I had a conversation earlier today with a friend who I’d not seen for a while. After an awkward pause in the conversation where he obviously wanted to ask me something but didn’t quite know how he said:
“I know I should know this…. but what exactly do you do?”
He went on to explain that he knew I was a blogger and that I somehow made a living from that – but because we’d not seen each other much lately and because I seemed to be starting new things all the time, he didn’t really have a grasp of what it was that I was spending time on these days.
Interestingly this is not the first time I’ve been asked this lately – I guess since I started blogging 8 years ago things have changed a bit for me and perhaps I’ve not communicated what it is that I actually do these days well enough to everyone. Life’s certainly changed a lot in the last decade – from being a theology student/minister (with part time jobs on the side) to full time blogger….
So – this post is an attempt to do just that for friends, family and anyone else who needs a catch up on what I do in my work. I won’t get into the nitty gritty of how my blogs make money – but what follows is an update of the ‘pies’ I have my fingers in these day. I hope it helps.
What I do – at least in my Work
Much of what I do these days revolves around my blogs. This isn’t that different to what I’ve been doing since I started blogging in some ways – but there have been some changes as some of the blogs are ‘newish’. The three blogs I own/edit/manage (in order of size from biggest to smallest):
- Digital Photography School – a blog about photography that aims to help people improve how they use their cameras.
- ProBlogger – a blog about blogging and how to make a living from it (sad but it’s amazing how many people want to learn how to do it)
- TwiTip – a newer blog about Twitter and how to use it
Each of those blogs have a variety of spinoffs and other social media sites attached to them. For example ProBlogger also has a membership site/forum that people pay to be a part of each month, a Twitter account, a job board where people advertise for bloggers, a facebook page, a YouTube channel etc. Digital Photography School has a forum (free), weekly newsletter and social media sites too.
I also have started selling eBooks off Digital Photography School (3 of them, one that I wrote and 2 that I’ve partnered with others on) and one on ProBlogger.
Then there’s the ProBlogger book – a real book made of paper (yes, very old fashioned but people still read them). This I co-authored with a friend and it recently was updated into a 2nd edition.
I also have partnered with others on a few other businesses. Some of you will be familiar with one of these – b5media which I started with 3 other bloggers a number of years ago. These days I’m not really active with that business but am a minority shareholder. I am more active however with a newer collaboration called Third Tribe – a membership site for online entrepreneurs.
That’s mainly what I do and am involved with. I do get asked to speak a fair bit at conferences but as most of it is in the USA don’t do a whole lot of that these days (I go over twice a year most years).
All in all business is good. I’m at a point now where my blogs are read by 3-4 million people each month (it can vary quite a bit) and where it’s more than a full time job. Things are at a point now where I’m getting ready to hire some help which will enable me to concentrate on the parts of the business that I enjoy most and to take advantage of some of the new opportunities that keep presenting themselves.
I hope that that gives at least some insight into ‘what I do’ at least as it pertains to the work area of my life. If it’s not clear or you need some clarification – do feel free to ask!
If it’s still utterly confusing – don’t worry, it is for me too!
PS: of course I’m more than just my work – I ‘do’ other stuff too…. but I thought rather than ramble on about ‘the rest’ I’d keep this just to work. Hope it helps.