, and a great start if you’re already earning as much as your wage – I’d definitely say go for it, the more you put in the more you get out! x

  5. Angie 10th April 2017 / 9:36 am

    I definitely think networking and community is key to successful blogging!

    • Hayley 11th April 2017 / 7:17 am

      Same love, it’s so important! I try to attend as many events as I can – you never know who you’ll meet! x

  6. Amy 10th April 2017 / 10:26 am

    Loved meeting you at BlogCon hun! You’re so right that you are your niche – I realised that a while ago – I don’t need a niche because I am it! I would love to turn my blog into a career although at the same time I really love my job so it’d be a tricky decision!
    Amy xx
    http://www.callmeamy.co.uk

    • Hayley 11th April 2017 / 7:18 am

      Same lovely – was SO fab to meet you IRL! <3 I hear you love, I absolutely loved my job and cried when I left, but for me the work load became too much and I realised that I just couldn't put 100% into both, so something had to give! x

  7. Teesh 12th April 2017 / 3:30 am

    This is useful, thanks Hayley! I have honestly only been blogging as a hobby, but if I can earn something from it too, that would be really great. xx

    • Hayley 12th April 2017 / 7:35 pm

      So glad to hear that Teesh! 🙂 It’s not everyone’s goal to turn it into a job; mine started as a hobby and just kind of naturally progressed that way – main thing is that you still enjoy what you do 🙂 x

  8. Emily 12th April 2017 / 6:23 am

    Staying true to yourself, I think, is one of the most important factors, if not the most important. Readers can spot someone being fake or insincere a mile away and without readers who are genuinely interested in your blog and what you have to say, it can be very detrimental to your blog/brand. And also, no one wants to read a robotic, monotone post. Personality does need to shine through to connect with them because everyone wants to know the person behind the post a little better!

    Emily | http://emilytrinh.com

    • Hayley 12th April 2017 / 7:36 pm

      Definitely! I couldn’t agree more Emily; it’s so important to inject personality into your content so your readers can resonate with you; but staying both true and honest are so key! x

  9. Laura 12th April 2017 / 4:01 pm

    Some great points here and I agree with you it’s incredibly important to stay true to yourself, your blog is your own personal brand and it’s important that only passion and love shines from it.

    Beautiful photographs, I like the pretty in pink theme here!

    Laura xo
    http://www.shehearts.net

    • Hayley 12th April 2017 / 7:37 pm

      Definitely Laura – think it really is such an important factor! Thank you lovely 🙂 x

  10. Jaz 15th April 2017 / 5:58 pm

    I was gutted to have missed your talk at Blog Con. I would so love for my blog to be full-time in the future but the market is so saturated I’m not sure this will be a possibility for me. Fingers Crossed! Thanks for sharing your tips!
    Jaz xoxo
    http://www.thelifeofasocialbutterfly.co.uk

    • Hayley 18th April 2017 / 4:41 pm

      Ah no worries lovely – would have been great to meet you but perhaps there will be another time 🙂 No problems, hope they helped! x

  11. Immy May 18th April 2017 / 4:36 pm

    This is super useful Hayley! I wish I came down to the chat! I absolutely think that treating the blog as a business is key, also carrying business cards with you. You always need them at the most unexpected moments and they can lead to amazing opportunities! Immy x

    http://www.immymay.com

    • Hayley 18th April 2017 / 4:42 pm

      So glad to hear that lady! Yes definitely, it really is the moments you’re least expecting it! x

  12. Jenny Cole 18th April 2017 / 7:14 pm

    Great tips lovely! My hope is that, one day, I will be able to freelance (and if I can do it through my blog and YouTube, even better!) so any advice like this is really helpful. Plus I absolutely love the photos you’ve used 🙂

    Jenny xx

    http://www.jaffacat.co.uk

  13. bee 20th April 2017 / 11:57 am

    Such great points. Of course, the dream would be to go full time, but I’m just too scared to take that leap from a usual wage. We will see, only time will tell! But these tips may give me a kick up the bum.
    Bee xxx

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