Blogging for (Relatively Low) Profit!

LOCKHART STEELE — Joel Johnson is one of my favorite bloggers. He helmed Gawker gadget blog Gizmodo for a few years, then oversaw all the Gawker tech sites before departing this past summer (damn him) for the greener pastures of Wired's website, where he's again managing bloggers (poor fool).

But in his spare time this fall, Joel started a new men's blog, Dethroner. Its eerily simple business goal: make money, but not a fortune. Given the blog's increasing influence—ur-blogger Jason Kottke memorably praised Dethroner's "low level of desperation"—it's interesting to read Joel's three-month status report on the state of the business.

He posted this on Dethroner earlier this week:

Following typical blog launch patterns, we launched to an exceptionally strong burst of initial traffic, only to quickly fall to a lower but slowly rising rhythm, averaging around 16,000 page views a day as of last week. That's a solid but not stunning level of traffic; it's expected to remain at those levels or below through the end of the year, as holiday traffic numbers tend to be low in general, plus we're going to an abbreviated posting schedule next week.

Our internal traffic goal is to quadruple traffic by Q2 of next year.

At current traffic rates and average level of ad placement by Federated Media, we're making between one and two thousand dollars a month, with a infrastructure overhead of about $200 a month (for hosting and occasional web development costs). Amazon referral fees are generating between $50 and $300 a month. I do not currently take any funds from Dethroner as a business, and will be putting all revenue back into the site, primarily through the hiring of full-time writer.

What does all this mean? Valleywag just said something nice about John Battelle's company!

Read Joel's whole post for more thoughts on the microblog biz.

State of the Blog t + 3 months [Dethroner]