The advertisement page on your blog should serve two purposes: it should attract any potential advertiser with relevant information like site statistics, and it should provide contact information, prices, and other related information. For those of you with the do-it-yourself mentality, this guide will be right up your alley.
The first thing that you should consider doing is writing a summary of your site’s functions for the first introductory paragraph. If your site offers additional services — more than what what would be obvious — than this is a great opportunity to inform advertisers of them. This is also great for quickly informing advertisers that are scouring the web for opportunities and do not feel like investigating deep into your entire site. In the end, it is a way to give your site a professional review.
While constructing your advertising page, your goal should be to highlight everything that is great about your blog. This means using statistics to your advantage. Impressive daily, weekly, or monthly visitor statistics are always something to highlight. However, never mention statistics or information that would make your blog appear less worthy to an advertiser.
Depending on the size and success of your blog, there are various things to consider pointing out on your advertising page:
- Traffic statistics (e.g. daily, monthly, yearly averages)
- Number of clicks on advertisements
- Number of subscribers to content feeds
- Numbers from PageRank, Alexa, Technorati, etc.
- Number of posts on average per day, week, or month
- Contributors to your blog
- Testimonials from other renowned sites and companies
- Companies/websites that have previously advertised with your site
- Prestigious companies or sites that have recognized your site’s content
- How long your site has existed (if a significant time)
- Any awards your blog has received
- Demographics of your readers
There is much more that could be added to that list, but essentially, anything that can make your blog appear valuable is up for consideration. You should be creative with the information that you display. Try to think like a salesperson. You are selling your product, so do your best to do exactly that.
Be honest with the information you are sharing. Mentioning statistics from the past is fine, but stating that your blog is currently receiving an average of 500 daily visitors when it only receives 50 is not a wise decision — your credibility is much more valuable.
Finally, do not go overboard. You need to display relevant information about your site, but do not make it a difficult task to read through your advertising page. Display the most prominent statistics and information about your site, and be done with it.
Pricing Your Inventory
There are several ways to actually set up how you are going to price your inventory. One way to approach this would be to publicly list your prices for each advertising spot (just as Performancing does). Alternatively, you could negotiate with each advertiser privately, and this could improve the chances of making a deal. Yet another way would be to design or employ a system that handles everything for you.
If your blog is relatively new and has few or no advertisers, you should make it your goal to sell most, if not all, of your inventory at any price. Why? Well, doing this will make your site appear more valuable and likely entice new advertisers. Many might be hesitant to advertise with a site that currently has little to no inventory sold; there would obviously be a reason for this.
The correct pricing of your inventory is also crucial. Overcharge, and you risk having advertisers pass without much, if any, consideration. Undercharge, and you risk not being able to pay the bills. Until you are consistently making money and having advertisers flocking to work with you, it is generally a better idea to charge less.
Finally, be sure to clearly display the terms of any deal on your advertising page. You do not want to leave the terms of the deal up for interpretation by a court of law, right? If you are negotiating a deal privately, be sure to make the details clear and keep any discussions about them. It is better to be safe than sorry.
Additional Tips For Sealing The Deal
Consider this a bonus section — I will be covering all of these and more with details in a later article, but for now, here are a few creative ideas for convincing advertisers that it will be money well spent:
- Offer a special deal with the stipulation that if the company/website sticks with you for a certain number of months, a free month of advertising will be given. (useful for securing long-term deals)
- Take a percentage off for early adopters, and maintain it throughout the advertising period (e.g. 10% off as long as the partnership continues)
- Offer to write a certain number of posts about the site or company advertising on your blog
- Offer the opportunity to have an advertiser post on your blog
- Offer the opportunity for an advertiser to sponsor a contest or giveaway
I must remind everyone to disclose the proper information if you are being compensated for writing about a company or its products. Again, your reputation and credibility are much more valuable than a few bucks.
If you have any additional tips or resources for setting up and maintaining your own personal advertising program on a blog, let everyone know about them below.