26 Crazy Stories about “OMG!” Opportunities that Blogging Made Happen

26 Crazy Stories about “OMG!” Opportunities that Blogging Made Happen

Will it all be worth it?

You can’t help wondering sometimes.

Every spare minute, you’re glued to your computer, reading, writing, doing all you can to grow your blog and build your audience — all on the shaky promise that someday your efforts will pay off.

But sometimes, that someday feels far out of reach. Sometimes, you can’t help wondering whether that day will ever come, or whether you’re just wasting your time.

Well, hang in there, my friend. Because you never know what kinds of opportunities your blog can bring you.

And they might take time, but for all you know, they might be right around the corner.

To prove it, I asked 26 of my blogging friends to share the coolest, craziest opportunities their blogs made happen in their early days — that is, before they amassed a huge following and made tens of thousands of dollars off their blog.

Ready to dive in?

#1. Jeff Bullas / Jeff Bullas


Jeff BullasOne of the “craziest” opportunities I had happened about a year after starting the blog when I was invited to speak in New Zealand.

It came about because a millionaire who was reading my blog, loved my content and had an idea and sent me an email.

After the event he asked me to join the board of a new tech startup and offered shares.

Five years later the company has raised $3 million and is continuing to grow.

That company is Shuttlerock.

We were a winner in Facebook’s 2016 Innovation Spotlight providing a scalable creative solution to unlock the true power of Facebook Advertising.

#2. Ryan Biddulph / Blogging from Paradise


Ryan BiddulphThe coolest opportunity that arose for me as a beginning blogger was being asked to interview Thrillionaire celebrity Nik Halik. I had no clue how to blog, let alone conduct an interview. Since this was some 7 years ago I literally pressed “record” on a tape recorder – I am not kidding – received the call on my land line (resistant to cell phone usage back then) and preserved the interview for transcribing.

I learned a valuable lesson too; be prepared! I asked two canned questions sent to me by his press guy and Nik told me he was bored of the same old questions as this was his 10th interview of the day. Because I spent 20 minutes researching him earlier that day I nimbly shifted and asked probing, interesting questions that made for a great interview.

#3. Chris Guillebeau / The Art of Non-Conformity


Chris GuillebeauIn my early days of blogging, Air New Zealand flew me to the Cook Islands for a 24-hour event.

It was a whirlwind visit and I learned that I don’t like sponsored trips (too much expectation on behalf of the sponsor, even when they say otherwise…), but I was still grateful for the experience.

#4. Danny Iny / Mirasee


Danny InyThe craziest opportunity that arose from blogging was that I ended up co-authoring a book with Guy Kawasaki and other A-listers when I was an unknown. Here’s how it happened:

Firepole Marketing (now Mirasee) was just a tiny blog with less than 1,000 subscribers, when I had the opportunity to guest blog on Copyblogger. My post was “38 Critical Books Every Blogger Needs to Read.” Number 12 on the list was The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki.

It must have caught the attention of Guy and/or his publicist, because a few days later, I received an email from Guy thanking me for including his book. He said he had a new book coming out and offered me a review copy and an interview.

Of course, I seized the opportunity. I spent 15 hours preparing for the interview to make it so good that Guy would want to share it with everybody. Afterwards, I posted the interview on my blog and created a video to promote the book on YouTube. I wrote reviews on Amazon and other bookseller websites—I did everything I could think of to get the word out.

Months later, I invited Guy to contribute to my book, Engagement from Scratch!, and he said yes. And that’s how blogging helped me co-author a book with Guy Kawasaki.

#5. Richard Lazazzera / A Better Lemonade Stand


Richard LazazzeraBlogging quite literally changed my life. Within months of starting my ecommerce blog, A Better Lemonade Stand, I wrote a really long-form piece of content that drove thousands of brand new visitors to my site. One of those visitors was the director of marketing for Shopify. He reached out to me via email and we started to build a relationship.

About a year later, I moved to Toronto. When the director at Shopify heard, I was offered a position at Shopify which I jumped on. That position allowed me to reach two million visitors per month through their blog (while still growing my personal blog), write a full length book, and participate in the IPO of Shopify.

I’ve since left Shopify and continue to build A Better Lemonade Stand and several other companies. To think it all began with a single blog post still amazes me.

#6. Ian Cleary / Razor Social


Ian ClearyWithin six months of launching the blog it was voted one of the top ten social media blogs in the world by a competition run by Social Media Examiner.

That was pretty amazing for me because I started the blog based in Ireland and I was the only European blog on the list. This rapidly helped me become an influencer in the Social Media Space and generated me significant business.

#7. Amy Lynn Andrews / Amy Lynn Andrews


Amy Lynn AndrewsIn 2006, when I had been blogging only a few years and blogs were still somewhat of a novelty, I was contacted by a writer from TIME Magazine. She had found my blog and wanted to interview me for a story she was writing about one of my main topics.

For some reason I didn’t think it could possibly be true, but a few months later I found myself in the print edition of TIME Magazine (in March 2007). Unfortunately I wasn’t savvy enough to maximize the exposure, but I did keep in contact with that journalist and enjoyed her friendship for several years.

#8. Dave Chesson / Kindlepreneur


Dave ChessonYou never know who is reading or following your content. I found out that my all time favorite writer, and multi-NYT Bestseller, Ted Dekker, had come across my work.

This led into getting to meet him for coffee, and ultimately, become an Advanced Review Copy (ARC) reader as well as helping with some of his book marketing projects.

#9. John Lee Dumas / EOFire


John Lee DumasVery early on I had the opportunity to be featured on some pretty big sites as a guest poster, which wouldn’t have been possible if I hadn’t had the EOFire blog up and running. One of the first was on Think Traffic​ (now Fizzle.co), and we were featured there within just one month of having started our own blog.

This first guest post gave us powerful momentum and exposure, which we then used to request to guest post on other big name sites like Social Media Examiner, Copy Blogger, Content Marketing Institute and over twenty others.

Each new guest post opportunity brought with it exposure, more momentum, and most importantly, a very valuable friendship with people I’m proud to still call friends today.

#10. Aaron Orendorff / Iconicontent


Aaron OrendorffBack in March 2014, I had just started blogging. Basically, it was me, my mom, and literally 261 unique visitors (I checked with Google Analytics just to be accurate).

I’d posted six times, when — out of the digital blue — I got an email about this post, Getting Your Customers to Hold It, Love It, and Give It Money:

Aaron Orendorff - email

I nearly lost my newbie-blogging mind. Of course, I said yes. And somewhat embarrassed myself by asking for a link:

“This is for a book project, so the linking is tough — but I’ll give you lots of love otherwise,” was Ann’s kind response.

Three months later, I’d secured my very first guest post at Copyblogger and I knew enough — just enough — to immediately turn around and pitch Ann on a MarketingProfs guest post. I composed a full article, sent it off, and was in. Everything I’ve done over the last three years has been built on that foundation. And I owe it all to one nice lady who stumbled on my blog when I had no business getting visitors of her clout (or visitors at all for that matter).

#11. Sean Ogle / Location Rebel


Sean OgleAbout six months after starting my blog, I wrote a post about quitting my job as a financial analyst. I had no idea what I was going to do after that, but I knew I was ready for something different.

The following week I received an email from a reader congratulating me on taking the leap, and telling me that he was looking to bring an intern out to Asia to help him with the online marketing for his company. I’d work part time and he would pay my basic living expenses, while teaching me the ins and outs of the digital world.

Six weeks later, I was on a flight to Bangkok where I would live for the next seven months – and it would set the foundation for my life and business for years to come. I haven’t had a real job since.

It never would have happened had I not started the blog, and positioned myself for a big opportunity to come my way.

#12. Camilla Hallstrom / Influence with Content


Camilla HallstromBack when I got started, I had NO clue what I was doing.

I wasn’t sure what worked and what didn’t. Sure, through programs like Serious Bloggers Only I knew what sorts of posts got results, but I still felt uncertain about putting anything out there. What was the point, really? What if I was just wasting my time on this blogging thing? A nagging voice inside my head told me I would end up empty handed without anything to show for it…

That’s why it felt amazing when one of my first posts got tons of shares and comments. But the best part? Brian Tracy (the sales mogul) shared it on his Facebook page (at the time, he had around 1.5 million followers). And that same post went on to win the title of “Most Epic Post” in a contest here on Smart Blogger (Boost Blog Traffic back then).

That’s the moment I understood exactly how powerful blogging can be. You can get noticed by anyone and you can open doors that right now seem firmly shut.

Apart from this, blogging has made such a difference in my life. I have met new friends who have the exact same interests as I do — that NEVER happens offline (for some reason, people’s eyes glaze over whenever I try to start a discussion about a content idea I just heard about). I’ve gotten job offers in big part thanks to my blogging experience and I started my freelance career because of it.

#13. Ashley Faulkes / Mad Lemmings


Ashley FaulkesWhen you are just getting started, you don’t really expect anything crazy to happen. But sometimes you get a big surprise!

One of the things I did when starting out was to create a post featuring all the influencers in the blogging and social media scene. It got a lot of people’s attention and connected me with a lot of influencers very quickly. After all, it was a post with the sole purpose of highlighting these influencers (and letting them know of course :>).

Now, having connected with these influencers, I had the opportunity to take it a step further. I started inviting a lot of them on my brand spanking new podcast. Of course, I did not expect many of the bigger names to say yes. Surprisingly, I got quite a few big bloggers on the show, including some who were very reluctant to put themselves out there (not everyone is a lover of the microphone you know :>). Some of the people I got on my podcast included: Rebekah Radice, Ileane Smith, Ann Smarty, Susan Gilbert, John Paul Aguiar, Ian Anderson Gray and more. No, not Seth Godin, but still, for a complete beginner not bad I think!

What blew me away is that getting in contact with people you look up to is not as hard as it seems (if they don’t have an assistant answering their mails :>). Don’t forget, they were exactly where you are not too long ago. And most are more than happy to help out a newbie! Give it a shot.

#14. Daniel Scocco / Daily Blog Tips


Daniel ScoccoBlogging is a great way to showcase your expertise and expand your network. I learned this when, back in 2009, I landed a consulting gig with an agency of the United States Government! The guys from Voice of America (the official external US broadcaster) were planning to launch a new site, and they wanted to learn what would be the best ways to optimize and promote it. It was a very interesting experience, and certainly a nice touch to my CV!

Practically speaking, this happened because I wrote a lot of content on related topics (website optimization, SEO, content marketing, website promotion), and that content got linked from other bloggers and site owners, and eventually it ranked well on Google. Then when the guys from VOA started doing some research they came across my stuff, liked it, and decided to get in touch.

#15. Meera Kothand / Meera Kothand


Meera KothandOne of the craziest opportunities I received when I started out was not only having my guest post accepted at Marketing Profs but also getting an invitation to record a mini video training for their paid members.

It was scary but I took the plunge and did the training for them and got paid for it as well. This was when my blog was barely six months old. I’ve always believed in guest posting but its benefits reach far wider than just getting traffic and growing your list. It gets you exposure, introduces you to a new audience and paves the way for other opportunities like it did in my case!

#16. Dave Schneider / Ninja Outreach


Dave SchneiderWell I got the opportunity to join my current startup, Ninja Outreach! The opportunity arose when I was invited on a podcast with my now partner Mark, who read my blog, only a few months after I started it.

After the podcast was published he reached back out to me and we discussed some ideas we had for building marketing tools in the space. We decided it made sense to work together on it. That was three years ago, and NinjaOutreach is doing over half a million dollars a year now.

#17. Nathan Chan / Foundr


Nathan ChanI can’t put this down to any one situation! Ever since we started the Foundr blog this has given us opportunities to interview some of the greatest entrepreneurs of our generation (Richard Branson, Arianna Huffington, Seth Godin etc.) and with this we’ve also been able to connect with some amazing entrepreneurs in our community which has been an extremely rewarding experience.

#18. Julie Harris / Whiskey and Red


Julie HarrisThe craziest opportunity that arose from blogging was being invited to speak at my first live class. I had been blogging for about six months when I was contacted by the Hawaii Chapter of a national women’s entrepreneur association, “Femfessionals” to speak at their Hawaiian Chapter dinner. They had found my name through another local business I had worked with in the past and found their way to my blog. I had just posted about “Charging What You’re Worth” and they loved the post so much they asked me to present on the same topic live, in front of their whole local chapter.

There was a whole catered dinner, wine and beverages, and a room full of local entrepreneurs waiting to hear what I had to say. I was so crazy nervous but excited. This opportunity then opened more doors to new clients, new projects, and continued speaking gigs. My business was so new at that point, I didn’t have much of a portfolio, and my small social following was pretty slim, but I had a pretty extensive business blog, and that was what convinced them that I was the perfect speaker for them.

#19. Franklin Hatchett / Online Dimes


Franklin HatchettWhen I first started blogging I came across a new internet marketing method with Shopify. I ended up writing about it on my blog and uploading a Video to Youtube. To my surprise this became a great opportunity and the opportunity grew my blog from around 1,000 visits a month to over 25,000.

This is the single biggest thing that grew my blog and I seized every moment of it. The blog post and video in question were posted all over the internet because people had doubts and talked negatively about it. That negativity grew my email list to 35,000 and Youtube to 30,000 subscribers in a year. I also launched a private Facebook Group four months ago that quickly grew to 15,000 members and counting.

The blog post that was shared and talked about now has over 400 comments with the video having over 300,000 views. Some might not call this the perfect opportunity, however controversy is used on a daily basis for advertising and any publicity is good publicity.

#20. Zac Johnson / Zac Johnson


Zac JohnsonWhen you put yourself out there in any industry and start to gain a following and audience, new opportunities are going to come up all the time. I’ve learned to not get excited by any of them, as only a very small percentage will actually come together. However, when they do, it’s pretty cool!

One such example was when Michael Bayer contacted me through email and asked if I’d like to be featured in a documentary on internet entrepreneurs. At the time I said yes… but always fully aware opportunities and emails similar to these come in every day and usually result in nothing.

Long story short, Michael was able to pull it all together and release the film! We had a nice premiere party in Hollywood, CA and it was pretty cool! Definitely a fun and exciting opportunity that never would have happened if I didn’t start ZacJohnson.com.

#21. Scott Chow / The Blog Starter


Scott ChowI would have to say that the craziest opportunity to come from blogging as I was getting started was the opportunity to be interviewed by a journalist from a nationally distributed magazine.

I’m generally a pretty shy person so it felt a little strange to have that kind of spotlight on me. However, I think for a lot of people that’s what blogging is all about: finding your voice and sharing that with the world.

I am proud to share that message with people and also to help so many people establish blogs of their own!

#22. Joe Bunting / The Write Practice


Joe BuntingThe craziest thing that happened to me as I first got into blogging was in 2008, after blogging for just a few months, I connected with another blogger who had been doing it for years for the organization he ran. We started emailing back and forth, and once, when he was going to be traveling in my city, we met and he introduced me to his daughter.

A few years later, I was traveling through his city, helping him with a book he was working on, and I saw his daughter again. We hit it off over coffee, started talking, and very long story short, less than a year later we were married. All from blogging.

#23. Tor Refsland / Tor Refsland


Tor RefslandThere are a lot of crazy opportunities that have happened thanks to blogging.

Let me mention two of them:

1. I got featured in a book with some of the best marketers in the world: Seth Godin, Chris Brogan, Brian Clark and Grant Cardone.

2. I got headhunted by Noah Kagan (I graciously turned him down, since I wanted to focus on building my own business).

#24. Ryan Robinson / Ryan Robinson


Ryan RobinsonI got to work with Tim Ferriss, Neil Patel, Lewis Howes and dozens of other entrepreneurs right after I started blogging.

A few months after I started to write about my experiences running side projects, I applied for a job as a content marketer for the business classes at CreativeLive—the online education company. Thanks to the fact that I had already been blogging for myself about business related topics and essentially doing everything the content marketing job would entail, I got the gig and overnight started working with some of the most prominent names in the business world, helping them to create content and market their classes.

By going after a day job that put me in close proximity to the most influential people in my industry, I’ve since been able to grow these relationships and they’ve led me to do things like become a contributor on Forbes, land interviews with people like Pat Flynn and to launch my own consulting business. Blogging is all about relationships—go out of your way to forge meaningful ones that’ll help you progress within your industry.

#25. Nick Loper / Side Hustle Nation


Nick LoperThe craziest opportunity that came from blogging was the chance to speak at my local TEDx event. I was about a year into writing the Side Hustle Nation blog when I was accepted as a speaker, and without any relevant public speaking experience I could point to, I think it was the blog (and Side Hustle Show podcast) that tipped the scales in my favor.

I was incredibly nervous leading up to the event, but it was an awesome “bucket list” experience and a chance to step out of my comfort zone in a big way. Plus it forced me to refine my message into a (hopefully) coherent and concise talk. I went through a half dozen different drafts and rehearsed like crazy before the big day, but the talk ended up receiving a standing ovation and has now been viewed almost 10,000 times on YouTube.

#26. Kiersten Rich / The Blonde Abroad


Kiersten RichMy first ever client was Visit Jordan for a video campaign where I got to produce a series of videos in the capital, Amman.

I’d always been passionate about videography, so it was an incredible opportunity and I was humbled that a tourism board had such faith in me despite only having just gotten started as a “blogger.” I learned early on that my audience and influence was only one aspect of my worth, but that my content also had value!

What Crazy Opportunities Are Waiting for You?

I know those pesky doubts are hard to shake sometimes. I know sometimes you feel like your day will never come; like you’re just wasting time and you might as well quit.

But let these stories inspire you to hang in there.

Blogging can (and often does) pay off in big and unexpected ways.

It is worth it.

So keep reading, keep writing, and (this is important) keep honing your skills.

Keep growing your blog and audience, and opportunities will find you.

Your turn will come.

And it might be right around the corner.

Author the Author: Eli Seekins is the founder of Launch Your Dream. He helps bloggers and entrepreneurs turn their passion into a business. Want help getting your first 1,000 email subscribers and making your first $5,000? Check out his FREE Job To Blog Virtual Summit — where 25 expert bloggers teach you how to quit your job, start a blog and make money doing it.

79 Comments

  1. Ryan Biddulph
    May 25, 2017 @ 10:23:29

    Hi Eli,

    Thanks so much for featuring me! These pros know; blogging opens doors you never could see.

    Like it was last week, I recall sitting in the very room I am sitting in now – back in NJ from world travels 😉 – with a freaking tape recorder and sweating, waiting to interview a celebrity in my eyes. Had no idea how things worked as a newbie. But I dove in, and from that experience I learned so many lessons for being prepared and for diving into deep fears.

    I have since spoke about blogging at NYU, appeared on Virgin and Forbes and Entrepreneur and Fox News, when I became a more established blogger, but goodness did things change so quickly after that first interview. Pushed me miles outside of my comfort zone. And as an aside it is one of only 3 interviews I did where I was on the asking side of the mic, versus the hundreds I have done on the answering side.

    I admire these guys. So many took off quickly, like John Lee, because they had immense clarity. I umm….did not LOL. My interview of Nik was SO long ago. Lots of struggles after that but those struggles built my character, my resolve, my focus, and made me who I am today.

    Guys, if you are waiting, hoping, worrying, fretting, annoyed, angry that your opportunity has not come,and you feel like you are wasting your time, the #2 guy mentioned above struggled like hell for many many many years, and still created a neat life for himself and for many of his readers who are becoming island hopping pro bloggers as we speak.

    Thanks for sharing bro! Fabulously inspiring post.

    Ryan

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 12:33:12

      Hey Ryan,

      Thanks so much for being a part of it!

      You’re right, facing struggles builds a lot of character. And most new bloggers face a lot of challenges. Most of it just has to do with hustling, sticking with it, and being patient.

    • DNN
      Jun 05, 2017 @ 07:47:21

      Ryan,

      Glad to hear about your blogging struggles. We all go through them. Did you hear the blogging success story about the 2 girls that met in NYC that used to work for NBC and they turned bloggers and even shared an apartment together? And check this out. One slept while they took turns and the other one created content in a small apartment in New York. And today, they’re beyond blogging millionaires!

      Keep on keeping on Ryan!

  2. CHINEDU OZULUMBA
    May 25, 2017 @ 11:31:07

    Congratulations Ryan, Jeff and every other person that featured. This post shows that experts do struggle mostly at the budding phase. Just have to keep doing all there is. Nice work Eli, sure it took lots of effort to put this together.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 12:34:39

      Thanks Chinedu!

      Totally right. Everyone has to start somewhere.

    • Ryan Biddulph
      May 27, 2017 @ 10:51:24

      Chinedu thank you!

      Ryan

  3. Cj
    May 25, 2017 @ 12:30:59

    Ho Eli,

    Thank you for this inspiration.

    I think it is vitally important when you just start out blogging to just keep on going. A lot of people give up to easyily.

    Like you said, you never know when oppertunity might knock.

    Regards,
    Cj

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 12:36:09

      Hey Eli,

      For sure. So true. Most people just give up up. Sticking to it and being patient is super crucial.

  4. Leanne Regalla
    May 25, 2017 @ 12:35:00

    Great original topic, Eli! Congrats on this post.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 12:36:57

      Thanks Leanne!

      Glad you like it 🙂

  5. John Lee Dumas
    May 25, 2017 @ 13:20:38

    Wow, what a great article Eli! Thanks for the mention, it’s an honor 🙂

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 13:36:24

      Thanks John!

      Glad you could be a part of it 🙂

  6. Zac Johnson
    May 25, 2017 @ 13:51:08

    Excellent round up and some really great tips! Thanks for including me, and I’ll be watching as you continue to grow your blog and name in this competitive world of blogging! 😀

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 14:14:19

      Thanks so much Zac!

      Appreciate it 🙂

  7. Mel Wicks
    May 25, 2017 @ 16:02:23

    A great shot-in-the-arm post, Eli. Just what we all need. Thanks for the inspiration and for having the genius idea to bring it all together.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 16:35:25

      Thanks Mel!

      Glad you like it 🙂

  8. Andrew
    May 25, 2017 @ 16:13:54

    These are all great. So far my digital marketing career has only given me the opportunity to explain how google search works to confused people at parties.

    “Wait, you make money how, exactly?”

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 17:30:25

      Glad you like the post Andrew 🙂

  9. Julie Harris
    May 25, 2017 @ 17:23:04

    Awww Eli! This was such a fun read! Some seriously incredible opportunities are shared here, and all from blogging! Thank you so much for including my own story. Blogging truly has changed my life in ways I never expected.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 17:29:41

      Yeah! Happy to include your story Julie 🙂

  10. Adventurous Kate
    May 25, 2017 @ 19:10:18

    Hi Eli,

    I know you meant well with this piece, and they do all have great stories, but I’m disappointed to see a list of 26 bloggers where:

    –21 out of 26 are male.
    –22 out of 26 are white.
    –Zero are black or Latinx — BUT the anchor photo for this piece is of a black man. I’m not sure whether you or the Smart Blogger team chose that, but the message that sends is that it’s okay to show a black face but not actually tell the stories of black bloggers.

    It’s not like this is a super specialized topic where only a few people could respond; anyone could respond to this.

    You say that you put a list together of your friends, and here’s the problem with that: most white people have mostly entirely white circles of friends. If you’re putting together a collaborative post of your friends, it will turn out to be mostly or all white unless you make an effort for it to be inclusive.

    For that reason, when I did a post on solo female travelers over 40, it was important to me that the list be racially diverse, include LGBT women, and feature a wide array of ages from 40 to 75. Not all of these women were my friends beforehand; I did the research to make sure that it was a diverse list.

    White bloggers — and male bloggers — hold a disproportionate amount of influence. It’s important for us to use that influence to amplify voices that don’t have that privilege.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 19:52:17

      Thanks Kate. I’m glad we have bloggers like you who care so much about people and their voices 🙂

  11. Blue Wren
    May 25, 2017 @ 21:01:56

    Like Kate there are a few things that bug me here, the main one being that most of the success stories here are people who write internet marketing blogs or blogs about blogging for business success. Back in the day people who wrote books about how to make money made more money from their books than did the people who read them. Seems to me in the internet age it is those who offer courses for entrepreneurs who are making the really big bucks, rather than those who are actually trying to build online businesses.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 25, 2017 @ 21:48:36

      Yeah I know what you mean. It can definitely seem that way sometimes.

      But from what I’ve noticed is that these are typically people who spend years hustling and building a business (in a specific market) and then go on to teach others how to do the same.

      I know of a lot of bloggers in niches like food, fashion and travel that make hundreds of thousands of dollars a month – more than most people who teach blogging or entrepreneurship.

      In my opinion, you’ll have more success and a much easier time with blogging if you pick a narrow niche and fill a need.

      We live in a golden era when it’s super easy to become an entrepreneur – so there’s a big need there. And I think that’s why we see so many entrepreneur / business / blogging coaches these days.

      But it’s also an extremely crowded niche to get into (I know because I’m finding my way through it right now).

      It’s much much easier to get started in a micro niche – something like vegan food, beard grooming, high school wrestling, traveling on a budget – stuff like that.

      Just my thoughts.

      • Blue Wren
        May 30, 2017 @ 19:04:44

        Thanks, I appreciate your reply. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the amazing information that sites like Smartblogger provide and I am not doubting the efficacy of the information if thoughtfully and consistently applied. I guess I would have liked to have seen a few more success stories from people in those micro niche areas. Perhaps that could be the focus of another blog article?

        Again, thanks for the work that you and the team at Smartblogger do. It is helpful and it does make a difference.

  12. Miranda Hill
    May 26, 2017 @ 00:21:07

    Hey Eli,

    Great post – it just goes to prove that you’ve gotta keep hustling, doing and putting yourself out there as you never know what will happen.

    Don’t let doubts steal your blogging dreams. Keep writing!

    Thanks for sharing these inspiring stories. Blogger to blogger – they warmed my heart 🙂

    Miranda

    • Eli Seekins
      May 26, 2017 @ 15:10:00

      Thanks Miranda!

      I agree. Just have to keep at it!

      Glad you liked it 🙂

  13. Bhuboy
    May 26, 2017 @ 03:25:12

    Thanks for this inspiration, I am in the situation where really I don’t know if what I am doing will result into something good in the future, but this post really answer it,

    • Eli Seekins
      May 26, 2017 @ 15:11:03

      Glad it inspired you 🙂

      You got this!

  14. Camilla Hallstrom
    May 26, 2017 @ 04:59:58

    Oh wow, such a great list of experiences! Hopefully, lots of budding bloggers will see just how beneficial blogging can be. And not just for entrepreneurs or marketers, but anyone really – people who want to position themselves as authorities in their fields or who’re looking for their dream jobs or who want to connect with friends with similar interests… The list goes on. Thanks so much for including me 🙂

    • Eli Seekins
      May 26, 2017 @ 15:12:18

      Thanks Camilla 🙂

      Was glad to have you.

  15. Jeannette Paladino
    May 26, 2017 @ 09:02:05

    Hey Eli,

    Thanks for the inspirational post. I have always followed Amy Lynn Andrews, she is inspiration for me and always will be my favorite.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 26, 2017 @ 15:14:56

      Hey Jeannette,

      Glad you like it! I agree! Amy is awesome 🙂

  16. Gwen Irwin
    May 26, 2017 @ 15:22:13

    Hi there Eli,
    Great to see you with a post here at SmartBlogger! Thank you for the inspiration. It can be tough sometimes feeling like not many people are seeing your work, but this renews my faith that it just takes one right person to stumble across it to make a big shift. Thank you!

    • Eli Seekins
      May 26, 2017 @ 19:08:17

      Exactly!

      Thanks Gwen 🙂

      Glad you got some inspiration from this post.

  17. Carla Paton
    May 26, 2017 @ 19:29:15

    Great post, thanks! I especially liked this idea from Ashley Faulkes, “One of the things I did when starting out was to create a post featuring all the influencers in the blogging and social media scene.” Brillant! I’m going to do the same in my niche!

    • Eli Seekins
      May 26, 2017 @ 19:53:25

      Hey Carla,

      Yeah, featuring influencers in your niche is a great idea!

  18. John
    May 26, 2017 @ 21:02:47

    Hi Eli
    I’m glad to see you here at smartblogger and a great post you share.

    Thanks for the heads up because my takeaway is plenty…

  19. Stefanie
    May 27, 2017 @ 06:59:07

    Hello Eli,
    thank you very much for the inspiration and ideas of blogging which is a great help to me!

    Being in Germany the blogging “scene” is not that great like here and connecting is much hard to accomplish. Guess the “Germans” need to learn how to connect and have relationships with other bloggers.

    Anyhow, thanks again for this great post!

    Best,
    Stefanie

    • Eli Seekins
      May 27, 2017 @ 15:40:13

      Hey Stefanie,

      That’s interesting! I agree connecting and building relationships with other bloggers is huge.

  20. Brent
    May 27, 2017 @ 12:35:23

    Hi Jon,

    I’ve always been a big fan of people like Seth G, Neil P, and Darren R, but you are by far now my favorite writer in regards to blogging. In the last 24 hours I’ve bookmarked three of your posts for re-reading and I love your free downloadable PDF.

    I’ve been blogging for 15 years now and make a full time living off very little traffic because the niche is finance (specifically lending and debt which is lucrative) so my blogs and me are usually treated like pond-scum,

    My earlier blogs were wretch-worthy for sure and yet they still bring in a handsome $300 bucks a day on average.

    I do drive traffic to affiliate links but I still write some very helpful posts for people who are in dire straits – of course no matter how helpful some of my posts are almost ALL bloggers want to puke when they see my other long-tail-get-the-traffic-get-the-commission posts.

    Because of your writing I’ve been inspired to come out of the closet and just be myself. Some day my helpful posts might even get some traction.

    Thank you for sharing your passion.

    Brent

    • Eli Seekins
      May 27, 2017 @ 15:35:03

      Hey Brent,

      That’s so awesome that you are able to bring in $300 a day from your finance blog!

  21. Theodore Nwangene
    May 28, 2017 @ 03:51:25

    This is totally Mind-blowing Eli,

    Blogging has indeed opened doors and landed a lot of people beautiful and enviable opportunities, these are the type of opportunities they wouldn’t have met if not for blogging.

    As for me, I think my craziest moment was when I made my first $100 few months after I built my blog.

    Also, when I started working with Harsh Agrawal, getting featured on the Income Diary, Jeff Bullas, Shout Me Loud, and Kristi Hines blog. And also when I published my first kindle book on Amazon.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Eli Seekins
      May 29, 2017 @ 15:12:38

      That’s awesome Theodore! Sounds like you are making some big steps with your blog.

  22. Tonya B
    May 28, 2017 @ 09:15:45

    This is a great round-up post Eli and it gives hope to people like me just getting started that REAL opportunities do exist. I love these stories!

  23. Blake Powell
    May 28, 2017 @ 15:25:06

    Awesome post Eli! Thanks for sharing with us.

    It can be really hard when you’re starting out to keep up the courage and motivation, but knowing that the only way to go is up helps a lot and these stories amplify that. I have been following Danny for quite some time and his content is super inspiring, and I see a lot of myself in him.

  24. Linkgostar
    May 28, 2017 @ 15:50:23

    thanks.
    i really like #4,6 and 12
    and i love Kiersten profile picture.

  25. Emmerey Rose
    May 29, 2017 @ 23:18:22

    Wow. Thanks for sharing Eli. It’s great to know how these successful people were able to grab such good opportunities. Do you have one as well? 🙂

  26. Susan Velez
    May 30, 2017 @ 07:19:09

    Hi Eli,

    I love reading posts like this because it helps us believe that anything is possible with blogging. You don’t have to know how to do everything, you just have to be willing to get started.

    When you’re first starting out, there’s so much to do. It can definitely be hard to keep with it especially, in the beginning.

    There’s so much to do and you’re not seeing any benefits from it. However, everyone starts out in the beginning stages. The only difference is that the successful people are the ones who don’t quit.

    They know their why and what their goals are. No matter what, they don’t quit, even though they may feel like quitting.

    Thanks for sharing this roundup with us. It was fun reading about all the possibilities that can come out of starting a blog.

    Have a great day 🙂

    Susan

    • Eli Seekins
      May 30, 2017 @ 21:15:28

      Hey Susan,

      So true! Knowing your WHY and your goals is super important. And the ones who win are the ones who don’t quit.

  27. DNN
    May 30, 2017 @ 20:28:25

    These blogging from humble beginnings is truly a business inspiration. This is why I stay the course in my content creation efforts because I know for sure these are real peeps. I can see myself just as successful as them in a few years from now God willing. People like them had a long-term vision where they desired their blogs and online businesses to be since inception. if the world and America had more blogging entrepreneurs like these fine peeps, we’d have more economical growth in America today. Who agrees? 🙂

  28. Franklin Hatchett
    May 31, 2017 @ 00:05:44

    Woohoo a nice picture of me is used for once haha. Thanks for the mention much appreciated and awesome roundup article! Let me know if you need anything 🙂

    • Heather Sanders
      May 31, 2017 @ 10:02:03

      Franklin – Ha! You don’t make that easy! I scoured the internet (read: Google images) and finally decided to capture a screenshot from a YouTube video. Definitely friendlier than the ONE other image I could find. 😉

    • Eli Seekins
      Jun 05, 2017 @ 21:34:58

      Yeah! Thanks for participating Franklin 🙂

  29. Arvind
    May 31, 2017 @ 00:22:25

    amazing opportunities created for blogger by blogging…it is really a great career or money making option to change your life…great post..!!

  30. Augy Michaels
    May 31, 2017 @ 10:54:47

    These are great real life examples of what can be accomplished. Very motivating to help stay the course. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Another great post.

  31. Sherman Smith
    May 31, 2017 @ 15:04:12

    Hey Eli,

    This was a great motivator for me.

    Like you said, you never know what opportunities your blog can bring and there’s plenty of them out there. You just have to stay focus, turn your blog into a content magnet and eventually you’ll reap the rewards.

    Thanks for the share!

  32. Shakoat Hossain
    Jun 01, 2017 @ 09:36:57

    Hey Eli Seekins,

    Nice stories indeed! 🙂 Love 26 case studies amazingly! 😉

    Here, i discovered some inspirational thought and all of them I should follow on twitter.

    Glad to find a chance to read and compliments. I’m so happy!

    Keep it up….Thanks! 🙂

  33. Shivam Verma
    Jun 01, 2017 @ 10:02:18

    This is truly a piece of inspiration. This tells us how much can we achieve by showing determination, perseverance, and strong will. I will really keep these success stories in my mind and work on my blog in hopes of getting a breakthrough.

  34. Kim George
    Jun 01, 2017 @ 20:35:18

    Hello there Eli!

    This is a great post you got here. I see a lot of familiar faces of some of my favorite bloggers in this list. Really great to see that blogging has opened up doors of opportunity for folks. Would have loved to see some stories of peeps in smaller niches and how they are rocking it out online with blogging. Buttt..love the article!

  35. Jhasketan Garud
    Jun 04, 2017 @ 20:03:39

    Hi Eli,
    That was really inspiring. Thanks a lot.

  36. Lizzie Moult
    Jun 06, 2017 @ 06:00:02

    Feeling rather inspired right now. My old blog did really well for awhile being featured around the place but I have given birth to a new blog and new direction and I hope that I can reach some of the OMG moments from this list!!!

    • Eli Seekins
      Jun 06, 2017 @ 18:56:53

      Go get it Lizzie!

  37. Vaishali
    Jun 07, 2017 @ 05:52:23

    Much thankful for this inspirable article!

    Above all else, blogging is a committed procedure that requires time and vitality. Bloggers should not promptly hop on analyzing the blog; rather, they’ll have to invest time and energy to build up the reputation of the blog. It is more important that analysis audience and identify audience appeals, as intemperate advertisements and advancements can push users away.

    Blogging is a challenging task as well an open opportunity to extend your voice over the Internet; test something new moves at your viewpoints and new thoughts on your work are basic and motivating.

    • Eli Seekins
      Jun 08, 2017 @ 12:58:17

      So true. Blogging takes commitment and patience.

  38. Jerry
    Jun 08, 2017 @ 11:14:13

    Thanks Eli, I find it interesting that just when your thinking as was mentioned about if you just wasting your time with this blogging think you come across a post like yours. And it helps to give you hope. As a newbie this just what we need at times. Thanks again.

  39. Peninnah
    Jun 12, 2017 @ 06:13:55

    Great to learn that blogs has opened opportunities for many. Kudos Jeff Bullas

  40. Ashutosh
    Jun 17, 2017 @ 05:31:52

    That’s why I come here, and each time I feel like it’s hard to continue. Thanks for such a wonderful post.

  41. sara williams
    Jun 18, 2017 @ 06:18:04

    Hey Eli,
    thank you very much for the inspiration and ideas of blogging which is a great help to me! Great to see you with a post here at SmartBlogger! Thank you for the inspiration.

  42. Monica Leftwich
    Jun 22, 2017 @ 06:38:55

    Some years ago, I was blogging about my hormonal health condition. I got so brave and outrageous in it, I was contacted by New York Magazine…from there, Yahoo…from there, a radio show in the UK. Yes, blogging can open crazy doors for opportunities. Bravo Zulu for such an inspirational piece, Eli!

    • DNN
      Jun 23, 2017 @ 16:10:42

      Monica darling,

      I am totally with you when you mentioned” blogging and open crazy doors for opportunities.” You have to have a mind see in this line of work and play the game of patience and staying the course and creating “lots and lots of content.” I’m glad to know you’re from New York and blogging. I’m from Flatbush Brooklyn. Why don’t you created an account on the site and let’s keep in touch and start commenting on some of my forum posts. Are you game, Monica? 🙂

      • Monica Leftwich
        Jun 23, 2017 @ 16:50:34

        Not from New York. Virginia actually. 🙂

  43. Adrienne
    Jun 29, 2017 @ 13:59:04

    I love these motivational stories! They are enough to encourage anyone to continue on the path of blogging.

  44. Noelle Addison
    Jun 30, 2017 @ 01:04:08

    Great post Eli! This is a great list of inspiring blogging personalities.

  45. Christian Chavez
    Jul 07, 2017 @ 04:49:53

    I follow Jeff Bullas for his social media advice and really they all work out of the box for me. Thanks for sharing this article, it was really fun viewing all of them.

  46. Marsha Ingrao
    Jul 09, 2017 @ 00:48:43

    Eli, this is an amazing post. Almost overwhelming, but that’s the way blogging is. I’ve had a book contract and a trip to Australia because of blogging. The opportunities keep coming in. I’ve been in the process of writing a book for the past year titled, “Because of Blogging,” You’ve nailed it with these 26 astounding stories. Where did you come up with all these wonderful interviewees? It gives us a bigger list of influencers, including you. Thanks again.

    • Eli Seekins
      Jul 09, 2017 @ 14:54:40

      Hey Marsha!

      That’s so awesome. A book contract and a trip to Australia is super cool.

      The contributors are some of the bloggers who I’ve connected with since getting started.

      Glad you liked the post 🙂

  47. SMN Zaman
    Jul 10, 2017 @ 10:20:01

    Hi Eli Seekins,

    This post is enough to inspire any aspiring blogger. In fact, l like some of the bloggers on the list who influenced me a lot to carry on with my blogging career.

    Hope to see the bloggers in person soon.

    Regards,
    SM

  48. Sanjib Kumar Saha
    Jul 15, 2017 @ 15:10:49

    I have developed Shopify websites for many clients and they seem to make a lot of money using Facebook advertisements and SEO. Many of them are bloggers.

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