What would you do with a website that got 6500 visits a day?
I’ve been asking myself that question recently, wondering how I could translate my website’s traffic into income without compromising the integrity of the site, and have drawn a big fat blank.
So instead, I’ve decided to draw a big fat $100 bill out of my pocket, and offer it to the person with the best idea for improving my site. As an added incentive, I’ll offer 10% of any money I make from the idea in 2007.
1. The Change Must Improve the Site
The two main goals for my website are to help people to learn the guitar, and to advertise my services as a guitar teacher. Whatever I do to the website needs to support those goals.
Also, I don’t allow indiscriminate advertising on my website for ethical and aesthetic reasons. Most advertising is institutionalized lying. If I promote products I don’t believe in or am not familiar with, in a sense I’m lying to my readers. Plus, ads are an eyesore. I’m proud of the uncluttered format of my website, and I want to keep it that way.
However, if you have an amazing guitar- or music-related product you’d like to sell on my site, that’s a different story. Submit away!
2. The Change Must Be Relatively Easy
For example: Maybe when I retire I’ll pay my rent at the Home For Wrinkled Rockers by posting daily video guitar lessons for a monthly subscription, but right now, teaching face-to-face is what I love to do, and I don’t want to cut into that time.
3. The Change Can’t Awaken the Great Music Publisher’s Association
Like a fly in a dragon’s den, my little website has quietly distributed chords and tabs of copyrighted material under the nose of the music industry and its army of lawyers. I’d like to keep it that way. That means I won’t do things like make my chord charts into a book and sell it (unless some copyright genius knew how to make it legit). Another idea that won’t work: Becoming an affiliate of iTunes and linking each chord chart to its corresponding .mp3 in iTunes’ music store.
That’s it! Here’s how the contest will work:
There are two ways to submit an idea. One is to just post a comment on this blog entry (make sure you leave your email address). However, if you come up with an idea that you’d like to keep private until the contest is over, you can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each idea will be reviewed by me. I’ll give feedback for ideas that show promise but need tweaking, so that you can resubmit your idea. Finalists will be reviewed by both me and Brady, the bass teacher for Heartwood Guitar Instruction. Brady’s three-year-old daughter Lena will be the tiebreaker, if necessary.
The contest ends on January 31st. Even if we don’t get any ideas good enough to implement, the person with the best idea will get the Ben Franklin.