The Monetizer is a fan of rap and hip-hop, and thinks it's funny how the music often gets a "bad rap" (no pun intended). Sometimes it seems as if society, Bill O'Reilly and other individuals label the music as the root of all evil. Despite all the controversy and drama we see in the headlines though, rap stars can teach us money making bloggers and online monetizers a lot. Stars like Outkast, 50 Cent, Jay-Z and The Game all have taken successful rap careers and turned them into so much more, and seem to emphasize some common concepts which can be used when you think about blogging or creating online moneymaking ventures.
1) Rappers have money on their minds - Monetizer isn't generalizing here, but there's more than a few rap songs that mention the importance of money. Some people put it before all else. While this isn't the best way to live your life, if you're trying to make money online it should be your attitude online towards your blog, site or product. There are some who suggest when blogging just do it out of your passion for the topic and the rest will follow. However money won't be made without some strategies, analysis and implementation of ways to improve on what you're doing. Many rappers have this "I Get Money" mentality which keeps them adding income.
2) Rappers brand themselves or their group/record label - A rapper basically turns him or herself into a product, so when you hear the name 50 Cent or Jay-Z you start to not only associate it to music but their other items. Once the rapper has that "brandability" they become more valuable to advertisers. From there they can negotiate deals to pitch products or even launch their own. They don't just sell rap music and records, they create lines of clothing, their own energy drinks, go into acting, even have their own comic books, action figures and cartoons! How can you use this? With your blog you can build it into a brand. Once you have a "popular brand" it will become attractive to advertisers. You can begin to sell ad spaces on your blog to those wanting to advertise. You can also branch your brand out into a full website with more than just the blog. Think about adding a forum, sales pages of your personally branded items (T-shirts, buttons and other memorabilia), podcasting, etc. You can start with just the blog or site, but as you start to improve in terms of RSS subscribers, Alexa rank and Page rank you will want to find ways to expand your business/product.
3) Rappers diversify their income streams - Similar to #2, but this involves the idea that once a rapper has that brand recognition, they can turn it into a clothing line, record label or night club. This is one of the big lessons in online moneymaking and money blogs, to have multiple income sources. Rappers often go into producing as well and begin to build their own record label, and a stable of new artists, meaning more moneymkaers. Running just Adsense won't get you rich, unless you're doing it on many many sites and really working your butt off. To give you more of a chance at building online wealth, you'll need to implement several moneymakers. Another valuable part of the lesson here is that the more income streams you use on a blog or site, the more chance for higher profits returned.
4) Rappers often are helped by controversy - This is not to say you should go out and do a drive-by shooting to get your blog in the news, but you can take a page here from rap stars. Often there are rappers whose album sales are assisted due to their controversy. Kanye West is one example of a guy who hasn't commit a crime, yet has been able to engage in controversy. He spoke his mind about George Bush's involvement or lack thereof during a Hurricane Katrina fundraiser. He continues to be amongst the more popular selling musicians. Speaking your mind about controversial issues or blogging about something in a controversial fashion will often get you more attention. More attention often brings more comments, more readers, more traffic and more subscribers. Another example, pictured here was the big record battle between Kanye West and 50 Cent. Both of them released albums on September 11, 2007 in a sort of "contest" to see who could sell more. Sounds a lot like the John Chow vs. Shoemoney RSS subscriber battle that has gone on through October which surely has helped both guys out.
Some people believe that rap music is evil and rots the brain, however the Monetizer says we can learn a lot from it. Now this mindset and set of concepts doesn't just apply to rap stars, but it shows the mentality several rappers have used to create a great deal of wealth. There are professional athletes, business people and regular people all over the world who employ these sorts of creative ideas and make money. Start thinking this way with your online moneymaking ventures and you will adopt an entrepreneur's mindset towards your online moneymaking ventures.
...In the end it's like 50 Cent says though, we all "Get Rich or Die Tryin'".