In an internet age when social media seems to be king, can you still make money monetizing a blog? You absolutely can, but the strategies are different from what they might have been in 2007. Today, a blog is one of several marketing tools you’ll use along with various social media platforms to promote your brand. Whether your blog is the focus of your business or you use it to promote your main venture, the strategies below can help you succeed.
Choose Your Focus
First, you’ll need to have a focus. Even lifestyle blogs have a particular voice, a brand and set of topics they focus on. Food, travel and fashion are all popular choices for monetized blogs. You could also write about a hobby. Whatever you choose, you need to be able to bring something fresh to the topic. Look at what others with your focus are doing and think about how you can distinguish yourself from them. Also keep in mind the elements that you will need to add to make your blog stand out, that are still in line with your focus. Elements like adding high quality images, engaging with followers, and a pleasing aesthetic are all important.
Have a Budget
The great thing about blogging is that you can get started with little to no overhead. However, you will need to set aside some money for a few expenses. At minimum, you’ll probably have to pay for a domain and hosting, and you may want to work with a designer. It may also be worthwhile to invest in a decent camera and learn how to use it.
How’s your writing? Do you need an editor? If you want a professional, polished blog, you might. You may also need a small marketing budget to pay for promoted posts on social media or other advertising. None of these are terribly expensive on their own, but you might need to lower your monthly expenses to come up with the cash to pay for them. You could redo your budget and look at places to spend less, such as refinancing your student loans into a new loan with a private lender. You can see your rate estimate to get an idea of how much money this will save you.
Use Social Media Wisely
You’ll need to learn how to use various social media platforms to link up to the content on your site, but you don’t have to be on every single platform. Take a look at how others use social media. You might notice that many people pick a few that they are comfortable with and stick with those. Whatever happens, be sure that you aren’t spreading yourself too thin across multiple platforms.
Be Financially Savvy
This is a business like any other, and you’ll need to make sure you run it like one. There is one big difference, which is that it’s very unlikely that you’ll make much or even any money at first. It can take a year or more to start really building an audience. However, this gives you time to figure out a lot of things ahead of time. You should consider whether you’ll run entirely off advertising or if you want to allow readers a way to contribute money, and if so, what method you’ll use to collect that money. You should look into things like affiliate marketing and consider whether guest posting—either doing it yourself or allowing others to do it on your blog—would be worthwhile. Have a business plan as you would for any other type of business.