You know what’s great about money? You can use it for lots of things: eating, clothing children, giving to charities that matter to you, paying for the mortgage every now and again. Pretty flexible, huh? I thought I’d write one for those of you wondering how to make money with social media (be that blogging or beyond). For the rest of you who are thinking, “it’s not about money,” just skip this one. It’s okay.
For the rest of you, a note up front: never wring your hands about charging for experience. Your mechanic doesn’t. Your dentist doesn’t. Your housepainter and landscaper don’t.
Make Some Money
Make Money With Ads – There are a few ways to do this. You can write a blog, build all kinds of content value, do all kinds of work to get a big audience, and earn money with either a standard CPM (cost per thousand) advertising rate, or CPC/CPA (cost per click and cost per action) rate by sticking ads on the site. This is a slog. You can make money doing it, but it’s one of the slowest going and hardest ways to make money. You need some serious volume to make it pay off. The other downside of having ads all over your site is that people complain that it looks messy and cheap. Go sparingly, if relationships matter to you.
Make Money With Affiliate Marketing – Affiliate marketing is when you sell a product that’s not yours and not actually in your possession. For instance, I am an affiliate for the Thesis WordPress Theme, created by Chris Pearson. I’m also an affiliate for Teaching Sells, a program on how to build educational content projects created by Brian Clark (aka copyblogger). The first program is paying pretty well. I haven’t done enough with the second to talk about it yet. Affiliate marketing is really worth checking out, if you have the chops to write about products and/or help your audience know what’s useful and what’s not.
Make Money Helping Others – I get about four requests a week from someone asking me to set up their blog for them. That’s not my ideal client, but it might be the perfect project for you to make some spare money and be helpful at the same time. Does your website have a “work with me” page or a “how I can help” page? Why not? There are plenty of people who might be able to use the skills you have to offer, but they don’t know the system for working with you.
Make Money Banding Together – I see lots of solo players out there who’d do well to get together, complement each other’s skill sets, and go out and make a business. The other thing I see a lot of are people who are great at marketing using the new tools, but who don’t have anything to market. Go find a business that needs you, locally or otherwise, figure out pricing, and get to work. Being solo is fine too, but there are lots of times when putting a partner or a collaborator or another external element into the race makes all the difference in the world.
Make Money Creating Products – This might be the most difficult (but most rewarding) way to do it. You could potentially package your own information and sell it yourself. Or maybe you sell information plus a service. Or information plus a service plus a solid product like software or merchandise. There are lots of ways to get at this, but don’t forget that it’s an option. Just make sure the products are worth something.