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August 22, 2015

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Here's the The Lowdown from DN Journal,
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The Lowdown is compiled by DN Journal Editor & Publisher Ron Jackson.

Making Money from Your Own Blog - How One Guy Did It Even Though His Family Disapproved

I had an opportunity to meet a lot of very interesting new people a couple of weeks ago when I went to India to cover and speak at the 2nd annual DomainX conference in Bangalore. One of them was Jitendra Vaswani of BloggersIdeas.com, who is one of the country's most popular bloggers. I found Jitendra's story to be especially interesting because he has done something I've always advocated domain investors should do - pick a subject you are passionate about and develop at least one website on that topic. I've seen many people create nice new revenue streams for themselves by doing that, just as Jitendra has done.

A blog is one of the most cost effective and quick ways to put your idea online, but like anything else that is worthwhile, it will take a little planning and a lot of elbow grease to turn your domain into a money making business. In the planning stage you need to determine if you can bring something new and interesting to a topic that will let you stand out from the crowd and attract an audience. That is easier to do if your topic falls in an area of interest that is currently underserved by sites that are already out there.

Jitendra Vaswani
Founder, BloggersIdeas.com

Vaswani said, "One needs to find the right niche to write about. My blog has a niche: SEO and the business of blogging itself.  Blogging caught my attention when I was in my first job as an SEO executive.  I learned blogging from one of my friends who  told me I should start my own because I was  good at SEO. Once I  started I got very interested in the process and started experimenting on my blog. I followed many mentors in my industry like Neil Patel, Zac Johnson, John Chow and many other top marketers who dominate the blogging world.  I always  try to learn from their  posts and how they are making money from it."

The main reason I tell people who want to develop a site to choose a topic they are passionate about is that writing and producing content is a lot of work - work they will get tired of doing, causing them to quit before they gain traction, unless they love what they are writing about. It is a view Vaswani shares. "Yes, the subject is very important when starting a blog. If you don't have the right subject,  trust me, you will  never get interested in writing a blog. I was interested in SEO & digital marketing, so it  compels me to write about it a lot. I have seen newbies not choose their  subject wisely. They make mistakes and ultimately lose interest in blogging."

Blog image form Bigstock

Many bloggers find it difficult to continually come up with fresh content for their site. Interesting information isn't easy to come by. Vaswani said, "I do a lot of research online to write a piece of content for my blog.  I use Google Trends and the Google Adwords tool to search for good  content. You should also strive to create great headlines in order to grab user attention. For that, you can use title generator tools like Tweak Your Biz Title Generator, HubSpotís Blog Topic Generator, Portentís Content Idea Generator and many more that are available online. Headlines can definitely increase user engagement and will  help you to write more."

Vaswani has another content tip that 

is already being successfully employed in the domain industry's blogosphere by our friend Elliot Silver at DomainInvesting.com. "People enjoy learning from bloggers who share their journey of success and failures on their blogs," Jitendra noted. "I have seen many top bloggers share their stories and readers get engaged because they want to know the story behind that blogger. I analyze and incorporate all these factors and develop my blog according to reader's requirements. I share my real thoughts and the internet lifestyle I am living."

In addition to finding the right niche, a successful blogger has to find ways to promote their site and build traffic. Vaswani pointed out several methods he uses to do that. "My target audience is from the digital and online money making niche. So I use social media channels to  promote my content, especially Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Reddit, StumbleUpon and Google+ which is very important because it is a Google property."

"I also use some blogging  communities that I share my content to: Blokube.com, Bizsugar.com, BlogEngage.com, Indiblogger.in, etc. These are some very active communities where you can share your content and get targeted  traffic. Join some Facebook groups to share your content, but don't spam on Facebook otherwise they will ban your URL. If you really want to get traffic on your site your SEO and social media should be very strong. Also build relationships with fellow bloggers as this will  help to get more traffic too."

Jitendra Vaswani (right) with DomainX Co-Organizer Gaurav Kholi earlier this month in India.
(Photo from Domain Name Owners Association of India)

Vaswani got a nice introduction to the domain business at the DomainX conference and was even motivated to register a few new names of his own. While Vaswani is much more a developer than a domain investor he has wrestled with a problem many in our industry have. Domainers often talk about how difficult it is to explain what they do to friends and family. In Vaswani's case, the problem was a much bigger one than that when he decided to become a blogger. As a profession that is barely a decade old many outside the field don't recognize it as a serious way to make a living.  "When I told my parents about blogging, they didn't agree with it," Vaswani said. "I was forced to take a job because of societal pressure. Parents don't understand their children's needs, they think about society first. This is the main problem with Indian parents."

Vaswani turned that negative into a positive, using their disapproval as motivation to succeed and prove them wrong. "They encouraged me to leave blogging and get a secure job but I never quit doing it," he noted. "With all of the family members against me, and alone on my journey, I wanted to prove I could make enough money from blogging." Vaswani has just about all the proof he needs, having risen to a position among the top couple of dozen professional bloggers in India, but he hasn't brought the matter to a head yet. "I still I haven't told my parents that I am doing full time blogging -  they still think that I have a job and while doing that job I am blogging and freelancing. When the right time comes I will tell them I am a full time blogger," Vaswani smiled (apparently confident his family doesn't read DN Journal)!  

(Posted August 21, 2015) 

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