Why I Have Decided To Monetize Leaving Work Behind
It seems like a long time ago that I wrote Why I Am NOT Trying To Make Money From This Blog. It was in fact the third post I wrote for Leaving Work Behind, back in June 2011.
It was written that early on with deliberate intent – I wanted to make it perfectly clear to my readers, that I was (and am) the “real deal”. I wanted you to know that I am not in this to make a quick buck, and that my opinions and recommendations can be trusted. Over the last eight months, I hope that has become clear.
This is the 97th post to be published on Leaving Work Behind. Say it takes me two hours on average to write each post. That’s 194 hours spent writing posts. If I value my time at $50, I have lost out on $9,700 of potential income. And that is not to mention the time spent designing, marketing, networking and communicating.
That is of course a very cold way to look at blogging, and I am not one to be cold if I can at all avoid it. I absolutely love this blog – I love getting to know people like you better, and I love the idea of being able to help others. I hope that Leaving Work Behind will be a useful resource for many years, and I am really excited about its future.
…But I Cannot Ignore Reality
When you quit your job and dedicate yourself full time to your online business, an element of practicality has to come into play. I would be foolish to ignore the fact that this blog takes up a lot of my time. Time that could be spent, to be frank, making money. This blog won’t be of much use to anyone if I run out of money and have to close it down!
I first started considering monetizing this blog when my good friend, Steve Scott, emailed me a couple of months ago. He basically insisted that I send him an affiliate link for a product I endorsed, so that I would receive a commission. Steve went out of way to help me, which demonstrated two things:
- Steve is a legend
- At least one person values my recommendations!
And so I have spent the past several weeks agonizing over whether or not I should monetize this blog. I have spoken to other bloggers behind the scenes, and I asked you for your opinion in my last income report. The response has been overwhelmingly positive.
One thing is for sure – if my readers were against me monetizing, I wouldn’t do it. It’s that simple. My number one priority is to maintain the integrity of this blog. With that in mind, your encouragement and endorsement has meant a great deal to me, and played an integral part in my decision to monetize.
What Does This Mean For You?
In real terms, absolutely nothing. I will continue to try my hardest to offer you the best possible advice that I can. I will continue to endorse products that I use. There is just one difference – if you now purchase a product that I endorse by clicking on one of my links, I will receive a commission. It will cost you nothing more.
It is extremely important that I am very clear with all of my readers regarding my monetization method. Any post I publish that contains affiliate links will feature this disclaimer:
There are affiliate links in this post. If you purchase a product through one of them, I will receive a commission. It will cost you nothing extra. I only ever endorse products that I have personally used and tested extensively. Thank you!
Am I Going To Make Any Money?
I imagine that my earnings will be extremely modest for the foreseeable future. As you will know if you read my monthly income reports, traffic to this blog is not anything to write home about. For instance, of the last seven days, the blog has received an average of just 200 visitors per day. The more traffic I receive (and the more people trust my opinion), the higher my affiliate earnings will be. It doesn’t take a genius to calculate that 200 visitors per day will not generate a great deal of affiliate income.
But it allows me to go full steam ahead with this blog in the knowledge that the framework is set so that I can be compensated for the considerable amount of time I put into it. The level of compensation is completely down to how effectively I market this blog, and the quality of the advice and guidance that I offer. I am very happy to be held accountable to myself in such a way.
Business As Usual
So that’s it! As I have already said, nothing is really going to change around here, but putting affiliate links in place allows me to pour everything into this blog without getting preoccupied in such silly notions as, you know, making money.
I would appreciate your thoughts on this matter. Are you happy for me to monetize the blog in this way? Are you happy about the way in which I am going about it? Please let me know in the comments section!
Creative Commons images courtesy of Andres Rueda, Mariano Kamp and Mukumbura