Ask a Blogger: How to Make Money Blogging – Hold a Contest

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How do I turn my hobby into some much needed cash?

Dana and I have shared the ins and outs of making money actively and now I will share a more passive method. Once you have built an audience or as you are building an audience you need to have a strategy. You wouldn’t take a vacation without planning, so you need to make a plan for your business. It is so easy to get sucked into just posting items. I mean I get hundreds of deals emailed to me daily just sorting is a full time job although I use Other In Box so it helps a lot.

I figured out you have to bring people to your site in order to make money. If you are blogging and there isn’t anyone there why do it? The easiest way I found to build an audience is to host a contest. I mean who doesn’t want to win a contest? It is a challenge because you have to invite people to come so you can draw traffic to your site. I link up my contest to over 100 sites a week. Linking is when you leave your contest on another persons post. There is a free tool available called a Linky. Why, should you link up your contest?

There are a couple of reasons.

1) The more times people see your business name the better. I have had a lot of advertisers contact me because they saw my name on their favorite site.

2) The more you “link up” the more opportunities you have to gain new followers.

3) When you create a giveaway as part of the entry the audience member will be required to follow you. This will improve your stats so you can charge more for advertising space, paid reviews, paid tweets, paid posts on facebook and text links in articles or on your site.

4) You can create a giveaway and then provide opportunities to cross promote with your blog friends. The Mavens of Money use each other’s contests as entries to our giveaway. Here is an Example. This will help you gain page view because people will click on your contest link and come to your page.

Why are page views important? Well pages views influence the prices you can charge for advertising in the form of buttons or text links, paid reviews, and articles with text links. The more page views you have the more valuable your site is. The other factor is a lot of my ads pay based on page views. I have sat down and created a spreadsheet with each advertiser I have those that pay based on page views and I have determined how much I can spend on my advertising budget verses my income. I run Madame Deals like you would any business with a store front there has to be a business plan. My business plan is simple increase my effectiveness by figuring out what works. I know that my passive contest link ups on the 100 sites bring people to my site. The effort equals income. I know cross promoting contests brings people to my site and I know the more page views I gain the better products companies will offer for me to promote which will in turn increase my profitability from page views. If you are interested in gaining page views and linking up. We have a Money of Maven Giveaway round up each week where you can leave your contest link. You can link up so our readers will enter your giveaways as well. This will add more potential page views to your site.

What is your tip for using contest to increase profitability?

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