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Travel blogging for a living sounds idyllic.  Imagine…

Life would be one never ending extended vacation, flying from one fascinating destination to another, staying in the best hotels while exploring one intriguing sight after another.

Best of all you’d get paid to do it …

As it turns out, most travel bloggers will tell you that in reality it’s a lot more difficult and less flashy than you might imagine. It’s also not guaranteed to be that lucrative either. In fact, very few travel bloggers make enough from blogging alone to say they earn a living that way.

But before you click away,  there are plenty of successful, money earning travel bloggers out there. What if all you need to is find out what they’re doing and do the same thing? 

 


step #1 get real

Too many aspiring travel bloggers fall in love with the fantasy, a romanticized version of travel blogging. 

They imagine travel companies lining up to employ and pay them full time, huge salaries to live the dream. 

That’s not to say there aren’t a few lucky bloggers out there who somehow land their dream job, but they are few and far between.

The fact is if you want to be a travel blogger, it’s unlikely you’ll be employed by anybody which means you must set up business for yourself.

Unless have the cash flow to support a jet set appearance, it’s probably more than a possibility you’ll be flying budget class and staying in hotels that won’t be featuring in any of your photos.

Setting up a blogging business involves a lot more than just crafting some pretty posts from the Outer Hebrides.

No matter what you’re blogging about or where you’re doing it, its hard work and it takes time to learn the skills you need.

So if you’re not in this for the long haul then you may want to rather clean up poo in a zoo to earn a buck.

Most successful travel bloggers commit to becoming digital entrepreneurs, to learning their craft and developing the skills required for as long as it takes to succeed.

 

 

STEP #2 create a brand

Travel is a very competitive market.

Unless you and your blog stand out you’ll simply disappear into the “same as” pile. 

The reason so many travel blogs don’t go anywhere is because they don’t develop themselves into distinguishable brands. They are merely bland copies of what’s already circulating on the web.

Let’s face it, there are probably almost no unexplored destinations left to conquer; ones others would want to visit anyway.

Big, well-known brands like The Lonely Planet and others have been uncovering and exposing travel destinations for years.

What can you offer readers they can’t?

If you’re just rehashing what’s already out there, whose advice do you think Ms and Mr Traveler is going to follow, the voice of authority belonging to well-known brands or yours?

Successful travel bloggers do not attempt to compete with the ‘big gun’s in the market, they develop their own brands by sharing their unique voices, opinions and personalities on niche travel aspects that are helpful to their audience.

The key is in identifying an untapped audience who need help with some aspect of travel that nobody else or very few are targeting. 

 

make money travel blogging

 

STEp #3: geT Niche Specific

 At one time, before the Internet, travel writers could write about just about  anything. In today’s digital world doing so will lead to certain death.

A lot of travel bloggers think it’s fine to simply record and share their travels around the world as a theme for their blogs. But there are far too many general travel blogs around and nobody is very interested in them.

Today people search for specific topics on the Internet.

Successful travel bloggers have managed to identify smaller untapped niches within the broader travel niche.

They go on to develop themselves as experts and authorities in these niches, finding specific audiences who they can help with whatever they are looking for.

You might decide you want to write about international travel on a budget but can you find a specific audience to target on this topic?

More importantly, are you able to identify an audience who is prepared to spend money?

You will need to know how to connect with your audience and give them what they want and it will have to be something they can’t find done better, elsewhere.

The time for random global nomad type blogs is long gone. Successful travel bloggers do not settle for being generalists.

Rather they identify a specific niche and an audience within the travel niche who they can help. They blog with a defined purpose.

 

 

travel blog india

 

 

step #3 plan to get paid

Another reason why many travel bloggers fail is because they don’t know how to make money from blogging.

There’s more than one way to monetize a blog but many of these don’t work, especially for beginner bloggers.

Take advertising an example, one of the most common options by far. 

Why wouldn’t this be successful? Isn’t it this how magazines do it?

Yes… but your blog is not a magazine. There are some major differences.

For starters, you have to buy a magazine. Nobody has to pay to read your blog.

Magazines charge advertisers huge fees to advertise in their magazines. Internet advertisers hardly ever pay to advertise on websites, unless it’s an extremely sought after site.

Magazines can only do this because they have a guaranteed circulation, a big enough audience who is likely to be interested in their advertiser’s products and services.

Unless your blog attracts many thousands of visitors and enough of them click on the ads you will not even make enough to buy a cup of coffee at the end of the month, so low is the payment you receive per click.

Travel bloggers make the mistake of believing that because they have a blog with advertising on it that somehow visitors will surface out of nowhere and make their dreams come true.

It does not happen.

It takes skill to know how to attract visitors to your blog and it takes time for this to happen.

So what is a better way for travel bloggers to make money?

The ultimate is to market your own products and services but when you’re just starting out it’s possible you won’t have developed these. I suggest you do the next best thing, sell other people’s products and services for which you get paid a commission when purchases are made. This is called affiliate marketing.

It’s important to only market products and services you understand, would use yourself and believe are valuable to share with your readers. Naturally these must align very closely with your specific niche and provide for your audience’s needs.

Affiliate Marketing still requires work. You need to know how to set it up properly, how to attract visitors and develop trust with your audience.

The reason this is  a more viable option is because as long as you choose the right products and services to promote,  the commissions are worth far more than what advertisers will pay you to advertise on your site, so you have a far greater chance of making money.

 

travel blog for money

 

 

step #4 – be the best at what you do

 

Lastly travel bloggers often don’t succeed because they they don’t invest in the right education required for success.

You can’t just throw up a website, add words and pictures and hey presto, instant success.

You have to learn how to communicate effectively in ways that readers will regard you as an authority and be prepared to trust you.

You also have to learn about more than just how to blog. You must learn about business and marketing.

Learning these skills takes time and practice and you have to be sure you get the right training that covers everything you need.

 

 

Travel Blogging For a Living can work

 Travel blogging for living can work when you approach it the right way:

  1. Be realistic. Understand what’s required to be successful. Commit to creating a long term blogging business.
  2. Develop your blog as a unique brand that stands out with consistent messaging
  3. Identify a specific niche and audience within the broader travel niche who you can help as you become an authority
  4. Choose the best way to monetize your blog e.g. become a skilled Affiliate Marketer
  5. Invest in the best all round training, resources and tools to help you achieve your goal.

 

It may not be the easiest way to earn money when you start  but speak to any successful travel blogger and they will tell you it’s the best ‘job’ they’ve ever had.

Have you considered travel blogging for a living? Where in the world would you head to first and why? 

 

Got Questions? Something to say? Leave a comment. Let’s chat

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10 Comments

  1. Michael

    I think all of us at one point or another dream of traveling the work while working a few hours from our laptop is a nice hotel.

    However the truth is blogging and traveling at the same time is not as easy as people make it out to be.

    First and foremost you probably need a blog up and running making you money every month before you begin. Then after that you’ll need to have a schedule on when you plan on working on your business when traveling.

    As I’m sure sitting on the beach and drinking pina coladas all day would be great — your business would suffer if you did that each and every day.

    So I agree if this is something people want to do, wa is a feast place to learn the nessary skills.

    Reply
    • Mark Baker

      Hey Michael,

      Great to have you visit and leave a comment. Thank you.

      Spot on with your thoughts by the way. You have to learn how to travel and blog for money while seeing the world before you actually set off on your adventure. 

      The learning requires time and discipline which you would not have if you were already lazing around on a tropical island somewhere. 

      But without a doubt it’s possible to do. I am a travel addict myself. Recently I even blogged while on a cruise in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, Proof You Can Run Your Online Business From Just About Anywhere when you know how. 🙂

      All the best,

      ~Mark 

      Reply
  2. Lisa V

    Very interesting article. I always thought travel bloggers had the world at their feet (so to speak). I know when I start researching going somewhere, I look online to find blogs as well as the big websites. Pulling the two together gives me the most information.

    We travel a lot but didn’t even think of monetizing a travel blog. I wonder if there are really any successful affiliate marketer travel bloggers? Did you find any statistics on that during your research?

    Reply
    • Mark Baker

      Hi Lisa,

      In my opinion travel blogging is no different to any niche. If you get the right training and stick with it you can be successful. 

      It’s a competitive niche but that’s a good thing as it means there’s money to be had. The key is finding the right audience segment and then distinguishing yourself as a brand. 

      Good question about whether there are any successful affiliate travel bloggers. There definitely are.

      According to Geno Prussakov  the CEO of AM Navigator, an award-winning outsourced affiliate management company,  they did a study in 2015 that showed that travel affiliate programs ranked fourth highest in the the top 20 affiliate niches. That means affiliate travel bloggers are definitely out there and making money. 

      I would say to any aspiring travel bloggers, learn the skills from professionals and you won’t go wrong.

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

      All the best,

      ~Mark 

      Reply
  3. Leah Vanier

    This is some great information. I have been throwing around the idea of travel blogging for a while, but have been having a hard time with actually knowing whether it will be worth while. I think I will have to do way more research to see if it is worth it, but after reading through this there are some great tips on making it work for me. Affiliate marketing definitely sounds like a great way to go about making money so that you can keep going. Thanks for the tips!

    Reply
    • Mark Baker

      Hi Leah,

      Yeah I can understand your reservations about being a travel blogger. It is totally possible though as long as you go about it the right way beforehand. 

      The thing to remember is that ‘travel’ as a niche is just like any other niche, it still requires you to have the right skills to make it work. 

      Every successful blogger whether they’re writing about travel or something else has had to learn how to blog for money, because it’s a lot different to just blogging as a hobby or for pleasure. 

      But once you have those skills and because there are so many different affiliate marketing opportunities to promote you can actually blog about just about anything while traveling and earn a good income. 

      My first advice to anybody thinking about doing this is to learn the skills, get the tools and have it working before you jet off somewhere. I know for myself  that without the training platform and mentoring community I’m still a part of I wouldn’t have had a clue how to get it all working successfully. 

      Thanks for stopping by and wishing you all the best.

      Cheers,

      ~Mark 

      Reply
  4. Furkan

    Actualy thinking about the audience is really important and I even changed the tone of my writing and made it more like a close friend.
    It seemed to work and people stay on my site a bit longer. However in my niche it is really difficult that people spend money and I am not sure about the potential. However I am passionate about it. What do you think that I should do to achieve full time income?

    Reply
    • Mark Baker

      Hey thanks for the comment. Much appreciated.

      People often second guess themselves when it comes to choosing a blog niche which is profitable. What I do know is that income can be made from just about any niche as long as your audience needs help with something and you can offer them the help they need which they are prepared to pay for.

      Without knowing your exact niche and what your approach has been so far it’s difficult to know what you might need to change. Sometimes I do advise people to change niches because what they choose is not impossible but very challenging for someone just starting out.

      But this is not always the case, sometimes it’s just a matter of being sure that you are offering them something they can’t do without. As long as you are writing posts that connect with your audience and it sounds like you are from your comment, it could also be an idea to look at your call to action messages to see whether they are effective. 

      Hopefully that helps a bit? 

      Cheers,

      ~Mark 

      Reply
  5. james

    Hi Mark
    Thanks for sharing this post. I do quite a bit of travelling so was glad to come across this post as wasn’t sure how to make any cash out of the process. You’ve offered some good advice here to highlight that it’s not going to be sunshine and rainbows to get this set up It’s something that that I would need to look into further if I was going to get into this more seriously, and avoid competing with the big dogs.

    Cheers
    James

    Reply
    • Mark Baker

      Hi there James

      No you’re right about the it not going to be sunshine and rainbows to get it set up but there can also be an enormous pot pot of gold waiting for you on the other side if you get it right. 🙂

      In all honesty I can say it’s not hard to do but it will take hard work. You do need to follow the right steps and have patience but the return in your investment down the line will be a lifestyle others can only dream about. For them it will probably stay a dream because to make it happen you’ve got to take action, which starts with getting the right education, tools and support. 

      All the best,

      ~Mark 

      Reply

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Hey... I'm Mark! If you want to know how to blog for a living, you're in the right place. One of the ways I make money blogging, is as an affiliate. Meaning, if you buy something via a link on this site I could earn a commission, at no extra cost to you. It's how you can make money too. Ready?  Let's do this!

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