Wednesday, May 15, 2019

To monetize or to not monetize, that is the question

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclaimer  for details.

I started writing on this site 13 1/2 years ago. It started as a simple way for me to journal my weight loss. I have always kept a journal. I actually have a journal going back to third grade. (It cracks me up to read it!). Maybe I was just na├»ve when I started this online journal, I certainly knew that someone could stumble upon this journal… But I never realized when I started that so many people could and would read my words. Imagine my surprise when I started to accumulate followers and comments! Knowing that I had consistent readers did not change the way I wrote in terms of subject matter. I still continued, and still do to this day, right my true and unadulterated story and thoughts. I hold nothing back, and I tell it like it is.  Even when it’s embarrassing and shameful. The only thing that changed was that I did strive to make my posts a little more reader friendly and not just a one sentence synopsis of my day. Oh, and I started to add pictures.  (Like this one from my walk at lunch yesterday!)

Quite a few years into maintaining this online journal, I started to see people doing the vlogs. I thought about it. I seriously thought about it. But I never jumped in to do it because, well...I don’t know why!  I also started to realize that some people had  ads on their site. Over the years, I have seriously thought about that also. I always resisted. After all, at the heart of the matter, this is really just my personal journal, one that I have invited the world to join in and read.   Part of my resistance though came from the fact that many blogs I read that monetized turned into ‘money makers’.  Those sites and posts changed from personal to purely informational posts designed to attract a random reader and garner clicks and sales!  I didn’t want that!  Not at all!!!

However, the thought of monetizing this site has continued to crop up in my thoughts over and over through the years.  This last year, even more than ever. I think part of it is due to the fact that we watch a lot of YouTube videos and we see people making a decent living off of their YouTube channels. I also have read some recent blog posts about people that are making money off of their blogs. I haven’t gone looking for these blogs and videos, they have come across my radar quite naturally.

I actually have the idea for a YouTube channel.  Who wouldn’t want to watch a 46-year-old overweight woman learn to mountain bike…  jumps, drops, furiously fast downhill sections, and weight loss. (Cause being out there would garner weight loss I’m sure!). I think that it would be part motivational, simply because of my weight and my age.  How many people don’t do something because they are older or overweight.  I also know that it could be quite humorous. Just remember the trail ride in this post wheree I found myself sitting on the side of the trail crying. Furthermore, such a channel would also satisfy the morbid factor.   Everyone would be sitting on the edge of their seat waiting for me to fall or cry....Over and over again probably. Perfect idea right???  But, I honestly just don’t know that I have the time and energy for a project of that magnitude.

You may have noticed a while back that I started adding a few Amazon affiliate links to my post. Not exactly a great moneymaker (I think I made $.22 last month) but it’s worth a try. I don’t put links in there often because it honestly had to be a product that I am actually using that comes up naturally in my post. I refuse to write a post just to throw an Amazon affiliate link out there.  (Which is probably why I only made 22 cents!)

A week or two ago, I finally caved. I added adsense to my site. I am personally trying to keep the ads unobtrusive because I don’t want the mission of my site to change. But, I want your opinion… does it turn you off?

I don’t expect to make any kind of money. I don’t expect to quit my job. I just figure, if I’m already writing then I may as well add these extra things on and maybe the pennies I make will add up to cover the financial expense of this site (the financial expense is quite nominal so maybe I can achieve that!). I wanted to explain my choices, maybe defend my decision a little. (To myself since I feel as if I sold out!!). Monetizing this blog site will not change the content. I refuse to write  fluff sales posts. I refuse to turn this into anything other than what it is, which is a chronicle of my journey.For better or worse, let’s see what happens. And buckle your seatbelt because I have no health has to weight has to drop!!!  Let’s do this!!!