The Biggest Challenge Most Bloggers Face

Movember Is Coming

Have you ever asked yourself what the biggest challenge you face is as a blogger?

Maybe you have. Maybe you have sat down and created a list of action items that are impeding your ability to reach for that next level, or maybe you haven’t.

If you have any interest in growing your blog it is one of those things that you have to do. Without that information you might find yourself wandering through the desert for forty years and while it works for some people not everyone enjoys sleeping with sand and scorpions.

 My Biggest Challenge Might Be Yours Too

The biggest challenge I face with growing my blog isn’t a lack of ideas nor is it a lack of a marketing budget.

Nope, my biggest challenge is time or should I say a lack of thereof. I have dozens of ideas for topics and multiple new features that I want to implement.

Time really does equal money and there is a cost to blogging that needs to be considered. Your time is worth something, call me crazy, but I am guessing that you don’t work for free.

The time you devote to writing/editing/commenting could be spent on other things. The money you spend on hosting, premium themes, newsletters, plugins and blog conferences could be spent on other things as well.

It all comes back to those famous three initials, R.O.I.

Why Are You Doing This?

Do you know why you are out here in cyberspace exchanging keystrokes with the other denizens of the ‘net? Is your blog part of a grand plan to take over the world, create a passive stream of income or be discovered as the next great author?

I think about all of these things because I have to and I want to.

I don’t want to work for minimum wage so I pay attention to how much time it takes for me to finish the projects I take on. Let me let you in on a secret, not everyone does.

Those of us who do work as freelancers have a significant amount of competition out there and some of them are willing to work for peanuts. We’ll save the discussion about how they devalue our work and hurt writers for a different post, but just know that it is happening.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that your company isn’t paying attention to how much it costs to run their social media efforts either. Companies are paying close attention to their expenditures and trying to make sure they are spending their dollars in the right areas.

Your time is worth something and your blog should be too.

What Do You Think?

What do you think about all this? Let’s talk about it in the comments.

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  2. Louise October 11, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    Hi Josh, oh how I wish I had more hours in the day to blog and comment. I love blogging and the relationships that evolve as a result, but there are other things that need to be done. I allocate a certain time every day to write posts, reply to comments, connect with people and comment on other blogs. And I stick to that…well, most of the time 🙂 But much as I love blogging, I also expect to get a return on my investment of time. It is part of my business strategy and therefore needs to generate a return. It is however difficult to measure that return…how do you measure a return that comes from relationship building?
    Interesting and thought provoking post Josh…thank you.

    • Josh October 12, 2012 at 12:14 am

      Hi Louise,

      Your question is one I think about quite often and I haven’t come up with a good answer. I can look at my blog and identify business opportunities that have come from it. I can pinpoint how much I have earned because of those opportunities, but I can’t always quantify how much time I really spent to generate that opportunity.

      I need to add that I love reading comments like yours. There is a distinct pleasure in connecting with people who really love blogging that is what I get from your comment and your blog.

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  4. JanBierens October 9, 2012 at 2:25 pm

    Hi Josh,
    There does not always have to be a ROI ‘involved’ in a monetary way. Just doing what one likes can be very rewarding.
    I like to write about ‘randomish’ subjects. Weather -as you know – some current affairs, fun, opinion everything goes. Writing – or the urge to write something – comes from out of the blue most at the time.
    Organized chaos. I lurv it!

    • Josh October 9, 2012 at 11:34 pm

      Hi Jan,

      The ROI doesn’t have to be financial in nature. As you mentioned if you enjoy what you are doing there are benefits that come from/along with that.

      I am also a fan of organized chaos. There is a lot of fun tied up in that.

  5. Lisa Gerber October 9, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    Hi Josh,
    I guess it depends on why you are blogging in the first place. If you’re like Carolyn above, you might be doing it simply because you enjoy it. Otherwise, if it’s to generate leads, it should be doing exactly that, right? I do it for a combination of generating leads, but also putting my work to practice. So for me, it’s about understanding how blogging works as a community builder and lead gen tool. Oy, the time investment. Indeed. 🙂

    • Josh October 9, 2012 at 11:32 pm

      Hi Lisa,

      Your blog sounds like a laboratory where you get a chance to experiment and see what works or doesn’t work. Or maybe that is my blog. 😉

      A good community does wonders, even when you have all sorts of crazies visiting you. That time investment can be tough, but when it works…

  6. Carolyn October 9, 2012 at 4:32 am

    Hi Josh, I’m writing my blog because I enjoy it. I love discovering new tech, chatting with leaders of up and coming tech companies and playing with new gadgets. Then, even better, I get to share my fun with others by writing about it. How great is that?

    You’re right, time is precious and that’s what I wish I had more of in writing my blog. So I created more time by reducing my schedule from 5-6 articles a week to 3. I wanted more time to devote to each article. I don’t want to go to fewer articles each week because, well, there is just too much great tech to share, and more is coming every day!

    I look forward to your article on freelance writing. I’m wondering if it’s like anything else, you pay for quality?

    • Josh October 9, 2012 at 11:28 pm

      Hi Carolyn,

      It is hard not to love reading a well written blog on a topic that the author loves. It is to get caught up in the excitement.

      Sometimes cutting back is the best thing you can do for your writing. The extra time and easing of pressure can yield big rewards.

      The question of quality is one I think about often. It is a longer discussion, but I see publications out there who spend so much time worrying about their bottom line they’re willing to take a hit on quality.

  7. Adrienne October 8, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    Ah, that time is money saying Josh! I hear ya my friend, boy do I hear ya.

    I know for me just learning how to do all of this was very time consuming. I didn’t want to just hire someone to do it for me because I wanted to know what was involved. I wanted to know how to do a lot of things myself and not have to always rely on other people.

    Once I started seeing a return for my money though is the day things started turning around for me. Which is why I find it hard when I hear people complaining that they’re getting nowhere when I ask them what they’ve been doing and they’ve been playing games on Facebook. Seriously? And you’re going to complain to me!

    Time is precious so I schedule mine Josh and I make sure that I get everything accomplished within that allotted time.

    Great post and a good wake up call for many a blogger.


    • Josh October 9, 2012 at 12:23 am

      Hi Adrienne,

      I suspect one of the differences between you and other people is that you took this more seriously and made a point to figure out whether you could make it work.

      Many people don’t put in the time and make the effort to figure it out. I have been working for myself for a long while now so I had to figure out where I was spending my time and what I was getting out of it.

      When you can attribute money earned or not earned to your activities it tends to have a big influence on what you do and how you do it.

      Clearly you have figured out a system. That is worth a lot.

  8. Tim Bonner October 8, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Hey Josh

    Time is also definitely one of my biggest challenges.

    It’s not often that I get a good couple of hours to myself to do anything with my blog so I have to write posts in short bursts. Not ideal but it’s where I am right now. I could definitely do with organising myself better which would improve things.

    Why am I doing this? Well, there’s a few reasons. Passive income sounds good, I enjoy it, and most of all it gives me a focus away from my day job.

    • Josh October 9, 2012 at 12:19 am

      Hi Tim,

      I am a fan of writing in short bursts. There is value in learning how to organize our thoughts and then share them in smaller amounts of time.

      It is a skill that you can improve through practice and it is quite useful.

      It is great that you enjoy blogging. It is really hard to last if you don’t and it is even better when you can make a buck or two doing it.

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