When your sex blog grows beyond a certain point, you’ll get people asking questions like “are you making money from sex blogging?” and “have you given up your day job yet?”
The answer is that blogging is no more likely to make me a millionaire than my philosophy degree would have made me Descartes. However, I do now have a sponsor [Edited to add – my sponsor can change at any time – at this time it was the lovely Bondara], a super-varied, inclusive sex toy company that sells many things I have used and loved in the past. I am completely delighted to be working with them, not least because they don’t want to change or influence the content of my blog – just be here in relevant places, so that if the mood strikes you and you want to buy some awesome stuff, they’re only a click away.
But the launch of their sponsorship gives me a great excuse to write about something I’ve wanted to mention for a while now – making money from sex blogging, and writing online. So forgive the slight indulgence while I get a bit meta – here’s a post about writing for money.
Making money from sex blogging: no more working for free
I get emails all the time from companies asking me to write content for them. “It’s great exposure!” they tell me, and I run off to Tesco to explain that I don’t have any cash right now, but I’ve got enough exposure to buy at least a bag of carrots.
Here’s the thing: sometimes writing is great exposure. Sometimes doing an article or guest blog for someone – especially if they have a huge and high-traffic site – can help boost your own blog, sell your book, or whatever. I’ve written free content for people in the past, and in some cases it’s proven really valuable. I wouldn’t have the stats I have today if it weren’t. If you want to write free content for people, I won’t judge you or kick off.
However, after a fair few years and a hell of a lot of emails explaining to companies that I do, occasionally, need to eat, I’ve come up with a new rule for me:
If they make money, I should make money.
Which means that while I’ll happily write a guest blog for a fellow blogger for free (if I have time!), or for a very early start-up magazine or blog which I want to support until they can become profitable, great. But I won’t be writing for anyone who makes a profit unless they give me some of that profit.
It doesn’t have to be a huge amount, but it does have to be something. Just as you wouldn’t ask a plumber to fix your boiler in exchange for a Yelp review, you shouldn’t expect a writer to provide you with blog content that’ll boost your profits in exchange for a link and the promise of unspecified ‘exposure.’
In fact, I’d go a bit further: a large number of requests for content come not from the company itself but from an SEO or marketing agency, so I think some people need to seriously re-examine their priorities. You have no budget to pay writers, you say? And yet you have a budget to pay a company to email writers and ask them to write for free? Your money’s going to the wrong place.
No hard feelings if this is you – everyone makes mistakes, and I appreciate that this has been a standard procedure for a long time. If you do have a budget (even if it’s a tiny one) and you want great content, you can probably get a much better return by paying bloggers a proportion of what you’d pay the agency to persuade them to work for free. Oh, and of course if you do want some great content and you’re willing to pay me, drop me an email.
Paying guest bloggers
“But Girl on the Net!” the savvy ones will cry. “You use guest bloggers, and you don’t pay them a penny! You stinking, miserable hypocrite!”
To which I’d reply: calm down. I’m not a twat. Now that I’m making a bit of cash from the blog, everyone who writes a guest blog from now on will be paid. Not much (because I’m not making millions here) but a share of what I’m making.
If I publish one guest blog each week I can afford to give a tenner to whoever is writing it. If I make more money, the amount will go up (and it will also go up if I find I’m publishing fewer guest blogs than I anticipated). I was going to limit guest blogs to two per month so I could pay £20 for each of them, but I get a fair few requests even without paying, so I thought it was only fair to open it to more people if possible. The money will of course go up if I start making more. If you’d like to write a guest blog, check out the shiny new guest blog page, and thank my sponsor for the fact that I can now share a bit of love.
Support your favourite sex bloggers by buying and sharing their stuff!
Thanks for your patience in reading this, what has to be the least sexy thing I have ever written on the site. But I hope you get what I’m trying to do, and I hope you can see why I am so delighted to be able to say that I now have a fantastic sponsor, and am doing some freelance writing (my favourite right now being the blogs I’m writing for Dreams of Spanking – getting paid to watch hot porn and write about it? Hell yes). And I’m really, phenomenally happy that I can do that.
Massive thanks to everyone who has helped me get this far – to those who bought my book, shared my posts, recommended me on Twitter and Facebook etc. Whether you were there are the beginning for my very first post, have only just arrived, or dip in and out occasionally. And, yes, even if you came here once via reddit and left a comment about what a horrible slag I am. Please do continue to support your favourite sex bloggers by buying our books, picking up products from our sponsors, and sharing our posts on social networks (if you’re not worried about your boss or mum seeing them).