BUSINESS, ORGANIZE your work | November 17, 2009

When Blogging Becomes a Job

participants at webcom montreal fall 2009

I was proud to read what Genevieve wrote on O.xide Design’s blog about my coverage of working with them for my husband’s birthday party. Gen wrote: “Bloggers like Kim are more like editors of magazines”. Even if Genevieve only met me once, she understood what I do for living.

Her comment brings the question of defining my job title. How do professional bloggers differentiate themselves from the casual bloggers? How we differentiate the different types of professional bloggers? You get the corporate bloggers, the bloggers for hire and the bloggers like me who are creating their own publishing company.

My Quest for the Right Job Title

After months of telling people that I was a professional blogger, I noticed a flaw. It does not convey my business goal. I must not forget that I am entrepreneur. I founded KimVallee.com to be a publishing company, a recognized media authority. I am the founding editor of that brand and this is where I put my energy all day.

Being a small business owner has its challenge. When you are a blogger, you are at the front of the brand. So, how do you disconnect your role from the brand? I feel that my job title should take into account the positioning of the brand.

Do We Need a Job Title?

Some people argue that job titles have become irrelevant. Maybe! After all, I am a lifestyle and entertaining expert when I give interviews for newspapers or magazines. I am the editor of a women online magazine (or a blog) when I meet people in my daily activities. That distinction works fine.

Still, we need to quickly tell new acquaintances what we do for living. You must take into account that the people you will meet are not necessary savvy in your area of expertise. Therefore, it is easier to refer to job titles that everyone can understand. This is why I say more often that I am the editor of a women online magazine instead of the editor of a blog. Or maybe it is because I always treated At Home with Kim Vallee (my main blog) as a women magazine.

What are your thoughts? Any advices?

+ photo by Jérôme Paradis at Webcom Montreal

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9 Responses to “When Blogging Becomes a Job”

  1. This truly sums up what it is to be a “professional blogger”. It is a profession which is almost too fluid to have a set title.

    Your article is a must-read for bloggers (and their friends)

  2. I think you have a nice problem. Being able to make a living by blogging is a big achievement that you should be very proud of. Those that don’t understand what a blogger does, do not seem to understand that blogging is a lot of work and not some form of volunteer non-paying job that we do for fun (although fun is not excluded). Blogging is a professional exercice which you do very intelligently. We cannot all make money with our blogs. Those that do deserve our admiration and respect. Keep it simple, just say you earn a living by blogging….Let them discover the rest. Here’s to you and your problem Kim!

  3. I often think of myself as an editor, but I’m also a writer too. I sometimes say I’m in the business of “online publishing”, but then again, I agree that it doesn’t always cover everything else I do because I an a writer and publisher too, oh and ad sales…jeez! It’s tricky. I’m a one-woman Internet publishing company.

  4. Kim, you are a online encyclopedia, an innovator, a creator and a leader in many ways. I think it would be very hard to find just one word to summarize and narrow down what you do in just one title and it would also be a shame to do so because it would miss represent who you are. As you said yourself you are building a brand and chose to use your name, there for you will never be able to split business and personal but that is also why you have the amount of followers that you do because we all know that what ever you say reflects you as person and therefor it will alway be genuine. Thank you for dedicating your life and your time to continuosly finding new and interesting ways in educating and entertaining us.

  5. Kim, I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. As we embrace this new world of social media and create new opportunities, some of the old ways of describing what we do just don’t work anymore yet remain necessary in order for others to understand who we are and what we do.

    I like @ParentClub’s idea of a profession that’s almost too fluid to have just one title, and a more traditional one at that.

    Like you, my online and offline world have collided and in a good way. I tend to describe what I do in a way whichever people or audience I’m speaking with will understand.

    Cheers,
    Eden

  6. The term “Professional Blogger” unfortunately has an “amateur” sound to it.. I usually quality myself as “Editor in Chief”. It sounds much more serious! 🙂

  7. Geeks are Sexy: I use Editor in Chief many times. But again it is a matter of perception and context. Professional blogger does not sound amateur for many business people. I did mandates as a social media expert for big organizations because I am a professional blogger. My role was to show them how to blog and how to use social media to promote their blog. In that situation, professional blogger brings more weight than editor in chief. The point I wish to make is that there is no single answer when it comes our job title.

  8. Hi Kim, I am a first time visitor, but I came across this post becuase I too need clarification on what our title is, besides “blogger”.

    Your post struck a cord with me, as of right now – no-one outside of the blogosphere really gets what I am doing with my time…”writing and researching..networking without steady pay”…as they see it, seems very pointless to them. I have been blogging for 5 yrs now.

    It is frusting that they don’t understand the bigger picture of establishing credibility and web presence that eventually will lead to bigger opportunities (hopefully).

    I think there is a movement of change happening – with social media taking hold of the reigns and I believe the answers we are seeking will materialize sooner than later.

    I am by no means close to your level of success as “professional”, but I am working towards that goal.

    Congrats on your successes.

    Cheers,

    Amber

  9. The definition of working at my country is when you go out from your house, wearing uniform and get salary every month. While I don’t have to go out from my house to do my job, I just use t-shirt and jean, I don’t have regular salary. If I say to people that I’m a blogger and get money from it, they won’t believe me, because most of people in my country still became internet consumers and they don’t use it to make money. So how should I call myself??? Hmmm maybe a jobless who can get paycheck every month lol