Book Review of The Foolproof Guide to Monetizing Your Blog by Cailin Koy
Blogs can make money by hosting ads from various companies on the blog site. The different models, Cost per click (CPC), cost per action (CPA), and cost per thousand impressions (CPM), are explained in detail, which is particularly instructive if you don’t know how the commercial advertising schemes work, for example those ads that appear at the top of a Google search results listing. In addition, Koy explains just where on your blog pages these ads should be placed and, briefly, how to get them to appear there.
I found one passage particularly relevant. Koy states: “How much advertisers are willing to pay you per one thousand impressions is strongly based on your existing traffic and what marketing gurus refer to as your reach. Reach is defined as the number of unique visitors your site receives per month.” I believe this is a key concept to know well. You must know your blog’s monthly number of views, visits, and unique visitors before you contact companies whose ads you want to obtain.
Some of the many forms ads can take are discussed, along with a listing of them. Particularly valuable, Koy provides a list of the major ad companies and roughly their requirements a blog needs to qualify for their business. In most cases, the monthly traffic is rather large, and thus, Koy presents some entry-level possibilities for the beginning bloggers as well.
The distinction between sponsored posts and guest posts is clear; plus Koy provides a valuable listing of networks to use to hunt for sponsored posts for beginners. Koy has a section on the relatively new method of Related Content as well. Contextual Links, Info Links, and Banner Ads are covered. Commission and Affiliate Links are explained; these are important for new and emerging blogs with “low to no entry requirements,” which work well until your blog site develops a large monthly traffic, allowing you to enter the bigger ad leagues. Then, there are the Paid Social Interactions, where you are paid to promote something on your social media sites.
Koy’s “Name your price” and Media Kits contain how much a blog proposes to charge to run these ads. I would love to have seen some actual numbers here, both for lower traffic and higher traffic blogs, or where one could discover that data.
Being an “ad-hater” myself, I found Koy’s admonition quite relevant: “You need to be careful in choosing what kind of ads to run and how many you’d like to run.”
Why? “You want to build a site your readers can trust in and enjoy for years to come.” And I believe that Koy is dead on: “Your traffic has a considerable impact on your earning potential. Building traffic is all about creating a great site with unique content that attracts visitors.” This is backed up when Koy suggests you always click yourself through the link your advertiser is giving you to ensure the content is related and what your readers might desire, to avoid misleading your readers.
So, if you have a blog and are interested in running ads that make you money or in selling your own products, this is a gem of a book to have and study. It’s loaded with key tips and relevant data to enable you to do just that, make money with your blog. I give it 5 stars and am glad to have it on my ebook-shelf.