If you can figure out what monetizing your passion looks like in real life, you are living the dream. For many of us, it STAYS a dream. But for Lindsay Ostrom, her love of food and sharing recipes turned into a full-time job for her and her husband Bjork (remember episodes 61 & 62?) through Pinch of Yum and Food Blogger Pro. In this episode she shares the story of how she was able to monetize her passion through blogging.
Listen to Episode 65 – Monetizing Your Passion
Want to connect with Lindsay? You can find her blogging at Pinch of Yum, sharing amazing recipes (like this Tikki Masala that is in our kitchen rotation) or follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, or Facebook.
Monetization Started Through Experimentation.
When Lindsay and Bjork started out with ads on Pinch of Yum, it was a scary change. They started by asking what was working for other people, then implemented ads and began watching and tracking metrics to see what was working. The mindset was: if you can make $20, you can make $40. And if you can make $40, you can make $80.
Growth Isn’t Always Fast, But a Slow Upward Trend.
They started small, just using ads on the blog to monetize. Then Lindsay paid attention to what people were interested in and started with ONE product, an ebook. She utilized affiliates to sell the book and saw a steady increase in traffic and sales through word of mouth and the affiliate program.
It Is Possible to Monetize, Even without Huge Masses of Traffic.
Find a value that you can provide to the readers you do have and to potential readers. You don’t have to have masses of traffic or depend on ads. Find what your readers want and how you can provide that for them, whether through information or a product.
Follow What Is Naturally Happening and Makes It SCALABLE.
Pinch of Yum’s training counterpart is Food Blogger Pro, where Lindsay and Bjork run a membership site to train food bloggers. This formed organically when they realized that people were constantly coming to them for help and answering emails one on one was simply not scalable. If you have people constantly coming to you for help, find ways
Working with Your Spouse as a Business Partner May or MAY NOT Work for You.
Every couple may not work well together on a business. (It’s hard enough sometimes to work with people you aren’t married to sometimes!) For Lindsay and Bjork, this looked like working in separate spaces. If you are trying to partner with your spouse on developing a business, there are the great benefits, but those same benefits can be a real struggle. You need to be intentional in taking care of and protecting your relationship.
Food Blogging as a Business Looks Different Than Food Blogging as a Hobby.
Lindsay started out just trying things and posting her thoughts. Now that the blog has a more serious following, it works better in systems. She makes every recipe twice, once at a normal time, and then one day when she makes all the recipes and takes all the photos in one day. Working in batches is a way to get more done systematically.
Your Skills Will Continue to Develop Through Use and Experimentation.
Pinch of Yum is a site known for food photography and Linday’s book, Tasty Food Photography, has helped countless bloggers get better. She found with each new lens, she learned new things about photography. With her writing, she tried to write the kind of blog she wanted to read. It’s important to read other blogs and works similar to yours, but to keep your own voice and perspective so you are inspired by someone else, but aren’t emulating anyone else. Just start and keep showing up, trying new things along the way.
Should You Do It for a Business? Or for the Love?
Lindsay is in the camp where you start with what you love and see where it goes. If you aren’t rewarded by the process itself, you will struggle to sustain that. There MUST be an intrinsic reward in the work itself. That will keep you going. Success doesn’t happen right away. You should ask, “Would I do it even if I weren’t being paid?” Think long term. It’s not getting rich quick. There is no magic formula to blogging or anything else, no matter what other people tell you. Keep showing up and posting content. The love will be the fuel behind what you do.
When it comes to monetizing your passion, where do you struggle? Do you agree that you should do it primarily for the love, not the money? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
(these may be affiliate links! Which means at no extra cost to you, I may get a commission for referring you!)