3 REASONS WHY BLOGGING IS LIKE BUYING SHARES

Buying shares and writing a blog have quite a few similarities. Here's three reasons why blogging is like buying shares.

BLOGGING AND INVESTING

A few years ago a friend suggested that we start investing in shares because bank interest was so appallingly low and share dividends were much more lucrative. I'm a huge advocate of playing safe and shares always seemed a bit risky, but our friend recommended that we buy "safe" shares in banks because they won't blow up in our face like the more speculative areas are prone to do. It seemed like sensible advice and we've since used some of our savings to buy some "safe" bank shares.

Recently I happened to be browsing through the stock market report and noticed that "safe" bank share prices have dropped (because Aussie banks have been misbehaving) and our shares weren't gaining in value like I thought they would. Small panic moment - until our friend said - "it's not about the share price, it's about the dividends - they keep paying regardless and the share price will climb again over time". Shares are about big picture investing - not short term gains (unless you're an expert). 

This got me thinking about blogging (as I often do), and how buying shares and writing a blog have quite a few similarities. So, here's three reasons why blogging is like buying shares.

1. YOU NEED TO FIGURE OUT HOW YOU'LL INVEST

Share portfolios are often diverse, but they usually reflect the type of product the investor is interested in. Some people play fast and loose and buy start-ups hoping to make a big profit, others play safe with banks and utility companies because they're in it for the long haul and are content with slow and steady progress. Both approaches have positives and negatives and appeal to different types of people and what they're hoping to achieve - the level of risk determines the portfolio you build.

Blogging works the same way. If you want to leap into making money quickly then you write what's going to get you noticed. You take risks, you hit all the keywords and look for ways to sell yourself to sponsors and go in full speed. For others it's about a slow, gentle pace that builds over time, they're not in it for an income but have longer term goals - sharing knowledge, having a forum, interacting with others, or just having fun. The level of risk and what you're hoping to achieve plays into the type of blog you build.

2. THE PRICE WILL RISE AND FALL

The price of shares (even the blue chip ones and the "safe" ones) rises and falls every day. They also do exciting jumps and really scary drops. You need to take that on board and be prepared to ride the rollercoaster because it's not the share price that really matters - unless you panic and sell at the bottom of the market. Any serious investor will tell you not to risk what you can't afford to lose, you buy shares for the long haul and the daily markets don't upset you because the dividends keep flowing and you're not intending to sell off your stock any time in the near future.

Blogging is the same. If you constantly monitor your stats you'll find they go up and down every day - some days are good and some aren't. Then there are months where your views skyrocket and other months where they plummet - often for no obvious reason. Ultimately it really doesn't matter - unless you quit at the bottom of the market. So many bloggers throw in the towel when they don't reach the heights they'd envisaged. They walk away from their blogs after a few months because they don't have the time or interest to push through for the long haul. They lose sight of the fact that blogging is an avenue for growth and development, and not a guaranteed road to fame or fortune.

Buying shares and writing a blog have quite a few similarities. Here's three reasons why blogging is like buying shares.

3. THE DIVIDENDS ARE WHAT REALLY COUNT

When you buy shares it's the dividends that are what really count. Most people look at what the annual payout is and go for shares that are producing an income well over the bank interest rates. If you're not going to earn more from your shares than your money in the bank earns in interest, then why would you waste time buying stock? Buyers look at getting in when the stock price is low and then sitting on their shares and watching as they earn dividends that can be re-invested in more stock, or alternatively, paid into their bank accounts as extra income. What it all boils down to in the end, is knowing what shares will give you the most value for your hard earned dollar, and how that will make your life in retirement more pleasant and affordable.

Blogging pays dividends too. For some it's a financial dividend if they're successful with their advertising and sponsorships. For others the dividends are different, they can include so many unexpected bonuses - learning new skills (how to actually write and publish a post, HTML, social media, analytics, link parties, and the list goes on), then there's the friendships formed with other bloggers, the knowledge gained from researching your posts and reading other blogs, the discipline of posting regularly, the engagment of our minds, the enjoyment of reading feedback from others, and so much more. Blogging dividends are about the joy of writing and engaging and sharing, and the way that brings pleasure and enjoyment into our lives.

HIGHS AND LOWS

Ultimately, the stock market and the blogging world will both have their highs and lows. Nobody gets a free ride. Those who hit the jackpot need to be wise in where they reinvest their returns so they don't lose it all at the end. Those who play safe and secure need to be content to build slowly - and not envy those who risked big and won - because there are many more who risked big and lost! It's all about the big picture and being in it for the long haul - overnight success is the unicorn we all hope for, but few find.

WHAT ABOUT YOU?

Are your a risk taker with the motto of "go big or go home" or are you like me - safe and secure, slow and steady? Are you receiving the dividends you'd hoped for?

Buying shares and writing a blog have quite a few similarities. Here's three reasons why blogging is like buying shares.

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58 comments

  1. Leanne, I tend to be a 'go big' - but not so much 'or go home'. I also find myself playing it safe from time to time. This is mostly because I'm somewhat new at blogging and I fit it in around my work and book writing - which can leave me drained some weeks. I like the way you compare blogging to investing -- because I hope to be in it for the long haul despite the possible ups and downs.

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    1. I'm definitely in it for the long haul Janet - I don't think I've ever gone big, but I do go with consistency and I'm a big fan of investing enough to see results, but not overinvesting and finding I've gone in too deep and it's cost me too much.

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    2. I agree, Janet, it can be a struggle to devote the time and energy I would like to towards my blog when I'm working full-time and trying desperately to finish this book. I tell myself I'll invest in my blogging and really make it something when I retire. Of course, as Leanne points out, even then it will be a balance of investing enough but not past my comfort zone. That investment comes in the form of money, time, and energy. In the meantime, I am collecting all the dividends mentioned in this post and pleased with my investment.

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  2. Very good comparison. I am hoping to make some money with my blog and with my other online endeavors but I am not an all or nothing kind of person. I realize that some times I'll get a lot of attention and sometimes not so much. You hit the mark here.

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    1. I think we'd all like the big investor joining us and paying us buckets of money to blog but I don't see it happening very often - and the cost to self and authenticity often negates the benefits. Making a little bit of money here and there is more my speed I'm afraid - I don't sell my soul easily :)

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  3. Your comparison is spot-on. I blog for fun and make a little pocket money from Adsense.

    #AnythingGoes

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    1. My adsense income wouldn't keep my granddaughter in pocket money Veronica - but who knows what the future holds? I certainly don't intend to plaster ads all over my site for the sake of a few bucks (that's what my real job's for!)

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  4. I like this analogy, it never would have occurred to me. You are so right! When we had a recession in 2008 and I watched my money in the market disappear I chose to play it safer in the future in the market, slow and steady. For my blogging, I started to get more people to come to my online company and become a customer. Now I don't care if they do or not but more that they enjoyed my post and connect with me, a passive approach to income but one I am OK with!

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    1. I feel the same way Haralee - everyone seems to think blogging is going to be their fast track to fame and riches, and they give up when things don't boom. I like having lower expectations that get met with bells on - that's what keeps me coming back :)

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  5. Yeah, not so much of a risk-taker. More of a slow and steady plodder!

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    1. But you plod so well Diane! And so regularly and consistently - and that always pays off in the long run!

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  6. Hello Leanne, I look forward to Mondays now, thanks to your posting schedule :-) I'm a slow and steady kind of girl (well, in most things, anyway). And in blogging it is certainly slow! I'm only in my fourth month of blogging and it feels like I'm going backwards sometimes, but I'll stick at it and wait for some more positive results. You inspire me with your laid back style and positive attitude. Have a nice week! Cheryl

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    1. What a lovely thing to say Cheryl - thank you so much. I guess it's an Aussie thing isn't it - laid back and positive - no point busting your butt for nothing. I'm enjoying learning about your ESL tips too when I pop over to your blog. Don't forget to link up with us at #MLSTL on Wednesdays if you want more interaction x

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    2. Yes, I guess it's an Aussie thing - plenty of laid back and positive people over there! I'm working on a new ESL post right now so keep your eyes peeled for that. I will check out #MLSTL, I promise! Thank you :-)

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  7. Interesting comparison, Leanne. I blog for fun and have received the blogging dividends that you mentioned. Have a beautiful week!

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    1. I think the dividends are so enjoyable that making a big killing pales in comparison Natalie. What good are a million views if there's no community?

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  8. So many of us don't have a retirement account or one that's well thought out. I love your analysis! xoxox, Brenda

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    1. Brenda! You managed to leave a comment without Google killing it :) Lovely to have you and I'm glad you enjoyed the post xx

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  9. You have some very valid points here! Love it

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    1. Thanks so much for popping in and taking the time to read and comment x

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  10. Love the comparisons you've made about blogging and the stock market - so true! I'm also a low risk, blue chip kind of person, but very wary of the stock market. I wasn't wary of blogging to begin with, and the journey has been one of learning, sharing, making friends and promoting other people and brands. Like you say, if you watch the stats on a daily basis you'd give up. Ultimately if blogging doesn't connect me with others then I wouldn't spend so much time at the computer :)

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    1. I launched into blogging with absolutely no idea what I was doing Jo - it's like the first shares I bought years ago - cheap and fun - fortunately those shares turned out to be steady earners, and my blog has turned into a steady joy too :) Thanks for the share on SM too x

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  11. Hi, Leanne - I never thought of this comparison but it makes a lot of sense. Like you, I'm more of a 'play it safe' kinda gal -- especially in terms of investing. The friendships made in blogging have developed over time and have been a delightful and unexpected reward.

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    1. That's how I see it too Donna - unexpected dividends are even lovelier than the ones you think you deserve. Blogging has brought so many joys with it and that's what's kept me plugging away merrily over the last four years :)

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  12. Such an interesting read Leanne! My blog is the long term investment and my financial gain very modest so far, but personal development has been better xx Maria #AnythingGoes

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    1. I'm the same Maria - a little bit of financial gain - but a LOT of personal gain. It depends on what you consider to be a good investment doesn't it?

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  13. Hi Leanne, I saw this post the other day and was very intrigued by the title. I held off reading it because I wanted to save it for #MLSTL and also to increase my curiosity. I am not disappointed. I think this is one of the best posts you have written and such a perfect analogy between blogging and the share market. As you know we have both seen the 'highs' and the 'lows' but remaining faithful to the plan and growing steadily always yields the greatest dividends. Thanks for being my BBB for another year and also thank you for hosting #MLSTL with me. Have a great week and I'm sharing on social media. :)

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    1. Hi Sue - I'm so glad you enjoyed it. The thoughts sprang from a conversation I had with you a while back when we were talking about the highs and lows of blogging. It's definitely a long term investment, but the dividends that pay off all through the year are the friendships and connections we make aren't they? Look at us - sisters separated at birth! Thanks for sharing MLSTL with me - I couldn't do it without you xx

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  14. Gosh you're clever! Such a good comparison Leanne. I am like you - I prefer slow and secure, slow and steady. I'm not so big a risk taker. I started blogging in September 2012 and I'm still here 6 years and 3 months later so something is working, even though I've not made an income from it or become super popular or successful BUT I do enjoy it and I have met some wonderful people (including yourself) and learnt so much along the way. :-) xo

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    1. That's exactly what blogging's been for me Min - the financial side has never been my focus (though I never say "no" to the right sponsor!) It's the relationships that have been formed and the encouragement received that have kept me going for four years - with more to come!

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  15. Interesting comparison. When I first started blogging, I had the goal of monetizing, but I took it at a moderately slow pace because I still had a full-time day job. At one point, I tried starting a side hustle, doing online life coaching. I loved working with clients, but doing all I had to do to get myself out there--writing articles with clickable titles and SEO, writing for Life Hack and other such sites, networking--just didn't seem to fit with my personality or my passion. I am back to blogging now, specifically without the goal of monetizing. I don't know if I'm taking it slow or fast, but my goal has been to build and belong to a community.

    #mlstl

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    1. I think all bloggers have a time where they think they'll turn their blog into something financial Bethany - then we realize the personal cost involved and most of us step back and decide we'd rather enjoy the ride than bust our butts for the mighty dollar. I've made so many wonderful friends through blogging, and I've also come to appreciate Midlife so much more because of it - both are huge dividends in my book.

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  16. Very interesting thoughts about the similarities between these two. I don't think I ever would have drawn these conclusions, but reading through them here, I thought - Yes! You are so right. Great post!
    Sharing for MLSTL

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    1. Thanks Trisha - the more I looked at it, the more similarities I found - I could probably write a second post listing another three ways they're similar!

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  17. Hi Leanne. I'm definitely a slow and steady kind of blogger. Actually I only look at my stats once a month. I have no interest in monetising so my goals are very low key. This year I have networked more than usual thanks to #MLSTL and have received rewards I would never have dreamed of. Shared on SM

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    1. Hi Jennifer - I'm so glad MLSTL has given you more connections - that's what Sue and I were aiming for when we started - Midlifers supporting each other. Slow and steady is a good thing - it's what gives us a long range ability to last the distance.

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  18. I love this analogy Leanne, and your title sucked me in from the start (but I read all your posts anyway). I love the dividends section, and yes blogging has paid me much more than i ever expected in terms of friendships and readers. This is my favourite bit - Blogging dividends are about the joy of writing and engaging and sharing, and the way that brings pleasure and enjoyment into our lives. You sum it all up perfectly, just love it! Thanks for your insights every week, I always look forward to reading anything from you #mlstl

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    1. Hi Deb - thanks so much for your kind and encouraging words - that's the dividend right there! It's not about filling the page with ads and generic posts, it's about writing from the heart and making friends who care and encouarge each other through this amazing stage of life. We're rocking those dividends!

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  19. Leanne, in terms of Blogging, I am what is referred to as a 'casual investor.' I enjoy writing, researching and engaging with other bloggers, but I am not willing to go 'all in' with a big investment of time. My current returns are commensurate with my investment, but I can see that one day I may want more. This month is the two year anniversary of Picture Retirement and I still feel like I have something to say. So, I will take my meager, but ample return and continue on. Great analogy and fun read. Happy Holidays

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    1. I love your "casual investor" analogy Suzanne. Blogging definitely is all about how much we're prepared to invest - of our time, our thoughts, our skills, and so much more. It's not about the dollars like stock is, it's more personal than that, but definitely what you put in is what you reap at the end of the day.

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  20. Such a good analysis! I don't blog for $, just for fun!

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    1. I think that's the case for most of us Amy - we're having a great ride and finding that what we receive from blogging far outweighs what it cost us initially.

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  21. I love the ideas you shared here. I don’t blog for money, but I have been thinking that it might be nice to make some money with my blog. I just have to decide whether or not to take the plunge and make the investment. Thank you for writing this because it really does add clarity to some thoughts I have been having.

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    1. I've wondered the same at various stages Sally - the only trouble is that it's hard to stay authentic and write stuff that comes from the heart when you have to take into consideration any sponsors etc. Finding balance is tricky.

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  22. I'm definitely more of the safe and secure type. Just starting my blog felt like a huge risk to me. I love the way you've related blogging to investing here. There are ups and downs, but the payoffs have been worth it and I don't even make a dime! #MLSTL

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    1. I make very little dollar-wise from my blog too Leah, but I've made so much in personal growth and connection - what more could you ask for? I think the personal dividends are enormous and I'm very happy with that :)

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  23. Interesting! I have mutual funds and so far have followed my intuition after learning as much as I could about them. So far, with the ups and downs for the stock market, they've held steady. And the gains keep growing! When I compare this with my three years blogging it's very similar. I trusted my gut after learning as much as I needed to feel comfortable jumping in. It's held steady and I trusted that there was other bloggers out there who would connect with what I wrote. It's held steady and my intuition tells me I'm in the right place. And the gains keep growing!! :)

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    1. Your story sounds just like mine Mary Lou - choosing carefully what to invest in and then reaping the benefits (far in excess of what I'd expected!)

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  24. Now I know why I hadn't commented on this post on Monday because you linked up your Saturday snippets...I couldn't comment on that. So, letting you know next week's prompt is Christmas (bet you did not see that coming LOL). Thanks for this really interesting post and analogy. Denyse #mlstl

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    1. Hi Denyse - I'm trying to share the love around a little and I thought you'd enjoy the Saturday Snippets. Not having to comment is an added bonus IMHO :)

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  25. Now that's such an interesting way to look at it Leanne.
    A little funny, and a lot true.
    XOXO
    Jodie
    www.jtouchofstyle.com

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  26. It's slow, slow, slow and steady for me, Leanne. I had a blog on Wordpress a long time ago and gained a good following. Now that one is closed and my new one is up on my own website and I find it very difficult to get eyes on my posts. You've been an awesome help, though, Leanne. I really appreciate your shares. I blog with three goals in mind: 1. To make myself laugh 2. To make others laugh 3. To get readers to check out my home decor stuff. It's not easy with all the competition out there and sometimes I think of quitting, but I have to express my creative side. It's who I am.

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  27. Thank you for pointing out the similarities and how to deal with blogging. I am more of the slow and steady type.

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  28. Blogging is such a roller coaster right now. It's very similar to the stock market. What works today probably won't work next month.

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  29. Hi Leanne,
    That's a very interesting comparison; I never thought how the two could be linked.
    I am not the risky kind; I am more of the slow and steady kind who looks at the long term.
    Wish you and everyone near and dear to you a Merry Christmas! :-)
    -- bpradeepnair.blogspot.com

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