Ahh, I know we all do “this” for so many heartwarming reasons. Some are here to change the world, inspire greatness, or provide useful education.
Others want to make you laugh (or cry) or fight for a cause.
No matter your reason, after hours, days, weeks, and years of plonking yourself down at the keyboard and spewing your brilliance on the screen, you start to think about what you are getting back.
Of course, there are the heartwarming reader comments, and be able to see ALL THE SHARES (those boost our egos big time) and the ability to create a tribe of loyal readers can often fill our soul. . but what is filling our pockets?
Last time I checked, I couldn’t pay my electrical bill with samples of yogurt. . .
When push comes to shove, we all need to find a way to create income, and I am betting that if we lifted the hood on your blog machine we might find a few spots to tweak and adjust so the coins can start to trickle in.
Yes, you sell something. Even if you don’t think you do, you do. Or at least you have the ability to. It’s time to define what you sell, and then make that public for all to see.
Visit your work with me page right now… just pop over, real quick like.
oh, you don’t have a work with me page. . . herein lies the first problem.
A work with me page is a “FOR SALE” sign on the junk sitting at the end of your driveway. It is the sticker on the package of cookies, or the fancy tag hanging off the fancy lamp in the fancy store. EVERYTHING needs a price tag, even YOU.
Now, how many details you share on this page is entirely up to you and how you want to run your business, but here are a few tips:
- define the key products you offer (sponsored posts, reviews, twitter parties, etc)
- If you don’t want to publish prices, state a minimum value to have a starting point
- include previous work when you are trying to get new opportunities – link to brands you have worked with or your portfolio of projects
- State your mission. What kind of work are you looking for, and what is important to you in delivering it?
And please, please, please remove the “contact us” box from this page. No one likes those things, and sales should be a personal experience, not a form to fill out. Add in your contact information and encourage companies to reach out.
(Need a few tips on what to do to GET the sale? Read this)
2. PRIORITIZE THE MONETIZED
There are about a bajillion places to get distracted when you work online. Facebook pings, funny cat videos and, Pinterest (like, all of it) and it is going to take some strong will power to keep yourself focussed on the RIGHT stuff.
- Do your sales work in the morning. By sending out pitches and pre-qaulifying emails first thing, you have the chance to answer questions and negotiate before the end of day. Having it fresh in an inbox in the morning also gives it a better chance of being dealt with right away!
- Focus on the work that is bringing you revenue NOW. As bloggers, we have a million things that we do every day to “gain exposure” and “build our brand” These are great, and useful, but make room for them AFTER you have completed the paid work. Not only is this more professional, but it means YOU WILL GET PAID sooner.
- Focus on assets you OWN. Build the assets that have the greatest ROI back to you. If you have ads on your site, make sure you are writing and building the views. If you work affiliates, prepare content to support those affiliate links, and re-use them again and again. By building the assets that are giving you income already, vs the ones that aren’t, you will see a quicker increase in your monthly revenue… obviously 🙂
(still looking for ways to be productive and not distracted? Read these tips!)
3. Reclaim Previous Customers
Selling to a previous client is ALWAYS easier than acquiring a new one. Spend a few moments of each day going back through previous sales and see if there is a new opportunity you can present to these clients.
- Provide quarterly updates to your advertising contacts letting them know of any changes, or great moments on your site. Remind them you are there and working hard.
- Check last year’s invoices- who were you working with 12 months ago, and what were you doing? Perhaps it is time to reconnect
- Follow up on leads that died. If you have emails that were never returned (or, egads, that YOU never responded to) it is NEVER too late to follow up!
4. Re-discover Your Assets
As much as focussing on the assets that are making us money is a priority, I am betting there are a few “lost” assets that you COULD be making revenue off of, but just forgot about.
Grab the paint can, and start dusting off some of these items to see if they can get to work for you:
- Newsletters and e-lists. Whether you are selling advertising or just using these to boost your content, this is a great way to keep your content in peoples minds AND create revenue. If you aren’t using these… do it NOW.
- Social handles – your twitter, facebook, instagram, pinterest AND youtube account can ALL make you revenue. While it is good to focus on your best, your other accounts should also be strong. Get in there, freshen them up and start seeing them as PRODUCTS, not just broadcasting and networking tools.
- Youtube AGAIN. If you aren’t here… you are missing the boat. Figure out what YOU search on youtube, and see if you can provide videos in that genre. OR, even better- see what your KIDS are searching! Be sure to ad advertising to your channel and optimize your videos for greater reach!
- Cross pollinate: If you have multiple URLs, now is the time to cross promote, if applicable. Get your readers from <there> over to <here> and you will increase your numbers.
5. Focus on Your BEST
On your blog you probably have half a dozen posts that do well every single month. These guys have been picked up by SEO, or pinterest or something else that is continuing to drive heavy traffic. And these posts are your SUPERSTARS.
So, let’s make them DANCE.
- Add affiliate links (as applicable) into your best performing posts. Linking from amazon, share-a-sale or other programs can help BOOST your income when you need it.
- With your best posts, it can be beneficial to add in additional ad placements INTO the post content. Don’t panic, your readers will hardly notice! Much like commercials, we are becoming accustomed to skimming over these. With a few extra adds in your post, AND heavy daily views, CHA-CHING, money is in the bank baby!
- Write MORE of these posts. If these are the things that are working, see if you can do it again!
In the end, if you are wanting to run your blog like a business, you need to treat it like one. Don’t spend your time getting distracted on Facebook, focus on WHAT WORKS. Create great work, get readers on it, and find a monetization plan that works for YOU!