For those who have found a way to succeed in it, travel writing can be extraordinarily fun, life changing and lucrative. But for a lot of people, the question of how to get to that stage, or even how to get started at all, looms large. Travel blogging has a lot of unique challenges and building a following can be a difficult thing to achieve, especially as it becomes an increasingly crowded field. Let’s take a look at some tips for how to achieve your goal.
1. You Don’t Have To Make Expensive Trips
This is everyone’s first problem. Travel blogging is a major case of ‘you have to spend money to make money’. It seems that everyone who does well in travel blogging is off to India or Cambodia every second week. Starting out, that just isn’t practical for most people. “A better way to think about it is to think about what will appeal to your audience. It may be the case that a place three hours’ drive from where you live, which may seem boring and not like travelling at all to you, is actually fascinating to a stranger who knows nothing about where you are from”, explains David Shute, blogger at Writinity and Lastminutewriting. So, get imaginative, try and look at where you’re from in a new light.
2. Write To Answer Questions
This is an excellent way to boost your audience. Try and create ‘useful’ content that will actually have value to someone who doesn’t already have some reason to care about you and your life. This will hook people in and, if they like the rest of your writing, you could have a permanent fan.
3. Develop A Personal Brand
You have to figure out how to stand out from the crowd from very early. This could mean a lot of different things but it all amounts to personal branding. Think about what you care about, why you want to travel and how that has inspired you to write. It could be as profound as retracing the footsteps of your adventure-explorer great-great grandfather or as mundane as a blog where you eat a giant grilled cheese in front of famous landmarks around the world.
4. Get Help
Running a successful travel blog isn’t as simple as travelling and writing about it. You need a web designer, advice about hosting, a video editor, graphic design for your logo, a social media manager, an accountant, an advertising team. At the start, it’ll just be you doing as much as you can. But as soon as you’re able, get help from others.
5. Do Interesting Things Whilst Travelling
People want to read about or watch someone who peered over the rim of a volcano, not someone who spent a week on the beach. Makes sense? Good.
6. Do Guest Posts
Try and spread your brand around by getting featured on other blogs. Write for free until you can reasonably charge and always make sure that they agree to promote your site.
7. Active On Social Media
For some it will be second nature and may even be how you got into travel blogging. For others it will be hell on earth. Whatever the case is for you, social media is a necessary part of travel blogging and actually a wonderful opportunity to connect with your follower base.
8. Start An Email List
Keep your views up on each blog post by creating an email list for your fans to subscribe to. That way you can share updates directly with them as you go.
9. Read A Lot Of Other Blogs
“In all sorts of fields, knowing your competition, loving your competition even, is necessary for beating them. You need to keep your finger on the pulse of the travel writing world”, says Harley Gold, lifestyle blogger at Draftbeyond and Researchpapersuk. Knowing what people are reading, who else is finding success and who you can emulate (or avoid) will be a really helpful guide as you work towards building up your blog to be as good as it can be. So, stay connected!
10. Treat It As A Business
You have to invest the same amount of time and seriousness into travel blogging as you would in an office job. Yes, travel blogging can be glamorous at the top end, but those people still sweat 365 days a year to make it all happen.
11. Keep Going!
Rome wasn’t built in a day! You have to fight for what you want. It could be years, but if you love it then who cares!
It’s a wonderful career if you can make it, but no-one ever says it will be easy. The best piece of advice is to do it out of love for it and let any real success that comes of it be an added bonus along the way.
Robert is a marketing strategist and a writer at Buy assignment online and Gum Essays. He endeavors to help companies grow and develop their brands effectively in today’s fast-changing and demanding consumer market. His biggest strength is in social media marketing, which he believes is the most powerful method for advertising. He writes mostly on business but is also interested in health, lifestyle and online gaming.