To Blog or Not to Blog about Making Money Online? That is the question...
The Monetizer continues to see differing opinions about the whole MMO niche and whether it needs anyone else to speak on it. There are those who will tell you it's a lousy niche to be in, because competition is high and there's thousands of MMO blogs already. They'll tell you that there's no room for growth and no reason to be talking about such a crowded blog topic. They'll convince you to give up on blogging in the niche before you've even given it a second thought!
The Monetizer tends to take a more optimistic and opposite opinion. While the niche may be crowded, there's millions of internet users with more added daily. To think that these internet users immediately flock to John Chow, Shoemoney, Darren Rowse or the other big names is preposterous. If you play your cards right, you'll be able to build your own audience.
Playing your cards right means 2 things:
1)Bringing something new to the MMO niche - Put your own very, very unique spin on Making Money Online. New ideas will attract a new type of audience. Remember there's plenty of internet users to attract, so target unique audiences. (example: an MMO blog devoted to senior citizens might be one way to go) Currently, there's MMO blogs devoted to people trying to get out of debt, MMO blogs for kids, and MMO blogs for newbies. Consider an untapped audience for your new ideas in making money online.
2)Establishing good SEO early on - This can be the toughest aspect of MMO due to competition. You'll need to find ways to really compete with the major players in order to attract your own audience. Consider going after money making terms that the others aren't looking at. There's plenty of internet users who love money making survey and offer sites, so that's just one aspect to consider for search engine positioning.
This blog post is mostly food for thought and hopefully inspiration to not give up on a niche before you even try. There's no reason to fear the MMO niche if you feel you've got plenty to say about it, and can bring your own unique perspectives. It will take many parts hard work along with creativity to get yourself noticed, but the end results are well worth it!
No matter what your blog topic, the Monetizer agrees on one thing. It should be something you have a good feel for and won't get bored with. A lot of MMO blogs tend to copycat the rest and eventually suffer from blogger's burnout. If you wisely choose a subject you really have a passion for, you're less likely to fade into the blogosphere, and more likely to establish an audience who can make you money!
(Note: You may have also noticed a less frequent posting rate here at the Monetizer blog. Due to some recent issues, posting won't be daily here, but still expect more of the same great Monetizer rants, content and info about Making Money Online!)
To Blog or Not to Blog about Making Money Online? That is the question...
You'll find it repeated on many of the make money online blogs, the concept that your blog is a business. As a business you want the blog's audience and income to grow. Someone like John Chow did this successfully, going from about $300 a month to $30,000! I'm a big fan of Google Adsense, which everyone uses these days to produce income, but I'm always looking for ways to add even more income to blogs I run. Eventually you may find that your blog's earnings hit a plateau, and you want to increase them. While it could included more advertsising and marketing costs, you can also consider ways to expand your blog as a website. Here's 4 ideas to consider.
1) Add a forum - The obvious choice, and a great idea for all those who love Adsense. Adding a forum to your blog gives readers and passers by another spot besides comments to leave opinions. It also can help you keep readers around, and attract them to your latest blog entries. Adsense and other advertising or affiliate programs can work well with forums, in addition to your blog.
2) Offer an online course - If you have a particular area or subject you want to teach readers, offer enrollment for a class. This may be one of the New School ideas for adding additional income to your site. It's something that John Cow & Garry Conn both have employed in their blogging battle, to teach readers. Make sure you've prepared materials for the course in advance, and syllabus, so that you can give readers what they pay for. Affiliate programs tend to work well as you include references to them in your ebooks or other course materials.
3) Offer catchy extras - The best example here involves social media sites. Offer readers applications they can use on Facebook, graphics for their Myspace or anything else you can think of. With Facebook it will take some skill, but many claim building useful applications is where the big money is to be made. Another option involves the ebook which could include affiliate or referral links to produce more income.
4) Merchandising - Some may view this as egotistical, but consider your blog site as a brand just like Coca Cola or GE. You can easily create catchy items with your logo, phrases and URL over at Cafepress (using art programs to design). If you don't have the graphic design savvy, enlist someone to help. This is a great offline way of expanding your blog into new areas. It makes you visible in the "real world" and if you design something catchy enough, it just might become a big moneymaker offline.
Keep these 4 ideas in mind with your blog site. A smart approach may be to invest in web hosting early on that will also give you a forum and other extras. Setting this up early on may give you plenty to work with in the future as your blog audience grows. The last thing you want is to hit an earnings plateau!
Are you able to see potential moneymakers, both online and offline? One of the keys to making money is to always be tapping into your creativity, according to Napoleon Hill. And many times there's opportunities all around us for moneymaking. Think about the area you currently live in...
Is there a need for a service or product in the town/city you live in?
Are you skilled at a certain hobby that you could translate into a successful blog?
Does a nearby restaurant or business need a website? If you have the skills, why not help them out?
Did someone say to you the other day, "I wish they had something that does this?"
Of course if someone says I wish there was a way to time travel, that may be far-fetched, but never let go of big ideas...There's no stupid ideas, and from failure often comes success..You might just spot a different opportunity from the failure!
Perhaps the biggest opportunity right now comes from the poor US economy. With gas prices so high, there's bound to be untapped sources of big income online. The key is just coming up with that great idea. Right now people are hesitant to make travel plans, or drive places. So the key might be bringing services into their home, minus gas or shipping charges.
The people who learn to spot the opportunities could be the ones to profit most in economic downturns, or internet bubble bursts. So always be listening and watching for that next big idea!
The Monetizer is patient, but when it comes to websites paying up, I like to see them do so as their FAQ state. In fact if it's money we earned through our efforts, it should be payed to us in a timely manner. After all, bill companies don't let us decide when to pay, or else we are assessed fees. Some affiliate sites online are iffy when it comes to payments, so I want to share this cautionary tale. For example, Ximmy, a site like Digg that pays, offers the following for affiliates:
When do I get paid?
You get paid once you generate $25 worth of commissions. Payments are made once per month (the 1st of the month) for the previous month.
Simple enough right? The Monetizer has hit the threshhold for a payout in May, but has yet to see it come through. The 1st of June was of course a Sunday, and many businesses don't operate then. That's all fine and dandy, but you'd think that payment would show up the very next business day, Monday. No show from Ximmy. This is just a minor rant here, as it's only a small $30 payout.. but it's good to be aware that some sites take their time in paying you, so keep on them about it! I don't want to completely trash Ximmy as a site, so I've emailed them and pending response and payment, I'll gladly inform everyone here that Ximmy is an honest payer (just that they don't always pay on the 1st).
You can give Ximmy a try yourself, as they also offer payment based on points for commenting on content at the site, or for getting content you submit onto their front page. Be careful of course that you don't expend too much time, because as of yet I'm not sure of the reliability of payments. If anyone else has seen a payment from Ximmy come through, let me know about your experiences as well.