Thursday, April 03, 2008

A Discussion About Monetizing Comedy Blogs

One of the Discussion groups that I belong to over at BlogCatalog is the humor blogs group. We have a discussion going on about how to monetize humor web sites.

I thought it would be interesting to post some of the discussion here.

3dom ask;

Any ideas - what sponsors should people use on funny picture/videos sites?

How much do funny sites earns anyway? (in my case it is average 1 thousand unique visitors daily - thanks to your stumbles! - 75-80% of traffic coming from US, CA, AU, EU)

pointlessbanter said;

Honestly that is a hard thing to do. Google and other contextual advertising isn't going to work. The only thing you can do is try and get direct advertising or get onto a network that will sell ads for you and for that you need to usually be at 100K page views a month to even talk about it.

I have tried a mix of everything and I am still not happy.

Fitzgerald said;

You have a lot of content and you have many more visitors than I do. The gurus of affiliate marketing say, "content is king."

Decide what it is you want to sell. Movies, music, books, etc. Then choose a distributor that you want to associate yourself with, i.e. Amazon(dot)com, eBay, there are too many to list.

And depending on what you sell and the cost, you could make a lot of money. Consider (cost x 1000 sells per month). You have 30,000 visitors a month if you sold 10% of them something that cost 1 dollar that would be $3,000.00/month.

That is possible, but it will take a lot of work to figure out what to sell.

Then check out affiliate marketing networks, i.e. LinkShare, Commission Junction, etc. Decide which merchants fit your site.

I did not see any Google links on your site, where do you put your ads?

3dom said;

Bad thing about my traffic is it all coming from social bookmarking sites. These people don't click anything (on my other site I've got about $7/month from AdSense from 160k unique visitors from Digg/Reddit/SU) - they are always in rush to return to the site from which they came from.

Plus I don't own the content (photos) - so I think site may be banned from AdSense - no point to use AdSense at all. So atm I'm thinking about pop-unders and CPM ads like Adversal (site is getting more than 100k views monthly).

CJ is a good idea. Maybe they have something interesting even for crappy SB traffic =)
Fitzgerald said;

I am not sure that you need to be so concerned about where your content comes from. You have a disclaimer and you state that you will remove any material that is copyrighted. I have received some of the pictures from your site in my email. And much of it may be in the public domain. You need to take the most popular pages in your blog and place an ad that is relevant to the picture.

You have a good site, I spent over 30 minutes surfing it yesterday. And I laughed many times. So as I said before you have good content.

Do you know the number one ranking page on your site?
Do you know where your traffic is coming from?
Do you know which search engine sends you the most traffic?
Do you know what search terms people are using to get to your site?

The answers to these questions will help you determine what to try to sell or what affiliate net work to use.

Just off the top of my head, I noticed that you have many funny pictures of girls / ladies. OK, so when a visitor comes they are looking for (1) something funny, and (2) a female. At that point you have their attention. Now you need to try to sell them something.

Female clothing, gag jokes, comedy movies, DVDs of your favorite female comic??? This is what pops into my mind.

There are many things that you could sell to a visitor who comes to your blogs via search.

It is a nice problem to have the traffic and not know how to sell to them, a much harder problem is to have no traffic at all. I do agree that much of the traffic that comes to your site from social networks is of low quality and not really people wanting to buy things. But you also have to consider that everyone that comes to your site buys stuff all the time, so why not have them buy from you.

And again consider that if you sold a $1.00 item to 10% of your traffic it would make you money.

Here is a quick three step approach that I would take if I were you.

1. Identify my most popular content (web pages). Maybe the top ten.

2. Place ads on those pages that are relevant to the content. i.e. if the page is about pets, a pet ad. If the page is about cars, a car ad. I think ads for comedy books, movies, DVDs, mp3s and other entertainment type stuff will work well for you.

3. Try to make more connections to other comedy blogs that will send you good high quality traffic. Go to blogs that you like and think are funny and post relevant comments. Ask the webmaster for link exchanges, that way a part of your traffic will come for other comedy blogs.

And one other thing Google also has referral ads too. So you can use more that AdSense for content type ads from Google.

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