It comes up in conversation more often than I can count. People wondering what IS IT exactly that I do? I have a blog, for sure. But that can’t earn me a living, right? (right! Haha). So with family Christmas card season just around the corner, I thought I’d make my Mum’s life (and yours) easier and just tell you.
Break it down bit by bit.
If you wanted how I make money specifically on the blog, I have a video about that. Pop over to my (poor, sad, lonely, neglected) YouTube channel to check it out. I do plan to make more videos, but you’ll see below, I’ve been busy so it’s been put on the back burner for a hot minute.
Kicking it off with Suger Coat It.
Right! Let’s kick it off where it all started with this blog. Suger Coat It was my first endeavour into the online world, digital marketing and list building after spending two years failing out of a Business degree. What can I say, I’m not a great student, and never have been. But I love to learn new things by myself from a book or the interwebs; so, I just figured it out.
I write this blog as often as possible and share to the NUMEROUS social media channels attached to it including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, YouTube and a neglected Tumblr and Google + page. Through Suger Coat It I generate income through sponsored posts, content creation (for brands not displayed on my social), digital product sales and ad.
Attached to this is the Suger + Ink podcast (we are re-branding!! Watch out for THAT) with Samara, formally of Blonde Ink. We have learned SO MUCH over the past three seasons of the show and I just love that it just gets better as we go along. Season Four is going to be epic, just two girls living their best 30-something lives.
Then there’s my new Instagram Suger Eats where I can share more of my food photography which has been so successful on Unsplash. I’ve always loved cooking and taking photos of food, something that has gone by the wayside a bit. As part of doing more stuff I love to create, Suger Eats was born. We’re so close to 100 followers and it’s as exciting as the first time I had an account hit that milestone. So cool.
And of course, there’s the Suger Coat It YouTube. As I mentioned above, about this time last year I was 100% in and making a video a week NO MATTER WHAT. It did awesome things for learning an entirely new and somewhat tricky medium (which hurts and I’ve bitched about THAT a lot). It also taught me how to build something from scratch instead of relying so heavily on the audience I do have here and on Facebook.
The Leave Home Blog.
While we’re talking about blogs, there’s also the little engine that could, The Leave Home Blog. My big idea that keeps plodding along with spurts of attention and drabs of forethought. I love this idea and have always referred to it as my big break waiting to happen. It’ll need some changes to bring it into 2018 for that to happen, but I have hope.
The consistency here has improved a lot since Charlotte started doing the majority of the work relating to the Leave Home Blog, especially its Instagram. The rest of the platforms are more automated, but we make (very little) money through sponsored posts and ad sales. The Leave Home Blog is currently funded by Suger Social, which brings me to, Suger Social.
The actual business business.
I registered the business name ‘Red Phone Business Services’ in 2010 as an umbrella to put all my social media, digital marketing, and at the time, copywriting, VA, and freelance services. This business operated in the background of numerous full-time and part-time jobs over the years. It bumped along sometimes making hobby money and sometimes being close to my full-time income.
About two years ago I decided that it needed to come under the Suger brand (invoicing for blog posts or content was confusing as a starting point). I wanted to call it Suger Media (taken!) and didn’t want to lock it into Suger Social Media (also, wordy). So I just went with Suger Social and locked that down throughout the internet.
Shortly after I brought on Charlotte who is our first ’employee’, followed closely by a book-keeper who was a godsend getting my invoicing and bank statement reconciliations under control. Plus, my accountant loves her, so that makes for an easy tax time. And I bought on a VA of sorts to help with the WordPress sites when we build them. I lay them out, set them up, and he fills them in.
Later this year, or next, I’d love to bring on a video editor (I have one locked in when I’m ready!) and more of a full-time assistant with strong admin skills and a drivers licence. Someone who can work more autonomously so we can continue to grow because I’m doing the ‘stuff’ I’m actually good at.
Because we’ve been growing, fast!
Suger Social currently runs the social media for seven businesses full-time from financial planning to fashion, recreation to accommodation. The team, which started as just me, but thankfully has grown have also created or assisted to execute marketing plans for numerous businesses in 2018 through consults and planning masterminds. There is nothing we don’t do really from hourly VA services to re-branding, marketing consultations and training. We also deliver workshops, build websites, some ads strategy and planning, and I’ve been trying my hand at more and more photography for specific social media use.
So, yeah. THAT’S what I do these days.
I’m not sure Mum is going to be able to fit that ALL in the Christmas newsletter, but it should make a nice change from Melissa does something on the internet and seems happy. Which, let’s face it, is the truth of it. Haha. Mum nailed it again.
Do you work online? Is explaining what you do something that happens regularly? I know I need more of an elevator pitch to summarise all this goodness, but do you have one? Give it to me below!
Hi! I’m Melissa Walker Horn. Around here, they call me Suger. I’m the Chief Blogger and doer of all the things here at Suger Coat It. Blogging since 1901; I love a casual ootd, taking photos, and writing about things that irk or inspire me. I love wine and cheese, long days at the beach and spending time with my family. I make stuff for the internet over at Chalkboard Digital. You know, living the sweet life.
Why do you have to explain? That is my question. You are doing something legal and are able to pay your bills then you are good in my view.
Haha. No need to explain at all, I get that. This was just to outline what I’m doing and how for people who are interested. And it’s a running joke with my fam that Mum has never really got ALL the info.