National Post writer Mark Evans asks the important question: how is making money off the blogs. He quotes me as saying, I am not, certainly not enough to retire and move to the French Rivera, though it does support my fondness for expensive Dunhill’s nicely. Evans basically scans the entire landscape – from tools to bloggers to search companies in search of dollars. If you discount my mutterings, I can say this is one of the most comprehensive articles on blogging.
Gawker, Weblogs Inc and Six Apart seem to be making money. But rest of us are waiting. I told Mark that we were in the equivalent of 1996 of Web 1.0 right now, and we all need to be patient. I am apprehensive of too much venture dollars flowing into the nascent market, because I know like overeating too much VC funding can cause indigestion. I mean come-on, do we really need a RSS fund?
Technorati’s Dave Sifry sums it up nicely when he says: “Any time you see a strong vibrant community of people doing something, keep your eyes open because there will be interesting businesses there.”
6 thoughts on “Show me the money…Mr. Blogger”
As long as you keep the heart and soul of what you are doing then taking money to keep doing what you’re doing is a a good thing. Kottke isn’t doing too bad either.
But Kottke has a large audience and had to beg.
Current models for a blog to make money are either ads (more often Google adsense), associate/affiliate links, such as those that Amazon have, or ‘donate’ buttons.
Only a small percentage of blogs would be in the situation that they need income to cover costs. Blogs are either personal blogs that are hosted on free services, thus need not seek an income, are a communication channel from a company promoting its own services, or the type such as Om’s where he would like some credit back for his work.
Affiliate links need their own adsense. What I am saying is that if I write a review about product X, chances are that somebody might see it and then go on to buy that product. At the moment I just link to that company, I get nothing in return. If there was a marketplace such as adsense where I can link to a URL that will send me back credit, then that would provide another and potentially better source of income. It would work like adsense but I can pick the ad that I want to link to and write a blog post around it. Its a bit cash-for-comments but not a bad idea as it would benefit all. Google would be in the best position at the moment to provide something like this. The blog author would simply see if a product they are about to review or link to is listen on Adsense, then use the Adsense link to link to it. This would be more attractive than some simple text ads.
As an aside, the article states that MS Spaces has 10 Million users, surely then the total figure for number of blogs being 13 Million needs to be revised? I think what is more important for the advertising industry is knowing how many people read blogs each day, and what they are reading.. which nobody really seems to know.
those are very good points you make. I could not agree more with you and i think the advertising and revenue models for this are evolving. i think it will take some time. I think the whole space is a little “cottage” industry for now. but thanks for you excellent comments.
any idea how much techcrunch make?i bet not much from Google Adsense but surely lot more from direct advertising. somoene direct ads works better for large network sites with hundreds and thousands of subscribers