You can buy advertising on New Music Strategies. You can sell it too.
I’ll be straight with you: I’d like to make a little extra money for running this site. It’s competing with other things that occupy a lot of my time and focus, and I’d like to give it the attention it really deserves — especially with the podcast on the (very near) horizon, and New Music Ideas, the new sister site, already underway.
With that in mind, I’ve spoken to a few very smart business people and professional bloggers, who have suggested ways that advertising can be made to work more effectively on this site without being too obtrusive, without getting in the way of the content, and without jeopardising the integrity of the blog.
They were very positive about the specifically targeted nature of the site, and said nice things about it being attractive to certain types of advertisers, mostly from within the readership itself, which kind of works out nicely.
So I’ve taken these suggestions and added a neat little twist: I want to give you a large chunk of that money. I know a bit of extra pocketmoney can come in handy when you’re an independent musician or music business, and my whole point here is to be helpful to you guys. So… let me explain how this works.
There are three ways to do this:
1) Sidebar advertisements
These will be rectangles of 168 x 240 pixels. That’s the same size as that picture of me up there on the right hand side of the screen.
There’ll be three of these. The first one will be near the top, just under the ‘About this Site’ section. The other two will be further down, to the right of the main body of the text (see where it says ‘Latest Posts’ and ‘Also Helpful’?).
The top one will cost Ã‚Â£150 for a month’s placement, and is aimed at businesses selling a product or service, or promoting their site.
The bottom two will only be available to independent artists or record labels who are promoting a specific release or gig, and would be available at the very affordable rate of Ã‚Â£20 for the week.
The sidebar ads would reach a readership of between four and five hundred blog visitors a day, most of whom, it would appear, are directly involved with the music business. I can show you Google Analytics stats on the numbers of visitors and page impressions (roughly two and a half times that number).
Your advertisement will link to the site of your choice. However, you should know that I’m fussy.
I will only accept advertising that I absolutely approve of, and will certainly never take your cash if I don’t like what you are pushing. While the money would be nice, my reputation is my business, and I will not flog crap.
Interested? Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
2) RSS Feed Text Ads
I have 1,200 RSS subscribers to this blog. They receive every post I write. Usually between four and seven posts a week. At the bottom of each RSS feed from this site is a message that encourages people to go and download the free e-book. However, I think these days every one of those subscribers already has it.
So… I am offering an advertising message of up to 100 words, with a link. The message will appear at the bottom of every RSS feed from the site. This text ad will cost Ã‚Â£120 for the month, specifically targets the regular, committed reader, and yours will be the only such message for that month.
However, if you are an independent artist, I will offer you the same text-link offer at only Ã‚Â£50 for the month — but I will make two such messages available that will both appear at the bottom of the RSS feed.
Like the first ad method, I will only accept messages that I personally approve. The standard will be quite high, but if your message is of genuine use and interest to my audience, and meets certain ethical criteria, then I’m happy for it to be attached to the bottom of my posts.
Sound reasonable? Here’s the email address: email@example.com
3) Sponsored blog post
Once a week, on a Friday, I will write a sponsored blog post of 3-500 words, promoting your product or service.
Here’s the catch: I’ll make it perfectly clear that it’s a sponsored post, and I will be entirely honest. But you get the power of veto. If I don’t like your service or product, I will give you the option to have me not publish the blog post, or post as is. If you decide against it, you won’t have to pay me.
Of course, if I say nice things, which will only ever be because I genuinely mean those things, then I’ll just publish.
My fine and considered writing comes at the measly cost of Ã‚Â£40 for the article. I’ll only do one a week, and I’ve priced it to be reasonably affordable to struggling independents and non-profits looking to get their message out to the independent and community music sector.
Of course, this blog post will appear on the site itself, which reaches the aforementioned 400-500 visitors per day, as well as to the 1200-odd RSS subscribers.
And of course, once posted, the article stays as part of the site forever, picking up Google search hits, stray visitors and people browsing through the site archives.
Good plan? Click the link to email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
But I’m not just going to sit and wait for the advertisers to come to me. I’m going to take what I think is probably the unprecedented step of offering commission on sales to the readers of my blog.
That’s right — you can sell advertising for me, and I’ll pay you a cut.
When I worked in radio, the commission on advertising was 15% of the ticket price. Double that seems more fair, don’t you think? If you sell any of these advertising packages, I’ll give you 30% commission as an independent sales contractor.
Better yet, to get things kickstarted, if you sell December, I’ll make it 50%. Yep – you get half.
Drop me a note if you’re interested: email@example.com
But wait — there’s more! (Always wanted to say that)
From my own share of the revenue, I’ll make a donation of 20% to a charity of my choice. I like Medecins Sans Frontiers (Doctors Without Borders), but I reserve the right to change who I give that money to as I see fit.
Of course, the same rules apply to your selling techniques as do to the product. If I think your methods are underhand or unpleasant, or if I don’t like the product or service you’ve worked so hard to get advertising revenue out of, then no deal. I can be quite unreasonable in this respect. I won’t put crap in front of you if I can possibly help it.
Your job will simply to be to put the client in touch with me to complete the transaction, then once they’ve paid, I’ll give you your cut via PayPal.
Does this sound fair and reasonable? Just… well, you know what to do.
I get a bit of money out of it, you get a bit of money out of it, I get to give some money that once belonged to an advertiser to something I think is really important, and I get to put that advertiser’s message out to a very well-targeted audience that is keen to hear that message, at a very reasonable price (especially reasonable if you’re an artist or not-for-profit).
Rates are subject to change, but not without warning. Months are calendar months, regardless of the number of days contained within (including leap years). Weeks run for seven days, Monday to Sunday. Days are the usual length.
And, of course, as the purpose of this blog is to be helpful and instructive, feel free to steal any of these ideas for your own website or blog. Best of luck with it.
You’d like to advertise on New Music Strategies, or would like to become an advertising rep — so drop me a note: firstname.lastname@example.org