It takes about 100,000 unique visitors a month to generate an income of $75,000 a year. Bloggers can get $75 to $200 for a good post, and some even serve as "spokesbloggers" -- paid by advertisers to blog about products.What a load of crap. Once again, the media can't get the basic facts right. I average more than 100,000 visits per month and anybody who thinks that generates $75,000 a year is delusional. As for this "$75 to $200 for a good post" -- Heh! Maybe Jane Hamsher expects that kind of money. Or maybe Harvard boy Ross Douthat.
This WSJ nonsense about $75,000 a year is almost a rumor too good to deny., but I'll deny it anyway, because it could hurt my business. Most of my blog income comes from people hitting the tip jar, which you should do immediately.
Otherwise I might be tempted to sell out. But that would require a willing buyer, and so far my promotional work as "unofficial spokesblogger" for Corona Beer isn't a paying gig. But if you'll just click that bottle, maybe . . .
UPDATE: Jeff Jarvis: "He says that bloggers with 100,000 readers a month are making $75k. Name a few." And buy that man a Corona!
UPDATE II: Pat in Shreveport: "That's why he gets the big bucks." No, they give the big bucks to Ross Douthat. Because he's so witty and insightful, we laugh at the mere mention of his name. Har. Har har har.
UPDATE III: James Joyner at Outside the Beltway:
I'm quite dubious of these figures. They are likely self-reported and inflated. $75,000 a year is $6250 a month. Who is it that's getting paid $6.50 per thousand visits? At that rate, Andrew Sullivan and Glenn Reynolds, who average around 4.3 million and 10 million monthly uniques, should be atop the Forbes 500.Joyner's got a Ph.D., so he's got those def math skilz. Buy that man a Corona!
UPDATE IV: Another professorial blogger, Donald Douglas, says he ain't ready to quit teaching merely because he's raking in the sweet blog-o-bucks.
UPDATE V: Little Miss Attila is rattling her tip jar, too. She talks about a recent dearth of advertising income, but at least she's in BlogAds, a network that won't even allow me to join. So instead I'm doing G*o*o*g*l*e A*d*s*e*n*s*e (you're not actually supposed to mention it on your blog) which threw me a whopping $153.25 for 243,000 page impressions in March.
Maybe Dr. Joyner (who's also a member of the BlogAds network I'm not allowed to join) can do the math and tell me how many page impressions per month I'd have to get in order to gross $75,000 a year from Google. Short answer: A freaking lot.
UPDATE VI: Linked by The Anchoress, who's got more traffic than me and ain't even close to $75K/yr. And I'm not linked by Megan McArdle, who's probably getting paid at least $75K/yr. by The Atlantic Monthly, but only a fraction of what Ross Douthat (who never linked me, either) is being paid since leaving the Atlantic for the New York Times.
The way I see it, there are two kinds of bloggers in the world: Bloggers who link me, and assholes.
UPDATE VII: Linked by Rusty Shackleford, who is not an asshole:
The Jawa Report gets over 100,000 hits every 3 - 4 days. It averages out to about 750,000 hits a month or about 9 million hits a year.Blogging works best, it seems to me, as a promotional medium. That is to say, it's a good way to call attention to something: A news story, a video, an event, or photographic evidence that Miss California's had a boob job.
So by that math I should be making like $500,000 a year from this thing.
I actually felt kind of guilty for making some money last year from blogging since so much of the content of the Jawa is written by others. Pajamas Media, I thought, was a pretty sweet deal. But it was nowhere near what it needed to be for me to quit my day job.
Seriously, nowhere even close. Not even in the ballpark. Think minimum wage.
While it is possible to use a blog as a venue for long-form writing (and all the updates are turning this post into a War and Peace), the key function of a news/politics blog is as an aggregator -- link, link, link. To that basic work of aggregation, you then add your own personality or specialized knowledge.
Since no two people have exactly the same set of interests, no two blogs will have the same linkage. Ergo, from the reader's perspective, the key to getting the maximum value from the blogosphere is to identify a small number of blogs that share your general interests and then following their links. Your favorite bloggers thereby function as intake funnels that pre-select and present information.
From the blogger's perspective, it helps to have some (more lucrative) service or product that you can promote through your blog. If you're a journalist, an author, a political consultant, a radio talk-show host, or the idiot daughter of a failed presidential candidate, blogging can function as a way to establish your "brand" and promote your work in an interactive format.
Given this dual nature of the 'sphere -- blogging as promotion and blogging as aggregation -- some people will gain far more from its non-monetary benefits than from direct income. It's a way to "get your name out there," or to get your ideas "out there," and so you're willing to overlook the fact that blogging per se is not particularly lucrative.