Can blogging be taken as a career in India?
You might be having this question in mind too. Right? Today, we are presenting interview with a pro-blogger Pradeep Kumar, who is running network of blogs and has nine years of experience in blogging. He will tell you if you can earn your living by blogging. He will also share risks evolving in blogging as a career. Find out everything in our exclusive interview.
Who is Pradeep Kumar? Tell us a bit about you.
Pradeep Kumar (Chennai) is a blogger and an internet marketer. I have been blogging since the past 9 years, learned a lot from it and decided to make it as my profession. I also started a company called Slashsquare to connect the blogs I run and also to provide web services. I’m a fun loving guy and an atheist.
Everyone wants to be a blogger now a days. What are your thoughts?
I would totally agree with that. Just like everyone has a Facebook profile they also have a blog these days, it could be on Blogger, WordPress, Medium or any other platform. A blog is more or less an expanded version of Facebook post or tweet. They use it as a medium to share their thoughts, their rants, their personal updates, etc. But when one decides to have blogging as a career, then things get little bit different and difficult.
What does it take to be a good blogger?
I always see bloggers as journalists, teachers and especially as marketers. Just like a teacher provide notes to his/ her students, a blogger provide notes to the internet users. Their blog posts are visible to everyone on the internet, you may not know, but in some part of the world, someone is reading your blog post and doing something valuable. So to become a good blogger, you need to be honest, factual, and more importantly patient.
Can one earn his bread with blogging? Can blogging be taken as the only career option?
Blogging as a profession is something that is very hard to decide. If you are a passionate blogger and if you want to do this 24/7, then you can consider it as a profession. Also, you need to be very sure that you can ‘make some decent income’ out of it. I wouldn’t recommend a person to quit the job or school/ college degree to become a pro blogger unless he/ she is extremely sure about this. Professional blogging is all about making money out of your blog(s).
Thanks to Google AdSense, now it is possible for all the bloggers to monetise their blogs. But when you are into professional blogging I would suggest you to have at least 5+ income sources apart from AdSense, it could be sponsored reviews, affiliate marketing, web services, etc., don’t ever rely on a single income source when you are into this.
Tell us about risks involved in blogging as a career.
First and foremost this is not a replacement for your current career. You can’t just quit your job and start your journey to become a pro blogger. If you want to become a pro blogger, then I would suggest you to start a blog and run it for few months, do some experiments, see how it goes, learn about monetisation and content marketing, you’ll get an idea about it then. You can also consult a popular pro blogger and learn about his/ her experience.
Regarding the risks involved in blogging as a career I could easily say many. Let’s be frank. If you are a blogger, you should please Google in whatever ways possible to keep your running smooth. Google provides you income (AdSense) and traffic (Organic Search), so if Google hates you (or bans you), then it’ll be really hard to recover. You should learn Google’s rules and blogging accordingly.
Apart from technical stuff, other risk is how the society will portray you. I’m not sure how many people will easily understand if you say your profession is blogging. Honestly I wouldn’t really care about their views or opinions, but sometimes it gets tricky, for example your future in-laws. 😛
Tell us your story. How did you get into blogging?
When I was in school I never really had a passion, I used to go, study, watch others play sports, and come back to my home. When Orkut got popular, I decided to give it a try, I went to a Cyber Cafe and started to use it. Just like others I got addicted to this social network easily and spent most of my time there. Orkut was a product of Google, by this, I also came to know about their other popular product – Blogger.com. My blogging journey started here.
I started a blog on Google’s Blogger.com and published copy-pasted articles. I had no idea how to use it, I just posted random stuffs and hit the ‘Publish’ button. I didn’t know about anything during that time, I was just an avid internet user. I learned about various Orkut tips/ tricks and started to write about them on my blog. I created various tutorials and tips related to Windows OS. No one in my circle had a blog, so I made good use of that scenario, and started to improve my blog. I shared it with various people and got valuable feedback.
On 2009, I registered hellboundbloggers.com domain name and started to blog properly. Because this was my 1st ever investment on blogging. I got that money from my dad (used his credit card) and purchased this domain name. I became responsible and deleted all my old crap posts. After migrating to WordPress (self-hosted), I made my 2nd investment for web hosting. By that time I was doing my engineering degree and I was not earning anything, from anywhere. I just saved my pocket money. I invested a lot for domain names, hosting, and browsing centres.
No one was there to guide me properly, so I experimented a lot and failed a lot. I decided I should make some decent money at least to cover my blogging expenses. After few months, I successfully earned some money to cover all my expenses. After few years, I successfully earned some money to make this as a permanent profession. So here I am.
Which blogs do you run and how much do you earn from blogging?
I started a company called Slashsquare, it is an Indian blog network and a web consulting media. It has HellBound Bloggers (HBB), MoviesDrop, DeviceBAR and other blogs under it. We monetised our blogs with advertisements, sponsored reviews and affiliates. Slashsquare network, in general, generates around a decent four-figure ($) income every month.
How big your team is? Tell us something about your team.
Honestly I don’t have a consistent team. I work alone. I have some freelance writers and good friends who contribute for the blogs.
Do you do anything else apart from blogging?
I love travelling, so I’m planning to visit some interesting places all over India. I also write stories frequently, so will try my best to convert them into a short film or a novel soon. I’m a fun-loving guy and I plan most of the things at the last moment.
Can a blogger become millionaire overnight?
Would like to mention a quote said by Steve Jobs,
Pixar is seen by a lot of folks as an overnight success, but if you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.
Yes, most of the overnight successes took a long time. We have tons of bloggers in India (and in the world), so the competition is really high and so does the recognition. If you are a blogger and if you are working hard, then one day or one night, people will realise that and honour you.
When you own a popular blog you’ll get lots of options to monetise it, so it gives you a chance to make at least around $1000+ per month easily.
Blogging is the new boom. What do you say about quality of blogs now a days?
That’s totally true. This has pros and cons as well, people either start to blog for sharing their views or spamming the web. But when you become a professional blogger, your responsibilities increase and you start to notice the good things about blogging. I’m really glad to see some of the popular bloggers in India are turning into professional bloggers, it helps the future generation a lot to decide their career, go for what you love.
What are the recent trends in blogging?
Any new trend on social media or SEO is a trend for blogging as well. Blogging connects all the important aspects of the internet. For social media, there are some rumours that Google will discontinue Google Plus social network and for SEO, I think bloggers should/ must make their blogs mobile-friendly, Google loves such blogs.
Tell us three qualities a blogger must have.
Usually these are the three qualities I expect from every blogger.
He/ she should:
- Verify the facts thrice publishing them online.
- Should understand Social Media & SEO.
- Be kind & patient enough to help the readers.
Would you like to give some tips to aspiring bloggers?
If you are going to start a blog or if you are running a blog, then you should understand the fact that blogging was never meant to make money, you shouldn’t start a blog with goals to make money alone. Making money should be a part of your blogging journey but not a goal or destination.
What do you think about BuddyBits?
I came across BuddyBits through an online friend. I loved the name, so I immediately visited BuddyBits and read some interesting blog posts under “Business” section. I think BuddyBits is an essential platform for all the youngsters out there.
Certainly, your experience and tips are going to help many aspiring bloggers out there. Thank you so much for wonderful insights from your blogging journey.