Over the last few days, I’ve told you that I am making some changes to my company. I’m not yet going to divulge every detail of that, but I AM going to tell you why I’m doing it.
It is because the “make money blogging” space that I’m in is inherently BROKEN.
… and the “gurus” of this space have failed.
And the result of this is plain as day. Most bloggers are:
- Confused on what to do.
- Concentrating on the wrong things… if they even have a real focus at all.
- Not making any money.
- Not seeing much (if any) web traffic.
Now, you tell me…. with ALL these people (yes, myself included) teaching people how to make money blogging – and ALL these people reading our sites, don’t you think we’d have a little better success rate?
I mean, something is inherently wrong with the SYSTEM if all these people are out there consuming this stuff – and yet most aren’t making it.
It isn’t a surprise that this niche is becoming full of freebie seekers and skepticism. All these people are selling stuff and yet people still can’t connect the dots. It is only NATURAL to start getting skeptical.
Is This Just Because People Don’t Take Action?
It is pretty obvious that everything that is taught out there in this space is contingent on people actually taking action and DOING things.
And the people who actually get up off their asses and do what’s necessary represent a minority. Sad, but true.
But, I’ll tell you something here…
While the “gurus” in this space can (and often do) just chalk this up to the laziness of people, I think it is BULLSHIT that they use that as a “cop out”.
Let’s put it this way…
If 100 people enroll in a course designed to show people how to make money with a blog, and only 5 make any money… then that’s a 95% failure rate. The typical product creator in this space would say “They just didn’t take any action.” And, in many cases, they’d be right. Way too many people view the act of buying a product as an action, then when it is time to get dirty, they fall back into their routine and do nothing.
But, all of them?
In almost any “real world” business, a 95% failure rate would be grounds for going out of business. With that kind of failure rate, nothing but the federal government can survive with that kind of failure rate.
We’re talking pure, unadulterated CONFUSION and OVERWHELM.
This niche is giving everybody not only bogus advice (in some cases), but conflicting advice. And it is coming at you like a firehose! The target audience of all the major “pro bloggers” out there is being peppered every day with “advice”. Oh, and some of it is on repeat, but made to look new. As ViperChill recently pointed out in his Future of Blogging post, ProBlogger itself has 52 posts on the subject of guest posting. 52!
The “make money blogging” space has turned into a creator of the shiny object syndrome. Very little focus on overall strategy and real foundations, but a LOT of focus on volume of content and fancy list posts designed more for link bait than to actually help people get results.
What’s ironic, too, as that many of those blogs are on automatic now while the original founder doesn’t blog nearly as often. They’re focusing on real businesses while the blog just keeps up the firehose.
So, is it as simple as people not taking action? No. There’s more to it than that.
Focusing On The Wrong Things
Earlier, I said the “gurus” have failed. Let me explain this.
First, let me say that most of them are doing very well at what they do. I know most of them. Consider many of them to be friends. In their own zone, many of them are A-plus people and they do great work and help their audiences tremendously.
So, where’s the failure come in?
I think it is a systemic problem – not the fault of any individual.
SOMEWHERE along the line – and I have no idea where or who – this notion came about that one could make money by blogging alone.
So, what happens is everybody scurries around this notion. And they focus on blogging.
The mechanics of BLOGGING. F**king BLOGGING!!
Then, make money.
That’s STUPID. It doesn’t work.
I haven’t exactly been quiet about that, but people even look at what I do and assume that blogging, alone, is how I make my living. Even though I wrote things like how “monetization” is wrong, how it is a failure, why you need to be an enabler and not a reporter, and how a blog is not a business… even though I wrote these things… people still operate along the path I outlined above.
This “make money blogging” space seems to be BUILT on this assumption. Hell, in a couple weeks, I’m going to be speaking in New York about the top “monetization” tactics for a blog… on the “blog monetization” track… which I AM THE TRACK LEADER OF! It is the ultimate irony… but this “monetization” stuff is so ingrained into the lexicon of this niche that I’m almost forced to play along.
And all these gurus teaching the mechanics of blogging and skipping right over the notion of building a REAL business – it is STUPID. These bloggers then embark on what ultimately becomes the blogging rat race – and they go into it with zero business foundation. They’re told to blog about their “passions”. That’s fine, but the advice doesn’t work for everybody.
Reminds me of the funny people in Silicon Valley who think up cute little names, focus on building coolness and audience, go out and act like they’re worth a billion dollars just because of that – all the while having no product and making ZERO money.
Yet, many bloggers would probably idolize those kinds of companies. Nevermind that they only exist because they’re coasting on VC funding and angel investing… because they (in many cases) don’t create a freakin’ product and offer nothing of value to the world. And make no money.
Blogging is not a business, and the problem with this niche is that blogging is being taught like it is the end-all, be-all.
There are a lot of people who think the answer to making money online is to start a blog! WTF?! Unless you have a strategy and a foundation, blogging is one of the shittiest and slowest ways to make money on the Internet in the history of man.
I’ve Not Lived Up To My Potential (Yet)
For too long, I feel as if I’ve just been another person in this niche. And, I haven’t been a leader in this space. I’ve been operating by the rules somebody else wrote.
I wanted to help bloggers, so I talked about blogging. And I talked about much of the same advice, perhaps with a differing twist and a different way of putting it. And, surely, it has served me well. And I have a ton of testimonials showing that it worked for you guys, too.
But, I haven’t lived up to my potential yet.
I have more to offer.
I won’t beat around the bush when I say…
I believe I have a lot more to offer. I believe I have a perspective that many don’t have. And I know damn well I’ve been doing this longer than pretty much any other name you can throw at me.
One of those skills I’ve always had is making the complicated simple. That skill served me well as a tech blogger. I’m an excellent “big picture” guy. My gut-level understanding of things is rarely proven wrong.
I don’t want to show bloggers how to “monetize”. I want to help them BUILD BUSINESSES. Real systems and operations capable of not only generating wealth, but achieving core missions that can help make the world a better place.
We need to focus on the basics. We need to begin approaching the Internet not as a magic money machine (which it isn’t, regardless of what some scammy Warrior Forum a-hole will tell you), but as a platform for real businesses based on the same rules as business has ALWAYS been based on.
I want to show bloggers how to build real businessses. I also want to show real businesses how to utilize blogging to the fullest. And I want to approach it in a way which does not cause confusion and overwhelm.
Will this mean that my target audience on this site becomes smaller? It might. I’m fine with that, however. I never set out to be the most popular guy in this space, or get the most traffic. What I want is for people to get RESULTS with the stuff I produce. I guess I operate with a slightly different benchmark than some of the others.
And, internally, it is time for me to expand beyond myself. It is time to build a real company. This isn’t a matter of hiring a part-time VA to “get things off my plate”.
So, I’m Going To…
I’ll tell you a little more about my intentions soon.
Some of it is still being fine-tuned. And, surely, no “business plan” survives exposure to the real world without adjustments.
If anybody thought I was thinking of leaving this market, think again. 🙂
I want to set a different standard.
What Do YOU Think Is Missing In This Niche?
I’ve told you what I think. What say you? Leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts on what I’ve said here. 🙂
A reminder that “Phase One” of my business changes is under way right now…
The CLOSURE of the Blog Masters Club. It comes to an end on Friday, the 18th.
This course was created in 2009 and, even then, I think I did a pretty good job of focusing bloggers on the things which actually matter inside that course. Over half the course was about stuff which (at least then) was different territory for your typical blogger. In fact, right in Module 1, it will be VERY clear that I approach it from a very different angle than many others who focus SOLELY on blogging and the mechanics thereof.
But, alas, it is time to end that chapter.