I think there must be a lot of blogging buzz going around, because all of a sudden I am getting a lot of questions about how I started earning money on my blog. If you are not a blogger, but think you might be interested in blogging, you might appreciate my post “A Blogger's Life Exposed.” It includes a lot of blogger's advice on whether or not blogging is right for you.
If you are already a blogger, but are having a hard time getting the traffic that you would like, here are some of my best tips. For a little background, I have been blogging for a little over a year and a half now. My stats last year at this time were 35,000 page views per month, and last month they were just under 400,000. I still haven't reached my goal for this summer, but my traffic has seen a significant increase over the last year…and I don't think it was by accident. Here are some of my best tips:
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It's Not My Blog. You can choose to ignore this tip if you would like, but I would not be true to myself if I did not include it. From the beginning, I have tried to include God on my blog journey. Anytime I get in a rut, or get overwhelmed, or need inspiration…I turn to him and say, “It's Your blog, please direct me!” The times that I remember to thank God for my successes and humble myself to ask for guidance, have always been my most viral posts. God knows me and he knows what my talents are (as well as what others are searching for), and He has always been the greatest assett to my success.
Group Boards. My traffic took one of its' biggest turns for the good when I learned about Pinterest Group Boards. If you aren't part of any, you need to be! Let's say you have 1,000 Pinterest followers but you join a group board that has 50,000 followers. Everytime you pin to that board, it's as if you have 50,000 followers all of a sudden. Group boards rock, period. If you know nothing about them, Google it.
Blog Conferences. I have been kicking myself that I didn't attend blogging conferences earlier than I did. I just couldn't ever justify the money, plus I figured there was enough free blog info out there that I didn't need them. WRONG. My first blog conference paid for itself times 10! Before the conference I knew maybe a couple of bloggers that I communicated with and bounced questions off of. After my first conference I became a part of several blogging networks and groups on Facebook and have learned SO MUCH from my fellow bloggers. It's also be a great place to ask for favors (repins, shares, etc.) and to support other bloggers in return. Even if I hadn't attended classes and met with awesome brands, the networking alone would have made my first conference worth it.
Pictures. Okay, it's probably fairly obvious to my readers that I'm not a professional photographer. But if you looked at some of my first posts you would be shocked at how far I have come! Pictures are everything in the blogging world (especially now that Pinterest contributes to most of blogger's traffic). I used to take my pictures in a hurry (sometimes in poorly-lit rooms or late at night), just so that I could get my post up. This is a very bad idea. Nothing good comes from a post with poor pictures. When I need a really good photo for a specific post and I know I'm not going to be able to find a free one that I like, then I use Fotolia or Dollar Photo Club (Dollar Photo Club has better pricing).
Link Parties. I have ran out of time for daily link parties, but they were a big part of getting my name out there in the beginning. Basically, you link up a post of your own, and then visit the other links and get to know other bloggers. Be sure to leave comments, bloggers love comments. And don't be one of those people that link and leave. Networking is valuable!
Ad Networks. It might be worth it to either learn Google DFP yourself, or pay someone to manage it for you. Basically, it allows you to backfill all of your ads and allows the highest paying ad to take the spot.
Sponsored Posts. Blogging can be expensive if you are wanting to do it for money (conferences, equiptment, etc.), so finding ways to help offset the costs (and bring in some revenue), will help keep you from getting burned out. Don't think that you have to have a certain amount of page views to get sponsored post opportunities.
- Social Spark (soon to be IZEA, you'll want to sign up for both). This one is first because it's my favorite. It seemed like it took awhile to get a campaign when I was a new blogger, but stick with it! Once I got my first campaign, I have been getting them monthly ever since, and they are my best-paying campaigns (typically over $200/post with my highest being $400).
- Linquia. You need to be based in the USA and have at least 10,000 total social followers.
- BluePrint Social. For creative bloggers who have been blogging at least 6 months and who post at least twice a week.
- Mom Central. For this one, they do not pay in cash, but rather with Amazon Gift Codes on top of the free product that you are reviewing. I have done a few fun campaigns with them.
- Weave Made and Pollinate Media. I have done a few campaigns with Pollinate and they have been so fun. Both are owned by the same people, but Weave Made was created for bloggers with less than 20,000 monthly views.
- Massive Sway. I'm new to this one, so I haven't done any campaigns yet, but they seem to have some really fun ones!
Are you a member of a company not on this list?
Now I want to hear from YOU! What are your best blogging tips?