Content is the key to success in 2015, but why? What can content do for you and your publication? The real issue at play is the monetization of content, not just the content itself. Now, this isn't to say that your content can be any old drivel, as all of your content needs to be valuable, but if you aren't monetizing your content, then it is largely worthless. Thankfully, there are a number of easy ways to monetize content on your site and companion sites that you can begin employing right now, including:
Offer Content as a Subscription
One of the easiest ways to go about content monetization is to provide users with useful, valuable content on a subscription basis. Using this method, you can generate virtually unlimited revenue as long as you continue to provide content that users want. Now, a few things to keep in mind: first, you need to be able to secure your content, even after a subscriber pays.
For example, if you offer text-based content, what's to stop a subscriber from copying it and pasting it elsewhere on the web? Yes, this is illegal, but far too many people use this method to disseminate information, even if they've paid for it. Also, think about how much content you should offer up front in order to entice users to subscribe. You don't want to give away the farm, but you also don't want to be vague in what you have to offer. Find a balance in order to be successful using this method of content monetization.
Sell Your Content Direct
Another way to increase revenues from content is to sell it directly to users. Everything from e-books to how-to videos can be valuable content that users will pay for, and with the direct-sales method, you aren't requiring users to enter into a long-term agreement, which can be a plus. The downside to this method, however, is that once you've made a sale, that's it ... it's done. In order to be successful using a direct-sales method, you'll need to keep offering engaging content that will entice users to come back and make future purchases. This method can also be combined with the subscription method in that users can pay a one-time fee for a piece of content, but then they can also pay a different fee for subscription access once they've had a taste of what your publication has to offer.
Provide Personalized Content
As mentioned, all content that you provide on a per-fee basis should be valuable to the end user, but you could take things a step further and make your content personal in order to gain even more revenue streams. Personalized content could consist of everything from one-on-one video coaching and consulting to seminars and retreats. When providing personalized content, remember that it is to be considered premium content, and therefore, its price should be adjusted accordingly. It may take a little while to balance the cost versus the revenue from such services, but in the end, this method can not only generate more income, but it can also generate more buzz about your company.