Want to learn how to be an anonymous blogger?
You’ve come to the right place.
In this post, we’ll answer crucial questions about blogging anonymously – what is it, why bother, and how to do it.
Before any of that, let’s look into whether or not it’s possible in the first place.
Can You Blog Anonymously?
You can create, promote, and monetize a blog even if you do so anonymously. There is no rule that forces bloggers to make their personal information public – not even their real names.
In fact, anonymous blogs are more common than you think.
Whenever you come across a blog without a person’s name on its “About” page, that’s probably an anonymous blog.
More often than not, an anonymous blogger uses a pseudonym to protect their real identity.
What is a pseudonym?
A pseudonym is basically a fancy word for “fake name,” which everyone uses nowadays. It is traditionally used to describe fictitious names used by authors and journalists.
In the online world, people often use pseudonyms if they know they can get negative reactions from their opinions.
In the blogosphere, however, a blogger’s name is tied to authority.
If your blog has a huge readership, your audience may want to get to know the person behind the curtain. And if you’re like most bloggers, you’d want the blog’s success to be credited under your real name.
This begs the question:
Should I use my real name on my blog?
Under normal circumstances, then yes – you should put your real name on your blog. It will give you a humanized brand that people will find relatable, approachable, and trustworthy.
Truth be told, I believe that creating a digital extension of your identity through blogging gives you the “full experience.”
- Build valuable connections with important people
- Establish yourself as an authority in your niche
- Use your blog to boost your employability to big-name companies
- Physically represent your blog at seminars and other events
- Leave a legacy under your name
With all that being said, you know I publicized my name on my blog since day one.
However, that doesn’t mean that anonymous blogging is utterly pointless.
Benefits of Blogging Anonymously
There are actually a few surprising yet valid reasons to blog anonymously:
1. Freely express your opinions
With an anonymous blog, you’re free to say whatever you want.
You have the power to talk about any of your beliefs – be it political, religious, or just personal. And with a blogging pseudonym, you’re never in danger of being targeted by an online witch hunt.
Whatever your opinion is, no one will hold it against you.
2. Protect other people’s identities
If you want to blog about real stories, staying anonymous will protect the identities of the people in them.
Let’s say you want to blog about the things you hate about your boss.
Even if you hide their name, readers will still be able to know who it is if you’re not anonymous. They can piece together facts like where you live, your job, and where you work.
Before you know it, your boss is already being publicly shamed and threatened by an online mob.
Such things can be avoided simply by removing your real name from your blog.
3. Keep your blogging and personal life separate
As a full-time blogger, it’s sometimes hard to maintain a boundary between your career and personal life.
The people you know in person may have issues with your blog content. At the same time, readers who disagree with you may use your real-world information to discredit or question your insights.
Imagine working as a social media manager while blogging about the dangers of social media.
People from your professional life, like employers, clients, and colleagues, will surely have some doubts about working with you.
4. You enjoy writing privately
Sometimes, you just do something without a compelling reason that other people will understand.
In the case of anonymous blogging, you may do it simply because you enjoy having a pen name.
Believe it or not, there are people who are uncomfortable with the idea of sharing their personal information online. Those people tend to use a pseudonym for stuff like leaving Facebook comments, opening up about personal problems, or blogging.
5. It’s in your contract
If you have a non-compete agreement, your employer may prohibit you from creating a website that advertises to competitors.
This is true even if you’re not directly promoting your services.
After all, showcasing your expertise on your blog can lead to queries from prospects who need your skills.
Keeping your blog secret will definitely help you avoid these conflicts.
6. You’re just testing the waters
What if you want to start a blog in a new niche?
You wouldn’t want your new website’s performance to affect your personal brand, right?
A pseudonym will keep your personal brand intact even if your new website fails.
This is common in the online marketing industry where entrepreneurs invest in several “money” websites in different niches.
7. Your real name isn’t brandable
In some cases, blogging anonymously is a marketing move.
To make your blog memorable and recognizable, you need a name that “clicks.”
Some people are blessed with marketable names like “Neil Patel,” “Brian Dean,” and “Rand Fishkin.” But if your name is hard to pronounce or remember, using a pseudonym can be a rewarding decision.
8. You’re trying to expose something
Lastly, online privacy can be a matter of personal safety.
There are people out there who want to leverage as a platform to expose something controversial. I’m talking about corporate espionages, political scandals, and unethical business practices exposés.
Let’s face it, you’re probably not into these things. But if you are, then hiding your real identity is a must.
Disadvantages of Blogging Anonymously
As you can see, anonymous blogging can still be a lucrative endeavor.
But by concealing your identity, you subject yourself to the following disadvantages:
1. You can’t rely on your own social media reach
Being an anonymous blogger means you can’t use your own social media presence for content promotions. You’ll have to start from scratch by creating an official page for your anonymous blog.
2. You miss out on being seen as an authority
Whether you like it or not, you can’t take credit for the work you’ve put into your anonymous blog. Otherwise, it shouldn’t be called an anonymous blog.
3. Engagement will be lower at first
Anonymous blogs can initially struggle with generating reader engagement due to a number of factors. For one, the online population would rather interact with real people than nameless websites with zero social media presence.
4. Password management becomes a hassle
It’s common for anonymous bloggers to have multiple emails and user accounts for online platforms. Without a proper password manager, it will be tough to manage your list of login credentials.
5. It’s hard to be truly “anonymous”
If you’re planning to monetize an anonymous blog, you may have to link your own bank account to payment channels. Your information will still be hidden from the public, but be careful if you want to blog about serious topics.
How to Run a Blog Anonymously and Still Make Money?
The good news is, anonymous blogs can still be monetized like any other regular blog.
Just remember that the early decisions you make will affect your future income.
Let’s start with the blogging platforms you can use to create an anonymous blog.
Where can I blog anonymously?
You can create an anonymous blog on mainstream blogging platforms like WordPress and Blogger.com. There are also privacy-oriented websites like Write.as that encourage anonymous blogging.
Let’s take a closer look at your options:
WordPress is the first platform you should consider if you want to make money with your anonymous blog. You can learn about the process of creating WordPress blogs in this guide.
If you’d rather spend time writing posts than building a website from scratch, you can use Blogger to get started. It’s a free blogging platform that’s more focused on content creation than website development.
Write.as is a minimalistic platform that streamlines the blogging process from writing to publishing. It is built specifically for authors, students, activists, and bloggers who require a distraction-free space for writing.
Speaking of distraction-free writing, Telegra.ph is another straightforward tool you can use to blog anonymously. You just give your post a title, fill in a fake name, write, and click “Publish” – no strings attached.
Wix strikes the perfect balance between features and ease of use. It’s a freemium, drag-and-drop website builder you can use to create a professional-looking blog in minutes.
How to promote your blog if it is anonymous?
Promoting an anonymous blog is no different from promoting a traditional blog with your name on it. You can still share it through comments, social media, ads, and sites like Reddit.
But before any of that, let’s get you a cool alias for your anonymous blog’s identity.
How to choose a pen name for your blog?
You can use any pseudonym or pen name you can think of as long as you’re comfortable with it. If you want, you can also use random words like Benjamin Franklin’s “Mrs. Silence Dogood” and Daniel Handler’s “Lemony Snicket.”
Here are a few more interesting examples of pseudonyms from famous authors:
- Stan Lee – Stanley Martin Lieber
- Richard Bachman – Stephen King
- Robert Galbraith / J.K. Rowling – Joanne Rowling
As soon as you start thinking about anonymous blogging, there’s a chance you already have ideas for your fake name.
If not, you can use a tool like the Pen Name Generator by Reedsy:
Still need help coming up with a pseudonym?
Here are a few more tips:
- Use a name from your own ethnicity – Basing your pseudonym on your ethnicity is good if it matches your audience’s demographic. If my target readers are from the UK,
- Use an anagram – You can create anagrams by rearranging the letters of a word, phrase, or name. For example, if your name is Paul March, your pen name could be “Chap Lamur.”
- Consider your niche – Incorporating relevant words into your pseudonym can help make it more memorable and catchier. For example, if you’re in the food niche, you can use something like “BBQ Barry” or “Honey-Dipped Hannah.”
- Think of your past nicknames – A lot of people were given childhood nicknames that aren’t remotely close to their real names. If you’re one of them, you can use that nickname and slightly modify it for those who knew about it.
- Just use your first name – If you have a generic first name, like John or Megan, you can safely use it on your anonymous blog. It’s not the ideal approach, but it helps by instilling some of your personality into your work.
How to Promote Anonymous Blog?
With your pen name ready, let’s talk about the ways to promote your blog and gain quality traffic.
1. Promoting your blog on social media
Just like regular bloggers, anonymous bloggers can spread their blog posts on social media to get free exposure.
I’d start by installing a social sharing plugin that makes the task easy for me and my readers.
Encouraging your readers to share your post is a step in the right direction.
But to give your social presence momentum, you need to do most of the heavy lifting yourself.
You can utilize every trick in the book, like joining groups, regularly sharing content, and connecting with other users.
I also recommend creating an official Facebook page for your blog, like what Megan did with Mom’s Got It Made.
How to post anonymously on Facebook?
Start by creating an anonymous Facebook account that won’t trace back to you. You can then share posts, join groups, and interact with other users through your anonymous profile.
A pen name will be a huge help here.
It will allow you to breeze through processes like setting up an anonymous email account and registering for services.
More importantly, it will allow you to make quick work of Facebook’s registration process. After all, it only takes a valid email address to verify your all-new profile.
After completing your new Facebook account, use your pseudonym and anonymous email to create accounts in other social networks.
As an anonymous blogger, you need to utilize every tool you can get for content promotions. That’s why you should consider creating anonymous accounts in as many networks as possible, like:
That’s it – you’ve now prepared your content distribution channels on social media for your anonymous blog.
You may refer to this guide for in-depth blog promotion strategies you can do with them. Just remember to make a few modifications, like using your anonymous profile instead of your real one.
2. Guest blogging
Being an anonymous blogger shouldn’t prevent you from seeking out guest blogging opportunities.
Guest blogging allows you to get more traffic by leveraging another website’s online reach. Additionally, it can provide your blog with much-needed backlinks for higher search engine rankings.
Here’s a quick rundown of the steps to successful guest blogging:
- Find relevant link sources – Search for authoritative websites that accept contributions from guest bloggers. You can spy on a competitor’s backlink profile to discover their top link sources.
- Reach out – Authoritative websites accept guest post pitches from contributors in many ways. It can be through a registration form or strictly email pitches.
- Review their guidelines – Some websites require you to follow certain content guidelines when submitting guest posts. If it suits your content style, go for it or attempt to abide by their preferences.
- Add backlinks where they count – Ideally, the website you’re guest posting to allows contextual backlinks, which are embedded within the content. If not, you can still put backlinks in your author bio.
- Promote your guest posts – Of course, you should also put some effort into promoting your own guest posts. If you can, build tier-two links that point to those posts to boost its traffic and rankings.
To learn more, check out my ultimate guide to guest blogging.
3. Email marketing
Being an anonymous blogger shouldn’t stop you from building your own email list.
Doing so will allow you to gain recurring traffic by sending out newsletters and targeted messages to your audience.
To get more subscribers, utilize strategies like offering opt-in bribes to increase conversions. For example, Carl Jensen of MoneyMow offers a free eBook to his email subscribers.
Here are some of the emails you can broadcast to your list:
- Welcome email
- Weekly roundup of posts
- New product or service promotion
- Birthday email
- Special discount or offer
To configure some of the emails above, you’ll need a good email marketing service.
4. Paid ads
As soon as your blog begins to generate revenue, think about launching an ad campaign to increase your traffic.
Facebook Ads are particularly promising for a number of reasons.
Apart from the website’s massive user base, it also has robust targeting and ad formatting options.
Just bear in mind that paid ads can only be profitable if you have a clear sales funnel.
What is a sales funnel?
A sales funnel is a sequence of steps that will convert your audience from being visitors to paying customers.
The typical sales funnel model has four stages: awareness, interest, decision, and action.
If you prematurely invest in ads without paying attention to monetization, you’ll end up spending more money than you’re making.
How to Make Money with an Anonymous Blog?
Now that we’re on the subject of monetization, it’s time to discuss the monetization strategies for anonymous blogs.
Let’s go over some ideas real quick:
1. Affiliate marketing
You can make money with affiliate marketing while still keeping your identity hidden from the public. With affiliate marketing, you can earn commissions as passive income by promoting the products of other companies.
2. Ad placements
A lot of anonymous blogs like Disease Called Debt make money by displaying ads on their website. It’s not as profitable as affiliate marketing, but you don’t have to put in the extra work creating affiliate content.
3. Sell your own products
Another lucrative monetization strategy is to create and sell your own digital products. Amazon’s self-publishers have been doing it for years by selling eBooks under a pen name.
4. Build an online course
You can sell online courses using a pseudonym, but it will be more engaging if your students know your identity. Also, be aware that you can’t record a video that shows your face if you like to stay anonymous.
5. Ask for donations
If blogging is your passion and content is your main value offer, you can ask for donations from your audience. This can be done through platforms like Patreon or simply by inserting a PayPal donation button.
Popular Anonymous Blogs
Here are some examples of popular blogs made by anonymous bloggers:
Disease Called Debt is a personal finance blog that focuses on debt management. Even though the owner’s personal debt story is revealed, you won’t find a name being mentioned anywhere.
Before you say anything, take note that “Carl” is not the real name of MoneyMow’s creator. Other than his age and location, there’s no real clue for his identity – even his photo only shows his back.
Hustle Escape is a self-improvement blog that publishes content around productivity, psychology, personal finance, and minimalism. Despite the modest design and secretive vibe of the blogger, the site generates passive income through affiliate links.
Mom’s Got It Made is a semi-anonymous blog about parenthood, self-care, and some DIY stuff. I say “semi-anonymous” because she uses the name “Megan,” which is unclear if it’s her real name or not.
There you have it – how to blog anonymously and still make money from your efforts.
Remember, anonymous blogging is identical to running and monetizing a regular blog.
The only difference is, you have to do everything while keeping your identity safe behind a pen name.
I recommend taking a break for a while. Once you’ve rested up, start by choosing a pseudonym and a blogging platform to build your site on.