Sugarlicious Money from Your Blog
Lisa Sugar had an inkling that her online celebrity gossip blog PopSugar was on the right track when Banana Republic called in July 2006 and offered to buy up all the ads for a week — six months before she had even hired an ad seller. — “The Sweet Spot,” Forbes, April 23, 2007
How would you like that? A huge advertiser calling you up out of the blue to offer you money. Judging by the size of ProBlogger’s readerbase, I imagine most of us would consider it a dream come true.
Care to venture a guess as to how many visitors she was seeing at that point, though?
Go ahead. I’ll wait. Take a guess. What would you say?
(Seriously. Stop and think about it. How many visitors do you think she was getting back then.)
Banana Republic wanted access to PopSugar’s millions of readers, most of whom are college-educated women ages 18 to 44 making more than $60,000.
Millions of readers. Millions. How many of you have millions of readers? (Seriously? Okay, you two can probably step out at this point. Thanks for coming by.)
The truth is, many of us try to squeeze every last cent that we can out of our readers. We think if we can just get to a few hundred visitors a day (or maybe not even that many) the ad revenue will start rolling in and we’ll be just a month or two away from problogger status. So when we hit that, we shift our focus to trying to figure out how to make more and more money. Then, not only do we stop acquiring new readers, we also start losing the ones we do have because the quality of our blog drops off noticeably.
What we really ought to be doing at that point is working to double that number, and then double it again (and again, at least) before we spend much time at all on monetization. I can’t say it enough: focus on content, not ads. And spend some time each day attracting new readers, too. It’s just as important to be proactive.
This isn’t because I’m anti-ads or anti-monetization at all. I’ve just tried it both ways and know that it’s just one headache after another trying to find lots of value where there’s only a little. If you’re looking to make some Sugarlicious money with your blog, believe me, you have to make it Sugarlicious first.