Sarah Says: Blogging as a Career

blogging as a career

Earlier this year, I put a call out for topic ideas for a new video series called “Sarah Says.” Well, ahem, six months later, I finally filmed episode #1. The topic du jour? Blogging as a career. This was the first comment I received in regards to subject matter, and a few people seconded the motion.


Honestly, I wasn’t going to touch this topic with a ten-foot-pole because I didn’t want to drone on about things that most of you don’t care about, but I ultimately decided to dig in and do it for the team. I hope this is helpful for the four of you out there that wanted to hear my thoughts on the matter. (Also, by no means will all of the subsequent “Sarah Says” videos be 13 minutes in length. GEEZ. Grab a snack.)

Also, have a topic you would like me to cover? Leave it in the comments!

  • Esther

    November 18, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    Love this!
    Out of respect for the video (and the insanity that goes along with posting them), I enjoyed it until the end. :-)
    I’ve only been blogging for a year, and haven’t started doing any monetizing, but I love these ideas for general blog building!

  • Erica W

    November 18, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    ya loved it! I know you said your media kit is private but do you mind sharing a list of what you include? Thanks!

  • Annie

    November 18, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    Great advice! I just started blogging and am not sure I want it to become a career, but your advice was excellent! I especially resonated with finding a purpose. Very helpful!

  • Mari

    November 18, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    You are so wnderful to share such a helpful video. Thank you for the time and tips!

    • Mari

      November 18, 2013 at 6:14 pm

      And by wnderful I mean wonderful!

  • Dorothy Lidsky

    November 18, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    Holy smokes! I have been toying with starting something- blogging, vlogging, I don’t know. It all seemed a little complicated to me. But this video was amazingly helpful.


  • erin cooper

    November 18, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    LOVED this video. Loved the bit about working hard & being nice. It’s really the best advice you can give anyone, and it helps make the internet a better place to work & play.

  • Mia

    November 18, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Sarah, I’ve been reading your blog since around the beginning; and sooo many others. You can imagine I’ve seen this type of video a time or two, yes? ;) Still, I was curious to see what you had to say on the topic…. I stopped it mid-way and said to my husband, “this is the best ‘how to blog’ video I’ve ever seen.”

    Thank you for sharing well thought out, useful, honest advice. You didn’t gloss over the topic and tie it up in a pretty package while managing to not really SAY anything. You did the opposite, and it may have been the most engaging I’ve ever found you. I could have listened to another 13 minutes! I think you may have found your new niche. ;)

  • jennifer

    November 18, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    Hey! Loved the video.

    I really love your first tip the most on knowing what you want to do or what you want to accomplish.

    Sorry about the gravel pile. That’s a bummer.

    Love the lip stick. Just found an awesome Nars one called pop life. It lasts forever and doesn’t kiss off on kids foreheads.

    xo from san francisco


  • Sarah

    November 19, 2013 at 7:03 am

    I heard so much here about big companies, what they want, how to attract them, how to get great partnerships, how to write content for them, how to network… but not so much about your readers, your audience, and what they want to read. I found your blog many years ago when Wito was very small, and what I loved about you was your honesty, and hearing about your day-to-day life, and the joys and struggles of motherhood. Now, it’s sponsored posts, shilling for companies and just the tiniest snippets of your actual life. I realise you have to make a living (and I know you’re more of a beauty/hair blogger than a mommy blogger anyway), and you’re right – this is the way blogs in general are going. But if you lose your readers, you lose your precious partnerships, right? You can’t blog as a career if no one wants to read what you write.

    Please, no more posts about the many uses of honey, or selling off vast numbers of barely-worn jeans.

    Write from the heart. That’s how to grow a blog.

  • J.Mill

    November 19, 2013 at 8:35 am

    This is so helpful! Don’t downplay the importance of talking about blogging on your blog. Keep in mind, a lot of blog readers are blog writers too. We love hearing what makes people successful!

  • Kristen

    November 19, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    This was great, and I think pretty right on. Nicely done, and it’s fun seeing your face!

  • meagan elizabeth

    November 19, 2013 at 5:21 pm

    Oh, this was too good! As someone who likes to blog just for the sake of blogging, I still enjoyed the tips on how to forge relationships. It’s all about community and respect (in life, not just in the crazy internets)
    Love your accent by the way!

  • Angella

    November 19, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    Reason #496 why we are friends. Love you. Miss you. xo

  • jennifer

    November 20, 2013 at 8:46 am

    As a professional blog reader (HA!) I thought this was very interesting. It was kind of like a behind the scenes, how’d they do that kind of thing for me. I enjoy reading and have never really thought about the business part of blogging. Anyway, thought it was a great video and kept me watching until the end.

    For what it’s worth, in regards to what Sarah said earlier about not writing as much about your kids/family, etc. I think it’s good for blog readers to remember that when a mom chooses to write about her life with a baby and toddler, that can start to change a whole lot as the kids get older and don’t want or need to be talked about online. I of course have no idea what your reasons are, nor do I need to, but what I’m poorly attempting to spit out here is, only you know what’s best for you and your family, so keep up the good work doing what you’re doing!

    • whoorl

      November 20, 2013 at 11:35 am

      Exactly, Jennifer. Like I said in the video, you have to evolve and always move in a forward direction. I used to feel more comfortable writing about my children when my readership was smaller, but now that’s not something I want to do anymore. But I don’t want to close up shop either!

      And yes, Sarah had a good point about losing a percentage of readers by not writing about what they consider to be the most engaging content. However, that’s a risk I’m willing to take because 1) I prefer not to write about my personal life all the time, and 2) the percentage of readers I’ve gained over the years far outweighs the ones I’ve lost.

      I wish I could keep everyone happy, but that’s just not possible. Very thankful for the ones that stick around!

      • Sarah

        November 20, 2013 at 11:50 am

        I think you do a great job of balancing it all.

      • Sarah

        November 21, 2013 at 7:33 am

        Totally fair point. I realise it’s a bit rich to sit here demanding all the juicy details of bloggers’ lives ;)

        • Sarah

          November 21, 2013 at 7:34 am

          (I was the original Sarah, btw. Well, not THE original. You know what I mean. TOO MANY SARAHS.)

  • Christy

    November 20, 2013 at 10:47 am

    “…don’t be entitled. It’s gross.” Love that!

    • Shelley

      December 2, 2013 at 10:39 am

      YES!! Loved that part most of all, LAUGHED OUT LOUD actually having just viewed your video after Thanksgiving, and having just had a lengthy discussion with my kids about the season, their holiday wish lists, writing in their gratitude journals received from their lovely grandmas… could not have summed it up better. Awesome. But great video, aside from that, as well! Lots of solid, well thought out tips, that I think would put someone well on the path to making a brand/name for themselves. Well done!

    • Kimberly

      December 9, 2013 at 3:57 pm

      Indeed. The standout quote of the video.

      Great video, Sarah!

  • Roxanna (miguelina)

    November 20, 2013 at 11:07 am

    I loved this, Sarah.

  • Sarah

    November 20, 2013 at 11:41 am

    Thank you so much for choosing my question and for such a great video. I loved it all! Thank you for the tips and for your continued inspiration – your values as a person, blogger and business woman really come through in all that you do. Thanks Sarah!

    (can’t wait to see more of these)

  • Nancy

    November 20, 2013 at 11:45 am

    This was great advice delivered In a lovely way. Thank you. I’m reluctant to do videos mostly because I get nervous and talk even faster than usual but you made it look easy, natural, and fun.

  • Shannon

    November 20, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    Best line of the video…” don’t be entitled. it’s gross”… More people need to hear that! Love reading your blogs…

  • Kristen Howerton

    November 20, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    This was so good. Although I felt the “just say no” segment was targeted specifically to me. FINE SARAH I HEAR YOU I AM WORKING ON MY BOUNDARIES.

  • jenvictoria

    November 20, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    I’m not a blogger and really found this post an interesting behind the scenes look at your blog, which I’ve loved for years. I love the mix of beauty/hair/style/+ family/home/life and look forward to seeing what you will post next. Thank you!

  • Laura

    November 20, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    So grateful for you stepping up on that box and I am not asleep! Sarah Burns (who is truly a terrific person as well as blogger :) had a really great question, and I so appreciate you sharing your hard earned insights. Smart. Savvy. Strategic. Sound. All words springing to mind while watching your video. I only wish it was longer! :) Thanks so much, Sarah. Truly.

  • Stacey

    November 21, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    I really enjoyed your video and suggestions. I’m a new blogger so I found most of your suggestions very helpful (especially OC-specific tips!).

    As to the comments about writing about your family…this is an issue I’ve been struggling with. I’m a new mom, and have shared a bit about my first year of motherhood, but I also don’t want to ‘pimp out’ my son, like some bloggers do. Its definitely hard finding that balance between sharing personal information and still having a private life. How do you decide? So far, I’ve just tried to listen to my gut, but I’d love to hear your thoughts on personal-life blogging balance.

    • Stacey

      November 22, 2013 at 2:42 pm

      Sarah—what is the name of the PR agency you mentioned in the video from the OC? I thought you said Polanade, but I can’t find that via google:) TIA!

      • whoorl

        November 24, 2013 at 8:39 am

        Hi Stacey, it’s called Pollinate:


        • stacey

          November 25, 2013 at 11:22 am

          Thanks Sarah! I’m going to check them out:)

  • Amanda Jean

    November 22, 2013 at 12:51 pm


    Thanks so much for this awesome video. Today was my first visit to your site. A friend shared the link with me and I’m so glad that she did! I’ve been blogging for 7+years now and I’ve learned a lot of this stuff over the years but would never be able to put it into words. It also sums up a lot of conversations that my husband and I have been having in regards to building my business. It’s nice to hear it from someone in the blogging business as affirmation. One thing you touched on but is the hardest for me is taking risks. I’m trying to not only take risks, but embrace taking them. Not easy! Anyway, thanks again for a great video post!

    Amanda Jean

  • sharon garofalow

    November 25, 2013 at 11:09 am

    Hi Sarah, the video and content were amazing. My hardest part is figuring out my end goal. I know that is something I need to do first. But I have also been starting to think about an agent. Are the agents only interested in working with people who bring in huge numbers? I have worked with all the groups like Pollinate and Clever Girls and feel my content is great. At what point would it make sense to work with an agent? It is the pitching and compensation negotiations that I could use help with most.

  • natalie

    January 27, 2014 at 11:21 pm

    Thanks for the helpful tips Sarah. I’m trying to get smart about blogging and determine if I want to take it beyond “a fun project”. I appreciate your pointers!

  • Mia

    January 30, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    Thanks so much for this Sarah. I’m not falling asleep at all- you present your information in a lively, interesting way. Very helpful!

  • […] love, love, love this vlog by Whoorl about the business of blogging + love even more that she mentions Pollinate! Thanks […]

  • christina

    February 3, 2014 at 10:14 am

    loved the video. so informative. thank you for sharing your valuable info!

  • lip pierced

    February 8, 2014 at 7:05 am

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