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Most Profitable Way for Small Blogs To Make Money Online

written by John Chow on May 2, 2012


I get many emails from new bloggers asking what’s the best way to make money online and my answer hasn’t changed – build traffic with quality content and then monetize that content in the most profitable way possible. Unfortunately, most bloggers go with the easiest way instead of the most profitable way. They end up setting up their blog with Google ads and nothing else.

Google AdSense, while easy to apply for and set up, is one of the most least profitable ways to monetize a blog. The rates are very low, and you have almost no control over what type of ads shows up. The average Google ad nets $1 to $2 per 1000 views (CPM). Considering that many blog don’t even get 1,000 page views a month, you’ll be lucky if it makes enough for a cup of coffee. Luckily, there are ad networks that pay a lot more than Google, and the most profitable way for a low traffic blogs to make money online is with Social Spark.

Best Way for Smaller Blogs To Monetize Content

Social Spark allows bloggers to monetize their blogs with sponsored content. Most of the time, this content is done with a paid blog post, but there are also sponsored videos and social media campaigns as well. Social Spark is ideal for low traffic blogs because the effective CPM is extremely high, making it perfect for smaller blogs.

The above screen shot shows some of the leads in my Social Spark account. The amount is done in points. One point equals one cent. You can see the offers pay 500 to 6,000 points, or $5 to $60 per blog post.

The great thing about Social Spark is it’s not very traffic dependent. Everyone gets paid the same amount unless you negotiate a high price. While $60 to write a blog post is too low for John Chow dot Com, it can be a year’s Google income for a small blog. And it can be done with just one blog post. I’ve seen many low traffic blogs (1,000 to 5,000 page views per month) making $100 to $1,000 per month off the Social Spark network.

How To Make Money with Social Spark

  1. Sign Up
    Create a profile in SocialSpark.
  2. Add Properties
    Link your blog to SocialSpark. You will then be asked to authorize Google Analytics and Direct Publishing on one of their supported platforms.
  3. Express Interest In Opportunities
    SocialSpark provides you with Offers and Leads from Advertisers, collectively known as Opportunities. Each Opportunity details what the Advertiser would like you to blog about and how many SocialSpark Points you can earn. You can accept the terms of these Opportunities as defined by the Advertiser or negotiate terms.
  4. Write Your Post
    Once you have found an Opportunity you like you, write a blog post within SocialSpark. Your post is submitted back to the advertiser for approval.
  5. Get Paid
    Once your post is approved it is published to your blog via Direct Publishing. After 30 days, you are paid your points. You can convert your points directly in to cash and receive payment via PayPal.

Social Spark is owned by IZEA. I visited their office and met with their founder and CEO back in 2008. They truly understand the smaller bloggers and have crafted a great system to help them make money off their blogs. Below is the video from that visit.

Click Here To Join Social Spark

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Tuan May 2, 2012 at 9:26 am

That’s totally right.
My blog doesn’t have decent traffic and after I try SocialSpark, it has overcome Adsense to become the top revenue source of my blog.
Write just 2-3 posts/month and we get more money than Adsense rev in the whole month. That’s an amazing network.

Tamal Anwar May 2, 2012 at 10:30 am

This is the real deal John and I am happy that you mentioned about this network in 2012.

Back in 2008 when I started blogging in blogspot free platform I put adsense like any rookie. But when I started using IZEA paid reviews (PayPerPost then) was my biggest money maker. I was making $5-$10 and even $25 per post. I was making more money than could make in adsense.

I strongly recommend new bloggers to take a shot at SocialSpark as they have more opportunities for small blogs. All you have to do is to get a nice page rank and 3 month old blog. Within 3 months you will obviously get PR3 with brilliant content.


Keron Calame May 2, 2012 at 10:42 am

Gonna give it a try John and see the results…….

Steve Zussino - Canadian Coupons May 2, 2012 at 11:29 am


It seems popular to go down this route. How does Google look at sites that have paid posts like this?

John Chow May 2, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Google has no problem this this because the post have nofollow links and it’s disclosed that it’s a paid post.

Shalu Sharma May 2, 2012 at 12:17 pm

I think you have a point John. Perhaps Social Spark is the way to go for those who start new. At least they will get 2 things, a topic to write about (content) and then get paid for their writing. Double win here..

Cool Shoelaces May 2, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Thanks John. I just got my first offer from Social Spark but it was only for 500 points or $5. I put in a request to up it to $20. Do you think they will approve it? My blog is about cool shoelaces Check it out!

John Chow May 2, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Every advertiser is different. They might, they might not. But if they don’t, you can always accept the 500 points.

Derek May 2, 2012 at 4:29 pm

This is great..
Its amazing hw one can monetize a blog with lots of options
peerfly is great too..

Make The Money Online Dot Com May 2, 2012 at 5:02 pm

I have actually set up an account from the last post you did on social spark and am getting to grips with it.


Jamie Northrup May 2, 2012 at 5:23 pm

I use IZEA’s PayPerPost, SponsoredTweets and just recently the media ads, but never tried social spark even though I’ve seen it, but I’m going to sign up now, thanks John.

Sanju Singh May 2, 2012 at 9:44 pm

Nice advice on making more money online John :) I will try it on my blog too! Thanks!

Angela Brown May 2, 2012 at 10:45 pm

It’s really great. Thanks for showing the smart way to earn money.

Ryan May 2, 2012 at 11:17 pm

Hey John,

Definitely a good tip for smaller bloggers. Depending on the niche the payouts can be really low. I find it best to build a list and monetize that email list.


quan281vn May 3, 2012 at 2:43 am

Great post, my blog with 1,500 traffic permonth can get money with this? Cause i dont know about the language applied…

John Chow May 3, 2012 at 6:54 am

You have enough traffic, but they are looking for blogs written in english only.

Richard May 3, 2012 at 3:45 am

Hey John,

Will this work for a <500 page view per month blog such as mine? Would advertisers bother with such a small blog?


John Chow May 3, 2012 at 6:54 am

The only way to find out is to apply. If they accept you, great!

Dan "Making Money Online" Ang May 3, 2012 at 5:06 am

Hi John, I gotta give this a try. Socialspark sounds like a good place for small blogs still starting out like mine.


Jeff May 3, 2012 at 5:28 am

Hey John,

One question, there is a step in social spark where we need to give our username and password for the wordpress blog that we are submitting. Is it safe to do that? Or should we skip it?

I have joined social spark many months ago when it was still starting and I haven’t a clue about it at all. Now I’m trying to submitted my site, unfortunately I keep getting rejected for some reason. It’s like applying for Google Adsense.

Any tips?

John Chow May 3, 2012 at 6:57 am

You can skip the step until you’re ready to accept an opportunity. Social Spark use a direct publisher to publish their content to your blog. You write the post on Social Spark, the advertiser approves it, then Social Spark direct publishes the post.

fas May 3, 2012 at 6:48 am

But isint sponsored post against the big G?

John Chow May 3, 2012 at 6:58 am

Social Spark posts are disclosed as paid post and the links are nofollow links. Google has no problems with this. It will not affect your Google ranking in any way.

elie palima May 3, 2012 at 8:00 am

this is good to hear!

Stocks on Wall Street May 3, 2012 at 6:50 am

Thanks for the advice John!

Marbella apartments May 3, 2012 at 6:56 am

Hi John,
We have just been hit by the Google update Panda 3.5 and I was not hit at all, but instead, my sites rose in the SERP. I say the same as you John, there are no shortcuts to success, just hard, hard work on creating quality content.

Kate@NewClientsEachMonth May 3, 2012 at 9:19 am


Thanks for the great info, I had never heard of this network before today. Great one to share with others!

Edgar May 3, 2012 at 3:28 pm

Not a big fan of them published the article into your blog via Direct Publishing, who knows what kind of fishy links,iframe or codes they will use.

Dannielle @ Odd Cents May 4, 2012 at 3:06 pm

I agree… I’m not comfortable with that either…

JamesW May 4, 2012 at 1:13 am

Great post, socialspark helped me with some of my blogs when I was starting out.
It’s really one of the easiest ways for low traffic blogs to make money online.

Ken Arrosas May 5, 2012 at 3:03 am

Thanks for the information,really give me lots of idea to start my own business.

Surminga May 5, 2012 at 7:24 am

It isn’t letting me sign up, says there is an error once I have typed my details in to sign up as a publisher. Not sure where I went wrong..

Any ideas ?

wilson May 5, 2012 at 9:30 am


Thanks for sharing with this! I have never heard of this website before and I have just registered an account. To reiterate of what you wrote in your post, you said that we are able to add in a post to the site. Can we include this post into our own blog as well?

wilson May 5, 2012 at 9:51 am


I have followed the instructions to add in a sub domain /supersecrets and I couldn’t login into my dashboard anymore. When i entered my dashboard, it directed me to my blog instead. Is there anyway can I access my wordpress dashboard again?

MMA Blog May 6, 2012 at 7:43 am

Thanks, that was an interesting post. I will try out SocialSpark.

Shalu Sharma May 9, 2012 at 4:49 am

Hello John, I have joined this programme through the email you send me but I still need to configure some of the website details. I can then look into what they have in store. I am looking forward to this.

Joseph May 10, 2012 at 9:05 am

Great Post John,
I have applied at Social Spark, I hope they approve my Blog soon. Thanks for sharing this.

JoJo May 12, 2012 at 3:35 pm

John you are definitely right that Social Spark is a great way to monetize your blog. I have no complaints. The opportunities are great because besides providing income, the posts also give you some great content to add to your site.

Derek May 25, 2012 at 7:16 pm

I think i’m gonna try this now.

bdhero June 16, 2012 at 1:34 am

dear john,

my site got pr1 but Social Spark does not approve
my blog. please help me how can i will get approve from Social Spark.