I was recently digging into Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere 2010 report, which surveyed over 7,200 bloggers, and provided great insight as to who is blogging, what they are blogging about, why they are doing it, how often, and where they are blogging from.
There were some interesting key trends this year, including the growth of mobile blogging, the influence of women and mom bloggers on the blogosphere, and the growing trust consumers have for bloggers over traditional media.
But no other trend was more exciting to me than the compelling statistic that 36% of bloggers surveyed reported making money from their blogs. That number, while still low, indicates a significant increase from 2009, meaning that more bloggers than ever are attempting to make money from their blogs. Additionally, the data also revealed that bloggers who received revenue from blogging generally blogged more this year than ever before.
According to the survey, while self-expression and sharing expertise still lead as blogger’s primary motivations, a significant portion of part-time and self-employed bloggers admit to blogging to make money or supplement their income.
Overall, only 18% of bloggers surveyed reported a non-salary income from their blog in 2010. The most common ways of generating blog revenue were from display ads, affiliate marketing links, paid postings and search ads.
Unfortunately, the mean income reported was $9,985, which, in my opinion, indicates that (A) bloggers still view blogging as a way to subsidize their hobby, to some extent, or (B) they just don’t know how to monetize their blogs properly, but want to learn.
Over the last year, I’ve run into a whole lot of more (B)’s. This is very exciting to me, whether the newfound open-mindedness to content monetization was economy-driven or because bloggers have finally realized that it is OK to monetize one’s blog.
Either way, the affiliate marketing industry wins a brand-new crop of passionate content providers, who are outpacing other social media and many traditional media outlets, in terms of generating consumer recommendations and purchases, according to the survey.
Affiliate Summit recognized this shift early this year and subsequently created Monetize Summit, which makes its debut on the Sunday of Affiliate Summit West 2011 in January. This series of beginner educational sessions will focus on turning a blog into a profit center, making money using pop culture content, providing tips and tricks to increase conversions, and teaching attendees how to use a datafeed to monetize a site.
With more than half of the bloggers surveyed planning on blogging even more, and 43% planning to expand the topics they blog about, it is our goal to help those bloggers be able to afford to spend more time to do just that.
Affiliate marketing shares in the blogger’s optimism for the future and we welcome you to our growing family.
Technorati’s state of the Blogosphere 2010 Report can be read in full here.