How to Creatively Monetize Your Travel Blog
I have a fond place in my heart for Kathmandu.
Not just because 2 wild men attacked me in this exotic capital of Nepal.
One dude nibbled on my right triceps. Another reached back and punched me in the shoulder, walloping me as he grinned insidiously, like the Cheshire Cat.
Before I drop a dual Mike Tyson reference I have to share: I hatched the idea for Blogging From Paradise after speaking to a travel blogger at the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu.
She’d earned some nice coin through both sponsored posts and advertising but those income streams dried up for her.
The wheels slowly turned in my mind.
I’d seen so many struggling travel bloggers bemoan the fact that their sponsored post and advertising revenue was sporadic at best.
Could I show travel bloggers better, more creative ways to make money online?
I’d earned a full-time income for a minute while covering a different niche. While changing time zones like most people change clothes.
So, being the real go-getter I was at the time, I stammered and paused and sputtered until 10 months later, when I was forced to let go my “make money online” blog and decided to create Blogging From Paradise, a portal that helps you retire to a life of island hopping through smart blogging, an ideal site for anyone who wants to learn how to start a travel blog. Or any blog.
Many struggling travel bloggers beat the sponsored post and ad revenue drum fervently, totally overlooking these creative, prospering means through which to earn scrilla online.
This leads to serious struggles, sporadic blogging income and nasty headaches.
If you’re willing to get creative you can travel indefinitely, blog about your globe trotting ways and earn a full-time income through your blog.
You learn through teaching.
What better way to earn steady income and learn more about travel blogging than by becoming a blogging coach?
Legions of bloggers are starving for good, proven blogging advice. Fill this niche by rendering a valued service via live online coaching or prepared report.
I offer one, hour-long coaching sessions via Skype or your preferred channel of communication (Facebook video chat, Zoom, etc) as well as a comprehensive report to help bloggers build their online real estate from the ground up.
Serve travel bloggers. Or any bloggers. The fundamentals are the same. The details may change according to niche but just a wee bit of due diligence (via Google) gives you confidence and clarity to help any blogger succeed in virtually any niche.
To become a skilled blogging coach you need to learn the in’s and out’s of successful blogging. This takes time and a full commitment to reading, studying, implementing what you learned and succeeding with your blog.
Blog coaching is a fabulously fulfilling way to serve other bloggers with love.
I enjoy working all my blogging income streams but feel coaching other bloggers is about the most fun and freeing activity I engage in online.
Rates: $50 to $100 per hour and $300 and up per comprehensive blogging report.
If you can write, get paid for your writing.
Talented travel bloggers can earn coin by offering freelance writing services.
I’ve ghost written an entire eBook which became an Amazon best seller. I also write paid guest posts.
The opportunities are limitless in the freelance writing game.
Even if you specialize in writing travel blogging themed posts you can make the smooth transition to online business or blogging tips writer because you’ll have learned many online business and blog building skills to grow your successful travel blog.
My #1 piece of advice for freelance writing travel bloggers: write 1,000 words daily for practice. Open a Word document. Write. Trash the doc after writing. Cultivate an attitude of detachment about your practice writing to become a skilled, experienced freelance writer.
Writing daily – for practice – gives you confidence and clarity in charging reasonable rates.
And what are said reasonable rates? For a 600 word article aim for $50, or in that ballpark.
Set up a freelance writer page on your blog to disclose topics covered and to show off your work.
As you create content and make friends with other bloggers people will seek you out to hire you.
Write and Self Publish eBooks on KDP Select
I kinda ran with the idea of writing and self-publishing eBooks via KDP Select for Amazon.
124 eBooks later – I self-published my first 2 flagship eBooks on Selz – I have a rich, robust library bursting at the seams with blogging tips, inspirational reads, fun travel stories and insights on how to become a digital nomad.
That’s the beauty of self-publishing eBooks on Amazon; you can stray outside of your travel blogging niche and still generate passive income by writing a helpful eBook and by adding the appropriate tags to your creation.
Travel bloggers can write travel guides to their favorite hot spots or perhaps you can share entertaining, humorous or dramatic stories from your globe trotting exploits.
I dig this income stream for its passive nature once you promote your eBook via a free giveaway on your blog. Boost downloads. Rank well for your eBook keywords. Generate passive sales.
The $1.99 price point works well for a 6,000 to 15,000 word eBook.
I suggest writing a 6,000 word read. Aim for a 30 to 45 minute read. Not the next War and Peace.
Convert those eBooks to Audio Books on ACX
Smart travel bloggers leverage the stuffing out of their content.
Create something. Convert that something into a different form consumable through a different medium.
Add income streams to your travel blog while playing to your reader’s preferences.
I converted more than 30 of my eBooks to audio book via acx.com.
I worked with a producer to self-publish these reads via audio.
Been a bit lazy on converting all 126 eBooks but that still marks one more blogging income stream rich with 30 helpful products for your listening pleasure.
Some folks prefer to listen to your vivid travel stories or spot on blogging advice. Busy folks feast upon helpful content on the move, while cleaning the house, commuting to work or while waiting to pick up the kids from school.
Self-publishing an audio book on acx enables you to promote your work on Audible, Amazon and iTunes, the Holy Trinity of listening channels.
Acx prices your audio books based on the duration of the listen. Minimum pricing is $3.46, split between you, your producer and acx.
Setting up an audio book involves:
- uploading a short PDF sample of the eBook
- listening to producers audition for the audio book
- choosing one producer
- confirming the audio book once the producer finishes recording the work
Promote your audio books through your blog and social media.
Create Premium Online Courses
I created online courses through Selz, Teachable and Send Owl.
Each course is “blogging tips” focused but you can just as easily created a course on how to travel or how to create a successful travel blog. The possibilities are endless, really.
Publishing online courses is a gateway monetizing activity. Establishing passive cash flow is one chief benefit but your courses open the way to establish serious authority in your niche.
Readers do a double take if you have a course – or 3 – in your monetizing arsenal. Takes some smarts to create an entire course.
Premium courses can be bigger ticket items.
Price courses from $100 to $500 or more depending on the depth of each offering.
The Real Deal
Opening these monetizing streams helps you diversify your blogging income and insulates you from the ups and downs of the sponsored post and ad revenue game.
But…….all of your monetizing success and failure roots itself in your inner world. Meaning, if you blog from an energy of love, helpfulness and service you’ll create helpful content and promote other bloggers which leads to online profits.
That’s the key: your energy. The energy you choose to vibe at influences the actions you take and colors your blogging activities. It’s the lynch pin. The deciding factor.
Income streams in and of themselves are useless. The energy of the individual who establishes these travel blogging streams determines whether or not the blogger prospers or struggles.
Don’t worry; we’ll dive into “inner world” blogging tips in future posts.
Are you a travel blogger who’s explored these income streams?
What income channels can you add to this list? Let us know in the comments.
Photo Credits: Hotel Zora Primosten & Clintus
Ryan Biddulph owns the website Blogging From Paradise. He’s a blogger, author and world traveler who’s been featured on Richard Branson’s Virgin Blog, Forbes, Fox News, Entrepreneur Dot Com and Neil Patel Dot Com. He has written and self-published 126 bite-sized eBooks on Amazon. Ryan can help you build a successful blog with the 11 Fundamentals of Successful Blogging Audio Course.