For more than five years now I’ve been blogging here at Life In Student Ministry and have supported the site’s fees with a few ads and affiliate links. Whenever there was extra income, I saved the surplus in it’s own bank account and used those funds to launch things like the youth ministry mentorship and MinistryQuestions.com. Over the course of the past five years I’ve taken less than $1,000 total for personal use. (For you math whizzes, that’s not even $200/year. Not a great pay rate.)
When I launched the sites new design six months ago I decided to remove most of the advertising because it was important to me that the site look clean and uncluttered. I knew it would cut the site’s revenue, but as long as it still covered the hosting fees, email list service, blogtalkradio subscription, domain registrations, etc., I was fine with that. Money was never my motivation for generating content in the first place.
As soon as I removed the ads my site’s traffic went up instantly by almost 1,000 hits per day because people started clicking through more of my content instead of being distracted to click on the ads and leave my site. The higher level of user engagement was worth the minimal revenue.
As positive as that is, I’m now at a crossroads.
1. My site is just barely breaking even financially. There’s no margin for future growth nor projects to better encourage you all.
2. My time is becoming more and more valuable to me as I now have a 1 year old daughter and a 1 month old son. I need to spend my free time with them and my wife, so when I do post content, the time it takes needs to benefit my family more, especially as my son’s hospital bills start coming in!
So, over the next couple weeks I plan to increase the ads you see on the site, in the RSS feed and in the email subscriptions. I just want to be up-front with you all about what’s going on. I also want to do my best to maintain a clean and uncluttered look, so we’ll see how all this works out.
I’m sure most of you will understand and some will call me a sellout, and I guess I’m prepared for that. We all go through transitions in life and having two little kids at home now means the time I invest into doing my best to bless you all through Life In Student Ministry needs to bless my family more than it has.
Advertising and Speaking Opportunities
If your company or organization would like to advertise here and support me, my family, and Life In Student MInistry, check out the Advertising Opportunities page.
I’m also open to more speaking engagements and consulting opportunities. Income from those streams can definitely bless my family, as well. Contact me if I can be of service to you.
Thank you to everyone who actually reads my stuff, interacts in the comments, tweets my links, shares it on Facebook, watches the videos, and continues our discussions on your own blogs! You guys are awesome! Life In Student Ministry wouldn’t even have the potential to start blessing me and my family if it wasn’t for you all.
Posted on November 4, 2010