It”s been six months since I started this travel blog and I realised that this is a tough gig to crack.
For the most part, I”m enjoying the experience. But as with any endeavours, I developed a love-hate relationship from making this travel blogging work.
I”m not saying goodbye to travel blogging. I am not keen on doing that. But rather, I would like to tell a few experiences I”ve realised from a few months of being part of the community. Here are a few things that have made this whirlwind experience both challenging but most of the time, inspiring.
- Travel blogging is, at most, a one-person show
It’s not easy to work and manage a travel blog. You work from start to finish – from buying the domain, doing the design work and fixing technical issues, writing blog posts to scheduling tweets and managing social media channels. It has become a juggling task, that has taken most of my free time. Building a blog from scratch requires a steep learning curve,and in order to get your head on the game – you need to have both discipline and patience.
It”s been difficult to keep up and you can see it with the ireggular number of posts I do per week. This is not what I want and I”m trying my best to put it back into a good rhythm – but mind you that it”s not an easy task to do to make sure that you have fresh & interesting content available.
But despite that most of the tasks belong to me, I have friends helping me out with 25travels – proofreading, writing posts and giving editorial advice – I couldn’t do it without them.
- Success doesn”t come easy
From a travel blogging context , it means that building your name online won’t happen in days, weeks or even months. This is an accepted fact. But keeping the momentum going to write and improve your blog, without any return on investment, is sometimes discouraging.
- Every new visit, follower or fan counts.
Checking my analytics has become a daily obsession. I check fanatically my blog”s search keywords, visits, page views, time spent and comparing it with the previous months hoping that it’s going to be better. But that single increase on my page views is enough to put a smile on my face.
I watch the numbers closely and with every milestone – my first 100 twitter followers, my first blog comment, my first 25 fans on Facebook – comes as a challenge to work hard and invest more time.
- Comment Lover
Once you write and upload your post, then you wait on how your readers respond. How will your post fare to the reading public? Will they gate it and love it?
For me, comments are big metrics to see how popular your posts are. Also, if someone re-tweets your post – you are happy. If someone famous (more on #4) re-tweets it, then you start jumping out of your seat. 🙂
It bothers me when a post doesn’t get any comments or feedback. If I don’t get comments on a post then I assume that there must be something wrong with it. Was my post boring, uninspiring or just plain unreadable?
- I get excited when talking to travel blogging celebrity
My first days as a travel blogger was like going to a new school. I am the new kid joining a pool of people who have been in that community for years.They, the popular travel bloggers, have mastered the art of travel blogging and amassed a huge amount of followers, fans and comments on their every posts.
As a new kid, I get excited every time a travelblogger celebrity reply to my tweets, RT my blog posts or comment on my blog. I can’t help to get star struck. So if you are one and you are reading this, please do say hello and comment back – that will surely bring smile to my face.
- Travel community is a great bunch
Being a part of a travel community like #TTOT, have given good traction for my blog and a supportive hand in improving it. New & fulltime bloggers work hand in hand in making everyone new feel welcome.
The community allowed to meet people who appreciate and value travel like I do. I’m continuing to learn about places I’ve never heard off , food that I never knew existed and experiences that is now on my ever growing bucket list. Through this community, I also got inspired to work towards doing an #rtw trip soon.
And I’ll also like to extend my thanks to the great people I met in the journey particularly beforeiam35, amzkiz, packsandbucks, hyperren, shivya, fourjandals, 2girls1journey, pckyourpassport, toniwonitravels, our_oyster, a6packofstories, confusedjulia, budgetplaces, AE_carhire.
- Small words can have an impact
I talked about success in the context of building a name online. And I”m far from achieving that form of success. But what is the measure of success anyway?
My biggest realisation in doing this blog is that through telling stories about my goal and adventures, I can impact the way you, my readers, think about travel.
This keeps me going, knowing that through my work, I manage to influence another person”s travel decisions – even if it’s just a simple hostel recommendation or to begin their own travel goal.
I remember that the reason why I started blogging was I was inspired by other bloggers to start my own. And now that I am actually doing it, it’s been rewarding to see emails & comments pouring in. That validates me as a travel blogger, even if it”s only in a small way. It’s only a handful of emails since I started – but all those emails, tweets and posts, inspire me to continue this work.