So you’ve got a blog and you want to make money.
You thought ads were the way to go, but where did that get you? No matter what you blog about, you can’t expect ads to be your main source of income, unless you’re legally sponsored by them, and even so unless you’ve got some huge sponsor like Coke, you’re going to need multiple sponsors to keep you up. And who knows how many of those will ask for X-deals where you get something like food or gift certificates instead of actual money?
So as you probably understand by now, ads are not the way to go, or at least not the only way to go. But that doesn’t mean blogging is useless as a form of income. If it was, there wouldn’t be that much people doing it as their main thing. And that’s what this post is for: to teach you how to make a living with blogs.
Idea 1: Make a newsletter
To start making money with your blog, let’s go back to the basics of making money, which is pretty much selling things. However, when your job is free information, what can you sell? The answer to that is simple: better information.
And you can easily talk about this information in a newsletter. Talk about books, ebooks, t-shirts with quotes on them, iPhone cases with quotes on them, whatever your mind comes up with that you can sell. Remember my post on making one thing and selling three? You just have to be creative with your merchandise.
There are different ways of letting your audience know that the newsletter exists, but one of the better ways is to remind them at the end of your posts. A banner, a pop up, whatever, you name it. Putting it at the end of your posts guarantees that the only people that see this reminder are the ones that read through your articles and really care about your content.
Idea 2: Offer 1-on-1 consultation or events speaking
If you’re blogging about something, chances are you see yourself as somewhat experienced in the field you talk about. This means your viewers might actually look up to you for the said topic. Make a page in your blog offering consultation or speaking for events.
And to make consultations more enticing, show the different things you can do in a few simple packages. If you focus on fiction writing, why not add things like world building and character development. Or chefs can have wine partnering and kitchen management in their packages. But the key is finding the middleground of focused and diverse. Having too little will mean needing a better sales pitch, and having too many will show you’re not focused or even good.
Idea 3: Membership programs
Another way to sell a blog is to have a space where people can subscribe to. That way, you still have a lot of content for free, but if people really want to follow you, you’ve got this special place with special features. And these features don’t have to be extra written content. Find out what your market needs. A good way I’ve found is to simply ask Reddit what they want. Find the subreddit that caters to you with an ok to good engagement, and ask them a general question like: “Ok. We all know that x-blogs suck right now. What do you see are missing from blogs in our field?”
Lastly, remember to make purchases simple. Really simple. If you can get people to buy in one click, do it. Incentive is higher when the steps are less and the gain is great.
If you’ve got a topic you want me to touch on in the future, please comment below.