These days, we see more creative ways to capitalize on blogging as the digital space expands and grows more complex. It is no longer just a journal to share your experience, thoughts, and feelings with the online community. Instead, it’s a way to share your knowledge, expertise, and experience with compensation (if you are smart about it). Therefore it’s critical to have a solid plan in place. You can’t just wake up one day and say to yourself, “Ok, I want to make more income. I’ll start blogging because it seems the easiest way to start.” Then you read some articles and pray you’ll be making money one way or another. Successful bloggers work extremely hard, consistently produce high-quality posts, and know how to market themselves.
This article will expand on ten strategies to monetize your blog and earn passive income. Although blogging is relatively easy to start, it’s becomes challenging to find a competitive edge to earn good money because of its low entry barrier and crowded bloggers.
Before you dive into reading ten different ways of earning with a blog, keep this mental framework in mind:
- Stop thinking about monetization. Reframe your mentality towards added values and target audience
- Find a niche to connect with that audience
- Commit to a personal productivity plan
- Select and leverage marketing channels like social media
Now to ten ways to get that extra income!
1. Coaching and Consulting
It seems like everyone’s trying to become a coach nowadays, offering personal advice on topics ranging from increasing income, managing personal finance, maintaining work-life balance, or starting a business. It’s your task, then, to stand out from the noises.
Take a pen and paper. Start with the brainstorming process.
Brainstorm as many ideas as you like within your talent stack (see definition of talent stack). Then pick one as your niche, develop a roadmap for your customers, and the desired output they can envision for themselves if they complete your coaching lessons.
For example, financial coaching for mom-to-be: In six months, you will learn all the basics of mastering your household finance and become an efficient “momager” who can balance your household expenses with little headaches.
Another strategy you can work on to resonate with your readers is to improve your storytelling. This strategy will enhance your vulnerability in a journey filled with challenges you overcame. Most people relate to a story rather than a rigid guideline or bombastic promises. Once you get your authentic story to the readers, they will start coming to you to learn more. Your words have touched them. Afterward, you can leverage your experience and knowledge to offer coaching lessons. Again, make sure you are an expert at the subject. You don’t want to be a wannabe who patches different sources from the Internet into a coaching session for your clients.
2. Digital Products
E-commerce digital products yield better sales with a blog. Blogging brings potential customers closer to understanding your brand and your products’ concrete values.
People love reading about how to use a product and what they will get out of it to fit into their daily life. For example, you can make an instructional video (vlog) or write a detailed blog about using digital planners to plan trips abroad or special occasions. Present the message on the added values clearly, which saves time and hassle. Or you can pitch them on how to use digital stickers in an everyday journal or note-taking to spark creativity and festivity.
Many online coding and design boot camps take the same approach. They offer their content, insights, and lessons in the form of short blogs to build trust and authority on the subject before students are convinced to sign up for their courses.
3. Physical Products
If you are selling camping gear, you may want a blog dedicated to educating your readers about the best camping gear and all the components that make the niche stand out. Incorporate the niched value you offer. Don’t just offer camping gear. Too broad and cliche. Offer a category to meet a need.
Hone in the unique aspects of the topic in your blog. For instance, discuss eco-friendly and easily disposable camping utensils; you demonstrate the importance and where these products can be used in your blog with detailed instructions and examples. Make it convenient for your readers to have space to imagine how they can use it to fulfill their needs, and they will continue to come back to your blog to learn more!
4. Affiliate Marketing
There is no digital world if you haven’t heard of the concept of affiliate marketing. It exists in multiple formats such as social media posts, YouTube videos, and unsurprisingly, blogging. Think of a salesperson who gets a commission every time he successfully promotes a product. Companies will look for you once you have the number to back up your influence. So, as usual, niche up your blog. Build a habit of writing and promoting a post every day to drive traffic to your site, and no sooner than later will you find yourself increasing your income threefold by promoting products on your blog.
You are not under as much pressure to make a sale as a salesperson. Instead, you can focus on driving value home to your readers by envisioning yourself using and benefiting the product. Make sure you affiliate yourself with a product you trust and envision using. Otherwise, your writing will fall flat, having to keep promoting something solely because you are receiving a pay bump.
5. Ebooks Selling
Many successful bloggers see themselves generating a massive amount of profit through ebooks. There are many ways to put forth an ebook for your audience. Through email marketing, blog article link, cold calls, networking – give your potential clients a sneak peek or part of what is in your ebook; as they are hooked, present the rest with a link to your ebook.
Ebooks don’t have to have a niche. Before you decide to write an ebook and link it to your blog, conduct a quick survey to assemble the content the readers are looking for (you can use Typeform or Survey Monkey).
Next, plan the structure of your ebook. Writing a book can be overwhelming, but you will get there if you break it down into smaller manageable parts and commit to finishing the role every day. Don’t make the mistake of writing your ebook right away. Planning is crucial in the process. Organize related content into one theme or one chapter.
After finishing your ebook, you can hire a book cover designer for your ebook. Then, start marketing your ebook on social media channels, including Quora, Reddit or IndieHackers. The best way is to offer free tips and guidance, show proof (even better!) of yourself achieving it, and make it measurable. This way, you present yourself as a credible writer and expert on the matter at hand.
6. Online Courses
Although many sites make online courses with minor hassles, such as Teachable or Udemy, offering online courses with no mediator is the best way to control your income. Like coaching, you are flexible in structuring your courses and the medium you deliver.
It’s best to offer courses related to your blog’s niche to get the best response rate. Establish yourself early on as an authority on the subject with detailed articles and interactive Q&As with your readers. However, you should not offer online courses right in the beginning when your blog has not yet gained traction. Instead, drive traffic to your blog first by offering free courses or content. Then, once you amass a certain following and observe that your readers trust you and want to learn more, you can offer relevant online courses.
7. Subscription/ Paid Membership
You are probably familiar with the subscription box model from Amazon, Netflix, Ipsy. Guess what? You can do the same thing with your blogging business. Readers are always hungry for exclusive offerings and content. Imagine if you can persuade 100 customers to sign up for an exclusive membership for $5; that’s $500 a month. You’ll have to have a niche blog that few can compete with and offer insights because online content is broad and saturated. If you can’t provide something that targets a specific audience and meet their aching needs, your readers will probably look elsewhere. Once readers feel like they can obtain much value out of your blog, you are bound to increase that subscription by the month.
If your goal is nonprofit or you’re not ready to deploy the above monetization models, you can always maintain your blog by asking for donations for starters. As long as you show that you work hard to give away valuable content and generate measurable values, your readers will see through this and be willing to chip in. There are some WordPress plugins to start a blog with a donation already set up.
The key to running a donation blog is to consistently communicate with your potential donors and ensure your key messages and values resonate with them in every post.
9. Sponsored Posts and Reviews
Sponsored posts can earn you a good bit of income. Some bloggers earn $15,000 – $20,000/month on sponsored posts because they work with well-known brands to review or promote their products. Before reaching that level, you will have to churn out a good amount of high-quality blog articles that drive substantial traffic for brands to start noticing. So make sure you’re an expert at your subject and produce consistent articles every week.
10. Freelancing Blogger
In-demand freelance bloggers can earn about $250 per hour. That is $2000 per day! Don’t just stop writing persuasively; brushing up your skills on social media, SEO, psychology, business strategy will make you a competitive writer that brands are dying to hire. Being a freelance blogger grants you chances to apply for challenges with different companies without focusing on one brand, maintaining a website, and producing posts relevant to that brand every time. You can write blogs for emails, landing pages, UX, or tutorials. The opportunities are limitless.
Want to learn more about passive income other than blogging? Check out here for more ideas!