March 15, 2016

Top Secrets to Becoming A Professional Travel Blogger

Most travel blogs started out as hobbies. A great majority of these blogs never become anything more than that, although their owners dream of turning their hobby into an income earning job. With such a fierce competition and new blogs popping out daily, it is not an easy task to get noticed. It requires serious work and devotion, especially in the first couple of years. If you think you are ready for the challenge regardless of the hard work it involves, keep reading to find out how you can get from writing for fun to writing for money.

1. Building an Audience Is Key
There are various ways in which you can make money from your blog, and new ones are constantly arising. But before money comes audience. And a visitor who navigates to your blog by accident and navigates away from it in a split second does not count as audience. These kinds of visits only increase your bounce rate, not your income. You need to attract and keep an engaged audience that will come back over and over again, like, share and comment your blog posts. There are different techniques in which you can build a fairly decent audience and maintain it. Obviously, you need to have an interesting story to tell, and then you need to know how to tell it and present it in a unique and appealing way. Then the companies looking for cooperation with travel bloggers will come to you.

2. Create Useful Content
You have to give people what they need. Of course your friends want to hear everything about your travels to Spain and see your photos, but a stranger does not care if you had fun. They want to know how they can have fun. Tell them what they can get for their money, how much does a pint of beer cost, an ice-cream, a sandwich, or a ticket to a museum. Where can they stay on a budget? What is the national cuisine specialty and where can they try it? Give them sightseeing recommendations, and here you can include a photo you have taken to intrigue them. Provide transportation tips, personal safety warnings (if there are any) and available apps

Think about what you had to investigate before setting off and how much a certain piece of information helped you. Make sure you provide verified and relevant information. Otherwise, wrong information might cost you your credibility among the readers. Try to find interesting facts or recommendations that are not mentioned in travel guides. If in Paris, do not write about the Eiffel Tower. Who has not heard or read about it. Instead, write about a new concept store, restaurant, or a nightclub that has just opened. Be a news breaker. Check out the questions and concerns on travel forums to get an idea of what people would like to know. Are you current readers sending you queries? Content is king, but given that reader's attention span in very short and that they process images a lot faster than text, supporting your story with appealing images is always a good idea. You can find excellent travel related images on EyeEm. This app allows you to browse through various types of images, you can find there even pictures of books.

3. Rock Social Media
Although staying active on social media is essential for growing your audience, do not waste too much time on them. Be efficient. Visit once or twice a day, to post your status, tweets, etc. and later to reply to comments and questions. What time of the day you will do this, depends on your daily schedule. But you might want to investigate the statistics and analytics of the visits. This can be checked on every website, or by means of some online tools. 

Track these analytics for some time to see when people get engaged the most, then schedule your socializing according to the results. The results might be different for different social networks. Adjust your content to the social media you are using. Facebook posts should be in the form of postcards, with a 4 to 5-image collage and a short captions. On Twitter, leave links in addition to photos, and do not go overboard with hashtags. One is quite enough. Do not forget to tag the locations on the photos when posting them on Instagram. You will see what works best along the way.

4. Hire Others to Help
A good way to attract attention while you are still an unknown aspiring travel blogger is to ask influential bloggers in the niche to write guest posts for your blog. Or ask them to post your stories on their blogs. This way you will be made visible to their large audience, and some traffic will be diverted to your blog. Before you decide to hire other bloggers, make sure you check their credibility.
Hopefully these tips will help you reach your goal. But remember that it will not be an easy journey. Are you still set to become a professional travel blogger?

**image credits: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5

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  1. You can check this site to have some ideas in making your own travel blog: The Budget Traveler

  2. I just started my own food and travel blog few months ago and it's really fun. At first I just loved taking photos and documenting it. But hopefully in the future it will become income generating too. This article if very informative. :)


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