You’ve seen those headlines.
“How to increase your blog page views in 10 easy steps”
“7 super easy ways to get more people to retweet your blog posts”
or “How I got 1 million blog visitors in 10 days”.
There is nothing wrong with any of these headlines. In fact, if you are a blogger or Youtuber or Podcaster, it is a dream to have people discover and engage with your content and it is better when it’s thousands of people !
However, it is possible to get so caught up in vanity metrics - blog page views, video views, podcast downloads, social media followers, number of likes on Facebook etc and forget that a blog, podcast or Youtube channel is simply a marketing tool that makes people aware of an actual business.
What is the point of getting millions of views and “social media influence” if it does not put a single dime in your bank account ?
Another shocking but not so shocking truth I’d like to share :
You don’t have to be famous to start thinking of ways for people to pay you for the time and energy you have spent learning and refining your particular expertise.
In fact, when I got my first freelance client for my social media management biz, I was only getting an average of 3000 page views per month - not exactly something to write home about. I had around 1200 Twitter followers and less than 500 people following me on Pinterest. My overall following online was tiny.
BUT, I still was able to use that as proof to my potential client that I COULD grow things from the ground up and would be happy to help them do the same. She said yes and 10 months later I am still enjoying the fruits of running my own freelance business.
So yes, by all means , do everything necessary to build your online platform. How are people going to find out about your amazing skills if you don’t ? However, you need to have an actual business/monetization strategy in place even if you’re just starting out.
Or else none of it will make sense.
7 Ideas For Monetizing Your Online Platform
- Become an affiliate with companies and brands you naturally “jive” with. You can start by becoming an Amazon affiliate for instance.
- Display advertising such as Adsense can be agreat source of income but this is one of those monetization strategies you cannot completely control
- Sell a digital product through a marketplace - Kindle, Udemy and Creative Market - are all marketplaces where you could be selling digital goods. The advantage of a marketplace is that people you don’t know can find you and it works when you are still in the beginning stages of building your own audience
- Start an e-commerce business selling physical products -eBay, Amazon and Etsy are all great places to start.
- Sell a service - this is by far my favorite way of monetizing an online platform especially when you are starting out and nobody knows you just yet. Services can be in the form of a freelance service or a consulting session. The down-side to a service-based business is that it is not always scalable unless you hire extra help because it involves your time and effort.
- Speaking gigs. Developing your voice online makes you an attractive candidate for gaining paid speaking gigs. Look for opportunities in your local area - meetups, churches or colleges.
- Do sponsored posts. Partner with companies to review their products and get paid for doing so.
I just gave you 7 solid ideas you could be executing with your online platform.
Don’t get caught going viral and yet having no money to show for it !