Moving On

Moving On

So…  If you haven’t already noticed, it’s been a long time since I’ve written anything here.  And although I promised I’d be starting out 2012 with tons of great content and new posts here on Common Sense Marketing, things have taken quite a few different turns for me since then.

As most of you know, I left my full-time job back in February 2012 to work on my own as a writer, internet marketer and web designer (basically, whatever people would pay me to do!).  It was a risky decision – especially considering that my husband quit his job the same weekend – but the success I experienced initially was beyond worth it.

Within a few months, I had picked up enough regular writing clients that I was earning twice what I was making at my former day job.  As a result, I had the opportunity to work on some fascinating projects with some unexpectedly high profile clients, which allowed me to broaden my knowledge in the business field and improve my writing significantly.

The transition to self-employment was a bit rockier – as I always expected it would be.  I was proactive about joining two co-working offices in my community, and I put a lot of effort into building deeper relationships with the friends who could help minimize the loss of office gossip in my life.  Adjusting to inconsistent paychecks and the stress associated with balancing multiple clients was a bit more of a challenge, but again, they were struggles that I met head-on by actively seeking to resolve the things that were bothering me.

The one thing that truly suffered from my transition to full-time writing was my affiliate websites.  Unfortunately, the demands of growing one business led to sacrifices on other ends – meaning that I no longer had the time or energy to put any effort into growing these properties.

As a result, I had several sites dinged by the Penguin algorithm update, as well as later refreshes of Google’s Panda update.  Even the sites that weren’t hit lost rank, simply because I no longer had the time to promote them in the way they deserved (and the way that’s necessary in this changing digital environment).

On June 1st, 2012, I made the decision to stop investing at all in my current crop of affiliate websites.  Although I still have a few ongoing web projects that I’m actively working on with partners, I’m planning to let my current sites expire when their domain registrations come up.  It was a hard decision, as I put a lot of work into those sites, but in the end, I was throwing good money after bad – buying articles and promotions to make up for the fact that I wasn’t personally investing in my websites.

At first, it felt strange to log on to my computer in the morning and *not* check my site’s SERPs rankings.  However, the time that this gives me to pursue other projects (and the fact that I’m not opening up credit card statements to find hundreds of dollars in last minute charges that haven’t been matched by an increase in on-site sales) more than makes up for the sadness of moving on from a project I’ve invested years of my life into.

Incidentally, this decision to commit fully to writing paved the way for yet another “out of left field” opportunity that I didn’t see coming.  Recently, one of my long time clients offered me a full-time position that I’ve accepted, so for the last few months, I’ve been working as the Content Manager for a digital marketing agency based in San Francisco.

Truly, the last thing on my mind was the idea of taking on another full-time job, but when your very favorite client comes to you with a great offer; it’s pretty hard to say no.  Although I’m surprised that my freelance career ended this way, I’m really looking forward to some of the new opportunities that this move presents for my development as a writer.

So, what does all of this mean for the Common Sense Marketing website?

Well, as you’ve probably already figured out, I’m not updating the site any more – and that’s going to continue.  There won’t be any new posts and I won’t be supporting either my email training course or the Community Marketing Challenge training course any longer.  I may occasionally respond to comments on the site, but expect both their approval and any responses I give to be few and far between as I concentrate on other projects.

That said, I’m committed to leaving this site active for the foreseeable future, as I feel that there’s still plenty of great content that current and future readers can benefit from – even if I’m not actively updating the site.  And hell, after all the effort I put into building up the content on this site, I’m sure as shit not going to let it expire like my other domains!

I will, however, be moving my active blogging over to a new website – Write Your Revolution, which will officially launch on January 1st, 2013.

I’m incredibly excited about this project and I hope you’ll join me there on opening day.  Instead of digital marketing strategies, the site will focus on my experiences making a living as a well-paid web content writer.  It’s my hope that the advice I can provide after five years and 2+ million published words in the field will help other struggling writers to both earn more money for their content and find more personal freedom within their lives.

Any questions?  As always, feel free to shoot me an email or use the “Contact” form here.  While I’m sad to be closing the door on this chapter of my online career, I look forward to seeing all of you all over on my new website starting in January!

Take care,

Sarah Russell

Image: katerha

2 Responses to Moving On

  1. Chas says:

    You know I’ve been a fan of CSM, but, I know things change. I look forward to visiting you on your new site, Write Your Revolution. I have been asked to write my first guest post on another site, and it has come about merely because of my active participation on other forums, as I don’t have my own blog as of yet, although I am working on something.
    “Nothing that is can pause or stay;
    The moon will wax, the moon will wane,
    The mist and cloud will turn to rain,
    The rain to mist and cloud again,
    Tomorrow be today.”
    ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

  2. Kalen says:

    I wish you the best Sarah. You are a committed writer and an expert in your field. I remember meeting you when working with a mutual client in 2011 and was always impressed with your work. I remember hiring you to write content for one of my sites and was very impressed with it there as well. As both a colleague and someone who has hired you as a writer I can say that any employer is lucky to have you on their team. Best of luck in all future endeavors and hope to keep in touch!

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