Book review: Problogger – Secrets for Blogging your way to a Six-figure Income

four stars

I remember being intrigued when I first heard Darren Rowse was planning on releasing a book, not because he was releasing a book, but because of the way he was releasing it. So many other bloggers / internet marketers would have slapped together an ebook, instructional dvd or subscription course, and in the process probably charged a heck of a lot more than the $20-odd this book goes for. To me, the fact that Darren chose traditional book format spells one thing: c-r-e-d-i-b-i-l-i-t-y.

OK, so the sub-title – Secrets for Blogging your way to a Six-figure Income – is a little cheesy, but I guess it’s perfectly in keeping with writing a “good” title for a blog post, so I’ll be generous and say it fits the style.

The authors

Yes, authors – although the branding is all ProBlogger, the book is actually a collaboration between Darren and Chris Garrett. Although I’ve been reading ProBlogger for a couple of years, I must confess I’d never heard of Chris before this book. Anyhow, here’s the author blurb on the two of them:

Darren RowseDarren Rowse is the guy behind, which has become one of the leading places on the Web for information about making money from blogs. He is a full-time blogger himself, making a six-figure income from blogging since 2005. In addition to his blogging at ProBlogger, Darren also edits the popular Digital Photography School as well as numerous other blogs.

Chris GarrettChris Garrett is a writer, Internet Marketing Consultant, and of course, professional blogger. As well as his own blog,, he writes for many sites including the Blog Herald, FreelanceSwitch, CopyBlogger, and even occasionally ProBlogger.


If you’ve ever read any of Darren’s content on ProBlogger, then you’ll know what to expect. The book’s content is in a similar vein, in fact it’s clear that a lot of the book is a re-packaging of posts that have appeared on ProBlogger in the past. You could see that as a negative, but in fact I see it as a very good thing. How many other authors have been in the position of having their work extensively proof-read and tested by their market before publication, resulting in increased relevance for the reader? Not many, I think.

In my opinion the heart of the book is three chapters:

  • Chapter 4 – Blog writing which talks about the nuts and bolts of writing compelling content.
  • Chapter 5 – Blog income and earning strategies which provides an overview of the various direct and indirect ways of making money by blogging.
  • Chapter 8 – Blog promotion and marketing which outlines ways to grow your readership.

There are also helpful chapters on choosing a topic, setting up your blog (the nitty gritty of domain registration, hosting, which platform to use, etc), buying and selling blogs, and the pros and cons of joining a blog network.


One minor gripe I had when reading through the book the first time is that both authors write in the first person (I, me, mine), but it’s not always clear which author has written a particular section. Perhaps it shouldn’t matter, but it bugged me because the information has much more meaning when read in a particular context. However, each chapter seems to have one main author, so it’s OK once you figure out who’s talking.

The authors talk about writing scannable content on your blog, and have largely heeded their own advice in the book: there are lots of lists, sub-headings, images and asides to break up the text and make it easier to absorb.

Will it make you rich?

Both authors are at pains at various points in the book to point out that blogging is not a way to get rich quickly (or even at all, for many):

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Having said that, there are increasing numbers of people making money blogging as their primary income source, and even more earning a supplementary income. It certainly can be done, and reading this book will give you a very good idea of what’s involved to make it happen. In one sense, it’s very easy: just follow in the footsteps of the pioneers. Of course things are never that easy in practice – it takes perseverance, a lot of hard work, and perhaps a little luck to become successful.


This is a good book, both for beginner and established bloggers. It could perhaps have done with a little more editing – there are a few awkward turns of phrase here and there. But this doesn’t detract from the content, which is dense and authoritative. Since I read it the first time, I’ve found myself coming back to refer to different sections again; the book can be read cover to cover, or just dip in and out of the chapters that interest you. Either way, you will be a better blogger if you put the advice into action.

I give Problogger: Secrets for Blogging your way to a Six-figure Income 4 stars.

Related posts:

  1. 5 Reasons for Blogging
  2. What’s your blogging exit strategy?
  3. Blogging course – Newcastle upon Tyne

8 Responses to “Book review: Problogger – Secrets for Blogging your way to a Six-figure Income”

  1. Gravatar of kahthan 1 kahthan


    Nice review,

    i do agree that this being a print edition does give it some credibility, however i do not think that it was done with intention. while most pro bloggers have dominated the online ebook/course market, the printed book is still an untapped market for them and this was the reason i think they went with the book edition.

  2. Gravatar of Rodney Smith 2 Rodney Smith

    kahthan: thanks for the perspective. One thing I didn’t mention in the review is that the authors’ high profile status might just have had something to do with the publisher’s decision to print the book – the marketing would almost take care of itself. I somehow doubt they’d be quite so receptive if I approached them with a similar concept – at least not yet anyway :-)

  3. Gravatar of Armen Shirvanian 3 Armen Shirvanian

    Releasing content through an actual book has a more positive results because books are associated with all the wonderful knowledge that has come from publish-worthy material of the past. The difference between a book and a PDF file might be larger than one would estimate.

  4. Gravatar of Rodney Smith 4 Rodney Smith

    Armen: I agree. One of the downsides of the ease of producing ebooks is that good content can be crowded out by a lot of low-quality stuff. Something that’s gone through the traditional print process has at least been thoroughly reviewed for quality. I’m sure this particular book would have been successful in either case though.

  5. Gravatar of Air Jordans 5 Air Jordans

    That is true. Printed books are relatively more credible than an ebook considering that printed books go through a long process of review for quality.

  6. Gravatar of Phil Taylor 6 Phil Taylor

    Nice review Rod but I thumbed thru the previews on Amazon and didn’t see anything that couldn’t be gleaned during a few days of diligent reading on DigitalPoint or various other webmaster forums. Perhaps there is more “meat” inside but I for one wouldn’t pay to read it all. Never heard of Wiley publishing either … apparently it is doing well in sales as it is currently #5 on Amazon’s computer/web niche sales list.

  7. Gravatar of Rodney Smith 7 Rodney Smith

    Phil: you’re right – you could read most of this online – in fact a lot of the content is repackaged Problogger stuff. But I like having it all together in one spot – depends how you like to consume your information, I guess.

    I don’t know a lot about publishers, but Wiley has been around for years – ever heard of the “xyz for dummies” books?

  8. Gravatar of Vinterdekk 8 Vinterdekk

    I bought the book.. just because it was nice to have a real print book. There wasn’t much new in it for me though.

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