Money makers and shakers is a series of interviews I am conducting with successful bloggers who are making money out of blogging and making a difference to the blogging community in different ways including educating new bloggers and teaching old bloggers new methods to monetize their blogs.
Before I start the interview I would like to present a little background information about Maki and his successful blog Dosh Dosh.
Who is Maki?
Maki is currently a Political Science and Philosophy student in Toronto, Canada. His personal interests revolve around indie rock music, anime, photography, art films, internet media and really good literature.
Maki has spent time doing freelance journalism and has also been involved with various public relations and marketing firms. He holds a high level of interest about affiliate marketing, social media, blogging and anything that results in a copious amount of making money.
What is Dosh Dosh about?
Dosh Dosh is a blog that helps you on ways to make money online. Dosh Dosh enlightens you on topics that vary from professional blogging to making money online with various tools.
Dosh Dosh strives to bring to you the legitimate and legal ways of making money exposing the frauds that try to take advantage of the means to make money online.
I am very happy to get the first interview with Maki and am glad that he has taken time to answer all the questions I have put forth in this interview.
What are your views about making money using blogs?
Maki: I think they are definitely useful tools that can generate income either directly or indirectly for a business or individual. You could easily set up a blog to complement your company or you could create a blog to promote your own professional services such as freelance writing or web design. Blogs are generally very easy to create and manage so they can be used for a wide variety of other means such as affiliate marketing as well.
Should / Can new bloggers take up blogging with a view of earning money?
Maki: Yes, I think taking up blogging with the aim of making money is not disagreeable. A blog can be likened to other websites or online magazines which offer you content in return for income generated by advertising. Taking such a perspective will not be detrimental for your blogging career as long as you holistically integrate blog monetization alongside the provision of content that fulfills the audience’s need.
Does it matter if you use your personal domain or a blog network for blogging?
Maki: Yes, I think it matters in the long run. Your own domain allows you a lot more backend flexibility and control. Hosted blog services like WordPress.com or Blogger do have limitations, not to mention that it might look unprofessional in the eyes of others.
What are the various source of income you use on your blog?
Maki: I mainly use a combination of affiliate ads alongside contextual advertising like Google Adsense for all my blogs. I’m also a big fan of direct advertising sales and have used this option extensively for most of my blogs.
Has the advertising industry started to take bloggers as a serious medium of advertising? How do you recommend part time bloggers manage direct advertising?
Maki: According to my personal experiences, yes. Companies do want to advertise on relevant blogs because they can reach out to a growing audience base via association with the blogger or blog in question. For part-time bloggers, I would highly recommend setting up an ‘Advertise’ page which lists their ad rates and advertising options. If one is really new to this, I’ve got a series of articles on direct advertising for beginners which might be helpful.
Would you advise your readers to take up blogging as a career?
Maki: Not unless you really enjoy it. There are many other more effective ways to make money online and blogging is just one of the methods out there. However, if you really do have passion for blogging, by all means go for it and see if you can actually make a living from it. It can be very difficult but like everything else, its worth trying if it is something that truly interests you.
Can you describe few steps to help new bloggers take a constructive path towards making money?
- Choose a blog niche and start a blog.
- Make a list of the blogs within your niche
- Network with these bloggers, link to them, engage in conversations.
- Write creative and original content.
- Promote this content to the bloggers in your niche
- Optimize your blog for search engine traffic
- Gradually monetize your blog using multiple income streams.
If given an opportunity can you as a leader in blogging and making money make a ready difference towards educating new bloggers?
Maki: Well, yes. I feel as if I’m already doing that by writing blog posts everyday on the topic of blog monetization or making money online. I wouldn’t consider myself a leader: everyone has an important opinion to offer and sharing knowledge or personal experiences we have will help each other to develop a greater understanding of how blogging can be profitable.
Will you pitch towards getting blogging as a mainstream subject for studies?
Maki: Not really. I don’t really think blogging should be studied in schools because it might make it too clinical or pedantic. In any case, there’s really nothing you can learn from a course that you can’t learn by yourself by reading some informative blogs. Courses entirely structured around blogging might be incredibly dull. :)
How do you help the community and recommend others to do?
Maki: Try your best to provide publicity for valuable web content that enriches one another’s understanding of a specific topic. Share knowledge freely and try your best to reply to emails or queries from the general public. This is basically one of the best ways to sustain any online community.
Do you have any other questions that you want to be answered? Do let me know. Looking forward to your views on this, do share your valuable thoughts through your comments.