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Help ProBlogger Find a Business Model II

I’m quite overwhelmed by the response to my post asking for Help in finding a business model for ProBlogger. There are 29 comments there already from some bloggers that I really admire and respect the opinion of. Thanks to those of you who have left your opinion and who have messaged or emailed your thoughts also. Feel free to continue the discussion (its a useful one to have for more than just my own situation).

Let me re-emphasize that I the issue is not about me making more money. Whilst I’m not opposed to the idea of a higher income from this blog the purpose of what I’m doing here is genuinely about helping the blogging community. The issue at hand is not about my own greed for more cash – rather it is about how I sustain what I do whilst still helping as many people as possible in relevant and effective ways.

I’m now going to spend a little time thinking through my response to the issue with your many comments in mind. I am leaning towards writing a book (the question over whether it should be an e-book or an actual physical book is a question I need to ponder – your opinions would be valued on this too) and would like to further explore the possibility of both forums (although the work involved in maintaining them worries me) and some sort of course/tele-seminar.

In the short term I’m not going to change my approach over consulting – if its basic advice (that won’t take long) you’re after and IF I have the time I’ll attempt to help out where I can – if its more comprehensive than that I’ll probably either simply explain that I’m too busy or that I need to find some way of making a little money for the time I put into it. I’m not going to force anyone to give me a link for my services – but would appreciate this if you feel this blog and the advice I give are worthy of it (It probably won’t hurt your case if you do – but its not a prerequisite).

Thanks again for your support – now lets get back to some blogging!

Help ProBlogger Find a Business Model

I’m hesitant to post this but its something I’ve been pondering for a while now and I’d appreciate your thoughts and ideas.

You see I love writing on this blog – it is the blog I’m most proud of and that I put most time into. I get more feedback and interaction with readers here via comments, IM and email than any other blog in my stable. However for the time I put in its the least rewarding financially. Ads for blogging services pay next to nothing and my readership is not really big enough to attract any big private sponsorships. I’d be lucky if this site pays for my morning coffee most days (and I go to a cheap cafe).

Now before anyone worries that I’m about to either can this blog, or start charging people to read it, or that I’m going to ask for donation – please don’t worry – this is a free blog and I intend to keep it that way. In actual fact I don’t write this blog for the money but because I’m genuinely passionate about blogging as a medium, want to connect with and help others who are also and because I enjoy writing on these topics.

So what am I hesitant about? Let me cut to the chase.

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Scrivs on ProBlogger

Scrivs writes this:

‘If I worked as much as Darren (damn, how many times can I link to him in one week?) or some of the others then I would have much more money, but I also think I wouldn’t be as happy with my life.’

Two responses:

1. Maybe I should start a competition – the winner of the ‘I link to ProBlogger Most’ competition. I could come up with a prize for the most mentions of my blog in a week. Paul could be hard to beat – he’s at 50% of his posts on his front page (thats 3 of 6 posts). However Blogging Help could actually be giving Paul a run for his money – they link to me in 4 of their last 6 posts – sometimes more than once per post. So Scrivs you might have to up your commitment to my blog a touch. Anyone else want to join in?

2. Do I really sound like I’ve got no life as much as Scrivs makes it sound here? I party too…errr…sometimes. Well I’ve been to parties…. ok ok I know people who party….. or at least I’ve been known to blog about people who party….

How Much Do I Earn from Blogging?

This is a question that I get asked more than any other. I was brought up not to really talk about money and what you earn so I’m always hesitant to do so – but due to the large interest in the subject I’ve from time to time given some indication (it can be vague) of what kind of money blogging brings me.

Keep in mind that I have numerous blogs and these figures are not just for ProBlogger (in fact this blog is one of my smaller earners). I also use a variety of income streams including AdSense, Chitika, Text Link Ads and Amazon Associates (to name just four of the main ones).

update: here are my top earning income streams from my blogging..

Here are a few of the more recent posts I’ve done on the topic:

- Earning a Six Figure Income from Blogging
- Look what Blogging Bought Me – the house that Google Bought
- Network Blogging vs Individual Blogging
- I’m a Six Figure Blogger
- Chitika eMiniMalls – How much do they Earn? – the day eMiniMalls became my number 1 earner!

I should clarify (as its a misconception that I often come across) that my earnings do NOT just come from this blog – rather I have 20 or so that I work on plus am now involved in various others through b5media which I am a co-director in.

I also earn my income via a number of courses including the Adsense program and especially Chitika’s MiniMalls.

I also always like to emphasise that blogging is NOT a get rich quick thing. To balance the links above (and before you run out and quit your job to become a Pro Blogger) I also STRONGLY recommend you take a look at some of the links and information that I mention in my ProBlogger Public Announcement Post.

Back in ProBlogging HQ

After a great break away filled with sun, golf, tennis, wine, cheese, food of all kinds and fun with friends I’m back. I hope those of you able to take a break over the Easter period had as refreshing a time as I did – hopefully away from your blogs like I was able to get. Its amazing what a few days break from blogging can do to your mind.

The only problem now is that I have an email box with 903 emails in my inbox and literally thousands of unread articles and posts in my RSS feed to wade through. This could take a while.

A quick question for my WordPress using friends – does anyone know a reliable comment spam prevention plugin for WP 1.2? I’ve got Kitten’s Spaminator installed on all of my blogs and it works perfectly in every case but this blog here at ProBlogger.

Does anyone have any suggestions for WP 1.2 plugins that might help?

Lastly – thanks to all those who’ve been leaving comments on the posts from the last few days – I’m particularly impressed with your answers on the Introduce Yourself Post which helped me discover a few excellent blogs that I’d not known of before.

ProBlogger Easter Break Vacation

Well its Easter (or it will be tomorrow) and at this time of year a group of friends that I am close with always go away for the long weekend for a time of great food, fantastic wine, to take in some our wonderful state’s coastline and a whole heap of fun and shenanigans. I’ve been looking forward to this for weeks but going away for more than a day or two always leaves me asking the question – ‘what do I do with the blog?’ Its probably too short a time for a guest blogger, but four days is a long time for my more addicted readers not to get a ProBlogging fix (yes you know who I’m talking about).

So I’ve decided to write a few posts which I’ll post before I leave and which will appear at pre determined times throughout the next few days – thanks to the magic of WordPress. I hope you find them helpful – feel free to add to them as you’d like in comments. Otherwise I’ll see you in a few days when I hope I’m feeling nice and refreshed.

The Week that Was on ProBlogger

What a wonderful week its been here on ProBlogger for me. Sometimes I just love my job. I’m getting to interact with some wonderful people from all corners of the world. I just got of Skype talking with Will Pate (Canada) a blogger I’ve admired for a while now. Yesterday I chatted with Sho (no blog… yet) a Japanese executive at a large Japanese web hosting company who are also the people behind the blogging service yaplog (with 100,000+ users). This week was also the first time I chatted to Arieanna (Canda) from Blogaholics and started chatting via email to one of the guys I’ve admired most for ages from afar – Chris Pirillo who has been gracious enough to agree to an interview with me (submit your questions for him in comments below if you’d like).

Add to all this the great chats I’ve had via IM and email with people like Bobby Masteria (France), Tris Hussey (Canada), Greg Edwards (US), Nicole Simon (Germany), Mark Jones (Australia), Jeremy Wright (Canada), Susannah Gardener (US), Rachel and Regan Cunliffe (NZ), John Campea (Canada), Cameron Reilly (Aus), Ken Burgin (Australia) and Connected (UK) – just to name a few.

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Poll: How Much Do You Earn From Adsense?

As some readers have already noticed – I’ve just added a poll to the sidebar which asks ‘Last month, how much did you make from Adsense?’

In the last update at Adsense Google have changed their rules to allow disclosure of monthly earnings so I thought it would be interesting to find out what bloggers are making currently with the program. The poll is anonymous and I have no way of telling who has participated or what they’ve indicated as their earnings so your privacy is in tact.
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Where to start at ProBlogger?

Josh, a reader of this ProBlogger just emailed the following question:

‘Hi Darren, I’ve just discovered ProBlogger after seeing your link on another page and I’m really impressed that people are making a living from their blogs. I’d like to be a pro blogger too and was wondering if you can point me in the direction of the best articles on your site to start off reading? Your archives are so full of articles I don’t know where to start!’

Thanks for stopping by ProBlogger Josh – I appreciate your email. Where should you start? I’d try some of the links in the square menus at the start of the page – especially Blogging for Dollars and Adsense for Bloggers (which is the first post of a series of tips on making money with your blog using Adsense. Most of the other links up there are to my main categories.

In addition to that you might want to view some of the following links which are the 10 most viewed articles on this blog over the past month:

Regular readers might like to nominate their own suggestions of helpful articles if they so desire in comments below.