In 2008, living in Utah, Mel Gunnell wanted a way to share recipes online. "This was the early days of blogging," she says. "Most people I talked to wondered if "blog" was a swear word. I started my blog really as a hobby to share my favorite recipes with my family who lived across the country." Two years later, Mel got her first blog comment from a stranger, and another two years after that she was getting enough page views that for the first time she started to think about turning her passion into something more.
She signed up for Google AdSense to start earning revenue from ads. "I still remember the day I got my first check for $25," she recalls. "I thought I'd hit the lottery! Unbelievably, within a year, I started earning enough that the idea of my site becoming a thriving business wasn't so crazy." With that in mind, Mel eventually decided to work with a Google Certified Publishing Partner, Mediavine, to manage her ads business on Ad Manager, which in turn allowed her to stay focused on creating amazing content.