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Monetization

The Secret to Quitting your Job & Becoming a Full Time Blogger

Becoming a Full Time Blogger

If your goal is to eventually leave your job and pursue your blog full time…this blog post is for you! I was able to leave my full time job as a marketing consultant to pursue my blog after just one year of blogging. Below I’m going to show you the steps I took to turn my dream of being a full time blogger into a reality.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, then you know I quit my job and turned down an $80k/year job to pursue my blog. Did I mention I was a single mother at the time? Talk about putting it all out there and taking a risk! P.S. If I can do it…you can do it!

If you dream of quitting your job and blogging full time, this blog post is for you! Click To Tweet

The dirty, dirty truth

Do you want to know how much I was making on my blog when I quit my job? I was making $100 a day. Now if you do the math, $100 is only $36,500 a year. Now that was less than 50% of what I was making as a consultant…BUT, because I was living below my means and following the 6 steps outlined below, I was able to make this work while I built my blog up.

One thing that you are going to have to get comfortable with is living on less money for a while. For example, if you are making $75,000 at your current job and are telling yourself that you will only leave your job once your blog is also making $75,000 you are going to be waiting a long long time. Here’s why..if you have a full time job, you will never have the incentive to give your blog all that it needs to be successful. At some point, you are going to have to take a leap of faith (and a pay cut!). You can however, do a few things to ensure that the leap will be worthwhile.

determining-your-blog-salary

Figure out what your number is

The first step you need to take is to figure how much money you need to make on your blog in order to get by. You don’t want to go into the poor house pursuing your dream, that’s just not smart. So you’ll want to make sure that you are making enough money on your blog to at least pay your bills and necessities.

Here’s a quick way to figure out your number:

Monthly bills (Rent/Mortgage, Car payment, Utilities, Insurance, Food & Gas) + Incidentals   = Your Magic Number

Now that you have your magic number which covers your bills and incidentals, divide that number by 30. This will give you an approximate amount of how much money you will need to make each day on your blog until you can give your job the old heave ho.

My magic number back then was $2500 per month…so I told myself once I started earning $100 per day, I would leave my job. After one year I did just THAT.  But I waited a month to quit my job to make sure that the $100 per day wasn’t a fluke and it was something sustainable.

Create a Goal Worksheet

Now that you have your magic number. I want you to give yourself a realistic timeline of when you’d like to quit your job. Write that date down and work backwards. For example, if you are giving yourself a year to leave your job, then you will start by writing down that date and then write goals for each month up until that date. In each of those months, I want you to write down what your traffic & revenue goals are. Hold yourself accountable to those goals!

Start living on a percentage of your income

As much as it’s going to suck to cut down on your spending, the payoff of working for yourself far outweighs the pain of cutting back on Starbucks lattes.

By now you have an idea of how much money that you need to make each month to cover your bills. What I’d like you to do now is take a hard look at your spending and determine if there’s anything you can cut out or cut back on. The more you can reduce your spending, the sooner you will be able to quit your job.

One of the ways I was able to save a ton of money was by shopping with coupons. I got so good at using coupons that I reduced my monthly grocery bill from $750 to $150. That’s an extra $600 I was saving each month, just by using coupons and watching sales.

becoming-a-full-time-blogger

Start making more money on the side

Start thinking about ways that you can make money on the side while building up your blog. Personally, I gave coupon parties at night and charged $20 per person to attend my classes. There were some weeks that I was doing 3 classes a week and bringing in several extra hundred dollars per month.

Write down a list of ways that you can make extra money. Can you give classes? Can you sell something you make? Can you become a VA for other bloggers?

The nice thing about creating an additional source of income is that you can continue to do this once you leave your full time job while you are building your blog.

Devote most of your free time to building up your business

Now I know that between a full time job and a family to run, your free time is pretty minimal. But I’m telling you that you have to devote as much of your free time to building your business as you can. In fact the easiest way to do this is to make time. In order to build my business, I started waking up before my family (5:30 am) and would use that time to write, strategize and update my social media.

I want you to ONLY focus on blog activities that bring traffic to your blog. Read this blog post for a good starting point.

If I were you, I’d focus all of my attention on the following activities:

  • Creating a community around your blog (Create a Facebook page, create a Facebook group & interact on Instagram, read this & this)
  • Creating killer content that gets shared (Read this)
  • Getting Email Subscribers (Use Mailchimp, it’s free for 2,000 subscribers, read this)
  • Pinterest (This is the one social network that you will want to master, read this)

Diversify your blog revenue’s stream

You are not going to be able to quit your job to pursue a full time blog if you are relying on only one revenue stream for your blog. If you take a look at other blogger’s income reports, you’ll notice that they make money from a variety of sources like advertising, affiliate marketing, product development and sponsored posts. The earlier you diversify your revenue streams, the quicker you will be able to quit your job.

You will want to concentrate on the following revenue streams:

  • Ad Revenue
  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Sponsored Posts
  • Product Development (Course creation or an eBook)

Once you’ve got all of those revenue streams generating income, you will be that much closer to becoming a full time blogger. Here is a guide to blog monetization that you can reference for more details.

Now, I’m not trying to disillusion you and I’m definitely not one of those blogging coaches who promises you will start earning six figures in your first year of blogging. What I am..is realistic. Becoming a full time blogger is a lot of work, however, it is an attainable goal. So many of my friends have made the transition from part time to full time blogger, that I know it is 100% achievable for you to accomplish, as long as you put the work in.

QUITBLOGG

Chrystie is a mom of 3 kids and wife to one. She's sold 4 blogs in the last 10 years and now helps other women start their blogging empire. Her love for really bad reality TV is only trumped by her love for margaritas without salt. Her other addictions include spray painting everything gold and embarrassing her kids at the bus stop. #thatmom

This article has 34 comments

  1. Maintaining Me

    I don’t think I realized that it took you a whole year! I was starting to get discouraged because it didn’t seem that my blog was as successful as some other bloggers but that’s really encouraging since I’ve only been blogging for about 2 months now! Thank you!

    • Chrystie

      Yes! It took exactly a year to get my former blog, Coupon Karma off the ground 🙂

  2. linda spiker

    It definitely takes time to build a blog to the point of making a decent living. I am glad that was your first ‘dirty truth’. A lot of people think the money will come straight out of the gate!

    • Chrystie

      It’s a lot of work. I’m not trying to downplay that at all 🙂

  3. Cara

    This is so helpful! I think it’s important for people to realize it does take a lot of effort and handwork but if the end result means you are happier and doing something you love, it is well worth it in my book.

    • Chrystie

      Exactly! Happiness is what most people are chasing anyway 🙂

  4. Jenna

    This post is so inspiring! I’m finding myself following almost all of your steps outlined and really hoping to make this blogging thing work for me and my family. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Sarah

    Really great tips! Especially the first one. I agree it’s impossible to change your life while still doing the same life you’ve already had. Working 40 hours a week and blogging on the side isn’t going to cut it at some point.
    Thanks for sharing!

  6. Aishwarya Shenolikar

    I don’t think I could ever do something like this. It’s really a brave and appreciable move! 🙂

  7. Rachel

    This is really helpful! Seems like such a scary leap, but it sounds like it worked out very well for you!

  8. Anna

    Love everything in this post! I am working towards quitting my 6-figure job – it’s my dream and am working towards a number of these goals. I am happy to have found this space for inspiration! Thanks for the tips! XO

    Anna || A Lily Love Affair

    • Chrystie

      Good luck! There is nothing like freedom of your own schedule! 🙂

  9. Crystal

    I don’t have a job, but either need to make my blog work for me or get a job in a year or two. I have been at it for over a year and made a couple hundred bucks total. I feel like such a whiner because I feel like the only people making money are ones blogging about how to make money blogging, but now blogs about other things can’t do as well because everybody and their dog has a blog!

    • Chrystie

      Crystal..you hit the nail on the head. A LOT of the 6 figure bloggers are the ones blogging about blogging. BUT there are thousands of other bloggers making a living doing things like recipes, crafts, etc. It’s all about honing in on a niche and exploiting it! 🙂

  10. val hansen

    Great post, so would love to do this. I have been blogging 18 mos and still not making much money. The techy stuff has been so challenging for me along with working full time, so not sure this will happen for me. Its giving me some great skills to pursue a different job though!

    Happy you were able to make the plunge!

    Valerie

    • Chrystie

      What kind of techy stuff is holding you back! I could write a couple of blog posts about it to help you out 🙂

  11. Brittany

    Great post and tips! One of my next big goals for my blog is to create an e-course. Blogging takes time, but it can be worth it!

  12. Dia All The Things I Do

    Thank you for laying this out so clearly. I love that you include a formula to let us know how much we really need to make. Such great information.

  13. Jenny

    Love this! I needed a formula like that to really know how much I’ll need to make. I am headed down the right path, for sure.

    xoxo, Jenny

  14. Natalie @ A Fit Philosophy

    Wow! Your story is really inspiring! Thanks for sharing 🙂 Taking the leap is the hardest part by far!

  15. Polina

    Great tips and really helpfull for me. Thanks to share them with us! I am a new blogger and i have a lot of things to learn! Thanks!

  16. Clare Speer

    Such great information! I pinned this and also put it my favorites for later!

  17. Angie

    Such great info! I have a hard time thinking I’ll ever make the number that would allow me to quit my job, but I need to just keep trucking and trying!

  18. Chris Huston

    Thank you so much for this post — its so incredibly helpful. It led me to your advice about instagram. It led me to download crowdfire — I was actually shocked by my friends who stopped following me. I agree with you — shame on people for choosing the number thing over friendship.

  19. Michelle

    Oh my gosh, this is just what I needed to read today! It is all a huge learning curve but finally I feel am on the verge of figuring out all the monetizing steps (just signed up for some affiliates and advertising, adding new social media to my site, etc.) But it all takes time so I have to be patient to reach my number:)

  20. Xavia Omega

    I’ve been blogging about a year and working on making it my main source of income. This was really helpful, thank you! 🙂

  21. Amanda Nel

    This is so helpful and I wish I had landed on your site before! However, now I know where to turn to for good quality information.

  22. Jessi

    This is my goal! I’ve been blogging for 4 years and just this year began making a profit! My saying hanging on my desk is “She believed she could so she did”! 🙂 Thanks for a great post and now I’m reading every post you have up here! So glad i found your site!

  23. Matthew Bernier

    Looks like you know what you are doing Chrystie! I’m ready to start my own adventure and finally leave the corporate world so the information you’ve provided in your blogs is extremely helpful (thank you)!

    Looking forward to making it to that 1-year mark myself.

  24. Kaustubh Patel

    I want to make blogging a full time carrer. But i am scared and confused. I am having a online experinece of 4 years. Please help.

  25. Jhasketan Garud

    Hi Chrystie,
    You story is very inspiring. You took a very difficult decision at a very difficult time. Awesome.

  26. Anjimplays

    I am a blogger to trying to pursue to be a full-time blogger and thanks for the tips

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