It’s no secret that one of the biggest forms of self-expression and information sharing platforms for millennials is blogging. But why do millennials really blog? What is the expectation? What is the motivation? What do they blog about and what is the desired outcome? The answers to these questions are as diverse as the millennial generation itself.

The topic of this weeks #MillennialTalk Twitter Chat with Chelsea Krost (@ChelseaKrost) was “How to monetize your blog.”

It’s amazing to see how much the #MillennialTalk movement is growing week to week and how more and more millennials are coming together to share and exchange information on issues that matter to them most. I initially thought that the participation had such a big increase because of the topic. After all, who doesn’t want to learn how to monetize something that they are already doing for free anyway?

I now realize that the topic was only part of the reason for the strong participation for this particular chat. The irony is, that after seeing the responses that were shared during the session, the ability to express, teach, learn and share are the real reasons millennials write blogs, which are also some of the primary reasons they participate in #MillennialTalk.

Monetizing those blogs for many is simply an added bonus.

The expert guest offered some valuable insight to the participants on how to achieve that added bonus of being able to monetize your blog. To me, after all was said and done, and the final question was answered, the essence of his message was that if you want to end up making money, start off making a difference.

There were a number of tools, platforms posting frequency suggestions and other tactical thoughts shared. But at the end of the day, those all seemed to be based on personal preference, style and affinity.

The big picture to me was more about why you write, what you write, how you write and when you write.

Based on my own experience and what I took away from this weeks #MillennialTalk, the best way to monetize your blog falls under these 7 simple guidelines…

1. Know who you’re talking to – decide who your audience is going to be and speak directly to them.
2. Be a solutions provider – provide thoughts, perspectives and insights that can help your audience.
3. Be transparent – use your words but speak from the heart.
4. Tell a story – story telling is the single most compelling way to evoke emotion and inspire action.
5. Build a community – don’t rely on other platforms to host your guests at someone else’s house, establish your own database and invite your guests to YOUR home.
6. Be consistent – determine the frequency in which you will post and stick to it, whether it be daily, bi-weekly or weekly.
7. Keep it simple – make it easy for your community members, advertisers, or partners to pay for your products, services or subscription.