But at a certain point in exploring a passion, you have to ask: “Can I make money doing this? Can I find a way to monetize my passion?” Yes, you can.
Freelance writing and book publishing traditionally doesn’t make a ton of money (unless your last name happens to be “King” or “Rowling”).
So we writers have to be inventive with how we support our families and keep the water on. Or settle for being starving artists. But these days, there is a third option: blogging.
You can do what you love, find ways to monetize it, and then use it to fund other less lucrative passions, like writing a book. That’s what I’m interested in.
The question is: Can you really make a ton of money with a blog, like all those “gurus” say?
Sure you can. And no. You absolutely cannot. Allow me to explain…
How to make a buck with a blog
I just got $120 worth of free books on Amazon. On a whim a few months ago, I signed up for Amazon Affiliates a few months ago and started linking to books I would’ve recommended, anyway.
I was surprised when the pennies turned to dollars without much effort on my part. I’ve since decided to save up my earnings and finally get a Kindle.
This is what blogging can do. It’s a fun little perk, but is it enough to quit your job and pay the bills? Well, no. Not in and of itself. But it is just one strategy among many in how people can make money online.
Here are other ways people make money online:
- Affiliate marketing: Selling other people’s products for them and earning a commission on each sale. My Amazon story is an example of this. I’m also starting to see some fruit from promoting other products I believe in, like 31 Days to Build a Better Blog.
- Product sales: Sell your own products (eBooks, webinars, iPhone apps, whatever). I’m working on a few of these myself. The trick is delivering value and only giving your community what they want.
- Advertising: If you have decent traffic, you can sell ad space. (I’ve just started exploring this, but so far it’s been fruitful. Recently, to jump-start my advertising, I offered a 50% discount on Cyber Monday.)
- Market your own services: If selling stuff makes your skin crawl, you can use a blog to build an online presence and brand and then use it to land consulting or freelance services. (I’ve had several people contact me about things like writing an eBook, SEO, and other topics I’ve written about.)