25 November 2014

Making money with mummy blogging: Blogfest 2014

A few weeks ago I went to my first ever blog conference - Blogfest. I wrote about my experience as a newbie at her first blogging conference. There were more things I wanted to say however, mainly about the things I learned. One key session stuck to my mind, and that was the "How to make money from your blog". I found it fascinating, and thought I would share some of my notes and thoughts around the topic for you guys.

The speakers were from Zone, a digital marketing agency, Tara from Sticky Fingers blog and Skimlinks CEO. And it was all about the different ways you can make money, and why as a mummy blogger (and parent bloggers in general) you should know your worth. 







 Know your worth!
  • Mothers are difficult to reach through traditional advertisement.
  • Mummy bloggers offer reach, credibility, and cut-through (e.g. visibility)
  • You spend lots of time on your blog, don't sell it cheaply, value your time and your own platform.
  • How much is your time worth? Think about this when you think about what you charge. Some posts can take hours to write.  
How to get commercial opportunities?
  • Don't be on the "grumpy blogger" black list (e.g. don't be negative or whiney online)
  • Be a "good bet" for a brand and work like a business - this means have a USP, a professional look and have a same look across all social media channels
  • Make it easy to contact you, PR yourself and build your following
  • When you get commercial opportunities, be creative and show them off (e.g. make sure people know who you have worked with)
  • If you do reviews constantly, how are the brands going to stand out?
  • Have a PR/media pack, and when emailing your rates to companies, make sure to include what you offer for the money (e.g. blog post, twitter, Facebook, Instagram, how much promotion you will do... etc.) 
  • New bloggers: joining collaborations and commercial competitions can bring visibility.
  • Using affiliate marketing (if successful) can also get you noticed by brands (as they get to see who refers paying clients to them). Skimlinks is one affiliate marketing site that automatically converts your links to affiliate links, whenever there are campaigns.
 
How to make blogging pay?
  • Top factors affecting reputation and remunerations: statistics, quality of the blog, social following, previous successful brand work, reputation, level of work involved, added social media support. 
  • Charge different rates for different works - e.g. featuring in something that is very popular on your blog should cost more than a bog standard commercial post. 
  • You can get non-monetary benefits too - reviews of events and products can bring traffic which can also be valuable
  • If old posts are particularly popular, there is nothing stopping you from revisiting them and adding / redirecting links to new marketing campaigns, to re-freshen the commercial ability of the post.  

All in all, pretty interesting stuff. It was fascinating to learn more about blogging from a business/money perspective, always good to increase your knowledge I suppose.

Did this session change the way I think about blogging or my blog? Not really - I am a hobby blogger. I have an interesting career that pays the bills and has the potential to really go somewhere fascinating. Blogging would be a great sideline to have, but that is about as far as my ambition for it goes. Did I monetize my blog? Sort of - I did sign up to Skimlinks, and will investigate Affilinet (another sponsor of the event) when I have a bit more free time. 



 

As a final note, in addition to making money, there were few other interesting thoughts that stuck to my mind. First, children today grow in an environment without the online/offline distinction. Secondly, writers find it difficult to write, and that is how you know you are a real writer. Thirdly, truth will set you free but first it will piss you off. On that note, Suzanna Moore's 10 tips for better writing were great.

If you want to know what it was like attending a blogging conference as a newbie, I wrote a lengthy post about my experience of Blogfest 2014 here.

What did you think of these tips? What was your favourite session and did you learn anything new?


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44 comments:

  1. This is interesting, even after two years I have still not made much of an effort to monetize. Mainly down to time to be honest, once my littlest is at school I will probably work at it more. But, I really quite like my blog the way it is! #brilliantblogposts

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    1. Time... that is what is desperately needed isn't it! I thought Skimlinks seemed pretty good in that respect, as it requires minimum effort from you (if you link a product, and there is an affiliate campaign, they automatically convert your link to an affiliate link). Whether or not affiliate links bring any money, I am quite dubious, but can't harm putting them on I suppose.

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  2. I thought this session was great, fab post x #BrillBlogPosts

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    1. I remember reading your tips too from the same session, they were really good as well :)

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  3. Love the post. i hadn't really thought about making money from my blog. Definitely something im interested in though. Thanks for the advice xx

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    1. I hope this will be helpful! There are lots of tips around the net, but I did find this session really interesting nonetheless.

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  4. I missed this session as wanted to go to the comedy one, so it was brilliant to find this summary of the main points, thank you! Good luck with your monetisingi ventures! #brilliantblogposts

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    1. I was torn between this and the google session, as I thought that would be pretty useful for me. Would love to find a summary of that session... And thanks, fingers crossed I suppose :)

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  5. I missed this session but sounds like some very good useful things came out if it - thanks for sharing!! #thelist

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    1. Oh yes this was definitely a good session, but then again, the other sessions had certainly their appeal.

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  6. Fab post, I don't do affiliate links but am a full time pro blogger and we as a community are hugely influential x Thanks for linking up x

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    1. Thanks for commenting. I read your interview a while back and that had loads of great tips. I think the point about bloggers offering cut-through is important - I certainly do pay attention if someone whose blog I regularly read recommends something.

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  7. I really wanted to go to this one but it clashed with something else- thanks for writing it all up. I need to do a media pack I think as I never know what to say when companies approach me! #TheList

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    1. Yeah, PR pack seems like something all pro-bloggers have, definitely worth investing a fair bit of time making it.

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  8. This is really interesting, thanks for putting it all together!
    I don't have anything 'money making' on my site, I've just been writing for the sake of writing really but I can see that if I want to keep going long term it would be good if it at least paid for itself. We already have our own advertising business (though in a very different sphere), working from home and juggling the girls (plus blogging) means I find it hard to justify too much of my time if it's purely for the love - a bit tragic but true!
    I might look into some of these in the New Year, thanks.
    Xx

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    1. That's the thing, blogging does cost some money and it would be great to recuperate those costs. OK, fair enough, currently I only really spend £15/year on the vanity URL, but then there are the added non-essential expenses like conferences, camera, camera wear and tear, equipment etc...

      But then again, having blogging as a hobby is not that bad - lots of people spend a lot of time and money on their hobbies (I used to do scuba diving - talk about a hobby being expensive and time-consuming!).

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  9. Great post, thanks for sharing these tips. I've never been to a blog conference but I would love to and will hopefully go to one next year x #PoCoLo

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    1. I really enjoyed it, even if I did moan about a few things about it. Maybe see you next year at Britmums Live? :)

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  10. A very useful post, thank you! I'm hoping to one day make a bit of money from my blog, but I'm sooo new to it I'm still figuring it all out! x

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    1. I hope you will get some good tips - check out Youbabymemummy - she did a post on the same session too, she picked on slightly different things I seem to remember.

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  11. Good read.
    My blog has taken a bit of a back seat since having my baby, but I miss it lots and want to get back into a good schedule.
    Monetising, however, has always been something Ive never been any good at. Maybe it'll come to me in the future :)

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    1. Well, here are some good tips to monetise it :) But Skimlinks and Affilinet seemed pretty good, worth checking them out. And good luck on getting back on the "blogging horse" :)

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  12. Really helpful for us who werent able to attend. Amazing tips. I was thinking there goes my chance to earn. My blog is mostly me ranting. But its nice to see that somewhere theres a chance for me to earn from my blog. I really wish I can. #pocolo

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    1. Oh brilliant, I did hope this is going to be a useful post for others. Good luck, hope you can use some of these tips in your own blog :)

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  13. Thanks for the tips, really useful. I did;t go so these type posts are a brilliant read. #pocolo

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  14. Ah, I didn't go to this session so this is really useful. Thanks for sharing what you learned. :)

    #TheList

    Jenna at Tinyfootsteps xx

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    1. You're welcome. Now if anyone did a note summary of the Google session I'd be pretty happy :)

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  15. Good tips! I was not aware about Affilinet. I am curious to learn what you have discovered about it! ;) x
    #brilliantblogposts #PoCoLo

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    1. I had never heard of neither companies. Had a good chat with Affilinet rep over coffee and they are super nice :)

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  16. What great tips! I often wonder about the bloggers who complain loudly online and why brands would want to work with them! Also wonder about those who CONSTANTLY review stuff as it must feel like their product is getting swallowed up. I guess its all about balance isn't it? Thanks for sharing x x

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    1. Yep, I've thought about the same thing. Regarding constant reviewing - I can see the appeal of review blogs. Lots of traffic, which appeals to some companies that want exposure. Doesn't offer the same cut-through though, which is maybe why you rarely see big brands, and expensive items in review-focused blogs.

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  17. Thanks for the report! I can never get to Blog conferences so this is really useful to me! #Pocolo #Brilliantblogposts (happyhealthymumma)

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    1. Glad to be of help :) Good luck if you use any of the methods introduced :)

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  18. This is such an interesting post - I make some money from my blog but I still enjoy reading tips and learning things. Thank you for linking to #PoCoLo :) x

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    1. You can always learn more I suppose, that's what I keep telling myself when I attend something like this :)

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  19. It's always interesting to read the different advice on monetisation - one piece of advice which came from a seasoned pro blogger was not to include rates in a media pack but to negotiate client by client project by project. I don't make as much as I'd like, commensurate to time spent, but things are changing on my little web space v soon!

    Mama-andmore.com

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    1. Oh, exciting! You have got me wondering now what it might be - perhaps something to do with yoga, or exercise clothes... I could see you modelling some yoga / sports clothes ala HonestMummy and the bag company (Nova Harley I think it was) :)

      That is a good tip btw, definitely works in business too - negotiate your work and project contribution towards the clients budget, not the other way around.

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  20. I'd love to make money from my blog and I have tried so hard to do so. I don't have a career any more and I know now I never will again so I have to find a way to make money somehow!

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    1. Blogging would be ideal wouldn't it! Stay home, work flexible hours and earn through doing something you love. I do hope you manage to make it pay, it is tough out there. Good luck!

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  21. Great info, thanks! As a relatively new blogger I need all the advice I can get!! I must keep an eye out for new blogfest conferences #brilliantblogposts

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    1. Brilliant :) Maybe I will see you at the next year Blogfest, and hope the tips will help you in the mean time :)

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  22. Great Post Sanna!! I do make money from my blog but there's so much here that I can utilise and help me make my offering better! And it was kind of easier than I thought (once I finally got my arse in gear) the fact that you have this great start will do you favours later on...you might not want to make money from your blog now but I recon if you stick with it you may well do !!

    Thanks for the link to the Mumsnet stuff- loved Suzanne Moore's too tip - we should get them to link up!

    Thanks for linking to #TheList xxx

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    1. Thank you, what a lovely comment. I know you've been blogging a while already, but hopefully there was some useful tips for you too :) I've actually already made a little bit money from affiliate links, and have had some offers for other stuff too. Blogging would be a great sideline to have, so maybe I will get my house in order after Christmas, and actually do something about it. Just seems like there is loads to do first in terms of dealing with taxes and all, yawn...

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