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StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Cashing In On Your Passion: Turning Your Blog Into a Business

Blogging is now a huge deal in the online world, and it’s fair to say that readers can’t get enough of the ‘written by the people, for the people’ format. Their honest content and down to earth style is seen as a breath of fresh air after years of glossy magazines with airbrushed models and columns written by journalists. The companies of the world have tapped into just how influential bloggers can be, which gives aspiring writers and bloggers the opportunity to earn money doing something they love. Many have even been able to turn it into a well paying full-time career. If you’ve been blogging for a while but want to push it to the next level and start earning some cash with your passion, here are a few things to bear in mind.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article
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Look Into Ways To Monetize

You can monetise blogs in a number of ways. The first and most obvious is Google AdSense, it’s completely free to set up, and there’s no hassle involved. The ads sit in your blog’s sidebar, and you get a little bit of money every time someone clicks on one. The main issue here is that unless you have a very large following, it probably isn’t going to make you a millionaire (or even enough to pay the bills) however it’s a little bit of extra income that can gained with no additional effort from you. Getting as many views and traffic to your posts as you can will bump these earnings up, so good promotion is essential. This information on Search Engine Optimization from Ignite Digital states that harnessing the power of search engines is one of the best ways to gain traffic. Along with Adsense, there are other affiliate schemes which work similarly, so do some research and find out which would suit your blog best. You usually insert a banner ad or a link within the text of your posts which earn you money for clicks, or a percentage of any sales made. The main way bloggers earn the majority of their income is through sponsored posts. These usually offer a generous payment in return for a link or mention, the only problem is they can be unpredictable. Because you have to wait for companies to contact you, you will probably find that some months you get a lot of work and others are quieter. If you plan on quitting your day job, you could do some freelance writing work from home during these times. This is useful as the work is almost always there, and you can pick and choose how many projects you take on.

Pay Tax

Once you start to earn money as a blogger, you are classed as self-employed, meaning you will need to pay tax on your profits. The exact process you will go through all depends on the country you live in- but it’s something that you will have to do. As they say, only two things in life are certain- death and paying taxes! Keep good records, if you spend any money on your blog as a business such as investing in equipment these can be deducted when it comes to tax time. Self-assessment is usually quite simple to do yourself, but you can always hire an accountant if you’re unsure.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article
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Boost Your Domain Authority

Because blogging is competitive when it comes to sponsored opportunities, you need to do all you can to appeal to these companies. Domain authority is one way to go about this, this is a metric which can show how much influence your blog has online. Companies will want to work with influential sites, and so this is something you can work on. Getting backlinks from other good websites can boost this, you can do this by asking other bloggers if you can publish a guest post for them. Include a link back to your site at the end and you get a good backlink. Putting out high quality and regular content on your blog will also help with this.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Making A Blog Your Business

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article
Photo courtesy of Pexels

Starting a business has never been easier and harder at the same time than in 2017. You see, the resources you need to start a company are available at the click of a button. Take a blog as an example. By signing up to WordPress and playing with the themes, it is possible to go live within half an hour. However, the hard part comes when you try to turn blogging into a business. Because the industry is saturated, it is almost impossible to stand out from the crowd and become a market leader. Well, it is until now. Here are the tips that will help you turn blogging into a viable business model.

Go Narrow

Going narrow has nothing to do with the shape of the blog. It does, however, have a lot to do with the content. Thanks to all of the sites on the web, there is an originality issue because the content overlaps. It is your duty, then, to try and be unique as possible when you come up with an idea for a post. Although it sounds easy on paper, it is devilishly hard when push comes to shove, which is why the content should be as narrow as possible. Why? It’s because the more specific it is, the more chance you have of being an expert. Also, there should be fewer articles online about fly fishing in Africa.

Don’t Put All Your Eggs In One Revenue Basket

Of the success stories you hear, most of them revolve around wealthy advertisers that funded the site. So, because it’s human nature, bloggers attempt to replicate this model to make money. It is worth noting that money for advertising is a viable option, but it isn’t the only one. To make blogging a successful business, there needs to be a variety of revenue options. For instance, don’t be afraid to sell products and services through the site. This tactic gives the customers the opportunity to spend money instead of only converting via a signup form. And don’t worry because it isn’t tacky as long as you don’t shamelessly promote at every opportunity.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article
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Choose A Good Host

There is a reason people want to know who the best WordPress hosting company is, and it’s because a host can make or break the business. Although you are the one in charge, they have the power to limit your ability to do business. It might not happen on purpose, but it happens all the same. Think about the cost, to begin with. A host might want a lot of money to play the hostess with the mostess, and you might not have the cash. Then there are the issues of security and support. A bad host could leave you open to attack if they don’t take online safety seriously, while some are not available to fix issues. Before you sign on the dotted line, you need a host that will cover all of the bases you find important.

Build A Community

Have you ever wondered why social media platforms are effective? If you haven’t, the answer is simple: they are a small community. Yes, people can talk to their favorite celebrities, but that is a bonus. The reason most people sign up for Twitter and Facebook is to interact with other users and check out shareable content. And, it is a business model you should try to replicate. If people can come to the blog and mingle digitally as well as consume content, they will have a reason to return. Not only is it as an excuse, but it is also a compulsion because people get addicted to interactive features.

Play The Long Game

One sure-fire way for a blogging business to fail is to expect too much too soon. Why? Well, it’s because the mentality forces you to make decisions that are bad for the business. The obvious example is changing the model after a couple of weeks. After six months or a year, there is an argument to re-evaluate your strategy to improve and expand. However, that isn’t the case after a short time as you need to give the blog time to grow organically. The most lucrative bloggers in the blogging industry make money now, yet that wasn’t the case in the first place. In fact, it can take up to 18 months to make enough to live off and be comfortable. If that is too long, then blogging isn’t the business for you.

As you can see, it is possible to make money from blogging, but you have to be ready to work hard and make savvy decisions.

StrategyDriven Marketing and Sales Article

30 Minutes To Build Your Freelancing Blog

If you’ve always had a soft spot for the digital world, you may be interested in embracing the blogger life. Bloggers work primarily online – although they can do their research and meetings offline too if this is necessary for their articles – and have found a way to monetize their writing hobby. Here’s a little hint for you, it isn’t the actual content that generates revenues, but the advertising that can be published on the website, as display ads or as part of a link building exchange – all in the sake of white hat SEO. So here’s how to build your perfect blog site in 30 minutes only.

StrategyDriven Marketing and Sales Article

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Time 0-5 Min: Get The Basics Sorted Out

Before you start writing, you need to consider how you want your blog to be called. This will be the domain name of your blog, which is the URL of your home page. Domain names are renowned for being extremely difficult to find, so if you need a little inspiration, why not try a domain name generator like this one. It’s a brilliant way to find awesome combinations! Additionally, you will need to sort out a server solution for your website – here for ideas – , as most blogging platforms only offer limited storage space for free. If you want to become a professional blogger, you’ll need to produce a lot of content; ergo you need a lot of storage space!

Time 5-10 Min: Shape It

Now, it’s time to be looking out for design and layout options. First of all, think about your logo, as a logo will make your blog appear professional. You can find plenty of affordable tools online to design your logo, or you can simply get in touch with a designer on Fiverr.com if you want a unique touch. You will find some great blogging platforms, such as WordPress, that offers hundreds of customizable layouts to give your blog its identity. Some come even for free, so in a matter of clicks, you can have the template you want.

Time 10-25 Min: Build Your Brand Message

It’s now time to prepare all the main elements of your blog: Build your brand online, as seen on the blog. You need to know what your brand is, which means you need to know what makes you unique as a blogger. Are you a mother of three talking about parenting? Are you a survivor of a disease who wants to help people recover their health issues? Define who you are, and make sure to explain it in your About-me page. Also, add a contact page with your blog-related social media platforms – which you need to create – and a contact form for readers who want to contact you.

Time 25-30 Min: Go Life

Last, but not least, your first post on the blog needs to be as good as you can get it. How to write the perfect blog? It’s simple. Focus on who you are writing for – for instance, if you are the mother of three mentioned earlier, it’s likely that you are writing to all parents, future, and present – to identify what your audience is interested in. It will give you the boundaries of topics you can discuss. And then start writing your first post! It doesn’t have to be long – 300 to 500 words is a healthy average. Finally, check your grammar before publishing!

Jeffrey Gitomer

A game plan to generate a thousand social media leads.

I have a goal and a plan to attract 1,000 leads in the next 30 days.

Six months ago I launched my Gitomer Certified Advisor program. It allows others in the coaching and training field to use my brand and sell my classroom training and my online platform along with their offerings – or by itself.

After a very successful (but limited) launch, I want to take the program to the next level and need to find interested and qualified people to do so.

THINK ABOUT YOU AS I TELL YOU ABOUT ME. Before I get into the strategy and actions I’m going to take, I want you to understand why I’m writing about the process. I want you to compare it to how you attract, how you prospect, and how you connect with willing buyers.

  • How do you get leads?
  • How do you prospects?
  • What is your strategy to socially involve and attract?
  • Is your personal platform strong enough to attract?
  • What is your social media lead-conversion rate?

The answers to these questions will significantly impact results.

BIG PICTURE: The strategy for this ‘attraction campaign’ is to use every form of social media and electronic outreach to find interested people, and offer them multiple ways to connect with me. The goal is to give information immediately without a barrier of registering or giving me their information. I want to get my messages BOTH responded to and passed along.

THE TARGETS: In order to get 1,000 leads, I am going to mass mail my contacts and connections AND specifically target existing coaches, existing sales trainers (corporate and independent), and anyone looking to start their own sales training business that wants to use the Jeffrey Gitomer brand to increase authenticity. As a Gitomer Certified Advisor, I provide them with the content, the brand, and the training to make it happen.

TIMED SOCIAL MESSAGES: Posting time and frequency are directly proportionate to the audience reached and their likelihood of response. From my personal experience, my social media consulting expert, Joe Soto, and the article, The Scientific Guide to Posting Tweets, Facebook Posts, Emails and Blogs at the Best Time in The Huffington Post, the best times to post on social media are as follows http://blog.bufferapp.com/best-time-to-tweet-post-to-facebook-send-emails-publish-blogposts:

Facebook. Best post times are between 1 pm and 3 pm Monday through Friday; engagement rates are 18 percent higher on Thursdays and Fridays.

Twitter. Tweet later in the day. Re-tweets on Twitter are higher at 5 pm compared to any other time during the day; the best times to post are between noon and 6 pm. This same study found that people are on Twitter 181 percent more during their commute. Think about it. Aren’t you more likely to be all about your life and how to improve it before or after work?

LinkedIn The Media Bistro suggests LinkedIn is most often used right before and after work hours (specifically on Tuesday and Thursday, but no one knows exactly (except maybe LinkedIn).

Blog readers read in the morning, with the ‘sweet spot’ being Thursdays around 11 am. But that’s a subjective opinion as well.

YouTube has no ‘best time.’ By comparison to others, its visitors are more search oriented, so I intend to be both searchable and findable. And my new video posts will go out to all my existing subscribers.

CRAP SHOOT REFINED: No one really knows. All messages are different, and all experts are flawed. (I’ve been proving that for years.) I believe that content is a bigger key than what time you post it. And key words will get you found. So that’s where I’m concentrating. I’m going out to my audience, and asking them to go out to their audience (re-tweet, repost, forward, like, comment, and anything else that spreads the word organically).

My overall goal is to generate at least 1,000 leads by May. You may think that is an aggressive goal, but highly achievable through social media and email. Generating 1,000 leads will create a pipeline that will lead me to one sale per day by June 2014.

And I am going to give you the complete detailed outreach plan for you to use as a guide to creating your own game plan for new leads – next week.

If you’d like to see the exact email and subject line I’m going to use, go to www.gitomer.com and enter the word ADVISOR in the GitBit box.

Reprinted with permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer.


About the Author

Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Sales Bible, Customer Satisfaction is Worthless Customer Loyalty is Priceless, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Red Book of Sales Answers, The Little Black Book of Connections, The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude, The Little Green Book of Getting Your Way, The Little Platinum Book of Cha-Ching, The Little Teal Book of Trust, The Little Book of Leadership, and Social BOOM! His website, www.gitomer.com, will lead you to more information about training and seminars, or email him personally at [email protected].