New Insight Into Blogging Shows – gasp – It’s Profitable

Marc Penn over at Wall Street Journal came out with some insteresting statistics about blogging today including the fact that roughly 1% of Americans are blogging for some source of income with 2% of those earning enough to make it their PRIMARY income. And people used to laugh and call blogging a “passing fad”.

Blogging isn’t dead, in fact it’s alive and well. Most of the blogs are now very targeted, niche blogs about specific topics, and they seem to do very well. My own is finally moving into fruition and soon I may be able to join that 2%.

Here are some more interesting statistics about bloggers from the WSJ article:

Wall Street Journal: Demographically, bloggers are extremely well educated: three out of every four are college graduates. Most are white males reporting above-average incomes. One out of three young people reports blogging, but bloggers who do it for a living successfully are 2% of bloggers overall.

It takes about 100,000 unique visitors a month to generate an income of $75,000 a year. Bloggers can get $75 to $200 for a good post, and some even serve as “spokesbloggers” — paid by advertisers to blog about products. As a job with zero commuting, blogging could be one of the most environmentally friendly jobs around — but it can also be quite profitable. For sites at the top, the returns can be substantial. At some point the value of the Huffington Post will no doubt pass the value of the Washington Post.

The barriers to entry couldn’t be lower. Most bloggers for hire pay $80 to get started, do it for about 35 months, and make a few hundred dollars. But a subgroup of these bloggers are the true professionals who work at corporations, serve as highly paid blogging consultants or write for sites with substantial traffic.

Personally, I realized a long time ago niche blogging is the same as publishing a newspaper directed at your target audience. The real difference is you’re publishing to the web making it 1000 times easier for readers to find it. Twenty years ago a small, independent paper would expect maybe 100 readers that they’d have to work really hard for. Today the average blogger will have 100 page reads within the first week. If they’re adept at using Twitter and have good content that number would be substantially higher.

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