This is an Off-topic post. Way off topic in fact. It’s also one that’s a little difficult to write. Like most people, I don’t much enjoy asking for help – but in this case I feel it’s worth at least putting a question out there.
For the last several years I’ve been lucky enough to work full time running web sites covering subjects I’m passionate about. iPad Insight, iSource (which was originally called Just Another iPhone Blog), and others.
I had been writing about mobile technology and running a mobile focused site as a hobby for a while when my life circumstances changed dramatically back at the beginning of 2007. I was diagnosed with a serious illness at that point. I lost my day job on the day I was diagnosed. I worked for a very small firm and they couldn’t afford to have any dead weight on board. As I recovered from my illness and became stronger I got back into writing and running sites. Again I was incredibly fortunate to be able to do that, because I needed to be able to work from home for health reasons.
I love my work. I’ve had to work hard to make a living at it these last few years. I work at least half of the day 7 days a week. I’ve taken 2 days completely off during 2012 and 2013 – for vacation, sickness or any other reason. I often work late into the evening. I often joke with friends who ask whether I actually make a living doing ‘that blogging thing’. I say it’s maybe more like ‘scrape’ a living than make a living – but again I have the huge benefit of being able to work from home, look after my health, and work at something that I genuinely love.
That’s a little background, or maybe too much background.
Now I’ve reached a point where ad revenues for this site have fallen and it’s looking like it’s no longer possible to do this as my ‘day job’ the way I run things now.
I could bring in more ad revenue by running different sorts of ads on the site. Those double-underline text link ads, popover ads, ads within posts, video ads, and so on. But I don’t want to do that, I never have – and I won’t do that. My goal for a long time now has been to continually look for ways to reduce and minimize the number of ads on the site – while still being able to buy my huge dog food.
Now I will look at a few possibilities. I may look for another writing gig to supplement this site’s earnings. I may just look to get another tech job – I worked for 15+ years in support, network management, and IT consulting. And iPad Insight may become more of a hobby site.
So, I’ve got a question for all of you, a bit of a request for help even. If I were to create a membership offering for the site, would you be interested in paying to be a member?
I haven’t worked out any details on that, but my initial thinking is that membership might cost around $2 per month, and that benefits of membership would be the warm, fuzzy feeling of supporting this site, a weekly email newsletter, and possibly a private bi-weekly Google+ hangout.
I hope some of you will take a minute and let me know your thoughts on this in the comments. I’ve also added a Paypal donate button at the bottom of the right sidebar – in case any of you would like to make a small donation to help support the site.
If I see there’s a strong level of interest in membership, then I’ll look at getting that setup and seeing whether it’s enough to keep going full time with iPad Insight. If there’s not, I’ll still keep this site going – but it will become more of a hobby site. I’ll still love running the site, I just won’t be able to devote myself full time to it.
Apologies for the way off topic post. Thanks for reading.