Ashley [9:20 AM]

EP 108: Get Ruthed: Providing More by Offering Less With Melissa Barnett

May 4, 2020

EP 108: Get Ruthed: Providing More by Offering Less With Melissa Barnett

It’s time to chat with EBA student Melissa Barnett about how to provide value without giving away the farm! Melissa is the founder of A Farm of Your Home, which is dedicated to helping suburban gardeners thrive. And Melissa is all too familiar with the subject! She has long dreamed of living off the land… but that’s not easy with a tiny yard in suburban Perth, Australia.

In 2012, Melissa decided to start just dreaming and start living her vision. Her garden thrived, but the blog that she started at the same time hasn’t taken off. She has a loyal following and decent traffic (especially lately!), but hasn’t figured out how to turn her passion into profit. As you’ll hear, her biggest frustration right now is her consistency. She’s spent a lot of time and effort figuring out ways to make her blog work as a business, but then wanders away from the path toward them.

The only way that Melissa has monetized so far is through sponsored posts, which she isn’t comfortable with because she feels she’s compromising the integrity of her site. Of course, this isn’t sustainable! Another challenge is that she has too much going on and is struggling to keep up. But Melissa already realizes this, and she’s in the process of pruning down her site.

I’m blown away by the amount of things that Melissa is giving away in her resource library. You might know that I’m not a fan of resource libraries, and Melissa’s absolutely isn’t serving her business! When you give away so much value for free, your audience will probably value your information less, because we value what we pay for.

If you’re struggling to turn your blog into your business, this is absolutely the episode for you. Tune in to learn more about all the things I’ve mentioned, plus some strategies for improving on-site conversion rate, why it’s so important to focus on your avatar, and why more content doesn’t mean more value. Your job is to serve your audience in a meaningful way!


[00:48] – Ruth welcomes listeners back to the show and introduces its Get Ruthed coaching guest, Melissa Barnett.
[02:26] – Do you have a blog or online business? Are you thinking about starting one? If so, get your FREE copy of Ruth’s bestselling book How to Blog for Profit (Without Selling Your Soul)
[03:58] – We hear about Melissa’s background, and where her main frustration is right now.
[06:00] – Because Melissa’s blog was rooted in her hobby, making the mental transition to turning it into a business has been a challenge.
[08:22] – What does Melissa’s traffic look like right now?
[10:11] – Melissa talks about how she’s monetizing right now, which is through sponsored posts.
[12:34] – We hear about where Melissa is spending most of her time right now, and how many blog posts she has on her site.
[16:08] – Ruth points out that one of the reasons that Melissa is struggling to keep up is that she has way too much going on.
[17:45] – Why is Melissa giving so much away in her resource library?
[21:15] – Ruth’s #1 recommendation for Melissa is to take away the resource library and offer one really great lead magnet.
[24:21] – Melissa is clearly good at experimenting, so she should approach her blog with the same experimental mindset as her garden.
[27:00] – What works for one blog or online business won’t work exactly the same for another one, Ruth points out.
[28:32] – Has Melissa been working on growing her email list? How many people does she have on it right now?
[32:17] – Ruth and Melissa talk about on-site conversion rate, and how Melissa can improve hers.
[36:26] – Melissa has an epiphany: people come to the site wanting a simple solution, and she overwhelms them with information.
[39:14] – Writing to her avatar will help Melissa provide only the information that will be really helpful.
[41:11] – Ruth recaps Melissa’s situation, and the biggest action steps that she needs to take right away to turn her blog into a business.
[46:52] – Don’t forget to grab your completely FREE hard copy of Ruth’s book How to Blog for Profit (Without Selling Your Soul)! And Ruth loves hearing from listeners, so shoot her an email at or get in touch on Instagram.