Anyone who writes a blog will tell you there’s a ton of money to be made. Of course, they’re lying but hey.. a dream has to start somewhere, right?
The truth of the matter is, that while there may be some money to be made in blogging, the “big” money is usually reserved for the top 1% of bloggers (sound familiar??), while the rest plug along with small payouts either in ad sense dollars or products given in exchange for reviews. Personally, I have a couple of ads on my site but in no way do I aspire to monetize my site. A few times a month, I’m approached by brands who ask me to review and promote their products and if it fits our life, I usually agree with the understanding that I am objective in my reviews. I created this site over 8 years ago to mark events in my family’s life and I’m perfectly happy with that.
Esteemed colleague, Shelly Kramer had an amazing post this week about the break down of what (mom) bloggers actually make and how brands should work with us. I highly recommend you read it if you’re a blogger of any type… “mom” or not.
But this post is not about the monetary value of blogging. It’s about that rare moment when you realize all the time you spend writing is actually worth more than any blog paycheck you could ever get. It’s the unexpected email that you find in your in-box from some unknown person in another part of the country who tells you how much your site means to them. How it helps them get thru their day and is their primary source of a sliver of happiness.
I received such an email this evening from one the readers of Ten to Twenty Parenting. Of course, I’m not going to reveal her name but this was the text of her email:
Just found your site. LOVE IT!
I am a single mother of four… ages 10,12,14,16. I divorced their
father in February 2011 and then he passed away suddenly of a heart
attack in October of the same year. I have had his family treat the
kids and I like garbage and I am executor for his estate. Also, my 14
year old son suffers from Bipolar Disorder. My life is anything but
simple. I handle the kids and life with a heavy dose of sarcastic humor.
Thanks for creating a place for me!
And that, my friends, makes all the time that I devote to not just this blog, but also to Ten to Twenty, worth it.
I am not so egomaniacal to think that I am blazing a trail or putting anything out there that is “better” than anyone else. But what I am doing is putting my cursor where my heart is. I believe there is a need for a community for those of us raising tweens and teens and I am VERY passionate about it. I spend hours looking for like minded writers and asking them to contribute to our site. Sometimes they say yes, sometimes they say no and other times, they ignore me. But I continue my quest because it has to be done. And for something to resonate so profoundly in a reader that they send me this kind of email, then I know what I’m doing is right.
Would I love to have major brands endorse the Ten to Twenty site and have some payoff for my endless hours of writing and research? Sure. But, as I said before that’s not the reason that I do what I do. If I can make a difference in one person’s life, then it’s worth it to me.
And yes – that IS worth more than a paycheck.