Monday, February 7, 2011

Learning How to Promote & Market A Blog

Some people make the choice to work for themselves. They plan for it, save for it, make sure every little detail is right before they begin. Others make the choice to earn a little extra income. But there are some of us who have the choice made for us. That choice was made for me in June of 2008, when I was laid off from my job due to lack of work. After the first year of diligently searching for and failing to find a traditional job as the recession got worse and worse, I truly feared for my future for the first time in my life.

I knew I had to do something to take control of my own financial well-being. Even if I was lucky enough to find a job, there would be no guarantee that this recession wouldn't cause me to be laid off again, but of course no job offer was forthcoming. The only option left to me was to find a way to work for myself.

My first attempt to work for myself was to open a CafePress store to sell my digital art designs. I spent hours putting the store together, uploading my artwork, designing various products, and then I waited for sales to come. And I waited. And waited. Waited some more. Nothing happened. Today, I'm still waiting, but I have a plan ... more on that later.

My second attempt was to start my own temp business featuring me as the only available temp. This business worked better for me, and it at least made more money than I spent on startup costs, but I still wasn't getting enough jobs to keep up with my day-to-day living expenses.

This is my third attempt. For a long time, I've been aware that people are making money on the web. If they can do it, why can't I? The problem, of course, was I didn't know where to even begin. A friend of mine forwarded me an email she received from a work at home program. I checked the company out and found out that they were legitimate. The system only cost $47 for lifetime access, so I figured I might as well give it a try. (I'm still evaluating the program, so I won't mention the name of this company until I'm satisfied that it works.)

It's only been a couple of weeks since I began the program, so the verdict is still out about how well it works, but I will say that I'm learning a lot. This blog was created as part of the program. It's a starter blog meant to help me learn the ropes. Now that I've finished creating the blog and getting signed up with the various companies I want to represent, the next step is to get people to my blog. It's called Traffic ... getting people to your website. I know what it is. I've always known what it was. What I don't know is how to get it.

And this is where my REAL education begins!

This is also the point where this blog finally finds its purpose. Working For Yourself is dedicated to my marketing education. I'll take what I'm learning and apply it to both this blog and to my CafePress store. (See, I told you I'd come back to this later. It's later.) Maybe it's vanity, but I happen to think that my artwork is good enough that people might want to buy a poster or a t-shirt, if I could just get my stuff in front of their eyes.

Will my efforts pay off? Stay tuned!

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