In the infancy of the Internet Blog, it was seen as a quick way to earn recognition and a reasonable amount of money by just sitting behind your laptop for an hour or two each day. There were a number of success stories, like Julie Powell, who blogged about her attempt to cook every single recipe in Julia Child’s famed bible on the subject of French food- Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Ms Powell’s mishaps and how her food struggles contributed to some major domestic disharmony caught on with the public, her blog became immensely popular, leading to a small fortune from a book deal and the subsequent movie that starred Meryl Streep.
The creation of a popular blog isn’t so straightforward, and in the case of Ms Powell, the blog project had a finite length, and wasn’t intended as an ongoing concern, meaning it didn’t need to maintain its momentum and readership over a greatly extended period. There are a number of traditional and obvious methods to earn monetize a blog, most of which are akin to the methods used by magazines and newspapers, but there are also some other effective methods that only work online.
Popularity with Readers: Popularity with Advertisers
Some blogs rise and fall in popularity as readers become bored with the repetitive nature of the material, and this impacts the traditional method for popular blogs to earn profit- the selling of advertising on the site. Perez Hilton made his name by blogging about celebrities, using waspish, even vulgar commentary about his subjects to amuse his readers. This amusement wasn’t ongoing, and the site has been shedding readers, meaning that his site is no longer so appealing to advertisers, which cuts into his bottom line. This decline in readership has led Mr Hilton to take on a kinder, gentler approach with his celebrity subjects, and his popularity seems to have stabilized. Despite this, his former friend Lady Gaga has accused him of stalking her. While you can’t always foresee what will remain popular, a regular self-assessment is a good idea, to ensure a sense of freshness, meaning that your readers are less likely to lose interest.
With an abundance of blogs on every topic under the sun, it’s no longer possible to write a blog, hope that readers find you and then wait for advertisers and publishers to wave their check book at you as they hope to profit from your success. Affiliate marketing is an effective way to earn multiple streams of income from your blog (or blogs), although your participation and interactions need to be continually monitored in order to maintain profitability, as ongoing tweaks are required. An affiliate program involves you forming an association with other sites, in which you send them web traffic, either by imbedded or standalone links on your own site. For each visit that comes from a link on your site, you receive a small commission. Small is a keyword here, but over time, these payments add up. Be careful of the conditions of any program you may want to join, as in some instances, your commission is subject to the visitor actually making a purchase via the link. There are a myriad of affiliate programs available, so a bit of research is required before you decide upon one that best reflects your blogs content and your end goals, although the affiliate programs offered by Google are amongst the most popular.
Coupons and Blogging
Another way that blog owners have found a way to make a substantial profit is by simply offering coupons and discount codes for websites that offer a product that compliments the blogs content. This has similarities to affiliate marketing, and yet mainly exists as private arrangement between the blog owner and companies with whom he or she has become associated, and offers coupons/discounts for. You should be selective in your acquisition of these companies, since there can only be a sense (and subsequent success) with this method if you in fact offer coupons/discounts with online retailers whose products have some kind of logical association with your blog. Larger online retailers might not be so interested in associating with a smaller blog, so it can be advisable to target smaller retailers. If you have difficulty acquiring retailers, you might want to point out the massive profitability of online promotions, particularly when it comes to annual online shopping events such as Cyber Monday.