This is an interview with Elna Cain from TwinsMommy.
Hey, Elna. Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do.
Hi! I’m Elna and I’m a mom to twin 6-year olds. I’m also a professional writer for brands and a blogger.
Over on Twins Mommy, I help mom bloggers gain income from their blog, as well as find time to blog while raising a kid!
How did freelance writing become your first side hustle (and is client work still part of your life)?
Freelance writing started out as a curiosity thing for me. When my twins were around 15 months old, I started trying to find ways to stay home with them and contribute to our finances.
My husband was the one who mentioned online work like being a virtual assistant or writer. After reading a ton of other mom blogs, I learned that freelance writing was something I’d like to try.
Read also: How Kayla Makes $10K/Month as a VA
When did you first start blogging and how did it go?
One thing I noticed from looking into other freelance writers was that they had a blog. So, with the help of my husband, I started a website for my freelance writing business and a blog.
My blog was just an experiment to practice writing and learn more about freelance writing. So, the blog posts were about freelance writing and my business.
Five years later, I’ve moved my blog to Elna Cain and now teach people to become successful freelance writers.
Do you think making money freelancing is easier than blogging, and why?
Yes, I do! I was able to get my first $400 from freelance blogging within the second month of starting. And soon after, my first $1k from freelance blogging.
When I started Twins Mommy I started affiliate marketing and it took me around 10 months to generate $200. But here’s the thing.
Affiliate marketing, in the long run, can generate more money. The next month, Twins Mommy was earning $2k from affiliate marketing.
So, I tell bloggers that if you need cash NOW, then offer a service like freelance writing. But if you have the time to cultivate a brand, then use other monetization strategies like affiliate marketing.
When did you start TwinsMommy and what topics do you cover on it?
I started Twins Mommy in 2017 and my vision for this blog was to help work at home moms.
So my topics, in the beginning, were mostly balancing working from home and raising twins.
But, it quickly pivoted because I really wanted to blog about how I was going to grow Twins Mommy and when I published that post, I generated the most comments, shares and started my email list!
How do you go about bringing traffic to a new blog?
Personally, the best way is to create valuable content and promote it on Pinterest.
If you create audience-driven blog posts that help people, then people will naturally read your posts and want to share it with their friends and followers.
Read also: How I Got 103,231 Page Views and Made $4,305 from My Blog Last Month
How do you use Pinterest?
Pinterest is a visual search engine. You can search for any topic and Pinterest will serve up the best pins that represent that topic.
Pinterest heavily uses keywords to figure out what your profile is about and what your pins are about. So, make sure to set those up when you’re setting up your profile.
Finally, a huge factor to getting traffic from Pinterest is giving Pinterest fresh pins as often as you can.
This means creating alternate pins for your blog post.
Read also: How I Increased My Pinterest Traffic by 778% in 2 Months
How important is updating old blog posts to your content strategy?
It is important, but I don’t set time every week to update old content. What you should do is update older posts that are popular on Pinterest, ranking in Google and that produce income for you.
Take a look and update information and images. But, if you learn of a change in a tool, then go ahead and update it as soon as you can. A course student emailed me and told me that LinkedIn doesn’t officially have the Pulse platform for writing articles.
Instead, you can write an article from your LinkedIn profile. I had to update my course lesson and all my blog posts that mention the Pulse and remove that term.
Finally, I would also update old blog posts that have the potential to rank. If you notice your blog post is on page 2 or 3, you can optimize it with more keywords to get it ranking on page one.
How do you decide what new topics to write about and do you optimize each article?
It’s a toss-up between finding targeted keywords and topics I want to write about.
I just did a keyword analysis and have about 7 new blog post ideas for one of my blogs.
But, that takes time to do. So, if I don’t have the time, I find ways to create valuable blog posts like using a roundup or repurposed content.
Do you remember how you earned your first $100 as a blogger?
My first $100 as a blogger was from affiliate marketing. I promoted my affiliate blog posts and generated my first $200 from those.
How much are you currently making from your blogs per month and in what ways?
I’m making a healthy income from my blogs and businesses. It has allowed both my husband and I to stay home with our twins!
What’s your favorite blog monetization method and why?
My favorite is ad revenue! I like starting new blogs, figuring out a blog plan and growing it!
Just recently I bought two blogs and am brimming with ideas to grow them!
My last blog I picked up was Imperfectly Perfect Mama and I was able to quickly grow that blog from 400 pageviews to 40k in one month.
When did you decide to create your first digital product and how did you promote it?
I created my first product – a course for writers – in 2015. The strategy I used to promote my new course was to create a webinar and guest post on popular sites.
From there, I also made graphics to promote my course in my blog posts.
What part of your income comes from selling online courses?
Around 50% of my income is from selling online courses and the rest is from affiliate and ads.
Most of my sales are cold generated, but I’m flipping that slowly with my email marketing funnels.
What makes you immediately get to work when you sit down to write?
Having a place to work helps. As soon as I sit at my office desk, I know I have to work! Sometimes listening to music gets me in the mood to write!
How do you manage your time between your 2 blogs, the twins and other tasks?
It’s a challenge! When my twins are at school, I can devote blocks of time for each of my blogs and client work.
But, during the summer when my twins are home, I can squeeze in an hour or two in the morning and when they go to sleep at night.
I also recently hired a VA so I’m unloading some tasks to her to free up time for me to working income producing projects.
How has your business model changed in the last year?
My business model hasn’t changed much since last year. I am still using niche blogs as my monetization strategy for Twins Mommy and I want to create another course for my freelance writing business.
What’s next for you and your blogs?
The biggest part is focusing on email marketing and potentially on Facebook ads and Promoted pins to grow my business! I’m looking forward to this new chapter in my business and can’t wait to help more people!