To Advertise or Not to Advertise? That is the Question.

As a business guy since an early age, you would think I would have an easy time figuring out how to monetize my projects and hobbies. Usually, that’s not much of a problem. However, I have noticed a psychological issue of mine creep up a lot lately and I’ve finally put my finger on it.

I have a problem with being second. Many times, if I am going to be second in something, I simply will wait and try to figure out how to be first – the best. This common mistake of mine seems to keep me from propelling forward in the little things.

For instance, I have been opposed to advertising in blogs and on business sites for a long time.

No, Don’t Do It!

Why? For one, I think it’s ironic that we want all this traffic and then we place advertisements to lead the user away from our site. The internet does not hold us captive like a magazine or newspaper. In the blink of an eye, we can be on to something else. Personally, I’d rather have loyal customers than random traffic coming and going because the source can change (read: Google changes it’s ranking all the time) and I’ll be dead in the water. Additionally, most advertisements are for items of interest by the same population who is reading the site. This means they could be pulled away from your site because someone else advertised better content. Now, how do they find their way back? Better to keep them on your site in the first place, I think.

Second, I believe it distracts from the real purpose of the site, to get loyal readership. Both the design and function of the site scream at me not to whore myself out to ugly advertising.

You Know You Want To

The problem with all of this conjecture and idealism is that it doesn’t put dollars in my pocket. Now, I love what I do. I love being able to spend time working on my blog consistently. But, I can’t afford to continue without monetary support. So, I feel it’s time to succomb to the pressure of the almighty dollar and start some advertising on this site, even if it only gives me a few dollars a day. It’s a few dollars I didn’t have yesterday.

Although I’m figuring out that doing something which has already been done by millions of others is just fine, I will continue to perservere for a better way to make money from this blog and other services currently being created. I don’t believe this is the only way to do it.

Nate Ritter lives in the Pacific Northwest (U.S.), popularized the #hashtag and creates web applications for a living. He also does miles and point hacking to enable cheap travel for his family. More here →

2 Comments on "To Advertise or Not to Advertise? That is the Question."

  1. ike says:

    Can a person really ever be number 1 at anything?

    I have been thinking a lot about this lately… So the best we can do is to seek out the creativity that God gave us (being the ultimate Creator) and rely on that to at least do something “fresh” and “new”…coming from the inspiration of God, rather than the influence of other men…we will never be first, but if we rely on our God given creativity…We can give our best first…

  2. nate says:

    Thanks ike.

    Yes, I know God is our source for creativity. What’s unfortunate is when the creativity is there but the people to make it happen are not. I have a few ideas I’d like to move on, but don’t have the time because I have to make some clink to support the fam. I would love to have a few compadres to help make my dreams realities.

    Thanks for your comment ike.

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