If you would have told me several years ago that a simple blog could become a highly profitable business, I might not have believed you.
Not knowing what it would lead to, I started my first blog in 2011. By 2012 I had built a small audience and in 2013 I made my first dollar online by publishing an ebook and promoting it to my list of subscribers. It was in that precise moment that I knew turning a blog into a business was possible. Since then I have been actively testing new ways to monetize my blogs, and I’ve made it a priority to learn from individuals who are achieving success online.
One of the individuals I recently had the pleasure of learning from is John Chow (more about him below). John was the keynote speaker at an event in Vancouver earlier this month, where he shared some of his key strategies for making over $100,000 per month (yes, per MONTH) from his blog.
Before I share some of the strategies that John revealed at this event, let me first tell you a little bit more about him:
Who is John Chow?
John Chow rocketed onto the blogging scene when he showed the income power of blogging by taking his blog from making zero to over $40,000 per month in just two years. And he did it working only 2 hours a day.
Today, John Chow dot Com is one of the biggest blogs on the Internet, with over 200,000 active daily readers and followers. It is ranked #16 on the AdAge Power 150 list and #1 in the list of the Top 50 Canadian Internet Marketing Blogs.
John is the Author of Make Money Online: Roadmap of a Dot Com Mogul, which rocketed to #1 on Amazon within the first week of release. He has written many other books and runs one of the biggest money making blogs in the world.
As you can see from his credentials, John is the real deal and is highly respected in the blogging and online business community.
Listed below are a few of the strategies he shared at the event I attended.
Strategies For Making A 6 Figure Income From Your Blog:
1. Capture Leads
As soon as you launch your blog, you must also begin building your email list. One of the biggest regrets of many veteran bloggers is not building their list from Day 1. Your blog won’t become a profitable business without a list of subscribers. The money is in the list.
Tips for building your list:
- Offer a free incentive in exchange for joining your mailing list (an ebook or series of training videos, for example)
- Don’t just collect an email address – get their name too. You want their name so you can use it in your email follow ups.
- Use multiple methods to capture leads. Have an optin box on your sidebar, at the bottom of your posts, or even in a pop up.
- Set up a landing page (aka squeeze page) and direct people to that page.
2. Build A Relationship With Your Subscribers
Most marketers will tell you that the bigger your list, the more money you can make. There is some truth to this, but more important than the size of your list is the relationship you have with your list. A good relationship with 1,000 subscribers is worth more than a bad relationship with 10,000 subscribers.
The way to build a good relationship with your list is to constantly provide them with value. Know who your audience is, what their problems are, and send them information that can help them solve those problems.
The process of providing consistent value to your list can be completely automated. Use an email marketing software (I use Aweber) to write a series of email follow ups that will be sent to your subscribers automatically according to a pre-determined schedule (one email sent per week, for example). You can send a broadcast to your entire list in real time whenever you want, but this will ensure that everyone who joins your list receives the same series of follow ups over the same period of time.
3. Establish Yourself As An Authority
Every one of us is a brand. Our personal brand is what people think of when they think of us. Your brand is what separates you from everyone else out there.
Branding is all about perception and assumption. What someone believes or assumes to be true becomes true. Your job as a blogger and as a marketer is to be purposeful about the brand you create in the marketplace and with your audience.
Here are a few ways you can begin to position yourself as the expert in your niche:
- Have a story to tell
- Give a talk at a local college or university
- Speak at an event
- Have someone interview you
- Get a professional logo
- Get professional photos taken of you
- Get pictures of you next to other experts/authorities/celebrities
- Write a book – a book is the ultimate business card
- Make a demo video and put in on your About Page on your website
4. Recommend Products & Services That Solve Your Audience’s Problems
If you follow the first 3 steps properly, you will find yourself in the following position:
- You have a list of email subscribers
- You have a good relationship with your list because you provided them with value
- You have positioned yourself as an authority
Think of those 3 steps as sewing seeds. You are sewing seeds that over time will reward you with the ability to generate income. You generate income by recommending products or services to your list. Since they trust you and you recommend something that is relevant and that will help them solve their problem, they buy (not all of them of course, but some of them).
You can sell your own products or services, or you can sell the products or services of another company in exchange for a commission (affiliate marketing). Affiliate marketing can become very lucrative over time if you recommend subscription based products/services. These pay recurring commissions (typically on a monthly basis) for as long as the person you referred remains a customer of the company. Essentially, you can keep getting paid over and over again for a sale you made one time.
I’ll admit it. Sometimes when I attend live events where an expert will be sharing their advice, I expect them to reveal some sort of “secret strategy” that enables them to get the results they are getting. But that is never the case. There are no secrets – there are only fundamentals. The reason John Chow is so successful at what he does is because he has mastered the fundamentals of blogging and building an online business. The strategies he shared aren’t secrets – they are fundamentals. It was refreshing to hear him share them.
As is true of all industries, there is no shortcut to success. We must learn the fundamentals and pay our dues before we can reap the rewards.
Here are some final tips John shared before wrapping up his presentation:
- Be consistent. Always deliver value.
- Keep working on your brand.
- Don’t do it all yourself. Get help.
- Treat your blog like a business, not a hobby.
- Don’t take things too seriously. Have fun.