Have you got a blog or are you are thinking of starting one? Or maybe you are just interested to know how to make money through a blog? I know I get plenty of questions from people about this. Whichever stage you are at, here are 7 super ways to monetise your blog…
Top ways to monetise your blog – my blogging background
I dipped my toes into the world of blogging when I started a destination weddings blog seven years ago. I adored this blog and was passionate about it for a while. I had a few opportunities to monetise it but I really just used it as a tool for learning all about blogging.
I then started My Tunbridge Wells, beginning with highlighting three things to do each weekend. It quickly became popular, mainly thanks to Facebook and local businesses started approaching me asking me to promote their product/service/event to my readership.
Since then, I have started a family travel blog too and earn a full-time income from the two blogs. My Tunbridge Wells is my main site but it’s nice to have an alternative income through Travel Bugs too.
There are plenty of ways to earn a living through a blog, from working with a blogger outreach agency to selling banner ad space directly to brands, sponsored posts and much more. Here are my favourite ways to monetise your blog…
If you are interested in honing in on your blogging skills, feel free to message me if you need any advice. From a PPC course to social media training and more, there are plenty of things to learn both for experienced and new bloggers – myself included!
This is probably where I make the bulk of my income. I offer sponsored post packages which include a blog post on the homepage, promoting it on social media, sending it out in the weekly email newsletter and if relevant, adding it to the events calendar. Brands usually reach out to me, but occasionally I do contact brands if I think they are something my readers would like to hear about and if they are something I believe in too.
I then work with the brand to come up with a blog post that works for them. I also publish guest posts, which is usually an expert piece written by someone body who wants to promote their business indirectly through it.
Banner Ads / Ad networks
I usually sell banner ads as part of a promotional package rather than on their own. I think they are more effective for the customer by doing it that way.
I haven’t used ad networks as yet as I prefer to promote local brands on my site where possible but I do sometimes place affiliate ads (see section further below) where I make a small commission when people click on an ad and purchase something as a result of that.
I think the main thing to be aware of when placing banner ads is to ensure that the ads aren’t invasive and that you don’t annoy your readers! We all know those websites that are plastered with ads and it makes it very difficult to read the article? Make sure your blog isn’t like that!
Blogger Outreach Platform
A great way to make money on your blog is by signing up to one of the blogger outreach services. I have been using Get Blogged for several months now and have made a great income from it so far for two of my blogs.
I scan through the opportunities section most days and apply for campaigns which I think would be relevant for my sites. I write a short pitch explaining why I think it would be a good fit and then wait to hear where my pitch has been accepted. I then have a certain amount of time to write and publish the post before submitting it for approval. I generally don’t need to do social media promotion for this and payment is really quick. It’s a simple way to make money on my blog and I like that there is lots of flexibility in terms of topic so I can be as creative as I like.
Not all blogs have a Directory but if you focus on a specific niche, then it could be worth setting it up. Brands will pay to be in a Directory because it can help with their SEO, assist them in reaching a relevant readership and can often be a budget friendly way of featuring on a site longterm. I offer annual directory packages which include social media promotion too and this seems to work well.
Social Media Promotion
If you have an engaged following on any social media platform, you can more than likely make money for publishing and promoting posts for brands – this is called influencer marketing. For My Tunbridge Wells, Facebook and Instagram make the most impact when trying to reach readers.
Remember your social media platforms are a reflection of you and your blog so only agree to promote something you believe in and something you think your readers / followers will be interested in too. This way the brand should get a good return on their investment and you will feel good about sharing content that is of interest.
Email newsletter distribution
Social media promotion is a great way of monetising your blog but having an email list and the option of promoting brands through it is even more valuable.
You are the owner of the distribution list, while you aren’t the owner of the social media platforms. Therefore nurturing and building your list is really important and still a wonderful way of reaching your readership.
I publish a weekly email newsletter and include certain paid-for content in there but brands can also purchase a one-off email shot which means I will send out an email with content and images specifically for them. For anyone that doubts the power of email, I can confirm that it is very much still alive!
I have dabbled in affiliate marketing here and there but haven’t really spent too much time on it. However other bloggers use this as their main source of income. Basically it is sharing a trackable link to a certain product or service and if someone clicks on that link and purchases something from that site (within a certain time period), you will receive a commission.
Again try to just promote things that you know will be relevant for your readers and perhaps test the water gently and publish the occasional affiliate link here and there to see what works. I’m signed up to several different affiliate sites and most brands are on one. Try to look at it from the viewpoint that if you like a brand and think your readers will too, then sharing a link to it where you can make a little income is a win win situation.
If you are interested in getting involved in blogging, there are plenty of Facebook groups for beginners and it’s a great place to start. Just search the word ‘bloggers’ and a decent selection will come up. I have some personal recommendations too, so feel free to email me or comment below if you are interested in finding out more. If you do create a site, you can also work with an SEO consultant like James Taylor SEO in order to really get your organic strategies in order.
Whatever you end up doing, I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. It can be a really rewarding and creative outlet and has given me so much flexibility over the last few years. Every day is different in the world of blogging!