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The Long-Term Approach to Blogging

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Building a business takes time. If you’re hoping to make a business out of your blog, blogging is no exception. Sure, there are some ways to quickly make a little bit of money, and yes, the risks are much lower than starting a traditional business. But overall, building a steady income through a blog is similar to any other business venture, it doesn’t happen overnight.

Many bloggers hope to launch a blog and start making money right away. When this doesn’t happen, bloggers frequently become discouraged and ultimately make a quick exit from the blogging business.

One of the keys to being able to make money from a blog is starting with a focus on the long-term, rather than the short-term. Focusing on the long-term doesn’t mean that there is a lack of effort in the short-term, quite the opposite. A long-term focus relies on consistent efforts over time to get to the desired results.

Why Do Bloggers Benefit from a Long-Term Focus?


1 – Over time you will experience an increase in readers.
Although there are a few exceptions, large subscriber bases are not normally built very quickly. Once the readers have been gathered, the income potential will be available.

2 – Current readers will become more loyal with time. Think about the blogs you read every day or every week. Do you feel more of a connection and more loyalty to those writers now than you did when you first came across their blog? In all likelihood you do. It’s a natural occurrence that comes from reading on a regular basis. A responsive group of readers is key to making money.

3 – Your content will build up. As you continue to consistently publish new posts, the amount of material that is on your blog will build up to something significant. This has a big impact on the amount of visitors you draw from search engines, and it also makes your blog a more valuable resource for visitors.

4 – You will have more time to gain links. Many of your visitors will come to your blog through links and referrals from other bloggers. These visitors often become your most consistent and loyal visitors. Gathering a lot of links will help to increase your number of subscribers as well as helping your search engine rankings.

5 – More trust from search engines. Search engines, especially Google, are very concerned with sending visitors to trusted domains. The longer your website has been around, the more trusted it will become (assuming you don’t do anything to damage that trust). Older domains typically have an edge over newer domains.

6 – Branding development is possible. One of the best ways to develop reader loyalty is to effectively brand your blog. Branding takes time.

7 – Increase monetization options. As you build up a larger subscriber base, and as your blog draws more traffic, more opportunities will be available to make money with your blog. Advertisements, affiliate programs, selling your own products, it all becomes easier and more profitable when you already have established readers.


The Downside to the Long-Term Approach

Although the long-term approach is necessary for most bloggers to be able to make an income online, there is a downside to it.

1 – It can be a de-motivator.
For many bloggers, not making money now causes them to loose some motivation. Without the will and desire to keep pushing on, many give up.

2 – There’s not much compensation for your efforts in the short-term. When building a blog with a long-term approach all focus is on future earnings. While this is fine for some, it can be hard to put in hours of work with little or no financial benefit right now.


The Short-Term Approach

While the long-term approach is best for most bloggers and provides the highest chances of success, some bloggers still prefer to take a short-term approach to making money. With the short-term approach:

1 – Whatever makes money today is the best option.
Building a business for the future is not relevant. Profit must be made now, and delayed gratification is not an option. (Made-for-AdSense blogs are a good example of this. Most of them have one goal – get visitors to click on ads. Building reader loyalty is not a priority.)

2 – You may be able to make money now that will compensate you for your time. While the long-term approach requires work with little or no short-term rewards, a short-term approach is geared towards compensating efforts immediately.


The Downside of the Short-Term Approach

1 – You may sacrifice greater long-term profitability in order to make a smaller profit quickly. This is a big sacrifice to make, and this is the reason most serious bloggers choose a long-term approach.

2 – There are no long-term benefits of building a blog. In other words, you’ll always have to work just as hard to keep making money. With the long-term approach it is possible that it could get easier to make more money as you build up a solid blog.


What other pros and cons do you see of each approach, and which approach are you taking?

My name is Foxy, and my job is to sniff out the good guest bloggers from the ones who aren't. This post was written by a contributing author to Blogging Tips. If you would like to learn more about becoming a writer (not one-time guest blogging) for BloggingTips.com, please contact us.

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Making Money

How to Increase Your Blogging Income Without Changing a Thing

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How to increase blogging income

Making more money from blogging is exciting and I figured out that’s what many of us want.  The simple truth is that the more money you make, the more you want to make.

When my blogging income was below $1000/m, I lived in a small apartment with no car. As more money came in, I upgraded my standard. That also brought more responsibilities. I bought a car which had to be fueled and maintained, moved to a bigger and more costly apartment, etc.

I found out I could increase my blogging income without adding new money making channels. What you should know is that you cannot reinvent the wheels.

Over the course of times, wheels have been improved to gain more performance. That’s exactly what we will be sharing in this post.

How to increase your blogging income without reinventing the wheels

Recently, I must mention that I added new money making methods to my online business. This was mainly in the Cryptocurreny industry. But talking about blogging, there has been a remarkable increase in revenue not related to any new method.

Here are my tips that will surely help you grow your income without having to struggle with new money making methods and please, this works so pay attention.

#1. Find out what works for your audience

One of the things you must quickly do is understand your audience. Who are the people reading your blog and what do they want?

Once you get this very crucial information (maybe by running a poll or survey), you will be able to select from the numerous ways bloggers make money. You can’t be doing everything at once and expect improved results.

You may combine three or four money making methods on your blog. But a few of these should be generating more revenue for you than others.

#2. Scale that method that works and be smart

Now, if affiliate marketing is what works for you, you should invest more in this method. Train yourself and create more affiliate blog post types. The more you get into it, you’ll discover little tricks that will help boost your conversion.

One of the things I do in this domain is get in touch with creators of the products I promote for special bonuses for my readers. Needless to mention that this is a great way to increase affiliate marketing sales.

My email list accounts for a huge portion of my affiliate commissions. So I found out that while working toward growing the list with the right category of subscribers, I need to keep it clean to improve my email  deliverability.

One of the products I promote has been doing exceptionally well. So I created a landing page just for it. The results were outstanding. I recommend you read this landing page creation guide by Sophie Krokida

I have generated quite a handsome amount from my blog with sponsored content and I was asking myself what do I do to scale this for more earnings. This brought me to coming up with my unique strategy that gives my clients more exposure and the result has been more income from the same activity.

Some bloggers are known for creating awesome products. If that’s what works for you, focus on creating your products and growing your marketplace. Don’t switch between different methods because you only end up being frustrated or getting very little results.

#3. Promote your blog

What I did that massively gave me more traction was carrying out activities that give my blog more exposure. While we all strive to increase traffic, not every traffic is worth it. Focus on targeted traffic to impact your conversion.

Here are the three main ways I promote my blog:

1 – Guest posting

By far, this is the easiest way to step out and let people quickly find your blog. While many folks focus on guest posting for the sake of SEO backlink (which should come as a bonus) I focus on providing value in my guest articles and connecting with readers.

I have landed many coaching and technical deals as a result of my guest posting activities. Like Ryan of Blogging from paradise, I know it pays to be consistent on some blogs, adding value and creating impact.

That’s why I do not rush behind guest posting on thousands of different blogs (which is good though) That is actually the posture of backlink mongers. But if you pick a few authority blogs, stick on them with helpful content, you won’t be able to avoid being noticed.

One of the main problems we face here is where to find blogs in our niche that are opened to guest posting. You may want to check out this massive list of blogs that accept guest posts in different topics.

2 – SEO (Search engine optimization)

My natural traffic has been on a steady rise, which is a good thing. Though Google and other search engines are on a constant move, stick to SEO best practices will always keep you safe. SEO is hard and at the same time, it is the best source of traffic that converts to customers or clients.

There is a lot to be said about SEO. I will recommend you check out this guide on SEO 101: The Essential SEO FAQ for Bloggers

3 – Social media

Social Media Marketing isn’t any new song except for newbies.  But here there are some errors to avoid:

  • People try to be on every social media platform at once, which is wrong.
  • Users hit and run. They don’t create time to interact with followers. Another error.
  • Many don’t track results. So they would never know what works for them.
  • The constant use of sharing apps is an issue. You must create time to connect on those platforms and spend time on them. Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram give preference to users who actually visit and spend time around.

Wrapping up

I just shared with you the three main things I do to increase my blogging income without necessarily trying to do something new. Again, you have to pick up what works for you, develop strategies to scale it and promote.

These will certainly help boost your online earnins

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Making Money

How to Monetize Your Blog Using Finteza

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Monetizing a blog has always been too overwhelming for an average person to figure out. Too many options, platforms and networks. Too many percentages, numbers and terms to qualify.

Whether you are a new or an experienced blogger, it is always that question “Am I doing enough”?

My dream has always been to set up own independent program without any middleman. After all, if we want to own our content, why wouldn’t we want to own its monetization? I would be willing to select who I advertise and how as well as how much I want to charge.

But how to report to advertisers? What kind of click-through to promise them? How to sell your own ads and own the reports and click fraud protection?

This question had been haunting me for ages until I came across a platform called Finteza and it looked like it was going to solve all my problems.

Finteza allows you to create advertising spaces on your site which will serve your created banners based on your created schedule.

How To Set Up a Campaign

1. Add Finteza Tracking Code

The first step would be adding Finteza analytics to your site which works exactly the same for any analytics suite you are installing: You just need to grab your unique tracking code and paste it to your site the way it appears on all pages.

Here’s an easy way to add code to header or footer of your blog in case you were lost.

Note: Finteza claims it won’t slow down your site as it is using a distributed network of servers. I haven’t had any issues with my page load time with Finteza running in the background.

2. Create Your Ad Zones

Ad zones are actual spots on your site where your ads will be served.

To add a new zones, go Websites – Settings -> Ad Zones and click “Create Ad Zone”.

Finteza ad add zone

Give your ad zone some recognizable name (e.g. footer, right sidebar, etc.) and select “Use banner width” and “Use banner height” for its dimensions.

You’ll be given a code to install exactly where you want the ad to appear. I simply used WordPress widgets to put the code and then dragged the widget to where I wanted the ad to be served.

Create as many ad zones as you want / can. You may want to test many ad placements on your site to create your price list and know what to promise to your advertisers.

3. Create Your Campaign

Now, proceed to “Campaigns” tab to set up your campaign:

Finteza campaigns

Next give:

  • The campaign name (This could be your advertiser or project name you are promoting),
  • Time period you want it to run. This is very helpful if your advertiser only paid for a certain period of time versus a recurring payment. You can even set up time of the day this ad will be activated (which frankly I am not sure when one may need to do but this option still seems impressive).
  • User agents (I simply add all available, as a rule)

Finteza campaign set-up

There are also some advanced settings which I find very nice to have (especially if you run your own project ads and want to serve to a certain type of audience):

Finteza segments

Now you will need to select the ad zones to serve the ads in. Again, for testing purposes select as many zones as you have: You will be able to use Finteza’s analytics to compare how your zones perform.

Mind that if you add several websites to your Finteza account, you’ll be able to manage multiple campaigns across multiple sites of yours from one location which is very neat.

4. Create Your Banners

Next you will be able to create your “Advertising group”, i.e. specify your target link and add your banners.

Creating banners is a fun process: You upload your creative, add your promo message and select your CTA. The resulting banner will be generated and it will fit all kinds of dimensions and screens. This is done for responsiveness: These auto-generated banners will scale depending on the size of the screen and still look nice.

Create banner

You can edit your banners later at any point if you choose so.

Again, there will be performance stats available for all your existing creatives, so the earlier you start the more data you will collect, in terms what seems to engage your audience better.

Once you follow all the steps, simply activate your campaign from “Campaigns” tab and you are done! If you scheduled your campaign to start immediately, it will run right away. Simply open your site and double check everything looks ok.

Collect the Performance Stats

Now, before you have willing advertisers to invest in your site, do run your own campaigns. This will allow you to collect all sorts of data on best ad placement, demographics of your audience, your click-through, etc. This will make your call for advertisers much more effective.

top performing

Once your advertising campaigns start running, you will be able to collect all sorts of data including:

  • Your audience demographics
  • Articles from where ads were clicked from to
  • Your ad engagement based on the traffic source
  • Your click-through depending on the ad location and CTA

All the reports are real-time, you can see current performance stats on any of your campaigns the moment you set them up.

Again the tool is free, so there’s nothing really preventing you from giving it a try.

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Making Money

How to Sell Your Content and Create a Separate Source of Income

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Bloggers produce tons of content on a weekly or even daily basis.

Is there any way to monetize that effort and create an additional source of income?

There are many ways to sell your content online, and I am listing some options here.

Implementation can still be tricky even if you have a strong vision of your requirements.

One-Time Downloads

Offering your audience an ability to buy a premium content download for a one-time fee is the most common way to monetize your site. It is easy to set up and requires no development budget. You can simply use PayPal buttons to collect payments and offer a download link.

You will have to expand your content for it to be indepth enough to justify the fee. Text Optimizer is a great way to do that. It uses semantic analysis to extract related concepts from Google to prompt you to cover them in your content to achieve a higher score:

Text Optimizer

Use Text Optimizer to expand your article to turn it into a downloadable eBook or whitepaper.

Text Optimizer should be used for both private and public content development as it does a great job helping you optimize for searcher’s intent and driving your content research.

Metered Paywall

With this model, users have free access to content until they reach a certain limit. This could be the amount of time spent on the site, or the number of articles or videos viewed. Newspapers have been trying this model for a while and it seems to be working well for them.

This is actually a good strategy as users have free access to low volumes, allowing them to consume some of your content before having to decide whether they want to pay for more or not.

Do keep in mind that if you try this method, Google will only be able to access and index part of your content, so your SEO may be at stake here. Plus, you really want to produce high-quality content for this method to work.

Leaky Paywall is a nice freemium plugin that helps you monetize your content creation efforts with the metered paywall method.

Leaky Paywall

Set your meter to allow X number of free articles before requiring a subscription. Leaky Paywall can be customized to allow multiple subscription options. Subscribers can pay (or register for free) for access to your content by category, tag, custom post type, and even pay a premium for your archive content.

Paywalls can be presented at a certain part of an article, after a free trial, or may be metered and only appear after a specific number of pages have been browsed. Most newspapers use a metered paywall, allowing them to generate more revenue from ads, rather than preventing visitors from consuming their content.

Subscription Membership

This model allows users to subscribe to a membership site for a fee, typically billed monthly or annually. This gives them access to all content for the subscription period.

Suppliers using this model generally don’t use advertising. When members have paid their subscription fee, they’ll have full access to all content that falls within the membership level.

This model also allows for upselling repeat customers by for example offering VIP membership levels. The payment of a big, one-time fee could provide lifetime access to all content, past and future.

Using the subscription model to sell content is getting more difficult for newspapers, and publishers have to counter disruption from news aggregator apps like Flipboard, Zite and Pulse. Curated news is getting more popular, but it threatens individual publications’ subscription appeal while potentially drawing in new customers at the same time.

Memberful is a nice platform that allows publishers to set up subscription-based membership plans. It also has an easy integration through WordPress plugin.

Memberful

Create a paywall and restrict access to content based on membership level. Protect any posts or pages right from your WordPress edit screen.

Micro Transactions

This model was actually used before the Internet was commonly used, with examples being arcade and sports games, and pay-per-view movies.

The micro transaction model is being used by iTunes. Besides, books by the chapter have been offered by O’Reilly publishing for years. A more recent example is the micro-payments option for Wallet users recently launched by Google.

This model may not work for magazine articles and news as these are typically single reads, while music and video tracks can be used repeatedly. Here’s an easy way to set up a pay-per-view site with WordPress.

pay-per-view site

For this tutorial, we will be using the MemberPress plugin. It is the best WordPress membership plugin in the market because it allows you to create robust membership websites with subscription plans and multiple ways to accept payments.

Conclusion

Content creation is incredibly time-consuming, so finding a way to monetize that effort makes total sense. You don’t have to choose a single method to sell your content and stick to it. You can experiment with and combine multiple ways. Good luck!

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

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