My blog is my job. It helps us pay for birthdays, vacations and even Christmas. I’ve used blog money to buy groceries for the recipes I share, crafts for DIY posts and even to spoil myself and my family. What started out as a hobby has become a relatively decent way to add to our income and helps keep me a “mostly” stay-at-home mom. I recommend blogging as a way to earn money to bloggers and friends looking for part time work as well; it’s a fantastic way to make your own career in this volatile job market. One of the few companies I work with often is Linqia. It’s given me a great chance to work with big companies like Mezzetta and Snuggle, brands I already use and love, and helps me establish myself as a professional blogger with professional business contacts.
Linqia is different than most Blogger Networks; instead of a flat blog rate, it lets you sort of determine how much you can make via clicks through their sponsored links for content. You place the personalize links throughout your story, share it via social networks and you earn a click through rate for each view you drive to them.
Sometimes campaigns almost drive traffic themselves with coupons, sweepstakes and giveaways and other times it can be tricky to get views. I’ve been working with Linqia for over a year and at the beginning it was tricky for me to reach my click quota because I didn’t really understand how to drive traffic to the links.
How Linqia Works
Like I said above, Linqia is a “pay per click” blogger network. At the start of the campaign, based on your current number of viewers, followers and social media reach you are given a click quota. When you reach or exceed your quota, that data is taken into consideration for your next campaigns. If you don’t reach your quota, subsequent campaigns will offer you a lower amount of clicks so you can reach it easier next time; if you exceed your quotas, future campaigns will offer you more clicks and bring in more income. I started off with lower numbers, struggled the first few campaigns and my click quota went down.
But then I started to get the hang of it, and now each campaign I get offers me the chance to earn more money. And let’s face it, you want to earn the most out of your sponsored content, don’t you? Professional bloggers put a lot of time and energy (and money!) into posts and sponsored content is just one of the ways we can get paid.
Ways to Reach Your Quota
Choose Genuine Campaigns
I try to always select campaigns that I think my readers would benefit from the most and what I feel I can share relatively easily and honestly. Who wants to work extra hard? Anything having to do with food is usually always a GO for me, because I love creating recipes and trying new products. Being genuine is always best and comes across as natural, allowing you to create sponsored stories that people want to read and share. Some of my lowest click outcomes have been from things I couldn’t genuinely share easily, even if it was a product I thought would benefit my readers. Being choosy with campaigns won’t affect you from getting future campaigns, so if you don’t think you can honestly and easily create a story, pass on it. More campaigns will come later, I promise.
Don’t Ask for Clicks, Share your Story!
It’s tempting to ask for clicks, but it’s against Linqia’s TOS. It’s better to share your content on your social networks with the highest amount of followers. I like to use Twitter the most and have seen the most success with reaching my quotas using Retweeting groups on Facebook. My favorite retweeting group by far is Twitter Marketing Group. You share tweets in a thread and everyone retweets everyone’s post. It can help your tweet be seen by thousands more people than just sharing on your own feed and it’s a great way to meet other bloggers and gain more followers too. I’ve seen some campaigns reach the click quota overnight; anything over that helps in your next campaign and earns you more money in the future. Another great Facebook group is Social Media Network Marketing; it allows you to share content on various platforms like Pinterest and Instagram too.
Pinterest is another great way to share content, by adding your unique tracking link to your pin’s description you can boost clicks fairly easily. Make sure you join group boards and share your pin to several relevant boards to gain the most views and retweets. This is also great for sharing content and boosting page views as well for a larger amount of time. After the campaign is over it won’t help with clicks, but it will help boost your numbers for your blog which is equally important for bloggers.
Create Engaging Content
This sort of goes without saying, but creating engaging content will drive more clicks and views than something that is plain and boring and uncreative. Come up with creative use of the sponsored brand’s products. Fun recipes, easy DIY, or a compelling or hilarious story always do well. Beautiful, mouth watering photos will do much better than badly lit and poorly plated ones will. Invest in a camera nicer than your iPhone and watch how your content is shared and retweeted and repinned, times over.
Another thing you want to do is create content on social media that someone wants to click on. Share your personal photos and drive clicks to your link by sharing coupons, sweepstakes and contests. Right now I am doing 3 different campaigns that all offer me the chance to let my readers win something. I find that these campaigns go far and above the click quota by at least a few hundred.
Utilize Twitter to it’s Full Potential
The average lifespan of a tweet that goes unnoticed is one hour. ONE HOUR! So if you’re not utilizing Twitter to the best of your ability, you won’t be creating the type of content that gets seen and shared over and over. Using Retweet groups like I mentioned above will take that one hour lifespan of a tweet and extend it over a few days. It will help you reach audiences that might not have seen your content and be able to unlock the potential for other people who may be interested in the content you’re sharing see your stuff! I have around 8K followers on twitter, but when I use Retweet groups to boost my posts, my stuff is potentially seen by over 100K twitter users. Some of the people in the group have 50K followers or more! I share their tweets to showcase it to a new audience and they retweet mine so I can get a much broader and larger audience as well. This is a much better option than spacing out 5-10 tweets over the course of the day. I’ve gone to bed and woke up to 300+ clicks on just one tweet before with the help of retweet groups!
I always like to push the giveaway or coupon using not only the campaign hashtags, but also relevant hashtags for the campaign like #foodie, #giveaway, #coupon, #recipe, etc… Hashtags will also help those who are looking for that type of content see your stuff too!
I always add my own photo, whether I download a brand photo of the giveaway package, or just a simple stylized photo of the recipe I made. The tweets are bigger and thus get noticed more. Adding your own photo with overlaying text is another way to say more than the 140 characters will allow as well. These tweets do MUCH better than just 140 characters and a bunch of hashtags that make no sense.
Share all of the content you create on your personal networks, add it to your blogs newsletter, and make sure you’re sharing a few times a week on social media (and using the marketing groups as well!). 1-3 excellently worded tweets with beautiful pictures and something encouraging for the person reading it, a day is all you need MAX. No reason to use scheduling apps to create superfluous tweets that will be extinct in a hour with little to no help to you. Just because you’re “Tweeting 10 times a day!” doesn’t mean anyone is seeing it, clicking it, retweeting it or acknowledging it. Work smarter, not harder!
Blogging is a community and we all are here to help each other, so use that to your advantage!
If you’re on the fence about joining Linqia, give it a try! I invite you to sign up under my name and start your first campaign! Full disclosure, I get a $5 signing bonus and another bonus when you complete your first campaign. So let’s help each other ace these campaigns and watch how our blogging income grows!
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments below and I will do my best to answer them for you!