If you’re a reader of my affiliate marketing blog, Finch Sells, you will probably be aware that I’ve introduced paid content over the last 6 weeks.
I thought it’d be interesting to see how many of my regular readers converted in to paying customers, especially given how fellow marketers can be notoriously hard to sell to.
The results from the first 6 weeks have been promising. I’ve taken just under $15,000 in sales, which I’m hoping will double in the next couple of weeks (Volume 2 was released yesterday).
While $15,000 is certainly a nice side-income to go with my usual marketing projects, I think the most exciting development is simply discovering that the premium content angle can work.
I’ve spoken about the concept on Twitter and a few people have quite rightfully pointed out that paid content can only be successful as long as the standard of the posts is kept high. I couldn’t agree more with the need to deliver quality content, but this is one of the reasons I’ve chosen standalone products instead of the currently popular subscription model.
Subscription based Internet Marketing forums are all the rage right now, and I’ve had the pleasure of checking out most of them. Sites like Aff Playbook, Stack That Money and IMGrind all do a fantastic job of delivering valuable content – and I’m sure they make a lot more money out of it than the $15000/month my Premium Posts have delivered so far.
The issue for me is commitment. I could potentially roll out a subscription based service, but it would create an enormous burden of pressure to keep delivering excellent content month after month. There really is little margin for error with a crowd that is so tough to please.
It’s the type of model that is much more sustainable on a forum where you have dozens of different personalities offering their own useful advice.
I’ve gone with the Premium Posts on a themed basis, so users with particular interests can buy information that should hopefully be directly relevant to them. With no subscription deadline, I can take full creative control and spend however long it takes to deliver content that I’m proud of, and that I think my readers are going to enjoy.
I hope that by adding products slowly, and keeping the quality high, I can build up a sizeable ‘passive income’. I’m also hoping that readers who have been converted in to paying customers will become more loyal to the brand.
Ironically enough, after releasing Premium Posts Volume 1, my blog received 6 of it’s 10 highest traffic days in the history of the site. Far from driving readers away, it seemed to generate extra visitors.
Releasing the products has also allowed me to seize a lot of traffic from forums and blogs linking to the announcement, which will presumably help my SEO. Not that I give two shits about SEO, but it’s a nice bonus.
Perhaps the opportunity that excites me most is the idea of exporting the Premium Posts concept and implementing it on other blogs.
It’s constantly preached that creating products is the best way to produce a long-term stable income, no matter what kind of site you’re running. While it will definitely be a challenge to provide the same incentive for purchasing paid content as affiliate marketing brings (who wouldn’t want to make more money?), I believe the concept has legs on it.
It should be interesting to see the results over the next couple of months. I’m definitely looking forward to making blogging a more profitable cornerstone of my business.
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