Is it wise to start a blogging business flying solo, or get a partner?
Hello, everyone. Welcome back to my blog. If you’re new here, “Hi. How are ya?”
Today is another tough-to-tackle subject in the blogging business.
Flying solo, or get a partner?
It’s amazing how solo bloggers outperform company bloggers. But if you’re a newbie blogger, building a blog that creates consistent monthly income is like going through the eye of a needle.
However, it doesn’t mean it’s not possible. Businesses have gone digital due to the situation we’re going through.
Still, the truth remains that the blogging business can stand the test of time.
It is only a matter of being open to change, being resilient, and adapting to new trends so you won’t be left out.
But then again, the question lies…
Can you run a (blogging) business by yourself?
Let’s have the option of hiring VA’s off the table. Besides, flying solo doesn’t mean you’re ACTUALLY SOLO. You can always hire somebody per hour or per task/project as needed.
Besides, hiring seasonal employees or freelancers will allow you to focus more and prioritize tasks that are essential in growing your blogging business.
What I want to talk about is getting a business partner.
The Yin to your Yang.
The cheese in your macaroni.
The Robin to your Batman.
My answer is Yasss.
Flying solo and running a blogging business is hard AF. But it doesn’t mean you can’t do it.
There are bloggers who started flying solo, but soon realize that having business partners to make sure that their blog is running smoothly, is an excellent boss move after all.
Couples can be a powerhouse, too.
Let me give you examples.
For anything beauty related, my go-to blog is Project Vanity by Liz Lanuzo. If you are passionate about starting a blogging business, she is hands down, someone you can’t miss.
Liz started Project Vanity in 2008 (I hope I’m not mistaken) flying solo for 8 years. Fast forward to today, her blog now has 24 contributors plus guest writers.
Aside from Project Vanity, Liz owns In Her Element, a cruelty-free skincare brand.
Project Vanity is currently under her corporation LLB, Inc. for 4 years now and managed along with her business partners.
While Liz, remains the “face” of Project Vanity, having contributors and business partners allow the blog to produce content every month consistently and in a timely manner.
Start a Mom Blog is created by Suzi Whitford, a work from home mom and married to a fellow engineer. Because of the massive success of Start a Mom Blog helping mothers like her start a blogging business from home, she was able to retire her husband from his full-time job so they can run the business together.
How about YouTubers?
Well, there’s Cute Polish by Sandi.
There was a phase in my life when I became hooked with nail polish. Primarily because of a fellow teacher who loves nail art. So, I started following Cute Polish on YouTube. I think by the time she hits a million subscribers, she started uploading videos in collaboration with other YouTubers.
Now, Sandi is collaborating with 4 other nail artists.
Based on these examples, you can tell that these content creators made executive decisions to grow their brand by adding contributors to the picture.
And I must say, things did work out for them.
Related post: Should You Go It Alone with a Single-person Startup?
But how would you know that getting a partner is the best move for your blog?
Well, let’s dive into the pros and cons.
Reasons why you should start a blogging business alone
Game face on, people. Since you’re flying solo, the spotlight is yours. Therefore, you are in absolute control of your blogging business.
2. Uneven commitment
If your blog is making money, it’s a business.
If not, it’s a hobby.
Do you see Facebook friends typing “interested” or “me” in the comments whenever you announce something spectacular?
But, if you dive into details, prepare to be seen zoned.
You see, the excitement is always there. But when people realize the amount of work that needs to be done, the excitement will die down and you’re seen zoned once more.
It’s easy to convince people to say YASS to a brilliant idea, especially if it revolves around making money.
BUT, when the going gets tough, chances are, you’ll end up sitting in front of your computer, alone, all-day, every day trying to make ends meet.
Saying yes is one thing. Commitment is another.
So, if you can’t find someone that is as committed and dedicated as you, flying solo is your best option.
You can’t afford to have a blogging business partner that has other priorities, and won’t hold the end of the bargain because “life happens”.
3. Bitch move vs boss move
Honestly, there are times when I can’t differentiate between the two.
As a solopreneur, I am a bitch when things go haywire.
At the same time, I am a boss when it comes to planning and making decisions.
I am both because it’s my right and I take responsibility for my actions.
It’s hard to be a considerate boss when you know that things are falling apart and it’s not even your fault.
Again, it’s a business you’re building, not a hobby. If you can’t find someone with this mindset, you’re definitely better off alone.
4. Flying solo teaches discipline
Because I’m flying solo, my blog won’t run without me. Therefore, I need to create new habits that will help me get stuff done.
My new habit is getting up at 6 AM every day. NO ALARMS.
Honestly, I can’t believe I actually did it. I was never a morning person. I like working at night. Plus, I need to adhere to my clients’ time zone especially those who are U.S. based.
But I’m actually proud and happy that waking up early has changed me. I have a few hours of quiet time, more playtime with my dogs, and I can be on work-mode at 9 or 10 AM.
My next goal, stay consistent with Pinterest.
5. Dreams can come true
“Am I pursuing my dreams, or someone else’s?”
This thought has haunted me while I was in the academe. I was a former college instructor, teaching Literature and English subjects to droopy college students (wink).
Heck, I even pursued a master’s degree (that I didn’t finish) because I “dreamed” to become a full-fledged professor.
Then, after my first writing gig as a course creator, I started questioning my career goals.
Fast forward to today, I am still flabbergasted at how my career has turned out. Sure, it’s not conventional, but I love what I do. And I’m glad that I finally chose the path that I find purposeful.
6. Income is ALL YOURS
Let’s talk about money.
As a solopreneur, whatever it is that you earned from your blogging business is all yours.
No if’s and but’s.
Okay, well you need to pay taxes and all that thingamajig.
But overall, income is forever yours.
7. It’s easy to do collabs
If you like watching YouTube (Drama channels, hi, how are ya?), I’m sure you’ve seen a lot of collabs from your favorite channels.
Collabs are great in reaching a much wider audience. It can be beneficial in both channels.
Lastly, it doesn’t destroy the fact that you are still the star of your channel. No one is stealing your spotlight.
Imagine Joe Rogan interviewing Elon Musk. It’s still Joe Rogan’s show. The episode just became juicier because of his special guest.
Cons of starting a blogging business alone
1. Slow growth
If you are learning and implementing as you go, growth is going to be really slow. You will miss your personal deadlines, can’t take more client work, and miss a task or two.
2. You CAN’T be absent
Raise your hand if you haven’t published anything in a month. Hehe.
We all know how important it is to ALWAYS show up, no matter what. Obviously, as a solopreneur, it can’t be helped to miss a Facebook post or two.
I can’t spend hours on Instagram.
I spend at least 3 days to finish one blog post.
While your audience loves you to always BE THERE, it does take a lot of discipline and preparation to be consistent in marketing yourself online.
And if you don’t move, no one else will.
3. Blogger Burnout
For me, blogger burnout is inevitable. But it can be managed. In a previous blog post, I shared a few practical tips in times when I’m about to tear my hair out of frustration.
Regardless, I also think of blogger burnout as an advantage. Imagine, not having any problem running a blogging business. Uhm, there must be something fishy going on there.
4. Business expenses are ALL YOURS, too
If the income is all yours, business expenses are yours, too.
The money you will use to purchase all these will come from your pocket.
It’s normal to spend money on your blogging business. But if your bank account isn’t ready, you may have to save up to afford the tools you need for your blog to run smoothly.
5. You can’t have an employee mindset
As a solopreneur, you have to ditch your employee mindset.
Remember, you’re the boss and you’re flying solo.
Therefore, you can’t fire anyone but you (wink).
Related post Q&A: Is it better to start up alone, or with a team?
So what’s your next move?
Now that I have shared the pros and cons of flying solo in starting a blogging business, here are tips on what you can do next.
Clear your WordPress dashboard.
Delete post drafts you’ve been keeping for months.
Think of this exercise as something similar to decluttering your room or workplace. Decluttering your blog allows you to eliminate distractions and achieve clarity towards your business goals.
2. Create a plan
How do you see your blog in the future?
Do you want to sell your own products?
How many page views do you want to achieve every month?
If you don’t have answers to these questions yet, now is the time for you to step back and assess how you can lead your new blog towards this direction.
3. Decide NOW
So, would you take the risk of flying solo, or get a partner?
I remember what my college professor always tell us:
Damn if you do. Damn if you don’t. Choose the lesser evil.
It’s best that you make the decision now. In case you decide to go with the latter, have a written agreement prepared. Request for complete transparency ie. division of labor, expenses, percentage of ownership, income, etc.
In case things don’t work out, you can go on separate ways with no hard feelings.
If you want to fly solo, well, kudos to you.
Here’s a virtual high five to you for taking responsibility for your blogging goals.
See you at the top 🙂
Flying solo and starting a blogging business is the biggest, most important decision I’ve made. I did it because I don’t want to be 100% dependent on client work. I see a lot of freelancers lose clients every day and have no idea how to start over.
Starting a blog is my wake-up call.
I can help clients make money with my services.
At the same time, I can benefit from my skills, too.
Bringing Up Business saved me. At times when I succumb to self-doubt, I look at my blog and see that well, it’s not perfect, but it’s mine.
And I will never stop appreciating my life’s work.