How Do Blogs Make Money: 6 Great Ways Bloggers Get Paid - should you blog in english

Wondering if you should blog in English or not? Below, you’ll find out why I decided to do it as a non-native English speaker, what the challenges are, how to overcome them, and how to make it work for any type of content. At the end of the page, you’ll also find the audio player so you can listen to the podcast episode.

Today’s topic is inspired by the fact that I was featured in a roundup post by one of the members of our community and membership for bloggers, Blogger Playground.

Her name is Sofia and she created this beautiful post on her website called Blogging in English for non-native English Speakers. She interviewed a few people on the topic and she asked us questions such as why we decided to blog in English when we first started, what the main benefits of that are, if non-native English speakers can actually make real money blogging, if our audience ever gave us any type of feedback about it, and just to share some tips, stories, struggles, notes of encouragement for anyone who is considering starting a blog in English as a second language.

Here’s the round-up post if you want to see my answers and also those of other bloggers. But I also decided to talk about it on the blog a bit because it’s such an important topic for so many of us and yet it’s not discussed enough online.

Why I Blog in English

Blogging itself is hard. Any online business model is. But when it’s not your first language, when you feel like an imposter 90% of the time, it becomes even harder.

I believe that’s one of the main reasons that many people who are not native English speakers don’t start a blog or why many others have so much doubt and fear before that and are not confident once they start their website. So let’s talk about that.

I’ve been blogging in English since 2013, so that’s 11 years now and I never ever had any doubt whether it should be this or my native language, which is Bulgarian, if you don’t know.

First let’s talk about why that is, why I blog in English.

First of all, I didn’t feel that connected to my country and its culture. I don’t say this in a bad way, it’s just my experience with it.

For as long as I can remember I was reading in English. It was mostly on personal development, which has always been my biggest passion. This is also the main topic I was covering on the blog when I started it. Now, it’s also business and a lot more, but that’s where it all began – with my love for personal growth.

I was reading those books only in English. I was watching everything in English. Not that much was happening online back then as it is now, but still I was consuming almost all of my content in English and that’s how I wanted things to be.

Eventually my brain started working this way and I began thinking in English. Especially when it comes to self-improvement, the topic I was writing about, all I knew was sort of in English. I only knew how to express myself on that topic in that language, so there was no doubt that this is the language I was going to write in online.

I also wanted to create a project of my own online and I didn’t even know it would become a business one day. Then it was just a hobby, it was just my desire to share my message with the world, to find like-minded people and just to have this creative outlet on the Internet.

It was also my version of creating my own world and separating myself from the environment I was in because I didn’t really like it.

What Blogging Made Possible for Me

So we can also say that my blog was my escape from the life that I had before which I didn’t like. Now my life is completely different. I live in another country, in the Netherlands, which is my favorite one.

I also create courses, I have the podcast, I have a lot going on online and I’m so happy about it. I have all the freedom and independence that was once only a dream in my mind.

I have to admit that it was all possible thanks to blogging. That was the business model that worked best for me and that’s why I teach it now, that’s why I’m so passionate about showing others how it can work for them.

But it started as a hobby. I didn’t get in it for the money, I didn’t know it could be profitable, I didn’t know how to monetize it.

I just wanted to write and I think that’s very important if you’re going to be writing online. Because, let’s face it, you might be doing it for the rest of your life.

So if you get bored of it, if you don’t have anything more to say at some point, people will feel it. You’ll probably stop growing your brand and it’s not going to feel that authentic.

So that’s why I blog in English, I couldn’t do it any other way. The benefits of this are many.

The Benefits of Blogging in English

So, why should you blog in English? For a start, it’s the most popular language in the world and it’s what allows you to reach the most people.

For me, it was even more important because I didn’t want anyone in my personal life to know about my blogging business back then. I’m a very private person but I’m also an introvert. I didn’t want them to get involved in what I was doing and I just wanted it to be my own thing, until at least it grows enough and I’m really confident about it.

Then I could share it with others. But also I didn’t care about their opinion, they weren’t my target audience, what I wrote wasn’t about them. It was about people who are into personal growth, who like and trust me, who don’t care about the fact that I’m not a native English speaker, who are just deeply passionate about the self-help industry and are looking for new sources of information and inspiration all the time.

They found me and they started telling me that I inspired them with my content, I motivate them to take action in their life and later in their business, and then the satisfaction from my work came.

That’s when my business started giving me back more than I could ever ask for.

You really have to love your craft, you have to love the topic, the niche you’ve chosen, the business model (blogging in this case), the type of content you create (which is written content). If one of these elements is not right and is not a good fit for you, you probably won’t make it. You’ll have to adjust something.

So if you are making the decision right now whether you should blog in English or in your native language, here’s how you can decide.

How to Know if Blogging in English is Right for You

Blogging in English is for you if you love languages, if you’re already reading a lot in English and just consuming almost all of your information online in English, and if you want to make your content available to anyone in the world.

The good thing about blogging is that you’re behind the scenes. You can prepare the content in advance and edit it and even after it’s published, you can always go back and update it, especially as your English improves.

The same goes for the emails you send to your audience and any other form of written content online.

We’re here to:

  • spread our message
  • teach people something we specialize in
  • cover a topic we deeply care about
  • write about the one or more subjects that we’re most passionate about and are constantly getting better at
  • create content that is transformational, educational and inspirational.

So a few grammar mistakes here and there because we blog in English but aren’t native speakers aren’t a big deal when looking at the grand scheme of things.

How to take action despite perfectionism

Perfectionism can definitely get in the way here, I know. I still struggle with this sometimes, I’m going to share some examples later in the episode, but I still show up because I care about the message.

This is the work I’m meant to be doing and it’s my duty to wake up every day and do it.

I just found a way that works best for me, to write that content, to post it on my platforms and to let people find it by optimizing it so it can rank in search engines.

If you obsess over a few grammar mistakes you’ll probably never publish anything. That’s very sad because there is so much you can contribute to the content that’s already available online. So many people can benefit from your exact teachings because you have a unique energy, you can infuse it into your content and that’s how you become a category of one in a very competitive industry.

For example, I love it when readers, listeners or students of my courses tell me that I do a few things very well. That’s taking complex topics and breaking them down into very simple step-by-step guides. Then, how much I care about them, how I respond to their requests immediately and create the content that they want and need.

Now this is especially true in the membership, in Blogger Playground. They’re giving me such an amazing feedback and I go above and beyond for them.

I immediately respond to their questions. I give them those big answers. And while we’re on the topic, let me just read what kind of feedback one of the members just left.

She said “Blogger Playground is fantastic. Lidiya is knowledgeable and always ready to help. The trainings and templates are top-notch and the community is approachable. I highly recommend it for anyone who wants close to one-on-one coaching for blogging success.”

blogger playground post image

Now I’m going put this as a testimonial on the enrollment page, of course, because it’s just so beautiful.

One way to overcome the language barrier

Think about it, it doesn’t matter whether English is my first language now or not. It’s about the value I provide, it’s about how I do it, how responsive I am, how much I care about the needs of the members in that community.

About how much I learn and do online and research and then I give it to them in the form of a post or quick video training or PDF file that they can use immediately, apply it to their business, save themselves some time and avoid some mistakes and just get to the result much quicker, which is to grow their traffic and income.

One way you can overcome the language barrier as you blog in English and stop caring about how good your level is, is to focus on something bigger than you. This is the impact you create online.

You do it for people, you don’t do it for yourself. It’s just something you have to do, you have to write that content, you have to cover that topic, you have to show up and you have to learn a bit about blogging to actually do it right.

When you have a deep why for doing what you do, when you focus on the bigger picture and how you help people, then you overcome your imposter syndrome, you overcome your perfectionism and you get to action.

Ultimately, our doubts and fears just prevent us from taking action or slow down our progress. What we want is that we take action today regardless of what our level of English is.

There are tools you can use to feel better about the content you create in English. The most popular one is probably Grammarly and it can correct the mistakes in the text and suggest better ways to express yourself in some sentences.

I guarantee you that you can still build a name for yourself in your industry even if your English isn’t perfect. Perfection is overrated in online business and I have the best example for that.

Perfection is overrated in online business.

Many, many, many years ago when I was still a nobody in the industry, I got published on Time Magazine, one of the biggest websites in the world to this day.

It happened by accident sort of but I was putting myself out there so I was increasing my chances of appearing on a bigger publication.

I was writing many guest posts for other personal development websites, then one of them got viral on social media. Someone from Time Magazine saw it and they contacted me. I literally couldn’t believe it when I got that email but, of course, I said yes.

They basically wanted to republish that same post – which is totally okay, it happens online – and they link back to the original one which was on another website where the guest post was. So that happened, that article is still there. I still get that big backlink from Time Magazine which is good for my website authority.

The funny thing is that there was a grammar error in the text. It was in the original guest post and then Time Magazine republished it with the mistake.

I think it was for the word assess and just one of the s’s was not there, which for a non-native English speaker is an easy mistake to make for that particular word. Then some people left comments about it and I’m not sure if the mistake was corrected after that. But my point here is that you don’t need to be perfect even to appear on the biggest publications online. One error in the text doesn’t change anything.

People can still take you seriously and you still build a name for yourself so anytime you have doubts please remember this example.

What about other types of content?

What if you don’t just want to blog in English, but also create other types of content in that language? Let’s talk about that.

Podcasting is a good example because the accent plays a big role. I can’t ignore it, I can’t change it. It’s going take me a lot of effort if I start working on changing my accent so it can sound more American, but it’s just not something I need. We’re not doing this too professionally and that’s what I love about online business.

You just have to get your message out there in any way that works for you and that is possible for you. I do my best, I do what I can and I’m happy with the result. It’s definitely not perfect but also the quality of the audio is not perfect.

A million other things are not perfect in my business but they still help people. I still get approached by bigger brands and for collaborations by others, I still interview some of the top bloggers in the world on my site and just the rest doesn’t matter that much.

The same goes for courses and any video trainings I create. They’re not live trainings because I don’t want that.

Let’s say it like this, writing is my thing. Podcasting is hard and creating videos is even harder.

I prefer to write not to talk, but I’ve decided that I want to serve a big audience, I want to give something to listeners and to those who prefer courses.

Because, for example, now through audio, you can connect with me better. You can get a feeling of who I am, you can tune into my energy through my voice because the voice can be a very powerful tool to form relationships.

As for courses, well, they’re the best way to actually work with me on a deeper level, to really apply all the strategies that I teach. It’s just not the same if I was doing it just with text.

But don’t worry, if you aren’t ready to dive into producing other types of content, then you can just stick to blogging.

Okay, I was talking about tools you can use to improve your content. When we’re talking about audio content, you can hear the words you have doubts about and only record your podcast episode or video after that.

I’ve done this many times and there are still situations in which I’m not sure how the word is pronounced because I’ve only seen it written. Not to mention that I’m in Europe and some things I know only in American but some words are more popular here in British English so I use that.

It can turn into this mix of both together with my Eastern European accent, and listeners from the US can be annoyed by that or confused. It can also ruin the experience on the show and they might prefer to skip the episode and never engage with my content again. But that’s totally fine.

I do transcribe my episodes so the text version of each can always be found on my blog. I try to give people different ways to consume my content depending on what works best for them. But in general, as a content creator, you have to be okay with rejection. It will happen.

Even if 90% of the people who land on your site don’t stick around, which is highly likely actually, you’re there for the other 10%. The ones who are ready to do the work, who like you and trust you, and who want to learn from you.

Why I stay away from live trainings and reject podcasts or video interviews

I literally said yes to one podcast interview years ago because it was with a person I really respect and feel comfortable with. I also did one video for YouTube with the CEO of the hosting company I’m using, again, because I really respect the work they do and their mission.

But in both cases, I didn’t enjoy the process. I didn’t feel good in front of the camera, I’m an introvert and I want to show up when I feel excited and have the energy for it. That’s when my best content comes out so I only do written interviews now.

The language barrier plays a role in that too and so does my perfectionism, but it’s also the fact that I haven’t gotten to the point where I want to drastically change this and start appearing on podcasts and videos and participate in workshops.

Years ago, I also did a live training for a workshop hosted for women in business who seek freedom, or something like that, and it took all of my energy.

I don’t recommend you approach this the way I do, though.

Any future opportunity that comes your way is a great gift and you can use it, but it’s also not a must. We’re in business to do things in a way that works well for us and we need our freedom.

In this case, we’re talking about creative freedom.

That’s the ability to work on what we want, when we want and create the content in the format we want. So that’s what I’m doing.

A word about imposter syndrome

Back to the topic of blogging in English as a non-native English speaker. It’s absolutely possible, you can also make as much money as you want, there is no limit to that. And the more you blog, the more your English will improve.

You can then go back to old posts and update them if you feel like or just always check your text with Grammarly before posting anything.

Also a word about imposter syndrome, because you’re probably going to experience that in a more intense way than native English bloggers.

The official definition of imposter syndrome is the combination of those feelings of inadequacy that we have and which can continue even if there is enough proof that we’re successful. It makes you feel like a fraud, you fear others can find out at any moment and you have a hard time accepting any of your accomplishments.

In its simplest form, imposter syndrome is the fear of not being good enough which means it’s a form of self-doubt. If you let it guide you, you can end up in dark places such as with the constant desire to prove your expertise, to learn more, do more, publish more, create better products every time, seek approval from others, etc.

But all these, when done for the wrong reasons, aren’t helping you build your dream business.

If you blog in English, others will too.

I was also thinking the other day that blogging in English, when it’s not your native language, also inspires others in the industry. I teach the blogging business model so that’s even more important for me.

It happened naturally, of course, but now that I think of it many of the members in Blogger Playground are actually non-native English speakers. Their level of English is great, of course, but still we face the same challenges.

And many people who contacted me over the years, readers of Let’s Reach Success, have just thanked me for everything, said that my story inspired them, how I come from another country, how English was not my first language and how I still made it happen online.

So the moment you do something like that you also become a role model for others and you sort of give them the permission to do the same.

Final words

So let me know if you blog in English but it’s not your native language or if you’re thinking about it. You can always email me and we can just chat about it.

I do recommend it. I recommend blogging in English if you feel comfortable enough with the language. If your level is really, really bad, then probably it wouldn’t feel good and maybe you wouldn’t stick to it. Maybe your message can’t really be understood if people start reading it so you can wait a bit.

But if you feel comfortable enough with your level of English, just go ahead. Just start that website and figure it out as you go.

And if you want support on your blogging journey, you’re always welcome to join us inside Blogger Playground.

There is a lot happening inside. We have so many sections and now I’m adding new things

For example, I’m going to be inviting guest experts. The first one is coming in April.

I’m also starting to cover news from the industry, trends and just what is going on that really concerns you as a blogger. An example is a post that is coming in the membership these days which is all about the Google Core update from this month, which literally changed the game online and the way Google is ranking websites.

So I did my research. I wanted to tell members all about it and it’s happening now that the update is almost completed because these usually take a few weeks. Algorithm updates happen often so bloggers should stay up to date with this.

I also just shared a new way they can monetize their blogs if they don’t have many page views. I can’t wait to see if someone actually does that and they earn their first money thanks to this announcement I made. So even one post in the membership can change the game for you.

There’s a lot more happening in there, of course. People asking questions, I’m creating video trainings, weekly posts on content creation, we cover email marketing for bloggers, we cover blog traffic, SEO, monetization, all the big things. So if you’re interested, you can just join for a month.

There is nothing to lose but everything to gain. The price is very low. I believe this is the most affordable membership for bloggers, at least right now and at least from what I know. So the price shouldn’t be a problem.

Here’s the page with all the details and let me know if you have any questions.

Prefer to listen to this article instead? Tune into the episode below.

Wondering if you should blog in English? Here's why I decided to do it as a non-native English speaker, and how to overcome the challenges: