Blog & Company News

Feb 25, 2011

How to Make Money With Your Blog

[caption id="attachment_393" align="alignright" width="225" caption="Make money with your blog"][/caption] Do you have a blog? Ever thought about making it a steady source of revenue? Whether you built your blog to establish yourself as an authority or to drive awareness for your brand, there’s a lot of potential in the world of blogging. The business model for blogging or vlogging is the same as the model for creating a website or a magazine. In order to make money, each has to generate enough traffic or readers to be able to sell advertising. For example, anyone who has a printer can make a magazine, anyone can now write a blog, and anyone with a video camera can make a video blog, or vlog. But until you are able to show your distribution numbers, you can’t sell ads. Selling ads is how you make money. Old-school print-ad model, new-school media. There are three steps: 1. Create content. 2. Build a community to create traffic. 3. Start selling ad space. Content generation is key You have to create interesting content that attracts and retains a loyal community. Then, once you have your community built, you will be able to find advertisers willing to pay to reach your community. Your community will build naturally around your content niche, which is why it’s best to align your content with your passions or areas of expertise. Write what you know. The better you understand your audience, the better you can communicate with them. Don’t get stuck If you’re not a great writer, don’t let that stall you. If you know what you want to say and have the facts but have trouble putting everything into words, just hire a writer to help. Ultimately, you’ll serve as the editor, directing and approving all content. The writer simply makes it interesting enough to read. Read blogs, like ProBlogger, that inspire your creativity and help you become a better writer. Check out Google trends to see if anything in the top 10 search terms relates to your subject matter. Create a road map Making a video blog may seem easy, but it still requires some road mapping—a script, if you will. There are several applications out now that make the process of recording your vlog easier to create. The technology has definitely caught up to the demand. In addition, there are many free ways to produce websites, blogs, and vlogs. The Small Business Authority offers a website, tutorials, and phone support get you started. Build your community 1. Email subscriptions are a crucial jumping-off point in promoting your blog. Allow your readers to sign up for weekly or daily emails, and encourage them to forward your emails to friends. 2. Create surveys and contests, and ask for feedback—all of which are great ways to build your community. 3. Provide links to social networks—they help your best content have a viral effect. 4. Use relevant tags and proper search engine optimization (SEO) techniques on all of your content so that it is properly indexed. There’s no point in posting if your blogs can’t be easily found. 5. Guest blogging on popular blogs is a great way to get in front of new readers. Understand the importance of SEO and tagging My favorite analogy for the web is a library with all of the books scattered on the floor. Without the Dewey decimal system, the library books couldn’t be found. Your posts must have relevant tags in order for the search engines to index the posts properly. Search engines make money by providing the most relevant results. If you don’t find what you are looking for when you use them, you’ll try the competition. That is why your content must be relevant to the search terms or tags you place. The more you become an authority on your content, the more organic traffic you will get. The term organic means that your content is the most relevant to a search term and ranks high without you paying for top ranking. And finally … make money! Once you have enough steady traffic to your blog, you can start selling banner ads and placing relevant ads from ad networks like Google. You can also endorse products and set up affiliate relationships, reseller agreements, and link exchanges. You can syndicate your content to other websites or guest blogs. When you use these methods simultaneously, you’ll see a significant increase in traffic to your blog. Essentially, your value is directly tied to your traffic. The more traffic you receive, the more you can charge for ad space. And that’s when the fun begins! This concept may be new to some, but it is likely well-traveled terrain for many business owners.