In today’s interview we are going to be talking with my mentor and my dream coach Timo Kiander from Productive Superdad.
Timo’s blog is all about productivity and time management related tips and the tools for career and business minded folks.
Since starting the blog 4 years ago, it’s been a great benefit to Timo in both revenue and through building personal relationships and contact online.
I hope you enjoy this excellent interview with Timo Kiander, as I know I did.
1.) Please tell us about yourself and how you got into blogging?
My name is Timo Kiander and I run a blog called Productive Superdad. I started this blog in 2010.
In addition, I have just started a Finnish time management blog called AjanhallintaVelho (which is Finnish for ‘Time Management Wizard’).
Not only am I into blogging, but I’m also into sports (marathons/triathlons), and spending time with my family (a wife and a son).
I live in Finland and I’m 42 years old.
I have been blogging on and off since the year 2000, but my English blog (Productive Superdad) is a serious attempt to turn blogging into a real business. Later on, I’m following this same plan with AjanhallintaVelho.
My topic of focus is productivity, which is what I write about in both of my blogs.
Well, I’m passionate about productivity, so choosing it as my writing topic was easy.
I wrote a book about online business productivity last year and that’s when I decided to start writing solely for this audience (i.e. people who are building their businesses, either part-time or full-time, but who want to do it productively and efficiently).
3.) How are you currently monetizing your blog traffic?
I recommend products every once in a while, and some of the money comes from book sales. But in general, this is only pocket money and not serious income for me.
I’m planning to write more books for Kindle starting this summer, so I’ll see how things turn out. Also, I’m about to start business coaching and speaking on a larger scale later this year.
So far, my main goal has been building an e-mail list, so that creating my own products and services would become much more justified later on.
4.) What do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started blogging?
Towards the beginning, I took a lot of training on what specifically distracted me from taking action.
It took me two years to hire a coach, but eventually when I did, I obtained the necessary focus that I needed. Finding a coach from the get-go instead of buying a lot of training products would have been the smartest move for me.
5.) What are three blogs that you visit almost daily?
There days when I don’t have time to read or visit any blogs at all. However, the ones I regularly visit are:
- Boost Blog Traffic
- Blogging Wizard
- Buffer Blog
6.) Would you say you are a successful blogger?
Yes, I do consider myself a successful blogger.
I have written over 100 guest posts, I have written a book, and I have been able to work with some of the big names of the industry. So yes, I would consider myself successful.
7.) How many bloggers have you successfully helped till date? Are they near success at all?
Anyone who reads my blog and receives help on their time management problems is someone who I have helped. Obviously, not all of them contact me and say that I have helped them somehow.
Of course, I hope that I have helped many people
8.) What are your major challenges online? And how have you been able to get past them?
The biggest challenge is definitely the information overload, primarily in the form of information products and having lots of potential great blog content to explore.
I think that the biggest help has definitely been hiring my own coach. He has helped me to focus on the important things, so I was able to eliminate a lot of irrelevant information.
9.) Can you give us three recommended tools/services that you use with your blogging?
This is actually a list of four different services because I believe that they all make a big difference to my blogging:
- Buzz Sumo
- Google Drive
The first one helps me to conduct research and figure out the topics I should focus on.
The second one is not directly related to blogging, but it’s a way to keep my work organized, by having a task list.
The third one helps me to keep all of my documents organized. I write and store all my documents in Google Drive.
The last one is Fiverr, where I try to micro-outsource as much tasks as possible for someone else to handle. This allows me to free up my time and to focus on the important aspects on my blog.
10.) What advice would you have for someone who is just starting with their first blog?
Keep a tight focus on what you are doing by:
a) Hiring a coach if possible
b) Picking a traffic source that brings you the biggest results (for instance, guest posting)
c) Connecting with influencers by interviewing them
d) Start building your e-mail list on Day 1
e) Take action every day – the more instant the action, the better
I think that with those four steps, you will be ahead of the game and will be able to take bigger steps forward instead of trying to be everywhere and do everything at once.
11.) What’s the best advice or tip you’ve discovered about blogging since getting started?
Write more on other blogs rather than on your own blog – especially when starting out.
When you’re first starting, no one is reading your blog anyways, so you have to take your writing elsewhere in the form of guest posting. That’s how you can get readers to subscribe to your blog.
Apply the 80/20 rule: Focus 80% of the time on other blogs and write content 20% of the time on your own blog.
12.) If you only had $100 to start a new blog, how would you use it?
Buy a domain name, buy decent web host, subscribe to a decent auto-responder service, and buy a premium WordPress theme.
I would spend the rest of the money on running expenses (for instance, if it would be writing a lead magnet for my list, the expense would go towards getting it a nice cover on Fiverr…).
13.) What sets you apart from other bloggers?
I’m focusing exclusively on online business productivity, and I haven’t met too many bloggers who are doing just that.
Also, I’m not that much into social media or SEO stuff. I’m focusing solely on guest posting as my promotional technique.
In addition, I don’t really care how many visits my blog receives daily. Rather, what matters the most is how many subscribers my e-mail list has and that my e-mail list is responsive.
14.) How can readers of the blog get in touch with you?
By sending me an e-mail. I don’t spend that much time on social media, so getting in touch through e-mail is the best way to contact me.
You can also set up a Skype call with me if you are interested, but e-mail me first so we can discuss the details.
Of course, anyone who is not familiar with my work, I encourage you to download my free book as well.