Now you have some of the basic dos and "do it if you feel like its." But how can you actually earn money from your blog? First and foremost, if your blog is in your specialty area, you should absolutely use it to promote your freelance writing services (even if just linking to your professional site). It can be a highly effective way of increasing business in general. But let's forget about that and think about more direct income from your blogs. Here are the tools and strategies I used to take my small business blog from nothing to a four figure income in just a few months:
Free Email Courses – Wait a minute. Free? I thought we were getting paid. We are. We are! As an example, I have a free 7-days to Finding Work from Home series that people joining one of my newsletters can receive. Every day for a week they receive a new email telling them about a specific work-at-home opportunity. Sprinkled throughout that series are affiliate links to some of my favorite work-from-home resources. It took me just a couple days to put that series together and it goes out like clockwork to hundreds of new subscribers each day. And I earn a commission if a few of those people decide to click through and purchase my recommendations.
However, the RI-based approach is most appropriate when a firm is not paying dividends or exhibits an unpredictable dividend pattern, and / or when it has negative free cash flow many years out, but is expected to generate positive cash flow at some point in the future. Further, value is recognized earlier under the RI approach, since a large part of the stock's intrinsic value is recognized immediately – current book value per share – and residual income valuations are thus less sensitive to terminal value.
In my case, I tried leaving the site in “automatic” mode a few times, when I did not have the motivation to post anything new. I found that my traffic, then my revenue, quickly tanked to half of what it should be. So far this has been motivation enough for me to keep writing, when nothing else would keep me motivated. But I have no reason to believe the “passive” part of the revenue would last more than one year. I can imagine revenue progressively going down, until it does not even pay for the server costs anymore.
Basic marketing ability -- You will not earn a decent income from most blogs if you don't market that blog in some way. That doesn't mean you have to market aggressively or feel like you're whoring yourself out with a constant sales pitch (more on that myth later). The most important thing you'll do marketing-wise is actually completely on the back-end -- evaluating your stats, testing ad placements, and just overall optimizing the site.
The only way to increase your income substantially, then, is to reach more people. The difference, put simply, is between writing an article and a book. If you write an article and sell it to the New York Times for $1 a word, you’ll never see more money from that piece again. On the other hand, if you were to create a collection of articles and sell it in a book, you may (depending on various factors, which we’ll get to) see money from this book over and over again until you keep it in circulation.
I love how real this article is. I’m so exhausted at seeing headlines and articles that lead people to believe blogging is somehow passive income and that passive means your not working. It’s heartbreaking, but I’ve seen several friends dump their entire life savings (and lose it) to try and live off of a blog based on the reportedly easy and formula-like ways to earn six-figures overnight. One of my friends just lost his wife, child, and home because he tried to jump right into blogging for a living and didn’t front load the learning because so many misleading articles told him it would be easy. He worked off of infopreneur blogger to-do lists like “get a URL, “write lot’s of content,” and “promote on social media” to win millions of visitors in just three months. Thanks for keeping it real.
I wonder what the avg number of hours/week (over a year) would be for something to be considered “passive income”. To me, it’d be under an hour a week. If I was able to earn money from something with that time investment, the hour a week would be mostly a time investment in checking on things that it’s still working and setting the course back on track.
eCourses – If I have a step-by-step process to share, I’m likely going to offer it as an eCourse. That’s something I’m working on right now. As it’s more intensive and structured than an eBook typically is I am able to put a larger price tag on this project. My funnel is getting a little smaller at this level, but there’s a high probability that many of those that purchased the eBooks are going to be interested in the eCourse.
Residual income is calculated as net income less a charge for the cost of capital. The charge is known as the equity charge and is calculated as the value of equity capital multiplied by the cost of equity or the required rate of return on equity. Given the opportunity cost of equity, a company can have positive net income but negative residual income.
Possessing a team of like-minded people is one of the keys to success and is essential in any business. The results you achieve will be directly related who you surround yourself with. You may be in business for yourself, but you cannot do it by yourself, you need a team. A team that you can rely on. Engineered Lifestyles has the experience and can provide you with the team you need for success!
“[T]he stream of continuing payments that are earned by Brad and/or Karen from the commissions (current and future) earned by the brokers within a book of business. Residual income arises from all sources of income relating to or derived from an identified book of business, including commissions earned by the brokers within that identified book of business from any source whatsoever.”
You know the fantasy: write some ebook (or better yet, hire freelancers in Mumbai to research and write it for you at $.20/word!) on some niche topic, set up AdWords and Facebook campaigns targeted to the right keywords (you can hire those Mumbai guys to do your keyword research too), put up a cheap landing page (with copy written by... guess who!), press "Go!" on the PPC campaign, and voilà. . . just wait for the money to roll in while you sleep!
Managing your own blog isn't as difficult as some people initially think. There's this misconception that you can't earn much money with your own blog, so you'd be better off going with content mills instead. Wrong! It's not difficult at all if you're willing to work for it. The only real excuse for choosing content mills over writing for yourself is that you don't want to be bothered with the work -- you just want to write. And frankly, that's lazy (and you know how I feel about lazy freelancers). If you're a hobby writer and you just want to write to get paid a few bucks, fine. Good for you. But don't call yourself a true freelance writer if you're not willing to work on the business end of your freelance career.
Shane and Jocelyn Sams, who were teachers before. Shane listened to my podcast, and he was like, check out this guy Pat, and his wife was like, No, that sounds kind of scammy to me. But then they decided to give creating digital products a try, so Jocelyn created a website called Elementary Librarian where she was selling packages and worksheets to librarians to help them and that site is doing really well. And Shane is a football coach, so he created coachxo.com to sell defensive plays to coaches. Both of those are doing well over six figures a month now, and they’re doing it through pdf files, worksheets and tools that their audience can use to help them in a more convenient way.
Fox’s book is a little outdated now, but the alternative passive income streams he mentions includes straight up blogging (with the advertising and affiliate marketing as the natural monetization strategy), but also podcasting (don’t agree with this so much as a direct revenue stream) and vlogging (video blogging / web TV, whatever you want to call it).