How can you make money with a blog? After ten years of blogging, I share my revenue models: I earn money with blogging in these eleven ways.
Today (March 8, 2019), it is precisely 10 years ago that I started blogging. It was 2009, and hardly anyone had a blog, let alone making money blogging. However, in 2019 it is perfectly possible: earn money with your blog. There are various possibilities.
Affiliate marketing simply means that you can earn money as a blogger if your visitors buy something from a webshop where they came through your blog. Example: I share a hotel tip for Norway in this blog. I also link to the hotel on Booking.com. If a visitor clicks on that link and then books the hotel, I receive a commission on it. I have to be a member of the Booking.com affiliate marketing software program and make a special link for the hotel. Many large webshops, such as Bol.com, also have an affiliate program. Worth using this if you write a lot about the products they sell!
NB I only promote things that I have genuine confidence in, for example, a hotel where I have had a good night’s sleep or a product that I use myself. I get paid through the affiliate link for the promotion I do for these things. The visitor will not notice any difference and will not pay extra.
Sometimes I am approached by a company – or I approach a company myself – to write an article on a topic that appeals to both of us. Example: This article about positive travel was created in collaboration with Better Places. They asked me to write about my impact as a digital nomad. Very relevant to me because I am a digital nomad. And Better Places thus gains a greater reach for its pursuit of positive travel. Such a sponsored post also includes a link to Better Places. I will then receive a fee for writing the article, the link, and the range that I offer.
Sometimes a company approaches me for a link in an existing article. The article was already there. The link could be an addition to my readers and an addition to the company. Case in point: I wrote this article about road tripping in Provence last summer. Six months later, Interhome, a provider of holiday homes, approached me if I could put a link to Interhome in the article. This is relevant as I also stayed in a holiday home in Provence, and recommend this to my readers. Interhome is an extra tip. I am getting paid for such a link.
Digital nomad in Provence
The same trick also happens on social media, whether you have a blog or not. A company can approach me if I want to dedicate a post with a tag to their product or service. Sometimes this also happens in addition to a sponsored article. For example, I not only wrote a blog about Provence with a link to Sunny Cars, but I also posted twice on Instagram with a tag to Sunny Cars. This is part of the deal, but you can, of course, only get paid for the social post.
A nice opportunity because you make followers extra happy with this: a giveaway. A giveaway means that you give away something from a company to your followers. This, of course, provides the company with nice publicity, and your followers have a chance. But what’s in it for you? You are not going to ‘just’ promote companies. Of course, the company must match your blog, and – depending on what you can give away – a fee is customary. After all, you offer the company a platform and often mention a link to the company. So I charge a fee for this, as it was a sponsored article. If there really is no budget, I sometimes want to advertise on social media for free. But of course, only if it really suits my brand.
In 2009 I started blogging on my own site. In 2013 I started freelance blogging or paid writing for other websites and companies.And of course, I could never have done this without my blogging experience for my own blogs. Immediately a new opportunity for bloggers: rent yourself out as a freelance blogger to third parties. Incidentally, I was also able to become a part freelance PR consultant through my blogging experience. As a blogger, I can not only blog, but I also understand the ‘blogger world.’ Something very valuable in the world of PR!
As a blogger, you have experience with blogging. Why not develop a blogging course to teach others how to run a blog too? Or about your niche, such as traveling entrepreneurship? I know many more bloggers who offer online courses, such as Tarinda on Instagram, Wanda on hiking, etc.
For example, I offer the students extra value (they receive the e-book as a gift). I offer other people the opportunity to order the e-book instead of taking the course. This way, everyone can choose which learning method suits them best. Chantal also offers an e-book, but this e-book is free. She does not earn directly with it, but the e-mail addresses she collects for this are, of course, very valuable.
My latest revenue model: people can travel with me! Or rather: female entrepreneurs who also want to work from abroad can join Female Workation. I started this project with my business partner Chantal because we both love traveling and entrepreneurship and know-how valuable it is to surround yourself with like-minded people. That is why this year, we are going on workation to a destination to be determined. Other bloggers could also offer a trip that suits them and their target audience. Are you a hiking blogger? Organize a hiking trip! Are you a food blogger? Organize a food tour!
Finally, as a blogger, you can also earn money by organizing an event at the end of 2016. The event is also a fun way to meet like-minded people and includes a closing drink. We didn’t make any money with it, but it was certainly fun: seven editions took place.
I blogged for five years before I started earning my first euros. Partly because it was simply not such a ‘business’ at the time as it is now and because you first have to invest before you can reap the benefits. I don’t believe you can start a blog and make money directly from your blog. After all, you need to reach to earn money. Without your visitors, you are nowhere! No one will click on your affiliate links, and companies will not pay you because you have no reach. So don’t forget that you have to (continue to) put time and effort into your blog to make money blogging.
And never sell your soul. In the long term, this will cost you dearly. Be transparent and alternate commercial content with non-commercial content. Above all, your visitors must continue to like it and benefit from your blog to come back.