Your Money Geek
Your Money Geek
Blogging is often pitched to people as a get-rich-quick type of business.
Just find your niche, set up a WordPress blog, and before you know you’ll be sailing the world, or surfing the web on the beach, or traveling to exotic locations! While this all sounds great, it’s not part of life for the average blogger.
The average blogger spends most of their day writing content, building an audience, and trying to make money.
Would I love to sail the world while working on a money-making blog worth hundreds of thousands of dollars? Of course.
But for most, making money blogging is a lot harder than it seems. To really make money with your blog, it takes countless hours of hard work and dedication even to make a couple of bucks blogging. Forget about buying a boat (unless you want to be a HENRY)!
Actually, it takes more than just hard work and dedication to earn money online as a blogger. You also have to know how to make money blogging.
It is not easy, but it is possible.
There are a lot of different ways to start making money as a blogger (which we’ll get into). But I’m also going to share one awesome tip to help you monetize quickly and easily.
That one awesome tip: joining a blogging group.
We’ll get to what exactly a blogging group is in just a second. But first, we need to talk about how to start your blog.
There are some things you need to do before anything else. First, know what you want to write about and the target audience you want to reach. Come up with some blog post ideas to help you get started.
Next, decide on what you want to call your blog. You’ll need to check the name to see if it’s taken by another website. In web language, the domain name becomes part of your website’s internet address. The domain name of this website is your money geek. The web address (URL) is https://yourmoneygeek.com. That’s how it works.
There are companies that provide free domain registration. Once you find a name you like and that no one is using, you need to find someone to host your website. Your website host provides the infrastructure and internet space where people access your site. Companies like GoDaddy, Google, Amazon Web Services, and BlueHost are examples of web hosting companies. WordPress.org is the easiest, most popular, and, in my mind, the best web site platform on which to build your website. More websites are built on WordPress than any other platform.
If you’re reading a blog post on how to make money blogging, you probably already have the blog up and running. That means you probably already knew most of these basics. But I don’t like to assume anything, so I at least wanted to include the bare-bones basics.
Ok, with that out of the way, let’s get on with the good stuff. I’m going to share six ways bloggers make money by running their blogs the right way.
For someone who wants to learn how to actually make money blogging, it’s important to understand these six things.
Display ads are exactly what they sound like: the small ads that show up on a website either at the top or bottom of the page as banner ads, off to the side, or within the content.
It’s usually the first thing bloggers do after they learn how to start a blog and get one up and running
Most new bloggers start by using Google Adsense for their display ad needs. This is an easy-to-set-up program where Google is the middleman between your site and the advertiser.
The payouts and RPM with Google Adsense are fairly low. In fact, they are probably the lowest in the industry. Many bloggers make the mistake of signing up for ads before they have any meaningful traffic.
Getting blog traffic should be the first priority. If you don’t have traffic, you won’t have people clicking on your ads because no one will be there to click in them. That seems like common sense. Yet so many times I’ve seen bloggers sign up for AdSense as soon as they start blogging.
It clutters up your site. More importantly, it slows down site speed, which is a huge factor in how Google looks at website rankings. So, make getting people to your blog your top priority. Only then should you consider putting ads on the site.
Writing great content that your audience wants to read is the best way to grow traffic.
Affiliate marketing is probably the most common term you think of when you think of how to make money online. Pay Flynn from Smart Passive Income has a good definition of affiliate marketing:
“Affiliate marketing is the process of earning a commission by promoting other people’s (or company’s) products. You find a product you like, promote it to others, and earn a piece of the profit for each sale that you make.”
Personally, I have a love-hate relationship with affiliate marketing.
I love the fact that I can get paid by promoting products and services that I like and use. All I have to do is include an affiliate link somewhere in the post. Getting paid to write a review on why I love a product seems like a great revenue model.
However, I hate how competitive and sleazy affiliate marketing can be. Many of the best affiliate programs have a ton of bloggers competing for traffic and payouts. That makes it hard to build a sustainable sales funnel and make enough money for it to be worthwhile. Also, you have bloggers who will promote products just because they are an affiliate, even if they don’t believe in or use the product.
Once again, if no one is visiting your blog, you won’t make money blogging. You need traffic. When that happens, remember to stay true to your brand and mission.
Creating an online course takes a lot of upfront work and effort, but once it’s created and set up, it can be a great form of passive income. Just remember, this is not the Field of Dreams. Just because you built it, doesn’t mean they’ll come.
There are several courses to consider. Create a blogging free guide or a course on search engine optimization (SEO). Do a review of the best web hosting companies. Include affiliate links and discount codes (if available) to the review. Many web hosting companies have affiliate marketing ads you can use. Get creative with it.
Your first online course should be something in which you are an authority; something people want to learn.
Usually, the hardest part of building a successful course is promoting it. To sell online courses, be sure to have a plan to generate some initial sales and earn money from the start. You should start working on your promotion plan before you even start making the course.
Here are some ideas to get your course or webinar out there:
Selling digital products is a great way to make money from your blog. You can sell physical products too. One way to sell physical products is via an Amazon affiliate program. You’ll have access to everything sold on Amazon. they provide ad copy, links, and pay a small commission on everything sold via your website. Like Google AdSense, the commissions are very small.
Another way of selling physical products is to set up an Amazon FBA business. Marketplace Superheroes has a great course to help you get started. Read our review of their program here.
Have I mentioned you need traffic for this to make sense? Yeah, I guess I did a couple of times. To sell digital products (or any product), you need traffic. Without it, you’ll be doing a lot of work setting all this up with little return.
Remember, when blogging, you’re creating content all the time. For free! Another strategy for making money online is to take some of your most epic content and create a digital product or ebook out of it. And, of course, get paid for it.
Remember, this has to be content so good that it is worth paying for.
Designing an ebook or product is pretty straightforward. You could pay for software to help you do it, or you could rely on Microsoft Word to do the trick. The most important part of making a product is ensuring it’s full of useful and relevant content.
A sponsored blog post is an article you write in partnership with another brand or company. It might be a review, testimonial, or a how-to article. It’s a great way to earn some cash for your blog!
Why would a brand or company pay for sponsored blog posts? As a blogger, you have a targeted audience that wants to hear from you. Brands are willing to pay to get their products and services in front of your readers using your voice.
Similar to affiliate marketing, be sure you are partnering with brands that fit your audience! Sponsored content should fit naturally within your blog.
Last, my least favorite way to make money online through your blog: freelancing. Yes, you can even make money writing
Personally, I’m not a huge fan of this type of work because when you are a freelancer, you are trading hours for dollars.
I’d rather spend my time building up my blog, which can hopefully one day produce sustainable passive income rather than giving my time to someone else for a small fee.
I do have two exceptions to this rule:
So that’s the laundry list of ways that you can make money blogging.
Could you execute some of those ideas to get income and profitability on your own?
But my best tip to help you make money blogging faster and easier is to join a blogging group.
Personally, I’m a part of The Money Mix Insiders group.
This group has not only paid for itself and then some since signing up, but it’s helped me increase my traffic, grow my social media presence, and improve my SEO. And it’s taught me how to make money blogging faster than I ever could have on my own.
Below you’ll find the full list of benefits and reasons why joining a blogging group could help you overcome your challenges and make more money.
There are countless benefits to joining a blogging group. For someone looking to reach financial independence, like me, the most important benefits were the monetary ones.
I defined monetary benefits as perks that could directly help me make more money (or save on expenses).
The first and most obvious benefit of joining TMM’s Insiders group is the boost in traffic you will see. This traffic increase comes from two different sources.
First, they feature you in their emails, on their site, and their social media platforms. They’re using their broad reach to drive traffic directly to your site.
But more than that, they also help you implement strategies to increase traffic on your own. Whether it’s through honing your voice, informing you of different channels and sites to promote your content through, or just general tips and tricks, they help you find ways to drive more readers to your site.
Let’s get this out of the way: The Money Mix insiders is not solely a link-building circle.
In fact, I’d stick with them even if I got zero link benefits from them.
But, lucky for me (and maybe you), they do help you build links the right way (like guest posting, syndications, and more).
You can learn more about their link building strategies after joining, but as an example, through The Money Mix, fellow bloggers, or other publishers, my links have quadrupled (yes, 4x!) since joining the group a few months ago.
We all know there are countless blogging tools out there to help with a variety of needs, like:
The Money Mix will give you the script for all the essential tools you need to be successful, but they don’t stop there.
They also give you heavily discounted and even free access to these tools.
Tools that are usually $30, $60, and even $180 a month come for a fraction of the price, or more frequently, they come free.
These tools help me identify my posts with the highest chance of ranking in Google and then give me tips on how to optimize them. Like this one: how to find the best index funds.
The Money Mix treats everything like a business, and it rubs off on the members of their insider group too.
They treat their email list as a traffic driver to their blog, but also as a separate business that can be grown and monetized. Frankly, they are pros at email marketing.
Since joining the group, my email list has grown from 100 to 1,500+! That’s 15x growth, opening up doors for monetization and also driving traffic to my site.
The Money Mix provides free, high-speed web hosting.
I’m not talking about $3/month Bluehost, either. They offer web hosting that would be valued at $35/month or higher.
This is a direct money-saver but also speeds up your site, which helps with SEO and your overall user-interface.
Plus, you can put the extra money you saved with free hosting towards growing your blog.
This is potentially my favorite benefit of this group. It’s also the most unique.
The Money Mix brings sponsored posts to you!
That’s right; the group actually pays you by negotiating group deals with various brands and companies.
Technically, there is a $180 monthly fee you have to pay to join. But, in 2019, I made more money from the group than I put in. And, already in 2020, I’m on track to do the same.
So not only do you get all the monetary benefits above, but you also get sponsored posts to help offset your monthly fee.
As if the monetary benefits weren’t enough, there are plenty of other benefits as well that didn’t directly impact my bottom line. However, they do improve my blogging skills and my website.
On top of all the benefits above, you get direct access to ask successful bloggers any questions you might have. I’m talking about six-figure pulling, blog selling, and technically-savvy bloggers. The experts who run the group are incredibly knowledgeable, and literally always available to for one-off questions and advice.
I can’t remember the last time I asked a question and didn’t get a response in under 12 hours. Plus, everyone who is a member is the group seems to be an expert in something.
Whether it’s Pinterest, SEO, coding, affiliate programs, site speed, or literally anything related to blogging, someone always has an answer for me.
Would I still be blogging one year after I started if I wasn’t in the Insiders group?
Honestly, I’m not sure.
Blogging is hard. And I feel lost more often than I feel like I know what I’m doing. This group has held me accountable and pointed me in the right direction to help me keep going.
I genuinely like everyone in the group, which is rare!
Everyone is supportive, easy to talk to, and sometimes funny.
That’s worth something, right?!
I will say this group is not for the hobby-blogger. The Money Mix Insiders group is for someone who wants to treat their blog as an online business, grow, and make money fast.
The Money Mix wants people who are in it for the long-run, and bloggers who want to engage and learn ways to make money online.
And if you are in it for the long-run, you shouldn’t have to do it yourself.
Most companies have a board of directors, or at a minimum, advisors. But for some reason, many bloggers work alone and in silos.
I view this group as having my very own board of directors and a group of advisors for my
So, if you want to learn how to make money blogging quickly, my number one tip to you is to join a blogging group today.
5 education issues to watch as Tennessee lawmakers return – Chalkbeat Tennessee
One year after tackling pandemic-related school challenges during a special legislative session called by Gov. Bill Lee, Tennessee lawmakers return to the Capitol this week with another major focus on students: how to fund public education.
Lee wants to overhaul the 30-year-old formula that determines how much money the state distributes to school systems, as well as how much local governmental agencies should contribute. He’s expected to work with fellow GOP leaders to offer a legislative proposal this month.
But some say the legislature shouldn’t rush that discussion, especially since it took years to come up with the current formula known as the Basic Education Program, or BEP.
“It’s OK to hold this and keep working on it if we need to,” said Rep. Scott Cepicky, a Republican from Maury County. “Let’s get this right.”
Lawmakers also aren’t inclined toward a lengthy session during an election year. They’ll look to pass a budget and wrap up by mid-April, if possible, so they can return home to campaign.
Until then, here are five issues to watch:
Since October when Lee called for a review of the state’s funding formula, Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn has spearheaded the process that included eight town halls and dozens of meetings with policymakers and education leaders.
Last week, she called the issue “the biggest policy decision we make” and said Tennessee should seize this “moment in time.” She also hinted a draft proposal will be unveiled early this week.
“There is funding that is potentially available, there is momentum. We see need across the state,” she told a forum hosted by Tennesseans for Quality Early Education.
The review, which aims to shift Tennessee to a more student-centered funding approach, has drawn public praise but generated private concerns about its intent. Many public school advocates worry the goal is to pave the way for a new private school voucher program halted by ongoing litigation, though the governor has denied that.
“I’m trying to keep an open mind and not draw conclusions before getting all the information,” said Sen. Ferrell Haile, a Gallatin Republican who is on Lee’s 12-member review committee to create a new strategy.
Schwinn said any future formula must factor in the needs of individual children. That includes students who have disabilities, are English language learners, or come from low-income families.
Currently, enrollment is the main component of the BEP, a formula with 46 components that determine how much school systems receive to pay for teacher salaries and other needs like textbooks, technology, and bus transportation. But districts have flexibility on how to spend that money, which explains why the BEP is considered a funding formula, not a spending plan.
“We want to put more money into education, but we want to make sure the money is being spent well,” said Rep. Mark White, a Memphis Republican who chairs a House education committee and supports forging a new formula this year. “Let’s give it our best shot.”
Whether the state revises its funding formula this year or not, the legislature must pass a budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1 — and is flush with cash. Tax collections during the pandemic’s economic rebound were higher than projected. The state also is sitting on hundreds of millions of dollars in federal grants intended to help working low-income families.
Meanwhile, Tennessee ranks 44th in the nation for student funding, according to the Education Law Center, which gave the state Fs last year for its funding level and funding effort.
The state’s BEP review committee, an influential panel of policymakers and education leaders, has urged the governor to prioritize more funding for school nurses and counselors to get Tennessee to nationally recommended ratios. A $110-million annual investment would fund 1 nurse for every 750 students instead of the current 1:3,000, and 1 counselor for every 250 students instead of the current ratios of 1:500 and 1:350 for elementary and secondary schools, respectively.
In addition to perennial discussions about raising teacher pay, there’s talk about expanding Tennessee’s pre-K program, which serves a fifth of the state’s 4-year-olds. Most districts have waiting lists.
During the pandemic, consensus has grown that pre-K and early grades are the best places for impactful interventions to address learning lag and social-emotional challenges.
“It’s a timely topic that is deserving of deep discussions,” Haile said.
A controversial proposal to limit which supplemental materials teachers can use advanced last year in two House panels before stalling in the Senate Education Committee.
Sen. Janice Bowling, a Republican from Tullahoma, promised to bring her bill back for consideration this year and address worries that “good” materials from organizations like the Tennessee Farm Bureau could be excluded.
The bill, co-sponsored by Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver of Lancaster, would prohibit teachers from using materials that supplant state-approved textbooks unless district leaders approve those materials in advance. Any approved print or electronic materials would be listed on district websites.
“We absolutely need to do something,” agreed Sen. Brian Kelsey, a Republican from Germantown, “but we need to do it in a way that doesn’t have unintended consequences.”
The president of the state’s largest teachers organization called the proposal “demoralizing” for teachers and logistically impossible for school districts. For instance, a teacher couldn’t use yesterday’s newspaper in a current events class.
“This is a move toward completely scripted lessons,” said Beth Brown of the Tennessee Education Association, noting that a new Tennessee law already restricts what teachers can discuss in their classes about racism, white privilege, and unconscious bias.
State testing went well last year, with a 95% participation rate despite the pandemic. But lawmakers are still expected to bring several proposals to change when and how tests are administered.
Expect one proposal to require that testing occur during the last 20 days of the school year, instead of the earlier testing window set by the education department.
“That’s going to give our teachers an extra 30 days of instruction time, which is a lot,” said Cepicky.
Other likely legislation would require students in grades 3-8 to continue testing on paper, while local school systems could opt to move students in higher grades to online exams.
This school year, Tennessee high schoolers are taking their exams online under the state’s plan to transition back to computerized testing after several years of technical snafus.
Should teachers be judged on how much their students know — or how much they grow?
Tennessee has mostly focused on the latter when evaluating their educators and schools through an academic growth model that measures learning over time, regardless of whether students are proficient.
But the complexity and opaqueness of the state’s statistical growth method, combined with increasing frustration over low student proficiency, could renew that debate among lawmakers this year.
“We’ve been doing this for 10 years, and where are we?” asked Cepicky, complaining that only a third of the state’s third graders are reading on grade level.
“Meanwhile, we’ve created an evaluation system where a teacher can get an A in academic growth even if their students aren’t proficient readers. We’ve got to get that commitment back to getting our kids proficient,” he said.
Such a move would mark a dramatic change for Tennessee, considered a pioneer in using “value-added” measurements to judge teachers and schools. For a decade, the guiding principle has been that all students can advance, regardless of out-of-school factors like poverty that might hold them back.
Other issues are sure to surface before this year’s legislature, including more funding for charter school facilities and how to address the state’s worsening teacher shortage. The statistics on the teacher supply is especially troubling, with thousands of Tennessee educators expected to retire by 2024 and fewer candidates entering teacher training programs.
“We’ve got to be creating multiple pathways to teaching in our state, and we’ve got to have a competitive wage,” said JC Bowman, executive director of Professional Educators of Tennessee.
The 2022 session of the 112th General Assembly convenes at noon Central Time on Tuesday. Visit the legislature’s website to track legislation, livestream meetings, and contact legislators.
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Made a Lot of Money in the Stock Market This Year? Here's How to Lower Your Capital Gains Taxes. – The Motley Fool
Returns as of 01/18/2022
Returns as of 01/18/2022
Founded in 1993 by brothers Tom and David Gardner, The Motley Fool helps millions of people attain financial freedom through our website, podcasts, books, newspaper column, radio show, and premium investing services.
Despite recent volatility, it’s been a pretty strong year for the stock market. And at this point, you may be sitting on gains in your portfolio, at least on paper. If you’re eager to sell some stocks at a profit and make those gains official, you should know that doing so could raise your tax bill significantly.
Whenever you sell investments at a profit, you’re required to pay capital gains taxes, the amount of which will hinge on how long you hold those stocks prior to unloading them. If you keep your stocks for a year or less before selling them, you’ll be subject to short-term capital gains, which are taxed the same way as ordinary income. If you hold your stocks for at least a year and a day before selling, you’ll be bumped into the more favorable long-term capital gains category.
But either way, capital gains could cause you to owe the IRS quite a bit of money. And so if you’re looking at a big profit this year, there’s one move it pays to make.
Image source: Getty Images.
Your goal as an investor is no doubt to buy stocks that make you money. But sometimes, that doesn’t happen.
When you get stuck holding stocks that are underperforming, sometimes, selling them at a loss is your best option. But the good news is that taking a loss in your portfolio is a great way to minimize the hit of capital gains taxes.
Say you’re sitting on $10,000 in capital gains this year. If you take a $10,000 loss in your portfolio, you’ll cancel out the capital gains taxes you owe. And, just as importantly, you’ll free up money you can use to invest in different stocks — ones that may perform much better or lend to more diversity in your portfolio.
Now you may end up with capital losses that exceed your gains for the year. But that’s OK, because you can use some of that excess loss to offset ordinary income — up to $3,000 worth, in fact.
So, say you take a $10,000 loss in your portfolio but you only have a $7,000 gain this year. In that case, you’ll still get to use your entire loss for the current tax year.
But even if that’s not the case — say, you have a $10,000 loss and only a $6,000 gain — you can carry the remainder of your loss into future tax years and use it to offset your tax bill at the time. So for example, in this scenario, you’d carry $1,000 of your loss into 2022 and potentially use it then.
Making money on stocks is a good thing, but only if it doesn’t cause a huge tax crunch for you. If you’ve profited nicely in 2021, it pays to see if there are losing stocks in your portfolio worth selling. Doing so could really help minimize this year’s tax burden, not to mention set you up with more money to invest with in 2022.
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HOD tackles license portability, policy changes – American Veterinary Medical Association
The AVMA House of Delegates (HOD) took on issues such as veterinary license portability across states and policy changes at a weekend meeting held January 7-8, during the Association’s annual Veterinary Leadership Conference.
The House’s Veterinary Information Forum addressed ways to make it easier for veterinarians licensed in one state to gain licenses in other states, as well as how to increase support for veterinary team members. During its regular business meeting, the House approved a new policy supporting collection of antimicrobial use data as well as updates to the AVMA policies on rabies and rabies vaccination waivers.
The AVMA News team reported on all of the HOD actions in articles published shortly after the meeting concluded. These are available for all in the profession to read online:
The House also said farewell to four colleagues for whom the weekend meeting was their last one as members of the House of Delegates. Please join in congratulating and thanking these volunteers retiring from the House of Delegates. Those retiring, their affiliation, and years of service were:
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