One of our favorite things about Mediavine publishers is that they not only work hard toward their goals, but they are willing to share their information and expertise.
The type of selflessness and generous nature our influencers display never ceases to amaze us. Between our private Facebook group to blog posts, social media and more, you will always find people sharing tips, tricks and information with their fellow bloggers to help them succeed.
We love this Publisher Interview series, because they have a chance to share their story and showcase their success to a new audience.
Today we’re pleased to share an interview with Brandon Gaille of the small business and marketing site, BrandonGaille.
Say hello and learn more how he got started and his path to success!
Tell us a little bit about yourself, your family, and your everyday life. (eg. Where do you live? What do you do when you’re not working? Do you have any kids or pets?)
I live in Houston, Texas with my beautiful wife Natalie and our two boys, Grayson (9) and Branson (7). My boys love Legos, and because they love Legos, I love Legos.
This November, my boys both celebrated a birthday. My gift to them was turning a room in our house into a Lego room. I was able to get the equivalent of $3000 of Legos (if you bought them from the Lego store) for just $300. I got them from the Goodwill Stores on eBay.
The room had troughs of Legos in the middle, and it was surrounded by display shelves on the walls with two work tables. I used IKEA, so I was able to do it all without breaking the bank.
How did you get started blogging?
I have a rare incurable health disorder, which left me physically and mentally disabled from 2005 to 2011. During that time I accumulated close to $500,000 in debt.
I started my blog in 2013 because I wanted to create an income stream, that would continue on, no matter which way my health went in the future. I was motivated to give my family financial security.
I was fortunate to build my blog to over 1 million monthly visitors in the first two years. The next year I added a course and a podcast on blogging, which added another big stream of revenue.
The podcast, The Blogging Millionaire, has been a great way to share all my unique blogging growth hacks that have contributed to my success as a blogger.
How long have you been a Mediavine publisher? How did you first hear about us? What drew you to Mediavine as a partner for display advertising?
One of the students from my course, Tony Stancato, send me a message asking if I knew about Mediavine. I applied that same day, which was about a year and a half ago.
Describe your experience with Mediavine. What do you love about working with us?
While there are many things I love about Mediavine, it is the Facebook group that I love the most. It is a nonstop source of expert level education.
How has your Mediavine ad revenue changed your life for the better?
My ad revenue literally increased by 500% overnight. This has allowed me to spend more time with my children and start dedicating one day of the week to my ministry.
How do you think the blogging industry has changed since you started your website?
When I started blogging in 2013, there were still bloggers ranking on Google with average content and little to no keyword research. Today, you need to spend time choosing your target keyword phrase and crafting an exceptional blog post.
What are the best and worst parts of blogging for you?
The best part of blogging for me is being able to work from home and work when I want to. It allows me to pick up my boys from school everyday, take care of them when they are sick, shoot baskets with them after school, and spend the day with them when they are down
I had to really think for awhile to come up with the worst part of blogging, but I was able to come up with one. It would have to be the anonymous hate message that comes through my contact page about once a month.
It is sad that there are people willing to take the time to say such horrible things to others. These people are definitely in need of our prayers.
What has been your biggest success as an influencer? (eg. traffic growth, sponsored work, etc.)
The biggest success that I have had has been in replicating the success of my flagship blog across several other blogs. My five big blogs get right at 4 million monthly visitors.
The big difference maker has been my keyword research formula. Over the past five years, I have continued to build upon it. It has gotten to the point that I can forecast how much traffic my future posts will produce.
Who are your FAVORITE bloggers. Who inspires you? Why do you like them?
The bloggers that have overcome or who are fighting through health issues inspire me. Many of these bloggers I have found through the Mediavine Facebook group.
Amanda Patrick is one of these bloggers. She had emergency surgery 3 times and almost died of sepsis last year. She continues to march forward, through it all, with her blog (Bliss Health Coaching).
I always remember that every blogger is a person trying to manage their blog, family, and health. You get to know who they are and not just what they write about it. Every life is a story, which can inspire thousands through a blog.
What are the most popular 3 posts on your blog?
What are your 3 personal favorite posts on your blog?
What tools and resources do you use to manage your blog? What could you not live without? Why?
Over the years, I have trimmed down my tools to the ones that make the biggest difference. I use WordFence to protect my blog from hackers, Pingdom to track uptime, Canva for creating images, and SEMRush for keyword research.
SEMRush is the one that I could not live without. I have used this tool to build out my own keyword research process, which is the foundation of my success.
What is your biggest traffic source? What strategies have you used to make that your top traffic source?
Google is my biggest traffic source. I dig as deep as I can to find keyword phrases in my niche, which have very little competition. Most bloggers fail to go as far as they need to go with keyword research.
I spend about 20% of my time, year round, on keyword research. It is pretty common that I will scan through 30,000 lines of keyword data in a given week.
Out of those 30,000, I might find only 40 keyword phrases to write posts on, but 90% of them will get significant Google traffic.
For bloggers, keyword research is easily one of the hardest skills to master. A keyword research tool, by itself, is only going to marginally help you. You have to spend time learning from other keyword research experts and mastering the craft.
Do you have any advice for bloggers on how to grow their traffic?
Invest money in courses every year. Before I go after something new, I always buy a course from someone who is having raving success in that area.
I did this before I launched my own course, started a podcast, and created my first webinar.
Here is my five-step process I use to identify the expert to help me become a master.
- Identify experts, with an online course, that have achieved greatness in the area that I want to master.
- Eliminate the experts that do not offer a Facebook group with their course.
- Eliminate experts that do not have a podcast.
- Listen to several episodes of each podcast to see what kind of value they deliver and choose your favorite.
- Buy the course and binge watch the entire course within 7 to 21 days.
You should always be sharpening your saw and making a commitment to constant and never- ending improvement.
Anything else you’d like to add to help other bloggers grow?
Earmark five hours every month towards spending time in Google Analytics. The stats will always point you in the direction that you need to go.
Name something on your bucket list.
To stand in the Jordan river where Jesus was baptized while reading Matthew 3:16 from my Bible.
What’s your favorite quote?
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity but of power, love, and self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7)
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