Media Companies vs Personal Blogs: Which One Is Better?

November 12, 2018 by

The very first post on Budgeting Blogger.

I love budgeting, keeping my finances in order. And I love blogs. Hence the name… Budgeting Blogger!

The times in my life where I felt out of control were when my finances were out of control.

I wouldn’t know where my money was going, how much of it was going to where, and I had zero dollars in savings.

Yes, I would “technically” save money here and there. But I did not have a dedicated savings account. All my monies lived in one single account and it was never managed or looked at carefully each month.

I love blogging because it’s literally the easiest way to make money on the side. Granted yes it does take a lot of work to get up and running, but once you get the ball rolling, it’s one of the most passive income businesses in the world.

But this is not true for all forms of building blogs online.

Experiencing both sides of the table

There are several different ways to grow a blog. You can hire writers: you can raise money and pour a bunch of money into and grow a media company.

Or you can build a personal blog.

My professional background is in hiring writers and strategists, media buying, and overseeing growth of large content businesses. So I’ve been able to work with a wide array of sites in both categories.

90% of the businesses I work with are large media companies. They hire dozens of writers. They have big offices. They’ve raised money. They have a really large infrastructure in management. They have sales teams. And they can scale their ad revenue much quicker.

It’s basically a giant company from day one.

Personally, I would never want to build a company like this.

Yes, their growth is a lot faster. They’re able to pump out tons of content – more content in a single week than a personal blog can in a year.

However, they’re also extremely stressful to run. Behind the scenes, profit margins are zero. They lose money for the first 3 years. They have huge overhead. They have to constantly hire and fire people.

Some examples of media companies: Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, Hello Giggles, Refinery29, Elite Daily

It’s just a nightmare to run.

To me, a personal blog is a much better option.

Think of blogs like Tim Ferriss, Wait But Why, Neil Patel, Smart Passive Income.

These are all personal blogs. They have fantastic profit margins. They publish blog posts when they feel like it. They hire only when they need to. They can schedule their own work days. They can travel when they want to.

And, they get the reward of being able to reach others PERSONALLY. They write their own content.

They can’t publish 100 articles a day like big media companies, but they don’t need to. Their personal reach can often times be much larger than these giant companies.

For me, and 99% of people out there, it’s much more attractive to build a personal blog.

Another option is an affiliate blog

Examples of affiliate blogs are NerdWallet, FinanceFox, The Points Guy, and The Penny Hoarder. These types of websites run similarly to large media companies. Sometimes, they also have hundreds of employees. However, they are much more profitable. Affiliate commissions make much more many than ads. Particularly in the finance industry, you’ll see a lot of affiliate blogs because the payouts for commissions earned can be huge.

7-figure affiliate blogs are sometimes even run by one single person – like Nomadic Matt. He runs the blog more as a personal blog, which I love.

To start a blog in a topic that you’re passionate about, sharing your thoughts, and getting direct feedback from readers who follow you.

It’s just a much more meaningful way to build a content business.

I know a lot of people out there say they hate writing. I know a ton of people in this industry who build blogs, then hire writers because writing is their least favorite part.

This is ALWAYS untrue. They hate writing because the blog they’ve built is in a topic they don’t care about.

And that’s fine. If they can build the processes to grow the blog with outsourced content, that’s awesome.

But FIND the topic you’re most interested in. Then build a blog around it. Grow your following from people with similar interests/opinions.

THAT is a compound interest business. It’s a business that continuously grows exponentially year over year.

Build an audience around that model, and you’ll have a business for life.