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Producing content day in and day out is a tough job, just ask any burned-out writer or videographer out there. When you start to generate income from content marketing, the workload doesn’t become lighter all of a sudden but the motivation to keep going can certainly become stronger.
Why do you need to generate income from your content? Well, how would your life change if you’re earning an extra $1,000 from your blog or video channel?
No matter how you view it, the fact is that it actually makes perfect sense to get some sort of reward or compensation for your efforts. If you’re creating content out of passion or sense of service, why not monetize your content to add more fire to your content marketing strategy?
In this article, I’m going to show you the top 7 ways to generate income from content marketing. There are other revenue sources out there, of course, but these income models are the most common and easiest ways to earn money from your content quickly.
Google has a program called Adsense that allows publishers to easily generate income from their content. If you’re just starting to monetize your blog, this could be a good starting point.
Advertisers, through the company’s pay-per-click program called Google Adwords, can opt to put up ad placements on websites related to their niche, industry, or target audience. As a content publisher, you can create an account with Google Adsense for your own website to display those ad placements.
Adsense payments, depending on the choice of the advertiser, can be computed on a per click basis or on per thousand views basis. Either way, you’ll make money when your readers visit your site to read your content and see or click on those ad placements.
Producing and selling ebooks from your website can be a lucrative source of income for you. People willingly pay for digital information products for as long as they have a need for those and perceive value in those products.
Ebook production need not be a difficult process, by the way. You can start by compiling your high quality blog posts on a given subject and turn it into an ebook by making a few edits and revisions to harmonize the compilation into one unified narrative.
If you’re pressed for time, you might consider hiring a freelancer to ghostwrite the ebook for you. Having a professional create your ebook is not really that expensive if you hire your feelance writer from such sites as Upwork.com or Freelancer.com.
Don’t forget to do your own due diligence by reviewing ratings and track records before you hire someone for the job. It will also be a good idea to thoroughly review the finished product’s message, tone, grammatical consistency, and overall structure before publishing.
You can easily sell the finished ebook on Amazon and then direct your own audience to the product’s page on that site. This would help jumpstart sales and garner initial reviews from readers who are familiar with your work.
Alternatively, you can forego with Amazon altogether and get all the revenue from your ebooks by making ebook downloads available directly from your website.
If you have second thoughts about the idea of selling ebooks online, you might want to try affiliate marketing.
This is actually my favorite income-generating method from this list. Affiliate marketing is arguably one of the most profitable ways to generate income online without the additional work of creating your own product to sell.
The core concept here is selling other people’s products and getting paid a percentage of the sale price, which can be as high as 100 percent for certain products.
You can easily find affiliate products you can promote that are directly related to your niche or topic by going to sites such as Clickbank.com, Affiliate.com, or JVZoo.
Most products on those sites pay 50 percent to 75 percent commission so it’s easy to make money with just a few sales per month. If you’re lucky, you can find products that give 100 percent commission. In such cases, the seller is basically willing to forego the initial revenue in exchange for leads and recurring sales.
Promoting affiliate products on your content website can be done by way of reviews, inline text referrals within your articles, and banner ads (most affiliate product owners will readily provide these).
My suggestion is to do the banner ads at the barest minimum and concentrate on inline referrals or product reviews to avoid interrupting and putting off readers as they go through your content.
If the idea of browsing different sites in search of affiliate products to sell seems daunting, you can simply try to focus on Amazon.com products, instead.
Amazon sells practically any product you can think of that’s related to your subject or niche and browsing through the website’s different categories can easily generate dozens of products or books for you to choose from.
Just like selling any affiliate product, the most effective method to sell Amazon products on your own content platform is by way of reviews and link referrals within your articles.
Although Amazon pays a much lower commission rate for their products, it can add up quickly if you have a popular website frequented by readers who value your ideas and recommendations. Combined with other income-generating methods described in this article, selling Amazon products can be a good way for you to make money from content marketing.
Readers of The Washington Post online were surprised a few years back when the paper they’ve been accessing for free online decided to put up a paywall on their website. It was, of course, a long-overdue move by the daily. News reporters and editors have families to feed too, after all.
Creating a separate access point for readers willing to pay for your premium content is a variation of Wapo’s business model.
The idea here is not to get totally stingy with your content. You still need readers and organic traffic to come to your blog and each one of them can potentially become one of your paid subscribers. Search engines, by the way, will not be able to index gated content within a members-only website or subdomain so this is another reason why you should continue providing free content.
You will still be creating free content for the majority of your readers but you can start producing more detailed and resource-intensive content that some of your readers will be willing to pay for to access.
Simply create a subdomain within your website to house your premium content and provide paying readers their own accounts and passwords to get to this content.
You can also market premium content as a subscription program to your readers. With this arrangement, you will basically agree to produce a fixed number of premium content each month that readers will pay a recurring monthly subscription fee in order to access.
Accepting donations from your readers or viewers is a standard way to generate income from your content.
The premise here, of course, is that you’re already producing top-notch content that are so helpful and compelling that your audience will not think twice about donating money to you to show appreciation for your efforts.
While this income model works best for nonprofits and charities, a good number of individual content producers are also generating revenue by simply asking their appreciative readers to chip in.
The easiest way to do this is by adding a Paypal donate button to your website. You can also add a call to action at the end of each quality article you publish for people to get reminded that you’re accepting donations to support your blog or video channel.
Independent ad placements on your website or blog can be a lucrative source of regular passive income. Companies do pay for ad placements on websites where their target audiences congregate and your blog or channel can certainly use the extra revenue.
Again, it all starts with quality content. When you produce top-level content that answers your readers’ questions or that effectively resolves their concerns, you will quite naturally build a large readership or audience base over time.
When you have that in place, you can start monetizing your content platform profitably because companies pay a premium price for high traffic sites and blogs.
When you go this route, always remember the people who got you there in the first place – your readers. Don’t make the mistake of turning them off by excessively plastering ad blocks all over your content. In short, don’t kill the goose that lay the golden eggs, as the aphorism goes.
Sponsorship is also another lucrative route to generate income from your content. The current model that high quality content producers use is to produce one piece of content sponsored exclusively by a single business entity.
If you have a popular podcast channel, for instance, you can produce an episode sponsored by a business whose products or services are directly related to the subject you’re going to tackle within the episode.
Sponsorship is a popular win-win income-generating model that you should try. You get paid by the sponsor while they, in turn, profit from the arrangement by way of increased brand recognition and leads generated from your sponsored content.
Content marketing for the most part has been treated as a tool to promote a product or a service. With these 7 ways to generate income from content marketing we just discussed, your quality content can actually be a profit center on its own while still doing its main job of marketing your product or service.
If you have other suggestions or tips on how to make money from content marketing, please feel free to leave a comment below.