I’ve been writing articles on this website for nearly 10 years. I’m always amazed how well some of them do: they are shared on social media, get loads of comments and the affiliate links in them make me passive income for months into the future.
On the other hand, you can slave away for hours on a piece of writing you think is really good, and … nothing! No one shares it, no one comments on it and no one is bothered to click the affiliate links.
Why? Well … if I knew the answer to that question …
However, I have found a crazy simple idea that never fails. This crazy simple idea will not only create a great blog post, it will also:
- help build relationships with experts in your niche
- earn you money from affiliate commissions
- build the authority of your personal or business brand
… and it doesn’t take much time to write.
Here’s the secret – ask one question to several experts
Blogging is all about providing value to an audience. The more you blog, the more you get to know your audience and understand their wants and needs. After a while, you’ll get asked the same questions over and over from your audience.
But, even if you have a small audience and you aren’t being asked questions, you can still do this.
Think of a burning question you have. It can be quite a simple obvious question, like:
- How do I get traffic?
- What’s the best email marketing service?
- How do I get clients / make money online?
Or it could be quite specific. And you post this question in a forum full of experts. It could be a forum that you know is high quality – you’ve had questions answered there before and the answers were useful. It could be a LinkedIn Group, a Facebook Group, whatever, as long as you know the people there are knowledgable in that area.
You could also send personal emails to people who you know to be experts in a particular area and ask them all the same important relevant question.
The answers you get back are pure gold.
People in forums and groups love to show off their knowledge. You will get loads of useful replies. Sometimes answers contradict and there’s an argument in the forum. This happens. This isn’t really fault and reading the answers and the arguments help you get a good feel for the pros and cons of a subject – whatever it is.
If you use email to ask the question of the experts it’s more work for you but it does garner a closer relationship with the respondents.
Case study – WordPress hosts
The first time I did this, it was by accident. I wanted to change hosts so I asked in the WordPress LinkedIn Group (this is a group that I really trusted) what was the best host for WordPress.
This is an example of a bad question. It’s too general. I should have asked something like “what’s the best VPS host for a blog that gets 40,000-70,000 visitors a month?”
By asking a question in this great group I was able to:
- get great advice about hosting from a bunch of knowledgable people
- write two helpful blog posts
- earn tens of thousands in affiliate commissions
These posts on hosting were particularly fruitful in terms of affiliate revenue. I usually only affiliate for products and services I have used personally. But, in this case, the hosts were recommended by a bunch of experienced WordPressers whose opinions I valued. I also was honest about there being affiliate links in the articles.
A few passive income ideas for you
Here’s a few ideas for blog posts that you can contact a group of experts about and make you passive income:
- The Best Microphones For Podcasting (ask a group of excellent podcasters)
- The Best Email Marketing Solution (ask successful internet marketers with lists of 10,000 or so)
- The Best HD Camera For YouTube (ask a YouTube group)
The money you make depends on how much traffic you get and whether the traffic is engaged enough to use the products and services mentioned in the article. But, if you constantly provide value through your blog, traffic and engagement will come.
You can do it
You can earn passive income from a blog. I do and so plenty of others do each day. But it’s not going to happen if you’ve just started. But that’s no reason not to give it a try.
Let me know in the comments below what you think of this idea, if you’ve tried it or if you’re thinking of using this technique.