There is a huge misconception that blogs are costly and thus can only be luxury products. Some people think you cannot be broke and blog at the same time. What does it mean to be broke? A broke person is not poor or poverty-stricken.
Being broke is about constantly seeing an opportunity for growth and investment. This means you see the money you have as a seed rather than a meal. This is why you can have a million bucks in your bank account and still be broke.
Being broke positions you to be aware, it gives you a thirst to create and share with others. This is all you need because no one can know everything. Opportunities are created from a collection of ideas from different sources.
I was about 16 years old when I took my first paid job as a field data collection officer. I worked hard for about 10 weeks; several days of walking through the streets identifying map locations. I had gotten a job with my cousin’s GIS company.
After the job, I got my pay in a brown envelope. I was not the same person that took on the job. I was a few bucks richer. Immediately I got the pay, I went off and paid for my clarinet. I went to buy a musical instrument, someone else would have called it a costly decision to make. It’s only costly when you never thought about it. This applies to blogs and publishing too.
My decision on what to buy had been made weeks before I got the job. I had a mission and it led me to the point where I got the job and endured till I could get what I needed.
Most successful people don’t look for money first, they usually identify opportunities first. The reason you are broke is that you don’t even know why you need money.
I’m sure you’ve met people who say things like “I don’t even have a laptop or phone,” or they talk about all the financial struggles they have which does not justify digital publishing.
When I say digital, I’m referring to ebooks and blogs. Now think about this, a majority of bloggers you follow and love didn’t start from being rich. The whole idea of content creation is not to show off your achievement. Rather it’s supposed to take you from being broke to creating value. My first nonfiction ebook “Write Heart,” offered me an opportunity to mentor more than 50 people in the art of writing within the space of 3 months.
You are not really broke until you have nothing to offer. If you have nothing to give to the world, then you are broke. If you have something to give but no one likes your voice or people don’t even know you exist, then you are broke. You have the power to change your circumstances.
A lot of times when I set new income goals for myself, I usually try to answer the question “What problem can I help someone solve?” I examine my ideas and evaluate how helpful they are to at least one person I know. This process once engaged, helps me decide if I can get at least one person to pay to hear what I have to say or do.
Let’s not focus too much on the money part of digital content. Forbes’ AJ Agrawal has shared his thoughts on how content could be a marketing strategy.
A lot of articles exist about how digital content could make money for you but a lot of people still struggle to achieve anything with digital because we are too fixated on the end than the means. The question you want to answer is “Am I creating something that helps?”
Being rich does not justify creating a blog. Having all your needs supplied does not qualify you to be a writer, blogger or thought leader.
Who Creates Content then?
Ebooks and blogs all over the internet are created by busy, lazy, broke, rich, sick, healthy, powerful and weak people. These people have some common traits. Here are some of the things they have in common.
1. A Story: There is nothing more powerful than your daily experiences. Simple decisions and reflexes that keep you alive and thriving. Having a unique story means that you have defied some typical expectations and discovered your capacity. You know your design and are able to provide solutions to specific or variety of problems. This deserves an audience. You deserve to be heard.
2. Passion to tell: There are funny, creative, silly ways to tell a story. Books and blogs carry the personality of the creator. One important question you must answer is this “do I have the kind of thoughts people want to read, engage and share with?” Sometimes that little nudge from social comments asking you to start a blog is a genuine appeal to your personality.
Someone wants you to create a brand from your personality. They want to see this person do the telling more often. A lot of people watch ads because there is a character they love in that ad. It’s just like reality tv shows where the housemates finally get voted and the audience selects personalities they find really appealing.
What this tells marketers is that people want to see this person more. The audience wants to connect with your passion while checking out products and surfing the internet for exciting stories.
3. Audience: Creating digital content works for people who have the ability to connect to specific audiences. Not everyone wants to hear your story but someone does and a creator thinks of only this audience. We are inspired by those who need to hear us and not the rest of the world.
4. Offers: As much as we love to tell stories, people can’t just be locked in an infinite loop of stories. They must be offered things goals. People want you to sell to them after you have pleased them. Yes, this may sound difficult to process.
However, you can attest to the fact that surfing the internet for entertainment or information always leads you to eventually buying into things. You eventually decide to shop on Amazon, download pdf files from google, find a writer and subscribe to their channel, donate to a cause or join a campaign. The creator is someone with an agenda. Do you have some idea, cause, brand, product or service you want to sell in the near future?
5. Platforms: Your content requires a platform to serve. Outside the digital space, a lot of us will struggle to rent auditoriums, print flyers and sell event tickets. This does not mean that people will listen to you.
A platform is not a collection of high-tech sound systems and beautiful chairs. Platforms are communities with common interests; churches, political parties, schools, organizations, industries. Would your story offer something unique to all or any of the platforms existing on the internet? Almost every industry operates through social networks. There is a community built around various problem types, they want to hear from you. That is your platform. In other words, do you have or need community influence? Then you should create digital content.
I could continue listing the reasons why blogging could be just the right thing for you to do even when you are broke. I could show you all the potential that exists in authoring your own content but you would keep asking why you need to create your own. Can’t I just use Facebook or just share other people’s books? Why must I expend capital to compile an ebook or start my own blog?
If you have all the 5 attributes I have listed above, it means you might not always want to sit behind a desk and take orders from an employer. You most likely want to do something outside a day-job. You definitely want to have a life outside employment. This is why investing can never be a mistake. People on social media and Google are not there because of you, they have other platforms competing for their attention.
However, people who get your ebook or visit your blog are specifically looking out for a connection with you. The chances that I will check out your blog’s about page after reading something mindblowing from you is very high.
Most people will not make this conscious decision to be part of your brand while on social media. A lot of people who will request to connect with, work with or promote an agenda with you want a personalized space that captures all they need to know about you and your capacity.
Finally, think of the way businesses explore opportunities online. There is a startup with the brand name #StillBroke. Olumide ( Owner, Glowville Blog) talked about this brand and explained the brand in these statements which resonate with this article:
“StillBroke is inspired by the never say never, and insatiable appetite of great people who always want to achieve more. They keep going for new heights like they have never tasted success before. They keep the hustle on like they are still broke!”
Creating a platform is not for any particular financial level, it’s something that anyone could and should do. You are broke so long as you have a need to create and expand, you can do more with the numerous opportunities the internet provides.
Hope this post was helpful. Use the comment box below to ask your questions.