|Where are you headed with your blog?|
First, you have to produce good content. Content that people want to read or see. Your content could be writing, it could be videos, photo journals, great graphic designs, anything you want - but it has to be great.
Next, be a social maven. Facebook and Twitter are the two places to concentrate on in the beginning. You can add other social sites as you progress. Be active. Produce status updates on Facebook. Tweet on Twitter. Share your blog posts on both. Share pictures. Comment on other Facebook updates. Like updates. Retweet tweets you like on Twitter.
Once you've established a routine on Facebook and Twitter and you've started to build friends and followers, set up a Facebook Fan Page. Get the LIKE button widget on your site. Get a Twitter button on your site, too.
Learning to become an Internet marketer is well worth your time. There are thousands of people that would love to know how to be proficient at it. Use your blog as a learning tool. Seek out new gadgets, widgets and tools. Bookmark them and collect them. I guarantee you someone is looking for what you just found or what you just learned. That is worth something.
Now that you've been producing content, you've learned how to be a better Internet marketer and your following is growing, you want to look for other venues for your writing or content. If you produce funny videos, look into Funny or Die. Funny content, try Cracked.com. There are a number of other sites that will pay you for content. You just have to keep looking for them.
Sites like Helium, HubSpot, Squidoo, SharedContent, Associated Content, etc. all offer revenue sharing. But your content is buried on their site and if anyone finds it and clicks on the ads, you get half of what the ad click was worth - which could be pennies. These sites may buy you a coffee over the course of a year, but you won't be making a living.
There are three venues you can take your work.
You can write for a site for free. If they have lots of traffic or big name recognition, this can be used as a "resume" item for your next gig. I picked up a gig from writing my America's Got Talent show recaps and reviews. AGTNews.com asked if they could use my content. There is no compensation, but my articles show up on AGTNews.com - the number one TV show of the summer.
Take on work that pays a commission or may be for low pay. I just landed a deal doing Internet marketing for a company. It's straight commission, but it gives me a chance to prove what I know about Internet markeitng. I'm doing exactly what I do every day, just more of it.
The next step is once you've proven your success somewhere, you can demand a price. "Look what I did here. If you want that, it will cost you _______."
You can do the basics on your blog to monetize it: Google AdSense, AmazonAssociates, eBay, Affiliate Programs, etc. I haven't had a lot of luck with those. I make some money, but I can see where huge traffic is the key to making money with those. In the meantime, I'm trying to get lined up with sites that pay real money for content, doing the Internet marketing and working on taking content and turning it into an eBook that I can sell. I'm also looking into teaching blog classes or Internet marketing classes via Skype or another webcam platform like UStream.tv.
On the Internet, it is not like having a job and getting a paycheck. You have to create multiple revenue streams. You make some money from your ads, you might be able to sell ads on your site, you write for someone else. you sell your Internet expertise to someone, you can teach people via webcam, produce an eBook, create and sell merchandise. There are no limits to how you can generate money, but you have to get one in place, make it stick, then move to the next revenue stream.
No two people will follow the same path. It all depends on the skills they have developed and how aggressive they are at selling those skills or the content they produce.
One thing I've learned is: Just be there. Produce content. Be active in social media. Share. Comment. Like. You will never know when and how things will develop. You can pursue opportunities, however, by just being out there, things will eventually come your way. The more you do, the more you'll start to see: Where could your blog take you? And how?
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