Product Creator or Reporter?

When it comes to making money online with content marketing there can be confusion over one very important question. It’s a question I’ve heard a thousand times and perhaps the #1 content marketing question of all.

That question is this –

Will content marketing work for me if I am not an expert or have deep experience in one particular field?

The answer is a resounding yes! Content marketing absolutely can work for you if you are not the “expert”.

If you want to make money online with content, but do not want to create the content yourself, keep reading.

You will soon discover that you can make a fabulous living, and bless others, by being the Anderson Cooper in your niche.

Curious? You’re going to love how easy this is.

Let me take one second to say that I fully believe that every person has knowledge and experience that can be turned into an information product and sold for money or given away to bless others.

I have an article about that exact topic you can read right here.

As a very brief bit of background, let’s look at the two classic ways to make money with content online.

When it comes to content marketing, there are two models that work very well.

The two business models are product creator or reporter.

You are familiar already with the role of product creator.

A person with deeper knowledge creates an information product sharing what they know about how to accomplish a certain objective.

They often sell these products on a website using a system like:

  • Clickbank,
  • JV Zoo
  • CJ by Conversant (formerly Commission Junction)
  • Amazon
  • ShareaSale
  • Avangate
  • Zaxaa
  • Their own private affiliate system.

Sometimes they don’t have affiliates selling for them but sell directly using a shopping cart like Infusionsoft, 1Shopping Cart, or just taking payments through PayPal or Square.

But what about the business model of being a reporter?

Have you ever considered that path?

A reporter does just what it sounds like. They report on the activity of others. Or they report about the content that others create.

But can anybody actually make money being a reporter?

In the world of television, readio and online news media, there is plenty of precedent for reports making what my daughter would call “mucho bucks”

Just look …

Is being a reporter profitable?

How many of these names do you recognize?

If any of these name sound familiar then you already know how the reporter model works.

You see, all of these people have one thing in common … they are reporters. They report about the accomplishments of other people.

There is no doubt that each one of these people is smart, driven, ambitious and successful. They have talent in their own right.

But what they are known for is being a reporter.

Being a reporter made them famous. Being a reporter made them rich.

And while you might not get Oprah rich, being a reporter in your chosen niche can do the same thing for you

Those people are all on TV. What about online?

Good point. How about these names you might know …

All doing pretty well, and both are using the reporting model online successfully.

Remember, a reporter reports on what other people accomplish. That is what these blogs do primarily.

And when it comes to the content they produce? Most of it is produced by other people! In other words, you can be a reporter and get other people to do most of the work if you establish a solid platform.


You know how people love video, right? And you know that YouTube has over 1 billion users. And you know that loads of new videos are being uploaded to YouTube every day. (In fact, 300 hours are uploaded every minute!)

Now what if you could use those videos in your marketing but without all the YouTube branding and the “you might also like” stuff at the end of the video?

And what if you could do things like build your list from YouTube videos right on your very own site?

I found a tool that makes it happen. And here is what I love about this tool.

  • It’s cheap. (Let’s be real, money matters)
  • It is a software as a service so there are no technical issues.
  • It is easy to use.
  • There are NO ongoing fees. A tiny one-time fee and you are done.

If you are interested, click this image to learn more. It’s what I use and recommend.

Being a reporter is the easiest way to establish an online business in your niche

I say the easiest because your main jobs are researching and sharing what you discover. If you have chosen a niche that you love, this will be not only easy but fun!

Think of it this way – have you ever had dinner at a new restaurant, or seen a new movie you liked, and then told your friends about it?

Now, what if you could get paid for doing the same thing?

What if you could get free stuff in the bargain?

Quick example: Imagine your passion is sugar cookies. You love them. Love to eat them. Love to bake them. Love to share your passion for sugar cookies.

Are you alone in your passion?

Not according to Google. According to them, there are almost 15 million people (14,600,000) who share your interest in sugar cookies.

Now, what if you spent your time building a blog about sugar cookies?

What would your average “work” day look like if you ran a sugar cookie blog using a reporter model?

You would spend time …

  • Sharing knowledge about sugar cookies
  • Offering recipes by email
  • Talking with other sugar cookie fans
  • Tweeting about cool new sugar cookie recipes
  • Researching new sugar cookie ingredients
  • Answering questions about baking sugar cookies
  • Compiling a list of the best recipes based on your own testing

Do any of these have anything to do with making money online?

You bet they do!

  • When you share knowledge, tweet and answer questions you are building your tribe.
  • When you offer recipes by email you are building your list.
  • When you compile lists of the best you are creating your own digital product.

Does this have anything to do with you?

You bet it does!

If you are struggling to succeed online consider the reporter model.

Some people call this curation, and it’s one of the best ways to do business online.

Identify your niche, start a blog and begin gathering places you can go to gather information to share with your new audience.

That’s the first step. A baby step. If you take the other baby steps you will build a real business talking, sharing and learning about something you already love.

And making a living from what you love is a beautiful thing indeed.

Charlie Page Signature

Charlie Page

Happily married for 45 years, Charlie is the dad to two wonderful daughters. He is the author of 12 books on Internet marketing and creator of over 40 membership sites. You can see all Charlie offers using this link Click Here

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below

Bridget Reply

Hi Charlie, thanks for this article. A very good piece indeed. i am happy i read it as it reminded me i had bought your curation course sometime ago but because of info overload, i failed to pursue it. There is no better time than now to go after it. I hope i will be able to get access to it once again. many thanks.

    Charlie Page Reply


    Getting access is never a problem as you have Lifetime access. Should you need help accessing just contact support by clicking here and they will be happy to help.

    I hope you enjoy the course. Of all the courses I have created, it’s one of my favorites. In fact, I am updating it a little later this year!

    Thank you,


Oscar Reply

Charlie, since you used journalists as examples here, I think it should be pointed out that reporters do far more than report on other peoples’ accomplishments. If they’re doing their jobs, they should be digging for information, including from non-obvious or traditional sources, conducting research and asking tough questions of those in power.

I think what you’re really discussing here are curators, not reporters. Museum workers are better models for curators.

    Charlie Page Reply


    Great point. But I’m not talking only about curators. I actually teach a course on curation so am somewhat familiar with the concept.

    I can see where you would draw that conclusion and will redo the article based on your comments. Thank you for that. I love when readers make me better at what I do.

    What I am talking about is exactly as you describe – people who dig through many sources in order to bring the best of the best to their readers.

    I disagree slightly with the “asking tough questions” part of your reply, however. That can be the role of an investigative journalist but is not necessarily the role of every reporter as I understand the trade.

    Thank you again.


Kurt Turrell Reply

Hi Charlie,

I so much enjoy your blog posts! I would like to suggest one more: What if you have developed your own digital product, but really have no clue about what a successful product launch looks like? Especially on little or no capital funding? I’m guessing what I must do now. Start pumping out good articles? Build content for a membership site, built around a flagship product (video course)? Can you find a moment to respond?

I treasure you!


    Charlie Page Reply


    Good idea. I’ll schedule in a post about product launches.

    I visited your site and reviewed our conversations. Here is what I think at this point.

    If you are sending cold traffic to your main page it’s going to be hard to get conversions. You are asking strangers to buy on the first visit, which is increasingly hard in today’s world. It is vital to warm up cold traffic with high-quality helpful (and actionable) content.

    My suggestion for your next steps are …

    Create a great lead magnet and squeeze page.
    [Optional but important] Create a low cost (tripwire) offer to get people to buy something from you.
    Write a 5 message email follow up series for your product or tripwire.
    Send all traffic to the squeeze page.
    [Ideal but optional] Create an upsell so you raise your average dollar per sale value.

    After you get 1000 visitors, evaluate the effectiveness of the squeeze page, lead magnet, landing page and offer.

    Along the way you can communicate with people via individual email to see why they did not buy or did buy and so refine your marketing.

    Yes, pumping out good articles is important (although a bit of a contradiction in terms) but it’s way too soon to think about a membership site if you don’t have sales of your core product yet.

    Hope this helps.


What Category Are You - Content Creator Or Reporter Reply

[…] Content came from a great article by Charlie Page – get more detail here. […]

Mark Mansfield Reply

Hi Charlie, congrats on another great story, because that what it is. You make everything so easy to read, interesting to read and full of great info for us people that need lots of help. I’m trying to start a blog and having trouble but I will overcome.


Mark M

Regina Reply

Charlie, this is a great idea. I would like to learn all about it.

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