Today I started my first-ever paid advertising campaign for the blog – as a matter of fact many of you have probably arrived here via that advertisement (if you did, leave a comment so I know if I’m getting my money’s worth!). I’ve waffled back and forth on whether I should advertise the blog or not for a long time but after seeing the extra free traffic that BlogRush brought me I thought, WTF, why not?
Why would I advertise a blog that has no advertisements itself, and generates NO income?
My website, GrownUpGeek.com already earns about $6k/month, and has gotten more free and “word of mouth” advertising than I could ever imagine (see my “brag roll” on my About Page), I dont really have a need to invest much more on the site and now i’m really trying to build readership here at the blog. Based on what I read at the webmaster forums I belong to, and what I see at other “make money online” blogs I feel there is a huge market of webmasters out there that are looking to learn more about how to make a living online. Because I am so anti-spam, anti MFA, “anti-krap website” I guess I’m hoping I can do my part to make the internet a better place if I can persuade a few new webmasters to make a quality website, instead thinking they can get rich by barfing yet another MFA onto the web. Who knows, maybe a few of the other big bloggers out there that don’t really need even MORE money will follow my lead and stop trying to bombard us all with so many of those ads that I hate so much. Don’t get me wrong – if your blog IS your website, then by all means you should monetize it (responsibly). But if you already have a website that earns good money, and have a blog that claims to help people why not just do it for free?
How I did it:
First off, I thought about it first, for a long time. Once I decided I was ready to spend the money, I looked at all the options. Adwords and MSN AdCenter were the first obvious choices but based on my past experience with both of them I did not think they would be cost effective. I also wanted to be sure that I targeted the right internet users: Webmasters, new webmasters, and people looking to learn more about making money online. I figured the best place to find these readers was at other money-making blogs (my competitors, if you will). Once I had a list of several blogs I’d like to advertise on I just did a little price-comparison, looking at buying text-links, regular ad-spots and “reviews”. I decided that I think I can get the most bang for my buck with a regular ad-spot that would be displayed on multiple pages – after that I just waited for the best deal, which turned out to be my new friend over at John Cow (not to be confused with the blogger with the same first name, but last name of CHOW) – He offered what I think was a great deal and I jumped on it. As for the ad itself – I threw that together in about 5 minutes with Photoshop (and it probably shows). If my jump into advertising works out, I’ll probably pay someone to make me a ‘real’ ad, and buy another slot or two at John Cow again next month..
Now I’ll have to wait and see if anybody shows up…