Following on from our first interview with Justin Germino we now have our interview with Kiesha Easley who I profiled the other day. Kiesha who is the founder of Weblogbetter has provided us with some brilliant answers to the questions that you (submit questions here) and I put to her.
There’s plenty of top notch information in here so a big shout out to Kiesha @ weblogbetter.com for it
Q1.Some would say that you’re lucky in that you took on Weblogbetter.com when it was already set up and running with a large number of readers. Would you agree that this has made blogging a bit easier for you since you didn’t have to put in all the groundwork? Or would you argue otherwise?
Rather than say “lucky,” I would say “blessed” – yes, taking on a blog that already had been built on a strong foundation by Brandon definitely made some things easier. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that having an audience already in place removes the requirement of hard work.
I’ve watched other blogs with even bigger audiences than what WeBlogBetter had at the time, change ownership and the result was not positive. The audience left because they had identified more readily with the previous owner.
I didn’t want that to happen. I didn’t want all of Brandon’s (Cox) hard work to be in vain. I wanted to make him proud. I wanted to not just maintain the blog; I wanted to take it to the next level.
So, I had to work even harder in those early days to convince the readers that WeBlogBetter was still worth their time. I had to really go out of my way to produce fresh content every day that was worth reading and not alienate anyone.
I was prepared to accept the fact that some readers would leave, but that didn’t happen. People kept reading and the community kept growing. I believe that’s because I went out of my way to connect with people and make them feel welcome. I believe it’s because I didn’t get cocky and because I continued to put in the work.
Q2.When you were younger did you ever see yourself working full time on the internet?
Oh, that’s an easy question to answer: NO! Because the internet didn’t exist (LOL)! Okay, okay… Of course, I wouldn’t be able to envision that – my family didn’t even own a computer. But what I did believe was that one day I would be a successful and influential writer and it’s that vision that propels me forward every day and makes me work so hard to build my blog.
Q3. What would you do if the whole internet crashed tomorrow, and it couldn’t be set up again until 2020? How would you replace the income you get from blogging?
I’ll entertain this “What If” scenario, but I’m set against letting fear consume any of my mental energy or guide my actions.
But since you’ve asked, I’d say that because most of the income that I make comes from the services (writing and editing) I offer through my blog, anyway, I would focus more on offering those services offline. My first steady stream of clients came from offline networking efforts. I attended networking events for professionals and made my services known to everyone I got a chance to speak with. I guess if the internet crashed, I’d have to trade in my PJs and break out the crisp, ironed business suit, again.
Q4.What made you want to start blogging in the first place?
I heard about blogging in college. We were encouraged to do more and more interacting online for various courses and also had to maintain an online portfolio. I’d heard people talking about documenting their experiences online on these so-called “weblogs.” It sounded pretty interesting, but it wasn’t until I heard about affiliate marketing and that you could earn money by displaying ads on a blog that I really started conducting some real research.
Q5.Have you any regrets with choosing blogging as a career? Or is it the perfect lifestyle for you? If it isn’t what would be?
I have no regrets. The opportunity to work from home is the perfect lifestyle for me because it allows me to be more present in my home and available to my family. After years of spending most of my day away from home and missing out on a lot of my children’s childhood memories, I needed a change. I’m glad that now, I’m able to choose the hours that I work as well as the location. If I want to work at 2am in my PJs; I can. If I want to work at McDonald’s while my five years plays in the indoor Play Place; I can.
Q6. Would you say that you have to enjoy what you’re doing to be successful at it?
No, you don’t have to enjoy what you’re doing to be successful. I’ve been successful at a lot of things that I hated doing. But if you plan on be happy with what you’re doing, then yeah, you need to enjoy it at least a little bit.
Q7. What’s your main form of income online?
The services I provide and offer via my blog are my main form of income. My blog allows me to obtain clients from all over the globe and makes it possible to meet people I never would’ve otherwise have access to. I also earn some passive income via ads and affiliate sales, but the biggest percentage is from services.
Q8. Would people say you’re addicted to social networks? Which one(s)?
No, people probably wouldn’t say that about me. I limit my time spent on social networks only because they can negatively affect productivity. I love Twitter, but I don’t let it rule my day. I check in when I have time, but I’m not addicted.
Q9. Do you like to rant when your blogging and let off steam? How do you think that affects your readership?
No, I very rarely rant and actually wrote a post a while ago discussing the negative effects that it can have on readership. (http://weblogbetter.com/2010/06/23/blog-rants-are-you-spreading-negativity/)
Q10. What’s the most surprising thing that’s ever occurred in your blogging career? (A strange email, site hacked, takeover bid, impersonator etc..)
The most surprising thing was the day I got an email asking if I was interested in taking over WeBlogBetter! That was evidence to me that opportunities are endless and anything is possible in the blogosphere.
Q11. If you were to start a new blog in the morning what would it be about?
If I were going to start another blog, it would be a travel/photography blog, something on the lines of “How to Travel on a Budget” since I love traveling so much. I realize that market is over saturated, but I would rely on my unique perspective and writing style to stand out from the crowd.
Q12. Have you ever considered selling your blogs? Or even buying other ones?
I’ve thought about buying other blogs, but I’ve already got my hands full and don’t have room to take on anything else – at least not right now.
Q13. What kind of superhero would you like to be???
I would like to be the kind of superhero that could use all of my brain (like the main character in Limitless)! That way I could accomplish even more with my day and meet all of my goals. I know it sounds ridiculous