Are You Building A Business Or A Hobby?

by Robb Sutton

This is the question you should ask yourself before starting any website or online venture.

Let me start by saying…either one is perfectly fine! The answer to the question is the important part because it determines your goals and which road your blog is going to take in the future.

To determine whether you are building a business or a hobby…you should ask yourself some very specific questions.

  • Are you looking to make money from your blog?
  • Do you want a way to communicate with friends and family?
  • Are you feeling a need in your niche?
  • Are you prepared for your hobby to carry increased responsibility?
  • Have you heard that blogging can be a fun way to express your individuality and thoughts?

Blogging As A Hobby

Blogging as a hobby can be a great way to share with friends and family or just have an outlet to get those thoughts and experiences out of your head and onto a screen.

When you blog as a hobby, there are no real responsibilities or accountability…you just get to do what you want…when you want. For many people, this can be something they enjoy doing in their free time and provide a creative outlet out of the normal every day life.

What are some examples of hobby blogging?

  • Photo Blog
  • Baby Blog
  • Family Blog
  • What you did today Blog
  • Personal Blog

How do you setup a hobby blog?

Anyway you want! That is the beauty of it! There are really no restrictions. If you want to just use Blogger…you can. Your goal is not making money or google search rankings, so all you really have to to is get your ideas on a page. Have fun with it and share your blog with friends and family.

I will go into the specific setup instructions in a later post, but for today’s purposes…just know that the sky is the limit. Do whatever feels most comfortable.

Blogging As A Business

Blogging as a business is much different than hobby blogging. When you are blogging to build a business there are two very different characteristics.

  1. Specific Goals Are Outlined and Altered Throughout The Process
  2. Business = Responsibilities and Accountability

Are you prepared for your hobby or niche to become work? Many people are not ready for this transition and you need to make sure you are before starting.

Brief Story

When I started Mountain Biking by 198, I was just a rider with a dream of building a website where I got to test product for manufacturers. It was also my way of becoming a real part of the industry instead of just another rider. When I started bringing in product from top name manufacturers, time lines and responsibilities started to take over. I was now responsible for delivering on my promises.

Very quickly, my online hobby had to make some changes to become a viable online business. These changes included structure, design, goals and planning to become the top mountain biking website on the internet.

These changes are necessary to future growth and this makes them required.

How is blogging for business (money) different?

  • Specific Goals Are Outlined and Accomplished
  • Long Term Planning Required
  • Specific Structure Based Upon Goals
  • Responsibility  and Accountability
  • Monetization

Give Me Some Good News!

The good news…this can all change day to day! You can have a hobby blog that grows a following that you can then turn into a business. You can also have a business blog that turns into more of a hobby. The beauty of the internet is the ability to make it whatever you want it to be at the drop of a hat. Just get started doing something and see how it goes!

Just A Little Bad News…

If you are looking to start any business JUST TO MAKE MONEY and nothing else…you will most likely fail. This rings true in any industry. Most online ventures are started with the intent of making a quick buck, and reality is that there is no such thing. With a troubled worldwide ecomony, we are going to see thousands of “online businesses” and only a small fraction will make it past the first 90 days…much less the first year. To actually build income takes a lot of work, so be ready to make nothing for quite some time…

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