When looking for new ways to make money online, the decision to create your own site and build up a member/visitor base is always a good one. Today I will show you how to create a video / entertainment site of your own, while setting up the necessary advertising to turn it profitable. Way before there was all of this video content available, one of the first areas I started making money online in was with freebies, celebrities and video entertainment area. Now, putting all of these methods together and utilizing the free resources at hand, you can create your own money generating entertainment site.
To give you a basic idea of how you can setup your new video entertainment site, I will use the CollegeHumor layout as an example. The key points I will focus on are Building Your Site, Adding Fresh Content, CPM Advertising, Tell a Friend Forms and Newsletter Subscriptions. I have marked several advertising and viral linking methods on the image below.
Building Your Site & Adding Content
For this article, we are going to focus on building a site around funny videos. There are already hundreds, if not thousands of funny video and humor sites out there. The main purpose of all of them is to gain the attention of the user and keep them coming back to the site. In the end, they make money by offering free content and getting paid every time banner ads are displayed. The longer a visitor stays at a web site, the more money there is to be made.
We all know that everyone loves watching videos online and there are already several huge sources that can provide you with free content. Just head over to any of the big video sites like YouTube, DailyMotion or MetaCafe and start grabbing content. These video sites want to get more viewers, and are giving you their “embed” code to place the banners on your site. Since you are grabbing content directly from their site, you don’t have to worry about copyright issues from videos or having to host them on your servers. To make your life easier, these sites already have the videos indexed and broken down into categories, you can easily create multiple categories or new sites based on each different category.
To keep your web site updated with new videos, simply visit these video site often and add new content, or visit the “What’s Hot” categories and add the most popular videos to your site. As your site continues to grow and gets spread around, you should start seeing some nice free traffic coming in through your free search engine listings. Once your site gets larger and established, you may want to host your own videos.
CPM Advertising on Your Site
Once you create your video entertainment site, you are going to try and build the site around your content, along with premium placement for advertisements. In the CollegeHumor.com example above, you can see they have a 786×60 skyscraper on top and a 300×250 banner on the side. Because of the massive traffic and branding of CollegeHumor, they are able to sell their advertising direct and on a CPM basis. Not all of us have this same branding and traffic power, so the next best solution for us, is to place CPM banner advertising on our sites from companies like CasaleMedia, ValueClick Media and CPX Interactive. If you are unable to get approved by any of these CPM networks, you can also place your regular affiliate network offers on the site. (In addition to cpm advertising, you can also play around with contextual advertising, such as Google Adsense. Placing adsense above or below video content has proven to perform well.)
– CPM Networks I Use: CasaleMedia, ValueClick Media, CPX Interactive
CasaleMedia is a more premium network and hard to get approved with. ValueClick Media is one of the largest and easier to get approved with. CPX Interactive is the easiest to get approved with, but also offer the lowest cpm rates.
Tell a Friend Forms & Social Network Marketing
Below the main video content, you should have the option for users to embed the video (if you are hosting your own videos) or link back to your web site. Offering your users the ability to link to your content, will not only give them something to add to their MySpace page, (thus sending more visitors back to your site) but it is also one of the greatest reasons to create a video site… people love to send funny stuff to their friends. In addition to social bookmarks and linking, you should also add a Tell a Friend form, which enables the visitor to send an email to a friend, with your web site url and funny video link. There area few TAF affiliate programs that will pay you to add a tell a friend form onto your web site, where you will get paid every time the form is sent. The ideal placement for a tell a friend form is right below the funny video or funny picture content.
– Tell a Friend Networks I’ve Used: TAFMaster & OptMedia
Building Up Your Newsletter
Creating a newsletter for your web site is crucial to it’s growth. In most cases, people will visit your site for a few seconds, then leave. If you offer them a newsletter subscription, you can have them coming back to your site daily. In addition to sending out the latest content added to your web site, you can also feature ads or free content of the day. In most cases, this can be any type of freebie or trial offer from an affiliate network. You can send out mailings daily, once a week or once a month. Sending out daily would be best for traffic as long as you are providing quality content and mailings.
– Mailing Provider I Use: Aweber
In addition to the methods I listed about for earning revenue and increasing traffic, you can also link with partner web sites (check webmaster forums), run “free stuff” (cpa offers) sections on your site, create a forum around your site where users can submit content or even offer your own image/video hosting service. The options are limitless, and each will help in establishing your new web site’s presence.
Before jumping into the video entertainment area, make sure that you spend some time to research other sites and what may be your next competition. There are thousands of sites out there fighting to get top position in search and trying to build a visitor base. If you can create a unique or useful service around video entertainment, you might just be able to create the next hot video portal like CollegeHumor.com, Break.com or EbaumsWorld.com.