You know the basics – write compelling copy, attract a large readership, land a movie deal and watch your blog make millions. However, in spite of your best efforts, Meryl Streep just isn’t dying to play you in a movie. While you wait for Hollywood to call, here are five tips on alternative ways to make money blogging in the meantime:
Write for Local Businesses
Regardless of where you are, a quick look in the writing section on Craigslist’s job boards usually reveals at least one local company looking for a blogger. The average rate of payment is about $20 per post and you only need a writing sample to apply. It’s a great way to make a little cash while getting your name out there— and a few witty comments can lure followers to your main blog.
If you don’t see any advertised posts, call companies and offer your services. If you get more than one client, make sure they remember to pay you by sending them invoices. You can use programs like Quickbooks to keep track of invoices and your other finances.
Kick Start a Publishing Campaign
With a publication dead, you can take your most memorable posts from the screen to the page. Get ready to tell your social network why your blog deserves to be a book and launch a crowd-funding campaign to get it there.
Once it’s published, the book will attract more readers to your site, and its sales might even make you a bit of cash. According to Kickstarter, the fundraising site has earned over $50 million for publishing, and it has helped aspiring writers to successfully launch over 5,000 projects.
Share your Opinions
Devote a corner of your blog to product reviews, and watch the free samples roll in. Companies like Products for Review put bloggers in touch with organizations that want their products reviewed. Although you won’t be paid for the review, these posts are an effective way to attract more readers to your site — review posts tend to have a lot of frequently searched keywords and it is easier to climb the search engine ranks with these words than commonly use phrases like screaming toddler or fun day at the beach.
Find a Niche
The Internet is full of mommy blogs, in order to stick out you need to find a niche. Figure out what’s different about you and monetize it. Using Amazon’s Product Advertising API, you can add links to any Amazon product, and when your readers purchase that product, you earn commission.
Whether your niche is computer repair, toddler development or bicycles, there are tons of relevant Amazon products that you can link to your posts.
Private sponsorships, also called direct media buys, are when a company buys advertising space on your page. In order to sell your space, you need to convince the advertiser that you have the traffic they need.
If you have a lot of local traffic, try hitting up local restaurants or stores for a sponsorship. To seal the deal, prove to them that money spent with you is more effective and more targeted than marketing efforts in other spheres. If you have traffic from all over the country, look for a mail order company that appeals to your readership. For instance, if you attract young granola moms, advertise cloth diapers. If you attract the Baby Einstein crowd, find a sponsor who reflects that vibe.