I’ll be honest with you, the month of October has been life changing for me. It all started at the Fincon11 in Chicago at the beginning of the month. What’s weird about this, these kind of conferences usually create a great buzz and give you some motivation to keep going forward but it all fades pretty fast. So most people get back home with tons of great intentions that eventually become… nothing because you are too busy watching Dr House ;-). But this time, it was different for me as I did something most people don’t do when they come back from a conference.
The first action I took was to improve my level of writing on TFB. I hope that you have noticed a difference as I take twice the time I used to when writing a post. They are longer, offer more insightful information and are meant to be more useful. Each time I write, I make sure that you can actually get something out of the post (such as my private advertiser management series). I don’t write just because it is Tuesday anymore ;-).
The second action I did was to take adsense off the TFB posts. You will still see some adsense blocks in the side bar and on a few very old pages (that earn me the lion share of adsense revenue 😉 ). The reason why I wanted to lose money on purpose was to gain more readers. I want to have my top screen clean of ads as I want to make sure that new visitors want to hang around and read more than one post. So far, it is going great as my newsletter subscribers have increased ;-D.
The last action we took as a team is to establish quarterly priorities. We have tons of projects on our board right now but we were working on too many sites at the same time. Therefore, some of our time was lost and also had a decrease in motivation due to the fact that “nothing” is moving really forward quickly. Now, we have a maximum of 3 priorities (projects) per quarter. This has made a huge increase in our productivity and the rate at which we are developing our projects ;-).
What I like the most about an online company is that as soon as you take action, you see results within the first month. But the best part is yet to come as the actions you take now have an exponential impact on your results in the years to come!
Traffic is on fire for October! There are 2 things that explain this:
a) The stock markets have gone back up and most of my sites discuss investment topics
b) I got hit by the Panda again… but this time, quality won the fight!
Yup! I’ll discuss that in another article but Google ran another Panda update in the middle of October and I got all my previous rankings back. This is why my traffic had gone up by so much in so little time ;-). The good news about the first hit is that I have learned to keep my readers on my blog longer and have them sign-up for my newsletter. This is a big accomplishment as our company grew stronger in during rough times and is now ready to crush it while we get a boost of traffic ;-D.
This is my September payment. Since traffic was pretty similar from August to September, I’m not surprised to see about the same payment amount. However, I can tell you that with the panda update, my next adsense cheque will be higher. This should continue as my traffic is definitely picking up at the moment (my last 15 days is better than the first half of the month).
Private Ads: $8531.45 (+2.47%)
Using all the tricks mentioned in my newsletter about how to increase my private income, I have another month over $8,000 in private advertising. This is pretty good as one of my biggest advertisers lost one of his clients which resulted in canceling a healthy campaign on almost all of my sites! This is why it is so important to keep contact with many advertisers at the same time ;-).
Months come and go and they all look different for brokerage deals and affiliate programs. While Market Samurai and Questrade still do wonders for me, I have several ups and downs during the year. This is why I have decided to push on the brokering side of the business a little bit more. Keep reading further down and I’ll tell you more about it ;-D.
This is not a big surprise to come down to my $200 average right now as I didn’t close any big deals this month for my niche websites. I keep working on new sites (my latest on is almost finished!) and I didn’t work on promoting them at all. With the recent panda update, I’ve seen my traffic go up and I have now more than one site with over 1,000 visits per month without even trying! When I work on promotion (probably in Q2 of 2012), I’m convinced to bring these numbers into the thousands of monthly visits ;-D.
I’m not good a bookkeeping (this is why I have an accountant right?) but I know that my expenses are roughly $4,000 for the month (this includes my pay for the day of blogging). In order to be fair, you need to factor your hours in there too. If not, you are not calculating real profits ;-). I detail the cost of running my business in this post .
Since I have a partner, this makes $3,500 in profits for roughly 16 hours of work in a month (this is the time I spend writing as the rest of my time is calculated in the cost of operations). I’m now making $218.75/hour writing ;-)… how cool is that!
Last week, I produced a 3 part series on how to manage private advertisers:
The first part was about knowing your site
The second part is about building your media kit
The third part is about making money without working your ass off!
There is also a 2,250 words complement to this series for my newsletter subscribers 😉
I created this series as I knew that there were a lot of interest in private advertising and you wanted to know how I manage it. In the meantime, I tried brokering some ads for a fellow blogger. I used to this at large a while back ago. I had stopped during last year as I was too busy with other projects. But now that I have a full team working with me, I opened up the business.
In a single month, we were able to generate $650 worth of deals (this includes two 6 month agreements and 2 new Paypal subscription). We could have jumped this to $1,650 but we had technical difficulties while adding a specific widget. With this great success, I’m opening up my offer to other bloggers in limited numbers (as I want to ensure a high quality service along with high quality advertisers 😉 ).
Here’s the deal:
I have a huge load of advertiser contacts and am well known in the industry (I’ve been blogging since 2006!). Therefore, it’s easy for me to generate more advertising opportunities and my sites are pretty full right now. So I am offering to manage and negotiate the ads for you for a very small price.
What I offer:
– I find, negotiate and manage advertising space for you.
– I also handle the renewals.
– It’s not exclusive so you can continue to find and close deals on your own.
– So less time spent on your blog, more money for you, how does this sound?
What I’m expecting from you:
– I want blogs that are PR3 and above (Sorry guys but Google sets the rule on this playground)
– I want 1 year of history (I want to deal with serious bloggers only and the threshold is usually 6 to 12 months before a blogger quits)
– I want bloggers that will put the ad in place within 24 hours
What’s the cost?
My process is pretty streamlined so I don’t want to charge you an arm and a leg for that. So here’s how it works: I take 1 month worth of advertising as a commission that is renewable on a yearly basis.
So for a monthly deal (through paypal subscriptions), I take the first payment in full and then, set a paypal subscription to pay you the following months.
For 6 month agreement, I take 1/6 of the deal and you keep the rest. If the advertiser renews in 6 month, you get the full payment (I will only take another commission if we can keep the advertiser on board the year after).
For 12 month deals, I obviously take 1/12 of the payment and you are good to go for 12 months ;-).
I’ve already got 2 new clients for November, so I’m already at 3 and will take a maximum of 10 clients right now so hurry up!
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