Blogging is quite a new profession and there are a lot of unanswered questions about it. As a full-time blogger, can you guess what is the first thing people actually ask me when I tell them what I do for a living?
It goes more or less like this:
“Hi! I just met you but is blogging even a career? And how much do you earn?”
Mmm, what can I say? Yes, blogging is a career and you can actually earn a living with it. Enough to quit your job and travel the World.
“But how? Who pays you?”
Whether you want to substitute your income completely or just get a nice side flow of cash, you can generate a decent income with blogging. It will require a lot of hard work, but it will definitely be worth it once you achieve the financial freedom you crave.
To shed more light on this subject, I have described here 5 different monetization strategies that successful bloggers use. Note, you can use all of them on your blog or you can focus on just one, depending on what fits you best.
Ads are the most known way of blog monetization. At the very beginning of my blogging career, I thought that I will never have ads on my blog because they look spammy and send people away from my site.
But fast forward to today, I couldn’t be more wrong. Nowadays, ads work on a highly sophisticated algorithm that shows your readers’ related products. It’s a win-win. Your audience will see products that are highly relevant for them, for example, a camera ad on a photography website, and you will get a financial reward for all the useful free content you put there.
One of the most profitable ad networks out there is Mediavine. In order to apply, you need to surpass 25k+ monthly sessions, but worry not, you can quickly do it when you focus your efforts on Pinterest and SEO.
- A beginners guide to SEO: How to get blog traffic from Google
- 10 Pinterest tips that will explode your traffic
Also, when you reach this level of traffic, you can sell dedicated space on your blog to advertisers.
Affiliate marketing is the easiest to start with, as you can generate income from affiliate links even with just a little traffic to your site.
What is affiliate marketing?
Simply put it’s a way of promoting other people’s products or services for a commission in sales. Affiliate marketing can be really profitable if done properly. It is important to know what products you want to promote and in which way you will promote them. I recommend finding products and services that you personally use and love and that fit well with your niche. For travel blog it could be adding affiliate links to hotels or trips, for beauty blog it could be cosmetics, etc.
I like adding affiliate links in the text where it will look more subtle:
“I highly recommend getting skip-the-line tickets with this guided tour to understand the unusual history of this place, and to skip these ridiculously long queue.”
Sponsored posts are one of my favorite ways to monetize. Influencer marketing is currently on the rise and brands are constantly looking for new ways to promote their products.
To work with brands you don’t need a huge following, what you should focus on instead is creating a unique offer for the brand. Think of what you can bring to the table that no one else can. Show the brand specific ideas that you have to promote their products.
Another way to work with brands (even if you have no following) is to offer services. Think about your strengths. Are you good at photography? Maybe you write killer content? Let them know that you could create content for their website and marketing needs.
CREATING YOUR OWN PRODUCTS
Have you ever thought about creating your own products or services? If you don’t feel like promoting other peoples stuff, consider creating your own product instead.
I suggest starting with online products such as e-books, e-courses, templates, presets, etc. to then optionally move to physical products such as fashion items, gadgets or books. Why? Because virtual products are way cheaper and easier to produce plus the scalability is way higher.
Choosing a product to create is not an easy task and would require surveying your audience beforehand. Take into consideration how passionate you are on the subject, how much you know about it and the interest of your audience.
Another way to monetize your blog or social media account is through offering services such as consulting, social media marketing, photography or writing. Be creative, there are lots of bloggers looking for a Virtual Assistant, Facebook ad manager or Pinterest experts. Find one thing you are good at, write about it and market your services!
As you can see, there are many ways to monetize your blog and social media presence. It is important to remember that blogs don’t make money overnight, there is no such thing as overnight success. What is important is to put in continuous effort, be patient and to test which monetization strategy is best for your audience.