Hi, I’m Marianna!
Over the last few years, I have been pouring my heart and soul into one thing: creating a lifestyle that allows me to spend more time focusing on the things I love (my family, traveling, homemade smoothies, gardening, vegetarian restaurants, camping, and the list goes on).
I’ve always been passionate about writing and graphic design so I was determined to combine both of those with a career that would allow me to have more freedom, flexibility, and the opportunity to make a decent income.
And that’s when I fell in love with blogging.
However, blogging is a lot harder than it looks and truthfully I’m still trying to figure it out. Since I started The Collective Mill, I’ve had a lot of ups and downs. I’ve made over $2,000 in one month and only $200 the next. I’ve had nights where I popped open a bottle of champagne and nights where I cried myself to sleep. I’ve made a lot of mistakes but learned so much along the way.
Making a full-time income blogging really is a hard thing to do which is why I want to be as realistic as possible. I always see bloggers who are talking about having a $100K product launch or making over $25,000 per month – and although that would be pretty amazing, I’m guessing only 1% of bloggers actually make this happen.
The truth is, I don’t need to make $25,000 per month or even 6-figures per year. I want to make enough to pay my bills, work from home, travel, and spend more time with my friends and family.
So after crunching numbers and looking at my finances, I came up with a number…
My goal is to earn $4,000 per month and what’s amazing is that every day I’m getting a little closer to hitting it. I don’t think I’ll be there next month or even in six months but I’m aiming to be there within a year.
Everyday I’m learning new things and becoming more strategic. I’m figuring out what works and what doesn’t work.
As I continue on this adventure, I want to share my experiences with you: the good, the bad, and the ugly. I want to teach you everything I’m learning along the way; from growing my social media accounts, creating an amazing community, monetizing my blog, and everything in between – and I know if I can do it, so can you.
Let’s get started!
A Road Map of The Collective Mill
Blogging really is an amazing thing. It gives you the opportunity to live the lifestyle you want while having freedom within your career. You get to spend more time doing the things you love (maybe that’s traveling, cooking, spending time with your family) while having a flexible schedule, earning an income, and maintaining a work/life balance (and because I like to nerd out on my computer, I created a Venn diagram to go over how awesome blogging really is).
Now let’s figure out where you’re at in the blogging cycle. Are you just starting out, a newbie blogger, or a pro blogger?
Just Starting Out: You haven’t set up your blog yet but you’re ready to
Newbie Blogger: You’ve been blogging for 1-12 months
Pro Blogger: You’ve been blogging for 12+ months
Depending on where you’re at, I’ve highlighted the best resources on TCM below. ❤︎
Just Starting Out
When you’re first starting out, it’s definitely going to be a lot of work. However, the beginning phases are the most fun and creative. You get to come up with your blog’s name, a color scheme for your site, and so much more. If you’re just starting out, I’ve created a FREE email course that includes:
1. A step-by-step guide on setting up your blog
2. The best resources for every new blogger
3. How to choose a topic and define your niche
4. Different ways to start earning an income
Plus, a lot more. This course is designed to help you learn everything you need to know before you start blogging so you can create a really strong foundation. Click here to check it out.
If you’ve been blogging for a few months, there’s always room to become a little more strategic. You can focus on growing your social media accounts, making your blog SEO friendly, or setting up an email series. When you start to put strategies in place, it will help you drive more traffic back to your blog and grow your community. If you haven’t already, definitely check out these articles:
- How to Write an Epic About Me Page
- How to Improve Your SEO Ranking
- 10 Easy and Effective Ways to Grow Your Blog
- How to Send Your First Email Through MailChimp
I’ve also created a handful of free templates, checklists, and worksheets just for you. Click on one of the images below, enter your email address, and I’ll send you the login information to access my free library of blogging resources:
Once you hit your one-year anniversary with your blog you truly have accomplished a lot. Blogging takes so much hard work, and hitting that one year mark is pretty amazing. So now that you have all of the fundamentals down, you can really start focusing on the business side of blogging. Have you started monetizing your blog? Are you focused on growing your email list? Have you been collaborating with other bloggers? Check out the articles below for some new ideas:
- How to Create a Media Kit for Your Blog
- How to Grow Your Email List With Content Upgrades
- 12 Places to Promote Your Blog Posts
- 7 Reasons Why Your Mom is the Only Person Reading Your Blog
Plus, I’ve created all sorts of FREE resources to help you along the way. If you click on one of the images below and enter your email address, I will send you the link and password to my free library of resources.
I also believe that community is one of the most important aspects of blogging. That means, I’m also here as your friend. If there is something you’re struggling with or you want to share an amazing story about your blog, always feel free to send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org).