Paid Travel in a Digital Age
Back in August 2014 we published an article on how to get paid to travel the world; however, we left one thing out that continues to increase in popularity – travel blogging. Of course, this isn’t as simple as creating a WordPress site and then just waiting for resorts and hotels to call you. The reality is that it’s a large amount of work, so you have to be prepared for that, but it also offers a great opportunity to see the world.
Travel Blog Must-Haves
Aside from writing impeccable content that people actually want to read, you need to be original in a few other areas in order to be successful. Since there are hundreds of travel blogs out there, you need stand out. This means finding a niche, or angle on a topic, that no one else is doing. Sounds kind of impossible, but with some consideration it can be done. You also need to design an intriguing and interactive website layout – one that focuses on images. Also, choose a really intriguing and unique name so that people will want to click on your blog in the first place; this includes registering the domain name for your blog title – make sure to use a tool like this to see what’s available for your desired name.
Regular Posting Schedule
You also need to stick to a regular posting schedule. If you post sporadically and go weeks or months without a post, you will lose readers and search engine ranking, and your blog will become just another travel blog in the blogging graveyard. Not only is it important for the success of your blog, but it is a good habit to have just to help spur creativity, develop your writing style, and treat writing as your fulltime job. Forcing yourself to sit down and write every day is self-discipline that will really pay off.
Speaking of writing every day, take advantage of this disciplined schedule and supplement your income as a distance freelance writer. There are plenty of opportunities to write web content, articles, blog posts, product descriptions, and even instruction manuals – see project posting portals like Freelancer to get an idea of the work that’s out there. And the best part is that this work can all be done remotely from the comfort of your hotel room. All you need is an internet connection to receive and send back projects, and voila! Pay for projects will always vary, but if you squeeze in a couple of freelance projects per day, you will have a little extra income without having to take on a 9-5 job.
And of course for your blog to really get anywhere, you need to properly market it. You will need to implement social media marketing and be sure to stay on top of trending topics. You should also implement an opt-in on your blog site encouraging followers to join the email list. Then develop a good email marketing campaign to include in your marketing arsenal. You should also generate a good network with other bloggers and guest post on their blogs and have them guest post on yours, building up your reach and your reputation in the blogging community.
Affiliate marketing is a whole different kettle of fish. Ideally companies come to you because of the content of your blog and the size of your audience and pay you to write about their products. This can be a slippery slope for many bloggers, so just be sure that when you work with affiliates, that you are honest and only promote products that you actually believe in. Otherwise your readers will feel like you sold out and will move on.