Hi everyone, today I thought I’d chat about all the different ways I sometimes make money from my blog. Often when we talk about blogging, we tend to just talk about sponsored posts-but the key to any kind of longevity is having as diverse an income stream as possible. Especially when we have months like last month, where my inbox was quiet and it seemed *everyone* was on holiday. Of course, I don’t make money by each of these methods every month (if I did, I’d be a lot richer!) but they help keep things varied….
1. Sponsored Posts
Let’s get the obvious ones out of the way first. One way I make money is from sponsored posts. I won’t go into lots of detail on this but would definitely say that having several blogs has really helped in this respect-and I can often offer posts across multiple platforms!
As I now also run Chronic Illness Bloggers (a blog outreach service for those with health issues); I will often ask brands if they’re looking for other bloggers after working with them on a blog-and recommend my network.
Of course, there are two types of sponsored posts: SEO led (where the company is looking for a link back) and PR-led (where the brand is looking for more general awareness.) I don’t tend to do much of the former anymore and have been trying to focus on more long-term relationships; such as my current relationship with invoice-chasing service Paysap. If you’re not sure about what to charge, read my ‘how much do bloggers charge for sponsored posts?’ blog.
2. Passive Income from Ebooks
My favourite method of earning is passive income through ebooks-as seeing an unexpected sale or two come in is lovely! I know bloggers do this through courses, but ebooks are much more style personally and I enjoy having something low-cost on offer for new bloggers.
I have two ebooks on sale: my Pitching Toolkit for bloggers looking to approach brands and my Grow Your Blog toolkit for those looking to boost traffic. I don’t promote them anywhere near as much as I should but do try to link to them naturally in posts and will notice a sale come through every now and again. I would 100% recommend everyone to have some kind of passive income project-and it doesn’t have to be a massive offering (I wrote my first ebook by spending 30 minutes a day over a few weeks). You can read my ‘How to create your first passive income download‘ which is not as American as it sounds-I promise!
3. Affiliate Income
Everyone talks about affiliate income and I’ll be honest, I don’t make a huge amount from it. Every few months I’ll reach the Amazon threshold or so; but what has worked better for me lately is direct affiliate relationships, e.g…
- My hosting service lyrical host (I have an affiliate link and you can get a 10% discount with my code BLOGLANCER)
- The Ultimate Blog Bundle (This is a great bundle of resources for bloggers that is on sale for a short period of time in October each year-look out for it; I buy it each year!)
- Ecourses like Emma Drew’s Ecourse
One thing I have got a lot better at in relation to affiliate income is to actually reach out to affiliate companies on AWIN and actually asking for review products. This has led me to write better content using affiliate links and lead to some successes (I FINALLY met the AWIN £25 payment threshold after many years!)
4. Instagram Ads
I’m not a big Instagrammer but I have started to earn a little bit of my income from the platform. After criticising Tribe (I still don’t agree that you have to upload the picture and wait to see if it’s accepted; it really does encourage people to work for free) I have ended up having two jobs through them-which restored my faith somewhat. I have definitely started to invest more time into my feed and charging separately for Instagram posts.
One of the most exciting potential revenue streams for this year has been talks and workshops. As an ex-teacher, I really miss helping others and I’ve had a few opportunities (both in terms of being a health and blogging blogger) to give talks, join panels and workshops. I’d have never thought of this revenue stream before, but it’s really exciting and does play to my ‘teaching’ skill set-so I’m excited to see where it goes.
6. Freelance Writing
As you know, I also work as a freelance journalist (more on this here); but some writing jobs do come directly from my blog-so don’t be afraid to use it as a showcase too (especially if you cover a specific niche). I am also starting to offer brands content for their own site as an ‘add on’ extra when discussing blog work. Even if income isn’t coming in, keep blogging as it can really be a way to get your name out there!
And finally- ads! I don’t have any ads on this blog but on my main blog-A Balanced Belly- I run Mediavine ads. It’s only been my second month of running Mediavine and I’m really happy. I resisted ads for a long time, as to me, it had to feel worth it financially to potentially impact the look and feel of my blog. However, Mediavine gives you lots of control-I turned my ads down quite low immediately and still earned £160 in my first month. Yep, I could earn much more with a greater number of ads; but this feels like a realistic compromise.
I hope this post was useful. I know it might be useful to provide some kind of breakdown as to what % these play into my income-but it really does depend. For example, when I first launched an ebook, I made more from passive income than I do one year on.
When the blogging bundle was out in October, I earned quite a few affiliate sales; but I have had lots of months where I haven’t earned anything. Similarly, I’ve had a few months with NO sponsored posts but this last months has been manic!
The idea of the post isn’t to show lots of money can made from blogging (lots of us are content to keep things ticking over) but to show if you’re in a rut and things aren’t working for you, there’s plenty of other methods to try! So see which one works for you!