Building Passive Income In The UK:
An Interview with Emma Drew
Welcome to this interview series focusing on UK-based passive income builders. We are now on the eighth interview of the series. I have seen commonalities between all the interviewees so far. The strive to have multiple income streams and a long term outlook.
Some ventures, naturally, have been more successful than others. And passive income, I think, is often misrepresented. It is not income that requires no work. Instead, it is simply income from work you have done in the past.
I hope you find this series enlightening and encouraging, opening your eyes to the multitude of ways you can reach your financial goals. Talking to passive income entrepreneurs has definitely inspired me.
Today, we’re talking to Emma Drew.
Please introduce yourself
I'm Emma Drew, and 3 years ago I left my full time job because I was earning more money from my blog than my full time job. I now employ my husband and we spend our time helping people to make money, save money and live the life they want.
What Does Passive Income Mean To You?
Passive income is income from work I have done just once - perhaps from writing a blog post once, or purchasing property once. It is money I can make in my sleep, at the cinema or whilst on holiday.
What passive income sources do you have?
I was fortunate enough to purchase a house at university, which is my first bit of passive income from the monthly rent. Apart from that and investments I get the majority of my passive income from my blog. I get advertising revenue every time someone lands on my blog, as well as having products such as courses and printables for people to purchase.
I make the majority of my income from affiliate marketing, where a company will pay me for every sale or sign up of their product or service that I get for them. All of these passive income streams more than cover our monthly outgoings.
How does your passive income compare to your active income and your expenses?
Running my blog is my job now, and my income can differ every month. On average I would say that 70% of our overall income is passive, with the extra 30% coming from sponsorships and running our eBay store.
What is your favourite passive income source and why?
Affiliate marketing is my favourite passive income source for a number of reasons. I love getting paid for content I wrote years and years ago, but also learning clever ways to introduce new affiliates to my audience. I only affiliate with companies that I use and trust myself, which helps me to stay genuine to my readers.
Earning from affiliate marketing is limitless, and I don't have to rely on selling my own products. I can find products and services that fit in well with my niche and will also help my audience.
Which passive income source has been the most challenging to build? And did you expect this when you started building it?
Although I love it, affiliate marketing has been the hardest to grow. I thought that I could just stick affiliate links into my content and see my passive income grow, but it has taken a lot of work. I have had to build up a loyal audience and find ways to introduce affiliates to them that aren't too salesy and actually provide them with value.
I invested a lot of time and money into courses to learn more about affiliate marketing best practices, and then adopted them for the UK - because we just aren't as far ahead as our friends in America. Finding the right balance and the right affiliates to work with has been hard, but I'm now earning a consistent amount of money from affiliates every month.
Do you think your passive income sources will provide consistent income over the long term?
I don't think that my property income will grow, because property investment isn't something I am looking to get into. I definitely want to grow my blogging income, both on my main blog, but also by starting up blogs purely for passive income.
Has passive income-building changed how you save, spend and invest? If so, how?
The passive income I receive has really changed my life. One of my biggest daily challenges is my mental health, and knowing that if I have a bad day, week or even a month, everything is still paid without dipping into savings is a great feeling!
I have allowed myself a few more luxuries now that our income surpasses what both my husband and I earned working full time - we drive a new BMW, we've moved into a bigger house and sometimes the occasional Ocado shop slips in.
Apart from those areas, not much in our spending habits have changed. We can now afford to invest more money which we find really exciting, and we also try to invest any left over money every month on top of our regular contributions.
What are the main advantages and disadvantages to being UK-based when building passive income?
Earning a significant amount of passive income from a blog in the UK is hard, and not many people have achieved it. Bloggers in America seem to be able to have it nailed by their third month of blogging, whereas it takes UK bloggers a lot longer to get there.
I think this is down to blog traffic - we simply don't have the population that there is in America. I also think property prices are so high that the average person struggles to get on the property ladder, never mind affording a rental property.
What advice would you give to someone looking to build passive income in the UK?
If you are looking for a passive income stream that doesn't have high overheads like property and doesn't tie up your money like investments then seriously consider blogging and the passive income streams you can get from blogging.
You can start your professional blog for around £50 per year and then the only other costs to start are your time. It isn't an easy journey, but once you crack it then the possibilities are endless.
And finally, where can people find you?
My Blog: www.emmadrew.info
YouTube: Emma Drew
Emma provides a fine example of blogging success. But she is right, blogging in the UK is hard. Don’t expect results as soon as you start. UK-based bloggers, wanting to turn it into a full time income stream, have a challenging road ahead. But the key is, once you start, don’t stop because you aren’t getting results quickly. Consistency and honesty are key to building a loyal audience.
What do you think of Emma’s passive income? Remember to hit that like button and leave your comments down below.