When it comes to succeeding online there is no question that content marketing with your own blog is the #1 method. Nothing comes close to the low cost and high return you get from blogging done right.
I’ve created a free report to help you decide which Content Marketing method is right for you based on what you like to do. You can get it here.
While many people have a blog (some have 15 blogs) not many are making money from their blog as they could be.
If your goal is to make money from your blog, this article is for you.
Today we look at five proven ways to monetize any blog.
Before we begin, let me set the stage. If you are into “get rich quick” or “spend $10 and make $5000” this article is decidedly not for you.
Neither is working online for that matter because getting rich quick is a myth that will only steal your money, time and joy.
The prize goes to the one who uses proven methods, works a consistent schedule and never quits.
Method 1 – List Building
It turns out, the money is in the list. Every single person you know, or know of, who is succeeding online has a list of their own. And they value that list like it was gold. Because it is.
With a list of your own you simply never have to pay for advertising. Instead, your job is to nurture those on your list with high-quality free content and offer them help if they need it.
Sometimes your product will help, and you make a sale. Sometimes you can help individuals and you sell advice. Sometimes you get to help with no immediate reward and put the law of reciprocity to work in your life.
The funny thing about list building is that everyone knows that they should do it but few actually take the action necessary.
That’s a shame because list building puts time on your side. Day by day people come to your blog but don’t sign up. Will they return? Maybe. Maybe not.
But if you put them on your list you can woo them back with helpful content.
You can develop a trust relationship with them. And trust leads to sales.
The other thing to know about list building is that it is a marathon, not a sprint. Like most good things it takes time. But time is going to pass anyway, so why not benefit from the visitors you get?
Look at it this way – if you get only 7 opt ins a day your list will grow by 2555 people a year.
It has often been said that every subscriber is worth between $20 to $40 per year to a list owner who is consistent in sending out content and offers.
Using the lower figure, we multiply $20 x 2555 to see that adding one widget (takes five minutes) can be worth a whopping $51,000.
And that is very much worth your time to do.
So how do you start list building from your blog?
Here is by far the easiest way to get started.
Add a widget to the top right sidebar. Eye movement studies prove that people look to the top right of a page often. This is why placing your opt-in form on the top right of your blog makes sense.
The form you see in this graphic took literally three minutes to create in Ontraport, my autoresponder of choice.
If you use Ontraport or a top autoresponder like Aweber, ActiveCampaign, etc. they will likely have a WordPress plugin you can use for this.
If you don’t want to use a form, consider offering a lead magnet. (More about this below)
Remember to consider the top right positioning for your lead magnet offer.
Method 2 – In Post Ads
In-post ads are ads that are embedded in the posts you write. Stunningly simple to do, these ads are simply an image with a link going to a product you promote, a squeeze page, lead magnet, webinar signup or anything else you want.
Here is an in-post ad from my blog that works very well.
And here is one from Neil Patel’s blog.
Using in post ads is easy. Simply use Canva (Canva is free) to create an image about 650 X 315 pixels in size.
If that confuses you don’t worry. Canva has a predefined size called “Blog Title” that works well. That is the size I used for the featured image of this blog post.
Next, you want to upload the image you created to your WordPress blog.
Then find the post in which you want to place the in-post ad. Go to the spot in the post where the image needs to be, and click “Add Media” in the editor.
Now select the image you want to add to the post. Once the image is in the post, click the hyperlink tool in the WordPress editor and add the link you want. This can be any link you like.
Many times it will lead to a squeeze page or affiliate offer.
Click Update to update your post and you are done!
In-post ads can help you build your list and make more sales. Completely passive, a reader only clicks the ad if they are interested. And interested clickers are the ones who take action!
Find out how Content Marketing can best work for you with this free report.
Method 3 – Category Landing Pages
A Category Landing Page is simple to create and powerful for your marketing. It is simply a page that someone sees when they click on the “categories” listing on your blog.
Most blogs have a category page that simply lists out all the posts for that category. Not terrible, but not great for you or your reader.
Here is a “normal” WordPress category page.
A marketing Category Landing Page does a much better job of helping the reader while putting your best foot forward. In fact, a good Category Landing Page can help you build your list!
Method 4 – New Traffic Sources
A major marketer is fond of saying that traffic is like milk – when you need it you just go to the store and buy some.
And he’s right.
In today’s world driving traffic is easier than ever. Yet most still struggle.
That’s understandable. Just Google any term you like about driving traffic and your eyes will instantly glaze over with offers, many of which sound too good to be true.
Because they are.
Rather than focus on “massive amounts of traffic” I encourage clients to be both patient and surgical.
Will Content Marketing Work For You?
New methods of traffic getting come along every year, sometimes every month. These are rock solid methods that work.
Here are two examples.
You already know that content marketing and blogs are popular. But did you know you can place ads on blogs in your niche (pretty much any nice) for a very low fee?
It’s true, and a site called Buy/Sell Ads is making it possible.
Here is a screenshot of their “getting started” area.
Another overlooked method is Google AdWords. Yep, Google.
The fact is, Facebook is killing Google in the advertising space. And that means Google is getting competitive again. If you have ignored them based on old information, take a look at them again. You might just like what you see.
Method 5 – Lead Magnets
If you want to make more sales, build your list faster, and never feel like you are constantly “pitching” for people to buy, then you need to fall in love with lead magnets.
I’ve written before about what lead magnets are and how to create them. In fact, I have a two-part series on how to create them. Click here to read them when you are ready.
But here is something that many people overlook about lead magnets … you need more of them than you might think.
If that sounds like bad news, it’s not. In fact, it’s good news. Once you know how to create lead magnets at will, you will be able to create them in a day or less. Sometimes much less.
But your competition won’t bother. Most people marketing online create a lead magnet and stick with it, figuring they have done their job.
But not you! You are a marketing machine, able to crank out lead magnets at will!
Here’s how to decide how many, and which, lead magnets you need for each product.
- Make a list of the benefits people get from your product. In other words, what’s in it for them? How will they be changed by owning the product you promote?
- Create a lead magnet for each of these major motivators. Make sure you lead magnet is very clear about ONE of the main benefits of your product. Then recap the other benefits on the last page of the lead magnet.
- Tailor your advertising to reach people who want that ONE benefit and offer them only the lead magnet that aligns with your advertising. Your advertising message must be consistent with your lead magnet offer for your marketing to work.
- Also offer your lead magnet on your blog. Use in post ads and links in the text inside your posts. Be sure the topic of the post aligns well with the lead magnet. You’ve created interest with your post and the reader’s interest in your lead magnet will be high when they click the link.
So there you have it, five ways to monetize your blog. I hope you enjoy it. Even more, I hope you take action on what you read. Because in Content Marketing as in other things, those who take action win the race.
If you are not sure where to start, let me suggest list building as your #1 step.
If you are still not sure where to start, let’s see if I can help.
Allow me to end with this question …
Which of the five is your favorite method?
Leave a comment below so we can discuss.