Dane Carlson emailed me an interesting question today which I thought might make an interesting discussion topic. He asks:
Other than to toot my own horn, what real incentive do I have to tell you whether or not I’m a six figure (or five figure, or four, or seven or whatever) blogger?
I can understand why you disclose parts of your income; it builds your credibility and stature in the “pro blogging” niche. But, what about Manolo from ShoeBlogs? What could he possibly have gained from the coverage?
As Dane says – I reveal my income from blogging (in part) because it helps to build my credibility as someone who writes and teaches about making money from blogs – after all who would trust someone to teach them something about a topic that they had not proven themselves in.
However others regularly reveal their blog earnings (I see posts doing this every few days) and I too have often wondered why? Perhaps some of the reasons might include:
- Attention Getting/Exposure - there is little doubt that talking about money get the attention of others
- Bragging Rights – I suspect that some do it just because they are proud of their achievement and want others to know
- Transparency – maybe some do it because they want their readers to know that they make money from their readership
- Inspiration – I know of some bloggers who do it partly because they want to inspire others to do the same
I’m sure these are not the only reasons bloggers reveal their income but am sure they cover some of the main ones.
The question of ‘why’ bloggers reveal their income is a good one – but perhaps as equally useful is to ask why bloggers shouldn’t reveal their income? Again there are probably numerous answers to this question (feel free to give yours below) but the main one that comes to mind to me is that in revealing your blog’s income you set yourself up for others to copy your blog’s topic and approach to blogging. This is a risk bloggers revealing their blogging success will take.
I’m interested to hear your opinions and experiences on this topic. Do you reveal your income? Why or why not?