You should have noticed I’ve added a totaliser on the navigation bar to the right. If you recall, thanks to the furious clicking of my readers over the last 4.5 years I finally got to cash in my first £60 of Google AdSense money. I then revealed the next £60 would form the basis of a prize fund for a competition. I honestly expected it would take a similar length of time before I’d have to give an update on ‘where your money is at’ but it seems that I’ve been quite lucky over the past 4 months and already we’re 20% there. I’ve had a look at the dashboard to try and work out what’s going on and it’s all CPCs and RPMs – way above my head. I was particularly lucky though as I had 3 clicks on an advert that was worth 42p a click, when the majority of my adverts are between 2-10p but alongside other clicks that put £3.68 in the prize pot in just one month
I have to admit that despite all this 'trying to give something back' I am feeling a sense of discomfort as well as excitement, I don’t know, maybe I'm just overthinking. I have covered the 'dirty' topic of monetising your blog but even though I felt comfortable with the decision to only go down the AdSense route and this time all of the proceeds [and I will add to that fund if necessary] will go to a lucky competition winner. So I’m hoping the transparency will help alleviate this feeling and I think the key next step is to set up the rules of the competition, perhaps you want to start early to get some entries in place? If people see there is a competition, what the criteria is and see the fund building it will make this the fun community payback event I wanted it to be.
As a reminder here's what I had planned for the competition:
The initial plan of how to win the prize will be based on a picture competition with the only criteria being that it must feature an item freely available from this very blog – STC templates, Print & Play buildings, even just the wound counters [although the picture will have to be pretty darn good to secure a prize using just the wound markers]. The choice will be yours.Therefore you could build one of my STCs straight out of the downloads, or even amend it, remix the template like Fenrisian Studios did, take a picture and that's your entry. Alternatively there's the Print & Play templates, but as they're relatively simple to do the picture best be all kinds of awesome - perhaps you fill an entire gaming club with my templates, or manage to get a table populated at a big tournament with my terrain [with links back to the templates] - now thats worth serious kudos. The chance to be creative in how you approach the task is up to you so it's not solely down to someone's hobby skills or photographic skills, so everyone can take part.
The next £60 in adsense revenue I will put towards another Imperial Knight [alongside my own money to make up the difference]. I will even offer to paint the Knight at no extra cost. But of course whoever wins the competition can choose an alternative model of equivalent value or for me not to paint it should they wish, it will be up to the winner.I'm a little hesitant about the painting side of it now as that borders on commision painting and I really don't want the added pressure of having to deliver something for someone else. Also, by not painting it I can ensure the winner gets their model this side of the 41st millenium because, as you know, I really don't paint that fast. So, again I'll seek advice from readers if that's something I should offer. But this will definitely be an international competition so anyone can enter, I certainly wouldn't want those guys in Syria who've clicked my adverts feeling left out of the competition. We'll work out the details of how the winner will get their prize if it's abroad but it will definitely require a photo of you looking suitably impressed and shocked at the win, so everyone knows the comp was real [I trust that's OK].
Ultimately there are a number of reasons for this competition:
- I want to give back something to the community after I was able to get an Imperial Knight from my AdSense revenue
- I want to generate renewed interest in my FREE terrain templates and markers/gaiming aids
- I'm genuinely excited to see how creative people can be to win the prize
- I want to de-stigmatise AdSense clicking, so other hobby bloggers can feel comfortable monetising their blog without too much inconvenience to their readers - its a click on an advert created by their browsing habits, that's no hardship