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Make Money Blogging in Your Spare Time

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Making money your blog is definitely one of the most exciting times for the growth of your site. Setting up your blog for the first time, getting your first post live, then seeing traffic coming through your site on a daily basis are all amazing things, but finally seeing all of your efforts come together and that you have built a web site / blog that can really make you money, now that’s amazing!

When it comes to blogging and making money on line I’ve had my fair share of everything. With ZacJohnson.com I’ve been able to generate over six figures per year through various methods, such as onsite advertising, affiliate products, partnerships and affiliate programs. Even better, my personal brand continues to grow each step along the way.

This post is all about making money with your blog and now I’m going to break down some of the best ways to start monetizing your blog, while not jeopardizing your user experience.

Best Methods for Make Money with Your Blog

As mentioned, there are plenty of ways to make money with a blog but you don’t want to get into any shady areas and you definitely don’t want to lose your audience just for a quick buck. Each of the methods mentioned below I’ve used on my own blogs and your audience may even benefit from them in the process.

Affiliate Marketing

Most of are already familiar with affiliate marketing,  but for those of you who aren’t it’s all about earning a commission on products or services that you recommend through your blog. For instance, if you just read a great book and mentioned it on your blog, you could use your Amazon.com affiliate link to refer sales back to Amazon and you will earn a commission on each.

The good thing about affiliate marketing is that it expands across nearly every industry and topic that you could think of for a web site. This means no matter what topic you write about on your blog, there are plenty of ways for you to monetize your content. You also don’t need to actually sell products or services to earn commissions, you can also refer leads to business or earn commission just for people to fill out short surveys or download games.

If you already have an idea for a site that would be a great fit for your site, go to their main page and look for an “affiliate program” link on the bottom section of their site. Most sites do have affiliate programs, but not all of them list it on their sites. To find more affiliate programs in your niche you can join larger affiliate networks such asshareasale.com that house thousands of different programs or search Google for “niche/industry + affiliate program” and you will have a nice assortment of programs to look through.

On Site Advertising

If you’ve spent a lot of time building up your site traffic, content and brand then you may be able to start selling on site advertising on your blog. This can be anything from product reviews, banners or newsletter promotions. Depending on your site traffic and niche, the price you can charge for advertising will heavily vary.

When selling advertising on your blog be sure to limit the amount of advertising space available. This will help you for two reasons. The first is that it won’t ruin your blog reader’s user experience and the other reason is that you can sell your advertising at a premium rate if you have less spots.

A great way to bring in new advertisers to your blog is to add an “Advertise” button or link to your blog. If you are having trouble finding advertisers for your site, take a look at your biggest blog competitors and see who is advertising on their sites. Send them an email and offer them a great deal for a test period to advertise on your site.

Creating Your Own Products / Services

The holy grail on blog monetization is creating your own product or service. If you are an authority within your niche and blog readers are continually coming to your site to hear what you have to say, then creating your own product is a great way to monetize your blog. When you have your own product or service not only will you be able to create something that your audience is interested in, but you will also be earning 100% of the revenue as well.

Some of the most successful ways to create your own product or service through your blog is with your own personal consulting service, creating a membership area to premium content and by writing an ebook with your best posts and content. Each of these might seem like they might not sell well on your site, but people pay good money to save time and benefit from quality services. This means, if people are coming to your site to read what you have been writing about, it’s very likely they would pay a premium for great content and services as well.

Starting Your Own Mailing List

All of the monetization methods above are extremely important and lucrative, but if you aren’t building a relationship and keeping your audience coming back for more, you are just another blog on the web. Starting a newsletter or mailing list for your blog is the absolute best way to grow your audience on a daily basis and giving you the ability to contact all of them with the simple click of a button.

I’ve been using Aweber for many  years now and they are one of the most trusted businesses online for email and newsletter management. All you need to do is throw a signup form on your site and ask people to join your newsletter and you are ready to go. To increase the amount of signups to your mailing list, you should create a free product or guide that you can give away to anyone who signs up. Not only will this allow you to offer a quality bonus to your audience, but it will heavily increase your conversions as well.

Through the use of a newsletter or mailing list you can keep your blog readers up to date with any new and exciting events going on at your blog, while also letting them know about any new premium services or products you are offering through your site. All of the biggest bloggers in the world and thanked mailing lists as their number one method for growing their brand an monetizing their sites.

Always Treat Your Blog Like a Real Business

Starting a business on the internet is extremely cheap and easy, but getting your site to the status of a real business that makes money is quite an accomplishment. This means you need to treat your blog like a real business. Blogging is one of the slowest forms for making money online, but when done correctly it can turn into a multi-million dollar business. Just take a look at TechCrunchHuffingtonPost andPerezHilton… all million dollar businesses run off the WordPress blogging platform and scaled in size and monetization to make them what they are today!

If you haven’t already, get setup with your blog and a free domain name, then shoot me an email with any questions you have about getting setup. I can even set you up with a free premium theme to get you on the right path.

Free Domain Name

This is it! We finally completed the “Seven Days of Blogging: My Personal Guide to Blogging”. If you missed any of the previous posts in the series, be sure to click here and you can find a link to all of the previous topics and discussions. Good luck with your blog and keep me updated on your success!

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Blogging

7 Ways to Compliment Your Written Text Content with Online Video

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Creating articles and blog entries is essential to your website. It engages people and gets them to want to know more about your brand. If done well, you are offering quality content that makes people want to come back for more. But, let’s face it. Text alone can be boring sometimes.

We are visual by nature, so adding a beautiful picture or graphic to your text can help bring out the essential aspects of a post and help create hype for your brand.

Better yet, use video. Video is the most engaging format of media available today as evidenced by statistics on video marketing. Users respond to it 66 times more often than text because it adds a visual element to your content. It is also more shareable because you can add social media share buttons or have people share it on YouTube.

  • Video marketers get 66% more qualified leads per year.
  • Video marketers achieve a 54% increase in brand awareness.

Below are some practical ways that you can incorporate video within your text to complement what you’re saying while not interrupting your main message.

1. Use humor.

Using humor in videos is one of the best ways to captivate your audience through video. Whether you were using talking head and interviewing people on the street about what they think about your products or creating hand-drawn animations through a whiteboard presentation, using humor is one of the best ways you can attract an audience.

People love to laugh, and they want relief from the stress that they face every day. Studies show that people come to the internet through mobile devices many times looking for funny videos. Use this to your advantage by adding funny videos to your page to accent your text.

2. Create an engaging thumbnail.

Remembering that people are visual, make sure that you create an engaging video

That emphasizes what your video is about. Having bright colors or a logo that attracts their interest will help but always make sure to capture one of the most interesting aspects of the video. If you use actual video footage for the still shot, take a little extra time at this point to think about how to create an interesting thumbnail. The thumbnail will get indexed as an image in Google and also on YouTube when people look for content.

3. Try whiteboard animations.

One of the best things about using whiteboard animation is that you can tell an entire story of your brand or explain how to use your products or services. Through this systematic and detailed approach, users will see a hand drawing out the information that you want to show them, and you can build a whole city by showing the hand what to draw when you create your whiteboard animations.

People love whiteboard because perhaps it reminds them of their early days in school when teachers drew out things on the chalkboard. It may also be reminiscent of some of the old cartoons that were built on simple frames. Whatever the case or the motivation people love whiteboard animations and you should love them too if you’re a business owner. They allow you to take the viewer from start to finish all the way to your call to action. Also, studies show it keeps their attention longer than other kinds of video and may, therefore, make them stay until your call to action.

3. Create infographics.

Infographics were developed about 10 years ago, and they combined some of the best elements of informational text with graphics that appeal to someone’s visual interest. What’s more, you can make an infographic into a video using some simple technology and software such as you might find on the simpleshow website. Check out some of the video examples here and see what you might want to do to bring your content alive through whiteboard video for infographics.

5. Place the video at the top of the blog or website entry and describe the information in the video below it.

Some of the psychology involved in sharing videos that work is the placement as to where you put them on the page. If you put the video at the top of the page, it is going to be the first thing they see when they enter your website and therefore they will assume that it is one of the most important aspects of your site. Put it in your blog as well to draw more attention and make sure and use keywords in your video description so that you will pull in people from both YouTube as well as general search engine traffic.

6. Try a cartoon with frames and text written below.

Have you ever thought about creating a frame by frame cartoon the way they used to do it? You can do this through whiteboard animation. Take a look at some samples of whiteboard animations and decide for yourself which one might be the most effective with your branding. You’re entertaining people when you use white boarding, and that is the key to keeping their attention. People want information, but they also want it given to them on an interesting platform and format. You can communicate anything you need to communicate attractively and dynamically that will keep them coming back for more.

To learn more about the many different ways individuals and brands are creating hand drawn cartoons and using them within whiteboard videos, click here.

7. Use video testimonials and use captions to illustrate what people said.

Create character animations of people talking and recommending your brand. You can use dialogue from customer service emails or from the feedback you’ve received on social media so that it will be authentic. Then use characters to deliver the dialogue.

Remember you want to increase the visual interaction and draw more customers to your website, so whiteboard animation is a great way to do this while keeping their attention and staying on focus. Customer testimonials should talk about the positive aspects and why the people liked your brand so that they will want to share this with others.

There are many ways that you can build your brand by adding video as a main component to your content. This keeps the material interesting instead of just putting out text, which can be boring to people over the long-term. You can use these techniques on your blogs or websites and other sites by cross-advertising across your platforms using the same keywords throughout.

This is a part of building your brand and integrating your marketing strategy so that video becomes a focus of what you do. This will greatly increase your impact and this is backed up by research.

Think Visual!

Whatever you do, think video and think visual, because the future is about handheld devices looking for videos that tell them what they want to know fast. If you can meet this need you will be on the top of the heap in the near future as we move toward an AI dependent and video mobile-focused world.

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Blogging

3 Examples of How to Promote Your Brand with Targeted Blog Content

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Blog content works wonders if you know how to effectively promote it and rank it in the search results. The main problem is that most bloggers and content creators are simply focused on creating content and then not putting in the time, work, and effort to actually promote. This is a direct path to failure for many reasons, such as:

  • Wasted time being spent on publishing 500-word articles
  • Not having evergreen content you can refer to time and time again
  • Scattering your SEO and link building efforts all over the place

A better way to create content for your site or brand, is to make sure you are covering as much content as possible, while also staying niche specific and having a call to action in the process. It’s also best to publish content that has at least 1,500 words of content, and is something that you can refer to over and over again. Even better, is if you can include some industry resources, references, and graphics, which can legitimize your content and also increase your chances for picking up some additional backlinks and social shares from regular site visitors.

With all of this in mind, let’s take a look at a few different brands that are doing content creation correctly, and how you can also grow your brand, blog, and business using these same methods.

Before We Get Started

Before we jump into the list of sites and a few examples of winning content for each, we should cover a few valid points when it comes to blogging.

WordPress makes blogging and content creation extremely easy. There are already more than 300 million WP-powered sites and blogs on the internet today.

There are also many different ways to create content, share it online, and also make it rank higher and more effectively in Google.

Before creating content for your site and clicking the publish button, you should have a solid content creation and marketing plan.

To learn more about the various components of effective, be sure to check out this start a blog guide.

Examples of Brands Using Evergreen Content

One of the most important things to remember when looking at different online companies and brands, isn’t just how well the content they create is performing, but also how they are creating content for their audience. Content is great, but if it doesn’t provide value and funnel new leads or sources of revenue into your business, it’s pretty much just more clutter being added to the one billion+ active websites online.

Making Job Search and Business Opportunities Easy

JobCompass is a website that covers the concept of making money in the world today, while also creating niche-focused content that targets a select group, demographic or audience. You will find a wide range of list and resource articles on their site, but you will also find some useful ones like this one on  where to find jobs for pregnant moms.

The revenue generation on the site comes from a range of sources, but it’s mostly based on affiliate marketing and lead acquisition. This makes it ideal for JobCompass to continually come out with as many useful resources and money making opportunities on their site, while also having their own recommended (likely an affiliate offer) method as well.

With a ton of evergreen content in place, and audiences all over the world always looking to make more money, this is a win-win situation for both JobCompass and their audience.

The Business of ‘Business on Social Media’

Facebook and Twitter are multi-billion dollar companies, but the business of marketing and growing a brand on social media collectively is even much larger. When you look at the many different brands and businesses in the world today, they all need to be active and growing on social media. Throw into the mix that there are plenty of social media platforms out there and new audiences to reach daily, it just seems like a never ending supply for demand and advertising dollars.

One such company that focuses on social media marketing services, is Famoid. Through their social media growth strategies, brands can reach new audiences without needing to create their own marketing an content creation plans. Instead, Famoid does the work for them.

On the Famoid blog, you will come across a wide range of case study articles like this one on gaining traffic on Pinterest. They also have a bunch of similar ones for Twitter and Facebook, while also profiling other brands and strategies they are using as well.

This is ideal for two main reason. The first, is that it creates content for the Famoid brand and allows them to reach new traffic. The second, is that Famoid creates these case studies, brands read it, and then sign up for their services when they realize they don’t want to put in their own time, work, and effort.

Again, win-win for the brand and end customer reading the content.

The Business of ‘Business on Social Media’

Facebook and Twitter are multi-billion dollar companies, but the business of marketing and growing a brand on social media collectively is even much larger. When you look at the many different brands and businesses in the world today, they all need to be active and growing on social media. Throw into the mix that there are plenty of social media platforms out there and new audiences to reach daily, it just seems like a never ending supply for demand and advertising dollars.

One such company that focuses on social media marketing services, is Famoid. Through their social media growth strategies, brands can reach new audiences without needing to create their own marketing an content creation plans. Instead, Famoid does the work for them.

On the Famoid blog, you will come across a wide range of case study articles like this one on gaining traffic on Pinterest. They also have a bunch of similar ones for Twitter and Facebook, while also profiling other brands and strategies they are using as well.

This is ideal for two main reason. The first, is that it creates content for the Famoid brand and allows them to reach new traffic. The second, is that Famoid creates these case studies, brands read it, and then sign up for their services when they realize they don’t want to put in their own time, work, and effort.

Again, win-win for the brand and end customer reading the content.

Free Content, Expert Names and Valuable Content

People use the internet for a few different reasons. They either want to buy something, find information, or to be entertained. If you can cater to one of these demands, then you can definitely create a business or revenue stream in the process.

As mentioned earlier, there is plenty of demand for making money online and entrepreneur/business marketing. Sticking with this content, we can now take a look at Mixergy.com and see how they are using a few different methods to reach new audiences, create killer content, and make money in the process — while also leveraging the power of industry experts and well-known entrepreneurs from around the world.

First off, Mixergy is subscription style site that is focusing on helping businesses and brands grow, while also getting the valuable information they need to do so. It was also created by Andrew Warner, who does most of the content and interviews for the site. You can see one of his most popular interviews here.

Once you take a look at the site, you will notice it’s mostly a landing page that makes the user enter their info before getting access to the content. It’s brilliant and I bet it works amazing. But again, it’s also a perfect example of how a website can provide real value to their audience, while also benefiting in the process.

Some site visitors will leave when they see the call to action, others will sign up for free. Of those who do subscribe, some will then upgrade to the premium plan. It’s all a numbers game, and the more valuable content Mixergy continues to create, the more value they will offer, and the more their business will grow.

The Best Blog Content, Doesn’t Look Like Blog Content

From a business standpoint and from a marketing perspective, blogging doesn’t necessarily have to mean sitting down and writing boring text content that ends up wasting your time.

Just take a look at the few different examples above of how these brands are using blog content to not only offer value, but to also increase lead generation and growth in the process.

If you don’t have a solid content creation and marketing plan, blogging isn’t something that you should be wasting your time on. The internet is way too saturated with content, and if you are just pushing stuff out there to hope it ranks and is being seen, it simply won’t happen.

To learn more about how to create fully optimized content that works in search and for lead generation, be sure to check out my list of top SEO analyzer tools that you should be using in 2019.

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Blogging

5 Reasons Why Your Business Should Be Writing Blogs Right Now

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Blogging is a great way to get your website noticed and generate more traffic and sales. 86% of companies use a blog on their websites, so you can’t afford to miss out.

You may think that blogs aren’t that important, or that they don’t make a lot of difference to your business. But they are a lot more effective than you may think.

Blogging can increase your lead generation by 67%. Whether you’re a new or established business, this can prove invaluable. Here are 5 reasons your business needs to start writing blogs now.

1. Generate Traffic

Blog posts add more content to your website and thus attract more people to visit your site. Creating web content means that you can direct your readers to other parts of your website.

This means you can write a post about one of your products or services and use yours as an example. When readers discover this, you have a greater chance of boosting sales.

2. Boost SEO

When it comes to marketing your business, SEO is king. SEO determines where your website ranks on search engine results. In turn, it impacts how many people find you.

There are a lot of things that affect your SEO. Things like a fully optimized website and using the right links can make a real difference. Hook Agency says that having the right SEO can double or even triple your traffic from search engines.

Once you have your website sorted, blog content is next. The more blogs you write, the better the SEO. Use popular keywords and terms that your audience would search for. This will make your posts rank higher on search engines and get customers your way.

3. Create a Brand Voice

There are a lot of company blogs out there which may be interesting, but they have no distinctive voice. When they have no voice, they all blend into one.

But if you write blogs with a specific voice, you make an impression. When people can recognise your writing style, they recognise your company.

Set featured imageTry to give your posts a personality. They are more fun to read and will keep people coming back to read for more. They make your brand more trustworthy and encourage people to choose your brand.

4. Showcase Your Services

When it comes to your business, you’re the expert. You know all about your own products and services, so use your blog to show off this knowledge!

Explain what you offer and what you can do for your customers. People want brands to know exactly what they’re selling and it makes you more reliable.

It also serves as a free way to advertise your business. You can write as much or as little as you want on the services you’re offering.  

5. You Stay Ahead of the Curve

When you give your website a blog, you’re also future proofing your business. Those who don’t have blogs are lagging behind and missing out on a lot of great opportunities.

It gives you the chance to be creative and boost your business in a whole new way. You can also add other media like videos and photos to your posts to boost your SEO even further.

Chances are, you’ll find blogging very fun. Regular content on your site gives your business a firm presence and will keep you on the SEO map for longer.

Your Business Needs to Start Writing Blogs Now

Now that you know how important it is to start writing blogs for your business, it’s time to get started. It’s a fun creative challenge which can lead to more traffic and more sales.

Want to start a blog on your website? Check out our services and see how we can help you set it up.

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