Saturday, January 03, 2009

Blogging for Greenbacks (Part One)

A long time friend Yet Abad for pointed me to Technorati's State of the Blogosphere 2008 report. It is a hefty and hearty article about how blogs are continuing to change the way people interact and do business on the internet.

One section of the report which caught my attention is Blogging for Profit. It points to the established relevance of blogs to the field of marketing and advertising.

Tehcnorati says:

Blogs are an increasingly attractive platform for advertisers. The majority of bloggers we surveyed have advertising on their blogs. Marketers realize that bloggers are creating high quality content and attracting growing, loyal audiences.

More than offering testimonials, blogs sometimes give more involved and more personal analysis of products, services, events, and personalities from a credible source. As far as blogs are concerned, credibility is not solely based on one’s expertise but also the strength and span of one’s connection within a community.

Blogs sway popular opinion

A blog by your friendly Tito Boy (as in Rex Navarete’s Tito Boy) ranting about the virtues of Adobo oil as a lubricatant can be as influential as say Yugatech’s blog raving over the virtues of his I-Phone. In anycase, this means that blogs have a greater ability to convince people to use of a product/service or support a movement/personality.

A local (Philippine) and more recent (December 2008) case that illustrates this point is the firestorm that exploded over Bambi Dela Paz’ blog. The entry basically told about how Masiu Mayor Nasser Pangandaman allegedly beat up her father and brother at the Valley Golf and Country Club. More than three hundred people commented on the post and with scores of bloggers linking up their blogs to Bambi’s.

Perhaps Bambi’s blog created the media storm or perhaps it was main news media organizations that popularized her blog. It could be part blog buzz and part tipping point, because certainly, somewhere in Bambi’s circle is a news reporter or media personality of some importance.

However and whatever happened, the conflagration in cyberspace apparently created enough pressure to get government agencies such as the Department of Justice and the National Bureau of Investigation to issue formal statements regarding the matter.

Moving public opinion is one thing, but earning money from blogging is a whole different ball game.

Earning money from your blog

I am one of the probable millions who have fallen for the lure of making money from blogging. For some time now, my failed attempts of realizing a significant level of income have laid the basis for substantial personal doubt on the matter.

Technorati’s 2008 Blogosphere report, however, shows some proof that people actually do earn from blogging. It says that:

The average annual blogger revenue is more than $6,000. However, this is skewed by the top 1% of bloggers who earn $200k+. Among active bloggers that we surveyed, the average income was $75,000 for those who had 100,000 or more unique visitors per month (some of whom had more than one million visitors each month). The median annual income for this group is significantly lower — $22,000.

Bloggers with advertising invest an average of $1,800 annually in their blogs. U.S. bloggers earn an average of $5,000, though bloggers in Asia earn 50% more on average and European bloggers earn an average of 75% more than U.S. bloggers. High revenue bloggers skew the mean revenue. The median revenue for U.S. bloggers is $200 annually (and the median annual investment is only $50).

Most of blog earners in the survey conducted by Technorati for its report receive income by carrying search ads, display ads, and affiliate marketing on their blogs.

Among the more popular programs is Google Adsense which basically pays blog owners a few cents to a couple of dollars when their visitors click on the Google Ad displayed their site.

(Next up: My Experience with Google Adsense)

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