Four Means of Monetizing Your Blogs Content
As an online marketing expert, I’m perpetually exploring marketing trends and various aspects of the industry in order to best understand the current business environment. This includes figuring out how individual bloggers are best making money, especially through content monetization.
But what’s surprised me the most is that even though there is a lot of discussion about monetizing online content, there really isn’t a single centralized location with all the information. That’s why I’m sharing what I think are four great ways to monetize your blog’s content.
1. Banner Ads
Banner ads are easily the most used tool for creating a solid revenue stream. First used in offline media, banner ads have existed online since before blogs became popular. Google AdSense is the most popular service for placing banner ads for people who want results without using lots of time trying to sell banner space without a third party.
Plus, Google’s ads are usually less intrusive than others and are more relevant to each blog, as they use viewers’ search history to cater ads toward them. Alternatives include Kontera and adBrite. You can use them with other types of ads since banners occupy up space that’s not used by anything else.
2. Affiliate marketing
You can get good revenue by simply placing an affiliate marketing link after each product review, service recommendation, or pretty much any blog post. Unlike banners which are usually pay-per-click or pay-per-impression (views), most affiliate programs use pay-per-sale or pay-per-lead. These work best if you have a fair amount of traffic to your site, but it can work for smaller sites too since it’s almost always free to become an affiliate.
3. Utilizing Social Media
The opinions of personal friends has a great influence on consumer choice. For example, a BlackBerry user might tell her friends looking to buy their first smartphone to buy a BlackBerry Torch. Her friends will trust her more than they’ll trust a BlackBerry salesman. Because of this, social media, such as Facebook has seen a surge in use within the business world.
Many bloggers and businesses start a Facebook fan page and simply copy and paste content into the page to get more readers and subscribers. As a blogger looking to make some dough, you can use social media to drive a market to your website in combination with any of the other methods to cash in, and magnify the effects of your other marketing strategies. In this way, social media can become a sort of “force multiplier.”
4. In-text Monetization
Unlike banner ads, link insertion involves ads in the actual text of your written content but does so in a way that doesn’t decrease the site’s overall appeal. Usually, the program automatically finds and highlights keywords that, when hovered over, display a small ad that can then send the reader to the advertised product. These ads are like AdSense in that they target the reader’s actual interests (e.g., a gaming blog is typically read by someone who plays Xbox). They also don’t get you blacklisted on search engines since the links use nofollow attributes. The most used systems, many of which are free, include INTENTclick, Infolinks, Skimlinks, etc.
I wrote Content Monetization, an eBook about that you can read for more detailed information.
Disclosure: I work with INTENTclick.