Episode 12: Ad-supported Content and Blog Business Models

Episode 12: Ad-Supported Content

This post will have some overlap with our previous episode on blog revenue streams, but with more emphasis on turning your blog itself into a business rather than simply monetizing it by connecting it to external sales. Please excuse the occasional skips (mostly in the reader Q&A segment). I tried a different piece of recording software for this episode, and unfortunately it skipped several times. I edited out as much of that as possible, and I'll be going back to my previous recording app in the future.

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In This Episode

In today's episode we'll talk about:

  • Business models for bloggers, including ad-supported content;
  • Finding a magazine's editorial calendar before querying them;
  • AutoCrit's self-editing tool for fiction authors, including an April-only discount for new subscribers.

Blog Business Models

  1. When most people bring up blogging as a business, they aren't actually talking about turning a blog into a true business model on its own. Instead, they mean using the blog as the primary marketing tool for another business venture such as selling products or services.
  2. But if you do want a standalone blog-based business, there are a couple of options: ad-supported content and incorporating premium features or paid content on your blog.
  3. It's not uncommon for people to ignorantly criticize ad-based business models for blogging. Don't pay attention to them. Their inability to make it work, or to make a specific type of advertising work, says nothing about the potential for your blog. It depends on your willingness to test, the niche of your blog, and what your audience is looking for.
  4. If you decide on a blog business model, you have several options -- from ad networks paying per-click or based on traffic to private ad sales and affiliate ads.
  5. The other major option for independent blog business models is to sell access to premium features on your blog itself, rather than selling external products or freelance (or coaching) services.

Magazine Editorial Calendars

A reader of the blog asked how they could find magazine editorial calendars. Here are three options, depending on the publication:

  1. Check their published writers' guidelines.
  2. Check the ad sales section of their website. Publications often share editorial calendars with potential advertisers so they can better time their ads.
  3. Contact the editor to ask if no schedules are available on the site.


As a follow up to my recent review of AutoCrit, remember that you can save 20% on the professional package through the end of April 2015 if you use coupon code AIW20 at checkout.

Get Your Writing Questions Answered

The All Freelance Writing Podcast regularly features community Q&As. So I'd love to hear your questions about freelance writing, blogging, or indie publishing. If you'd like me to consider answering your question in a future podcast episode, you can contact me in three different ways:

  1. Email me at jenn@allfreelancewriting.com.  Include the phrase "Podcast Question" in your subject line to make sure the email is filtered correctly so I don't miss it.
  2. Submit your question through the contact form on this page.
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