If you’re just getting started on the internet as a blogger or simply looking for ways to add new revenue streams to your online business, you might be considering accepting ads for other companies’ products on your blog. There are many ways to do so and while the most common and easiest to implement is using large networks like Google Adsense it may not be as profitable as using direct advertising. In this article I will cover the most used ways to monetize a blog from selling ad space. I will also give the possibility to learn far more profitable techniques.
In order to make your blog attractive to companies looking for ad space I recommend that you consider carefully what kind of ads you accept, what the process and price is for purchasing a spot. It can be a good idea to have a page describing everything companies need to know about advertising on your blog. I found this example you can check out to see what I mean. I believe that creating an “advertise here page” which gives all details about your blog stats like traffic details, rates of advertisement space etc. is a good start. People visiting your blog may find it interesting and and excellent for advertising their products. Here the advertising page will do the job for you.
It is however important to keep in mind that in order to make good money from selling advertising space you’ll need to write posts to a profitable niche market. You see in order for anyone to make money someone have to spend money. You also need good traffic to really scale income from advertising. This is important to attract direct advertisers that are willing to pay you well as they need clicks and exposure. Quality content and good traffic are probably the two most important prerequisites before pitching for direct advertising. Choosing a profitable niche for a blog and attracting massive traffic are separate topics, and I recommend you participate in our free blog monetization training to get this right. In this 7 day training course you will learn the essentials of what I call the Blog Income Formula. You see advertising is just the initial and least profitable stage of making money from a blog. It is however a good place to start. In the Blog Income Formula Free training course we will cover the entire lifecycle and the detailed steps for turning a blog into a profitable business. Check it out if you need success with your blog.
Unless you have tons of traffic the income from ads will be limited by the space you have available for sale. This fact have lead many marketers to skip using ads completely and then they use the space to promote own products and top content on their blog.
If you choose to have ads it is important where you place them on your blog. You have to test and find out what is working with your site. On Tripwire Magazine I have ads on top of the side and on the right sidebar and in the beginning of every article. I have found this model effective and it may work for you as well.
Let’s investigate the options you have available.
Contextual ads normally suit blogs that have a particular niche topic best. This is especially true if the blog has some sort of commercial angle (ie. it has products and services associated with it). However it may be hard for blogs covering several topics or even have a general and overall focus.
Besides adding ads to your blog theme it is has also become increasingly popular to place ads in RSS feeds. The reason is that a lot of people use RSS readers to read their favorite blogs. AdSense offers RSS ads and you may try it out to see how well it performs.
Selling Ad Space Directly to Advertisers
Selling directly is probably the most profitable way if you are able to manage it your self. If you consider this option I believe one of the best solutions you can pick is this OIO Publisher plug-in for WordPress. It allows you to create ads spots and sell them automatically. If you’re interested then check out their site where you can try a demo.
Selling Ad Space Directly to Advertisers requires that you can find the advertisers and that you are able to charge them for your services.However if you manage it you will not have to pay others to do it and the entire profit is yours. Finding direct advertisers can be a tough job, but I may certainly be worth the effort. The key point you need to remember is to have a niche blog. With this I mean writing to a segment of readers with a specific interest. Know their needs and provide solutions to their problems. This will turn them into loyal readers that come back again and again. Loyal readers are much more likely to support you by clicking ads and buying stuff from you and the interaction you can get through comments is also what makes it really fun to be a blogger. Here’s a few tips.
1. Search for direct advertisers in Google.
Use Google to find direct advertisers for your blog. Search using keywords relevant to your blogs audience and see what kind of advertising links or companies you’re getting. The ads on Google show up in the right sidebar and above the search results. If there are any interesting companies you can decide to approach them through mails or contact form on their website.
2. Check other relevant blogs, forums and websites in your Niche.
We all visit other blogs which are relevant to our blog’s niche. It is best place to find direct advertisers for your blog. Keep on checking what kind of sponsors other blogs are getting and try to approach those sponsors through mail. These sponsors already have experience with direct advertising, so there are more chances to get positive response from them and Who is advertising on them?. These advertisers are targeting sites on a similar topic to you and are more often than not willing to test new sites that have relevance to their industry.
3. Use Social networking websites
Social networking websites are rocking these days. Advertisers, publishers, employers etc. are using social networking websites like twitter and facebook to find right blog and candidates according to their requirements. You can also tweet or post on Facebook about available Ad space on your blog. Or even create a fan page on facebook as it is currently one of the most effective ways to get social attention to your blog. Also consider integrating the facebook social plugins to your blog. There are chances that you get good results from such websites.
5. Visit Marketplaces
There are several popular forums and discussion boards where advertisers and publishers meet solely for the purpose of finding and negotiating advertising deals. You can visit Digital Point – Buy, Sell or Trade Forum, SitePoint Marketplace and Webmaster World Commercial Exchange Forum to find advertisers for your blog.
6. Write a page and a blog post about it
As I told you in the introduction it is a really good idea to add a page where you describe everything about advertising on your blog. Then it may be a good idea to write a blog post explicitly stating that your blog is now open for direct advertising. Reason for this is that your subscribers (RSS, email, feedburner etc.) will not know when a page is added. Writing a post will ensure that your subscribers notice. You may also write a post on how effective advertising on a blog can be and then do a product placement of your own advertising page at the right place in the post.
- Updated status of your blog like PR, Alexa rank, Traffic
- Rates of Advertisement space
- Payment mode
7. Online Stores and New Sites
It involves googling the keywords associated with any topic and not just looking at who was advertising but looking at what businesses were listed in the search results, particularly those below than you in the rankings. Some bloggers paid special interest in online stores who had a direct revenue from their sites and contacted them to see if they’d be interested in advertising – quite a few did. Many also noticed that new sites who were still getting established were also sometimes more willing to buy advertising.
Another increasingly popular way to sell ads on your blog is to look into text links. The best thing about text ads is that they don’t take up much room and still they are popular because they help companies build back links. Also depending upon the system you choose can have control over which advertisers you accept and reject .
One of the top companies in this market is text-link-ads It gives you great control in that you set your own prices and approve all ads before they are published. They also other players in this market as well however keep in mind that Google hates links that are placed commercially as they are a threat to their goal of providing relevant links. So keep this at a reasonable level.
Impression Based Ads
Impression based ads or CPM advertising pay a small amount for every person who views the advertisement. In a CPM campaign you sell a set amount of impressions. An impression is a single instance of an ad appearing on you blog. CPM-based advertising can be a cost-effective alternative to CPC deals and may be more suited for a company if the desired keywords are very popular and expensive. So in other words if you’re in a though competition market your blog may benefit from testing this option. Impression based ads won’t earn you much if you don’t have a lot of traffic but can be great if you do. The amount that they pays varies from program to program (and ad to ad) and is generally a fraction of a cent. You can find further advice and programs to use here.
Publisher & Advertiser Marketplaces
Publisher & Advertiser Marketplaces is also a great option but keep in mind that most of the solutions on the market take 25% or more of your revenue. Having said that it is still a very easy and effective way to find companies willing to pay for advertising space. I use buysellads.com to sell ad space and their solution allows me to add a an “Advertise here image when a spot is free. This is a great way to make potential advertisers aware of the opportunities on you site. This company is primarily operating in the design and web development niche and this makes it highly effective and profitable. You should look for similar solutions in whatever niche you have picked.
More profitable Blog Monetization Techniques
A lot of bloggers are already making a good income online and there is no reason why you shouldn’t do it yourself. The Blog Income Formula allows bloggers like you and me to quit the “nine to five” life style and become our own boss. However this is only the beginning.
An important point to make up front is that a blog is not a business model in itself and as such it is not making any money for you unless you build a business around it. However blogs with high quality content are great for building relationships, trust and attracting traffic and this is the foundation for building a business online. It is also why many large established companies have created blogs as supplements for their existing web sites.
A blog is what I call the traffic enabler and it requires hard work to become successful in this phase. It is worth the effort though if you get serious about building a business around your blog and implement a Blog Funnel. In my free blog monetization training I will go into details on how to get as much as possible out of each visitor by carefully planning what route and action the reader is expected – in other words by creating a blog funnel.
The real money comes from guiding your visitors towards the lower part of the funnel and turn them into customers willing to spend. Keep in mind that for you to make money some one have to spend money and you need to have relevant offers that solve immediate needs or solves the problems your visitors struggle with right now.