Going Pro

by | Oct 16, 2004

“I do believe that weblog publishing tools have enabled the rise of the individual journalist-entrepreneur, away from the shackles of underpaid, under-utilized, under-appreciated jobs with formal media companies.” -Rafat Ali of Paid Content

I started blogging in July 2003 because I had something to say. My intention was never to make money. Like most writers I simply wanted to be heard.

As I have grown more comfortable with the form and learned much more about the blogosphere, it became quite clear that one can do more than simply be heard. Rafat Ali, Jason Calacanis and Nick Denton have all made this into a living, and a healthy one at that. Some reports have Ali pulling in ten grand a month in ad revenue. For a one-man show, that’s pretty damn good.

In recent days I’ve noted that Ali and Calacanis are looking for bloggers to help them grow their media products. I have contacted both gentlemen about the possibility of joining their firms. Yet, even while doing so, I had to confront the question, “Why?” Why work for them when I have the ability and the temperament to go it alone. Not here. This blog is covers too much ground to make money (and as I mentioned, that was never the purpose here). The key to monetary success with a blog is to exploit a niche, particularly a well-defined niche that you know a great deal about.

I decided tonight to embark on a new path with my friend Shawn Hartley–a technology and marketing wizard and a former colleague of mine from Bozell’s Omaha outpost. We’re launching Adpulp.com, a blog dedicated to covering the ad industry, in our own inimitable style, of course. Sure, there are some blogs already operating in this space, but space on the web is infinite. We will establish our own voice and an audience will find us. Blog it and they will come, you might say.