Things I didn’t know before I became a full time blogger

Leggi in italiano 

Since I’ve been blogging for living, this activity has taken some amendments to my approach and attitude to blogging and in writing in general; now I’ll tell you more about this.

I’ll tell you a couple of things I would have never imagined before I became a full time blogger. If you are a full time blogger I’d love to know your opinion and if you are not (to not yet) I’m even more interested in your insights about what I’m going to tell you.

1 – Writing is but 30% of the activity 

full time blogger - in my suitcase

Let’s start with this new that will take the purist writers away from the ambitions of being a full time professional blogger.

Writing often and well is very important. Even more important is consistency and coherence.

But there’s plenty of other crucial things to do in order to increase your traffic, your page/site authority.
Each week, in order to make my bog grow and be visualized, there’s a set of activity I must do and that are not content writing.
These activities are scheduled as follow:

  • at least one hour a day to read other blogs and comment on them ( one of my favorite activities, since it allows me to learn so much!);
  • at least one hour a day joining Facebook Groups support activities and Twitter chats (both in Italian and in English, since this is a double language blog);
  • at least 3 hours a week answering to comments on my posts (the more the blog grows the more the time devoted to this activity increases);
  • About 3 hours a week translating posts;
  • At least 2 hours a week answering and dealing with agencies asking for guest posts;
  • For each post, let’s say about 2 hours in social sharing (which also implies making graphics suitable for each social network);
  • 20 minutes a day growing social Instagram and Twitter followers (I have decided not to have a Facebook Page. If you’d like to know why, read “Things all blogger should do… but I don’t”)

Se si gestiscono più blog, come nel mio caso, le attività di cui sopra si moltiplicano e spesso trovare tempo per ideare e scrivere contenuti diventa complesso.

You might also be interested in the post

5 things to do
after you post an article on your blog

2 – A hater makes your day 

travel basilicata blogger

For those chi still don’t know it, a hater is someone who doesn’t like you for a reason or another but, differently than all the other people who have similar feelings for you, manifest them with several different more or less polite critic comments (on your blog or on social media).
They can be more or less violent or vulgar, sometimes just ironical and cynic.

I’m quite touchy and before I became a full time blogger I would have never imagined how a long and critic comment written under my blog post could really make my day, make me feel happy, diverted and successful.

Actually, thinking that someone is so interested and committed in hating me to lose time and read my blog or part of it and write a negative comment makes me feel so… unique, precious and even loved.
At the end of the day, hate implies commitment, just like love!

3 – You don’t write for yourself anymore… and that’s fine! 

work harder - do you have to leave your full time job to be free?

When you decide to have a blog not just to express yourself but in order to have the blog read by as many people as possible, your ego sops being the center of it all.

Well, I mean, your personal writing, your interests and your “self” are still there, well visible, and must stay at the center of your topics. I still write about travels and blogging, no matter what are the main interests searched by people in the internet. And you must keep on studying the subject more and more, as if you have to become the maximum expert about the matter.

But, as far as concerns me, I’ve found it was useless to write about my feeling and impressions walking down the streets of New York when the world is full of people trying to learn about where to go to escape NYC summer heat or looking in the internet about if or not having a sightseeing tour?

What’s the use of writing a post about why I love blogging in more languages when someone can be interested in HOW to do that, technically, and if and why is this actually useful?

Surely you’ll find me in the tips I write and in the impression I describe but since when I started blogging for work I’ve had the necessity to put the reader at the center of the topic I write about. Me, I’ve become peripheral.

And you know what? This is great! This is something very important for someone who writes, also novels. It taught me how to make up a story without autobiography risks.

4 – I had to put aside the most of what I knew about earning money as a blogger

I’ve read about related links, affiliations, Adsense and so on… enough to lose hopes or to have false ones. Actually the ways to earn money with a blog are like the ways to happiness: ENDLESS.

And they are not necessarily bound to your traffic nor social networks followers: you can have well paid guest posts even with a low-medium traffic (let’s say 30.000 readers a week) and 5.000 followers on social networks.

work 2

Most of bloggers don’t earn money just with their blogs and use it as a way to be more visible for potential customers.
They also write, for example, for company blogs for money. They’ll make it only if there’s a customer that finds them good and smart.
Just like a journalist, a blogger doesn’t have to be super expert in the subjects of any client; they must be eager (and able) to:

– study new subjects
– make them interesting for as many people as possible
– being able to tell them
– being able to share them on social networks

Then, eventually, a blogger also writes for her/his personal blog, used as a virtual show room or as a free-place to finally express personal opinions or interests and as another way to gain (some) money.
The latter opportunity mostly depends on the amount of visits, and that’s why travel and fashion bloggers have a little more opportnities; they deal with subjects interesting for much more people than IT blogs, pet blogs, drone blogs, disability issues blogs etc.

To learn more about it, read “All the truth about bloggers”. 

5 – There are good practices… I’ll never put into practice 

commentare blog post

When something becomes a job, this doesn’t mean you ethic must be gone. On te contrary, you start thinking and acting following the so called work ethic, leading you to make choices sometimes economically disadvantageous but that will make you feel better with your job and work better. So, in along period, also to have better gains.

There are good practices all blogger should do (as long as they say) but that I don’t, like inviting my readers to join my newsletter, letting advertising pop ups  interrupt readings, putting too invasive banners let ruin the aesthetics of my posts.

Finally I have to say that once, my cynical dark side didn’t allow me to understand how satisfying this job could be. I believed nobody could ever care about my personal experiences abroad, since I realized (and my google position helped me to realize 😉 ) that as long as my personal experience is your personal experience… people will keep on reading like I love to do with other bloggers.

Dark side 0 – Sabrina 1.


  • Ana

    I agree, Sabrina! Blogging is hard and not everyone’s cup of tea. And I feel travel blogging is harder as you have to explore any destination like a traveler, choose good frames and click your pictures, stay connected with your readers and followers on social media even if you’ve limited internet connection, try to write your blog posts at night suffering from the terrible jet-lags and reply to your endless emails.
    But, when you get the positive response from your readers, that happiness is priceless!

  • Tiina A

    Loved these points! That shows so well how hard work is the keyword. You have definitely worked hard and it’s great to see how well you have succeed in it 🙂
    I should do the same 😉

  • Eugenia

    That’s so cool you managed to become a full-time blogger! You Rock and I am your fan! I completely agree that writing just a great content is not enough in our competitive world, but to be successful a blog also needs a strong blog promotion strategy.


    What a lovely blog you have Sabrina !! I think it takes lots of courage to be a full time blogger and I am glad when I see bloggers who succeed. Lovely tips !!

  • Anton

    I can so relate to this! Build (or write) and they will come is not applicable. No blog is an island and if readers can’t find you, it’s hard to sustain the writing, just from a motivation standpoint.

  • Ali Rost

    What a great post. How true to it all .. especially that writing is only about 30% of the job. There are so many more things I do everyday .. I never would have imagined!

  • Freya Farrington

    I used to guest blog for a company in both French and English and that definitely duplicates your workload! I also find it’s the admin side that takes up most of the time as a full time blogger also!

  • Ana De- Jesus

    I wish I was a full time blogger, one day my dream will come true. It is true social media promotion and engaging in Facebook groups is what takes up the most time!

  • Tiina A

    Thanks for these tips! So far I’ve been just kind of writing for myself and not really focusing on all those things I should as i would love to become a “real” blogger.

  • Figlia del Caos

    Che cosa fantastica! Si vede che ci metti tutta te stessa in questo lavoro. Io vorrei avviarmi su questa ripidissima strada, ma ho bisogno di qualche consiglio. Potrei disturbare una PRO come te via mail?

    Anyways also with this article I’ve learned a lot of this job. So thanks! 🙂

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