Moms Turn This Hobby Into a Money-Making Business
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Eight years ago, Brandi Best started a simple blog to vent about the sometimes crazy-making experiences of being a stay-at-home mom with five kids.
Life with Five Monkies was her quiet corner of the Internet, a social outlet where she could share a little about motherhood — including her newborn twins — and have conversations with other adults. As she puts it, she was “just kinda ramblin’ and learning how to write again.”
But then she discovered the business side of mommy blogging, and her new hobby quickly turned into a vocation. And it’s easy to understand why — the business has little start-up cost, pays well if you’re willing to work hard and has great perks, such as free trips to Hollywood movie premieres and meetings with major celebrities.
Today, Best is one of a handful of mommy bloggers in the Florida Panhandle who make a full-time living promoting brands like Disney and Toyota to readers who depend on them in making purchasing decisions.
They are the influencers.
‘A More Powerful Experience’
Advice from the Experts
What is your best advice to anyone, not just moms, thinking about starting a blog?
Brandi Best, fivemonkies.com
Write about what you're passionate about. Whether it's food, family, products you use, or entertainment. Write what feels natural. Decide early if you are going for a long-term goal of making an income. If you are, buy your domain name and url! Make sure your social media channels are similar, preferably the same, as your blog name.
Mommy blogging is basically what it sounds like: mothers writing about their experiences raising children and managing households. When they first started becoming popular in the mid-2000s, the blogs tended to be journal-like but over time have evolved to focus more on kid- and family-oriented products.
The significance of mommy blogs is in the way they can influence consumer spending. Marketing research has consistently shown that women make or heavily influence the majority of purchasing decisions in a household. And what helps inform their decisions? According to a 2012 survey by online platform BlogHer, at least half of the participants reported making purchasing decisions based on something they read on a blog.
Shannon Colavecchio, senior director at Moore Communications Group in Tallahassee, has worked with mommy bloggers on successful campaigns for clients such as the Florida Prepaid College Board. She said their strength is in the connection that they can make with readers.
Being a mom is a very personal thing, she said, and bloggers and readers bond over their shared experiences in motherhood. Frequent readers see a mother going through the same things they do and begin to feel as if they really know the blogger. So when the blogger recommends a product, it carries more weight than if it was coming from a stranger.
“It’s a much more powerful experience” than seeing an ad or a booth at an event, Colavecchio said.