So, recently on Facebook, I found out what I kind of already know. People are unsure exactly what it is I do and how I do it and more importantly, how I make money doing it. While this really could be a novel in itself (there are many books on the subject actually!), I was asked if I could write a post on what a day is like for me as a blogger. I am flattered people are curious. I want to make it clear that this is not what every blogger does for their daily routine as there are many kinds of bloggers out there and there are as many niches as there are people who blog, but this is what a day is like for me, personally, as a blogger.
A Day in the Life of This Blogger
I will make it in as simple of terms as I can, but understand that it changes sometimes from day to day, but for illustration purposes, here is my usual schedule of things.
7:30 am is the time I wake up. Usually 7 days a week. Why 7:30? Well, my daughter gets up for school then m-f and i can’t sleep in much later than that because by 7:30 my time, it’s already nearly lunch on the East coast. The first thing I do is check my email. This can take anywhere from an hour to 2 hours depending on what is thrown at me. This includes time responding to emails about product reviews, reader questions and advertizing opportunities. I always have my email open because this is an ongoing thing all day.
While checking my email, I am often bouncing back and forth checking stats for traffic, analyzing the day before and checking how my promotion did on all my social media networks. I regularly have 5-6 tabs open on my computer, and often as many as 20. This is also a day long thing as I watch my stats for the day as well.
I am also a VA (Virtual assistant) which means I contribute to other blogs. I currently contribute to 3 others. I write posts for them and I usually have 1-2 post to write for one blog or the other of them daily, M-F. Writing a post usually takes about an hour to an hour and a half. This is including writing it, researching it, finding and editing a picture for it and editing the post itself adding in SEO (a way that search engines group or rank posts..its a long explanation, but this is the short version of explaining it), links, etc. Being a VA also means I need to try to be available to my clients as well.
In between writing posts for my VA work, I am posting links I am promoting that day on social media as well as networking with other bloggers.
By now, it is around lunch time. I take a short break to eat usually. Like any person who needs to eat on the fly, this often means whatever quick meal I can rustle up in the kitchen.
After lunch, I usually start working on my editorial calendar. This means making sure I am set for the week on my own posts or doing projects such as making recipes, crafts, DIYs and so on. It sometimes means going to the store to buy supplies (including waiting in line for 20 minutes at Hobby Lobby like I did the other day). It means making sure I have things scheduled out. When doing projects such as making my own DIY things, recipe creation and crafts, there are sometimes mistakes and mishaps and I must start all over again to get it right.
I often take the afternoon to talk on the phone to my VA clients about their plans for their blogs and what role I will be playing as well as do training sessions, conference calls with businesses I am working with and follow up on emails.
Writing posts is not so much just sitting down and tapping my fingers away on the keyboard. Oddly, other than researching for the post, it is often the picture taking and editing that takes the most time. For a recipe, craft or DIY, I might take as many as 100 pictures at different angles of the same object staged in different ways. Staging means making the object look interesting, neat, eye catching or in the case of recipes, delicious. It means trying out different props with the photo and different backgrounds. When I finally get the images taken, it can take another hour or more to go through them all and pick one or two that are the best. Then comes the editing. I must fix the lighting, crop, resize, add words and effects. This whole process from start to finish can take a couple hours and I have gotten some odd looks from neighbors as I photograph some peanut butter on my balcony.
By now, it is usually dinner. I take a break to cook (and if the meal will be blogged about, this can take even longer because of pictures that need to be taken along the way and staging of the final product). My poor family has gotten used to drooling over dinner and watching me snap pictures of it in my light box or on my patio for 15 minutes or more before they can dig in. (My 11 year old has gotten so used to it, she asks, “Mama, are you blogging this or can we eat it now?”)
After dinner, I sometimes take a break for a minute to spend time with my family.
When the break is over, I often write extra posts, catch up on any emails I didn’t get to, do extra promotions, edit images and so on. I often don’t get to bed until midnight or later, daily. Sometimes things come up that keep me awake such as last minute posts I have been asked to do, last minute posts I decide to do and last minute promotional pushes.
This doesn’t even include what goes into a product review. Honestly, Lisa at Planet Weidknect explained that a lot better than I could have.
When I am not actually writing, taking pictures or editing, I am promoting on social media, talking with fans, managing my social media accounts, reading and commenting on other blogs (I love that bloggers are so community orientated. We love to support and help each other), researching blog topic ideas, brainstorming new content ideas, writing content posts I sell for my freelance work on the side and pitching/following up with clients and companies. All in all, I spend on average 10-12 hours a day online, most of it working, sometimes taking a mental break to play games or chat.
If you are wondering how I make money doing all of this, I make money from my VA clients, companies I promote and affiliate promotions. Occasionally, I do sponsored content. I am also able to support my family with the “free” products I receive for review such as gift cards to restaurants, cleaning products, clothes, home decor, household products and so on. I only promote products and companies I fully believe in and that value me and what I do. I consider it part of my integrity.
The work is long, a huge numbers game, full of deadlines and can be mentally taxing, but, I absolutely love it. It is my passion. I have found success in it in no way I thought I could. I have made amazing friends. I do it because I like to help people. I love to inspire others and I love to make a connection. I can do it in my PJs if I choose and I am my own boss and If I am organized enough about it, I can occasionally take a day off. Also, I take time some time to run errands like a normal person does when I need to. 😉 Keep in mind, I am also a stay at home mom, so I while I take breaks to play with my daughter and help with homework and tuck in at night, I am lucky because my daughter is a pre-teen. Many bloggers do all of this that I do with toddlers clinging to them and a baby bouncing on the knee.
So there you have it. A day in the life of THIS blogger. 🙂
Bloggers, what is a day in the life of a blogger for you? I would love it if you shared posts about your blogging journey!