Do you know what an influencer is?
It could be you!
I’m not kidding. If you establish yourself as someone who can influence other people’s purchasing decisions, you are an influencer.
You create this influence by establishing your authority and knowledge on a particular topic or by building a relationship with your audience – say, by creating a blog, engaging with your readers and being active on social media. The really cool thing about being an influencer is that you can use your status to monetize your blog.
This is one of the exciting aspects of creating a blog, isn’t it? Not only are you creating content because you love whatever you’re blogging about – but your passion can also create an income stream. One way to generate this income is to join a blogging network.
What is a blogging network?
Blogging networks are intermediaries between brands and bloggers. Brands always have specific demographics they want to target for advertising, and influential bloggers in that demographic are easy partners. This means you get paid for the effort you put into your blog and the marketing department of different brands gets a highly targeted ad.
Some blogging networks focus on ad sharing where you run literal ads, others allow brands to offer products for sponsored posts and then, of course, you can be paid cash for participating in these marketing campaigns. All of them have different salary structure and payment details. There are tons of opportunities that are open to everyone, and then there are blogging networks that you can enter by invitation only. But, for bloggers, they all depend on one premise: you must have an active, interesting blog and an engaged audience. Being active on social media is also important to your bottom line.
There are over 100 blogging networks out there, but today I’ve singled out 10 blogging networks that I think offer great opportunities for bloggers of all stripes. There’s something for everyone, so don’t think your blog is too new or too small to qualify!
Acorn will work with all levels of influencers, from those with just 1000 followers to those with hundreds of thousands of followers. They also connect bloggers with some big brands like Crest, Dasani, Bounty, Dr. Pepper, Cheerios and many more. Influencers who work with them cite the many small touches that make Acorn one of the best networks to work for, from an easy-to-navigate site to handwritten notes and gift cards.
Activate is about having the largest influencer network in the world and working with some incredible brands (from Marc Jacobs to Aveda to NARS). They advertise to their influencers that they don’t need exclusivity and they pay monthly. Activate’s attractive interface allows influencers to connect all their social media networks into an attractive media kit that can entice brands to include you in their campaigns. A complete profile will ensure that you are offered the maximum number of campaigns, and that you will only see campaigns for which you are eligible.
Revfluence is now known as Aspire. Past brand campaigns on the network include The Bouqs, Dyson, Hello Fresh and more.
If your blog’s demographic is predominantly female, BlogHer is an excellent platform to showcase your content. They focus on sharing the best content by and about women, covering topics from news to politics to food to fashion – and they run the BlogHer Publishing Network, a premium ad-sharing network that lets you work on blog-based sponsorship programs. Allows and earn a revenue share from ads run on your blog To join, you must be a woman (or have a demonstrated female audience), have excellent content and engaged readers, update your blog weekly and follow their editorial guidelines.
Blog Meets Brand is another good blog network that can connect you with brands and pay you – and they’re easy to sign up for. You just enter your name, email address and a password to get started before proceeding to the normal profile creation. Once you’re active, brands can find you – and Blog Meets Brand is big on hyper-focusing on niches, so if you have a well-defined niche and an active blog with a large following, you’ll probably do better.
People have written books behind the clever Influencer Marketing For Dummies. Their opportunities include paid gigs, sweepstakes and more. Past brand campaigns include Krispy Kreme, Hanes and Motorola. You have to apply and it can take up to 3 weeks to get back.
IZEA claims to be the biggest marketplace for creators to monetize their content – they don’t just work with bloggers, but YouTubers and Instagrammers and journalists and photographers and videographers. They have worked with brands like NBC, P&G, The Home Depot, and Toyota, just to name a few. Depending on the type of content you create, they can connect you with publishers and brands looking for sponsored posts or other content. They offer a directory or content that you can share and you pay for every click on that content.
Social Fabric by Collective Bias does more than connect bloggers to brands: it connects bloggers to each other. They are very upfront about their emphasis on community, and one of the great aspects of that community is how it elevates each member. Social Fabric members help each other improve their blogging skills, from taking better photos to writing better stories. To qualify, you should have an active blog with an attractive visual design that is easy to navigate. And You should engage with your readers through social media.
The Soy is another helpful blog network that wants to help their bloggers succeed – one of the first benefits of their network is that they teach bloggers: they give bloggers the tools to be successful no matter what site or conference they host. They’re also big on their proprietary dashboard that matches you with brands, and insists that you only choose opportunities you like and match your blog’s demographic.
TapInfluence matches bloggers with brands so they can either put together sponsored posts or short content (social posts) or both. Signing up is easy, and one of the bonuses of signing up for a free profile is seeing your estimated influencer earnings right after connecting your social media feeds and blog. Once you’re onboard, you’re discoverable by brands working with TapInfluence’s software. Considering how easy it is to sign up, it’s leaving money on the table to not check out.
I hope you’ve signed up for one or more of the blogging networks above so you can start monetizing your blog today! Honestly, if you put in the work, there’s nothing wrong with getting some money for your time. Just be honest and have fun!