If you’re thinking about starting a blog, or if you’re at the very first steps of your brand new blog, you may wonder whether you’re ever going to profit from it.
I bet you’re enjoying this whole brainstorming, writing, strategizing, learning, learning, learning… At least, I do. A lot. But there comes a time when you have to decide if your blog is going to keep on being that wonderful creative new hobby you spend your free time with – or if you’re actually going to make any money out of it. And even live from it. A dream, right???
As you probably already know, it is more than possible to live from your own online business. And blogging can be an online business. You only have to want it real bad. And work for it. Real. Hard.
There are 3 main ways to make money blogging:
♥ Setting ads on your page
♥ Working with brands / Sponsored posts
♥ Affiliate marketing
Although there are more and more bloggers who consider a fourth way to make money blogging – your own product creation -, I’m not adding it to this list on purpose. Not because I think that it’s a bad option. I even believe it’s the best one on the long run. But I don’t think that it’s the most appropriate option if you’re just about to start blogging – or if you’re at the very early steps.
So let’s focus on those three other options, shall we? Although all of them are perfectly good methods, I have to confess that I have a problem with advertising and working with brands. Let me tell you why:
♥ Ad Networks – It may sound too silly of me, but I just don’t like how ads look on my blog. I have fun writing, giving tips and helping other women who, like me, don’t want to work at a corporate job but to have their own business. Now, I know that, in order to do that, you have to sell your content, products, services or whatever you do. But I want my readers to be able to read and – hopefully – profit from my posts. Without these annoying ads all around the content.
But that’s just me. If you don’t have a problem portraying ads on your blog, go ahead and let me know how it works out for you 😉
Just remember that you have to have a lot of pageviews to really profit from ads, so don’t get discouraged too soon!
♥ Sponsored Posts – I find working with brands is a perfect fit for fashion, cosmetics, essential oils, makeup and all types of blogs which work well with product reviews and sales. My personal issue with that is that I wouldn’t like to review anything I don’t love. I’d like to write and give my own opinions. Not the opinions I’m paid for. And I wouldn’t feel comfortable either to give negative reviews to someone who’s paying me to. So, not an option for me either. At least until I find the perfect brand! But again, that’s my experience and my way of doing things. I know bloggers who live from their sponsored posts, and who love it to review products from other brands.
♥ Affiliate Partners – I have to admit that I spent a lot of time not even wanting to know what affiliate marketing was all about. I attended some courses about online marketing and affiliate networks, but it all sounded way too abstract to me. How could I reach those “networks”? What or who were they? What was affiliate marketing again??
What is affiliate marketing?
It’s as easy as earning a commission from other companies’ products. And how can you do that? Letting your readers click on a link which contains your personal tracking code. If anyone clicks on your link and ends up purchasing the product or service you are promoting, you’ll earn a percentage – it varies from company to company – from the sales. Easy, right?
Imagine you’re writing about a product or an online tool you love. Your readers will expect a link to check them out themselves without having to google it, right? Well, the only thing you have to do is insert your affiliate link instead of the general link. And you can do it on your blog post, your weekly newsletter or your social media shares, whichever you feel most comfortable with!You get your very personal affiliate link once you sign up for an affiliate program – which can be as easy as filling up a form where you’re required to leave your name, website URL and the details of the account where you’d like to get your commission. Isn’t that awesome?
You get your very personal affiliate link once you sign up for an affiliate program – which can be as easy as filling up a form where you’re required to leave your name, website URL and the details of the account where you’d like to get your commission 🙂
Why do I love affiliate marketing?
When you blog, it is essential to be yourself. To keep your voice. And affiliate marketing allows you to do it – that is if you only offer affiliate links to those products and services you love and use! Otherwise, it wouldn’t be much different from ads and sponsored posts, would it?
Besides, if you were going to include the links anyways, why not earn money at the same time? Think about it:
♥ Who are you taking advantage of? Nobody.
♥ Who are you helping? You’re giving your readers immediate access to products and services you use and love.
♥ Who’s paying for those affiliate links? The company whose products you’re linking to. As easy as that. Not your readers. Not yourself. The company is paying. Sounds about fair, right?? They were going to profit either way!
Where can you get more info about affiliate marketing?
Everything I’ve learned about affiliate marketing is thanks to my friend Tasha’s online course Affiliate Marketing for Bloggers.
Tasha, who blogs at Designer Trapped in a Lawyer’s Body, gave up her partnership at her law firm to blog full-time and she’s only been blogging 3 years! Now she wants to teach other bloggers how to grow their blogging income through affiliate marketing so that they can earn real money by pursuing their passion for blogging.
She offers her online course Affiliate Marketing for Bloggers twice a year (autumn and spring) to help you jumpstart your affiliate marketing efforts. If you’re looking for an online course which is both comprehensive and easy to follow, I totally recommend Tasha’s course. So make sure you join her waiting list to receive any updates about her new opening!
Now, there surely are more courses about affiliate marketing, but this is the one which made me understand how it actually works, and how easy it is to implement in your blog and social media posts. Just try it out and tell me what you think 😉
So let me recap why I love affiliate marketing:
♥ No cost for your readers.
♥ No cost for your readers.
♥ No cost for you.
♥ Profit for the seller.
♥ Profit for you.
♥ It allows you to keep your voice and be yourself.
♥ And, on top of that, it’s super easy to implement!!
Whichever option you choose to start making money with your blog, be yourself, keep your voice and stay true to your readers. And never ever recommend anything you wouldn’t recommend to your best friends 🙂 Happy blogging!!
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