I met Julie in a blogging Facebook group. I always enjoy seeing her posts because her travel photography is so pretty, and I makes me want to pack my bags to travel the world. I am sure you will enjoy her work as well.
What is your niche?
I run a travel blog. As I have been living in North America since 2006 and prefer long-term travel, my blog focuses on the destinations’ features and travel tips through the locals’ lens. The blog also features travel writer interviews, travel writing tips, and guest posts.
What made you want to become a blogger?
I love traveling and writing travel stories, and I always wanted to do something with my passion. This summer when I finished my contract job, I decided to take some time off from work. It is during this time period I realized life is too short to work for someone else’s dream. So I decided to start travel blogging, which allows me to pursue my passion.
How do you keep organized? Do you use an editorial calendar?
I have had an editorial calendar since the beginning of November and I use it for brainstorming posts. I tried keeping up with scheduling at least two posts every week and I have been getting behind these days. Because my blog just launched this July, I have spent a substantial amount of time on social media connecting with fellow bloggers and sharing content. However, every day I will spare at least an hour to write new posts for my blog, guest posts, and editing old ones.
Do you have a set routine or sharing schedule for posting to social media?
Although I share posts and pictures on social media daily, I don’t have a specific routine. The only time I share my post on social media is when I share other bloggers’ content. Lately, I focus on Pinterest as it boosts organic traffic. I like to spend time on travel-related content that has beautiful images, as those images oftentimes reignite my passion for traveling and exploring.
Do you monetize your blog?
Currently, I only have one affiliate link on my blog, and I have not made any money from it. I do not depend on the affiliate sales for income. As my blog is still new, it is essential for me to focus on producing high-quality content and engage with my readers. I love traveling and blogging. I believe it is important to do what I love first and pour my heart into it.
Do you have any advice for new bloggers?
Be patient. There will always be bloggers making tons of money and having millions of monthly views and thousands of unique visitors. Most of these people have been blogging for years. When I just started full-time blogging, I knew little about the blogging world and how to build an audience. In the first two months, there were days my blog had no visitors at all, and my Facebook page had less than 50 fans. In late October, it started getting better. Blogging is not for those craving instant gratification. It involves tons of hard work and a ridiculous amount of time and commitment. Do not expect to write a post, and get spiking traffic and tons of money rolling in. Open up to learning new skills and work very hard, and it will pay off in the long run. Most importantly, write what you are passionate about, and never trade your integrity for anything.
Anything new on the horizon for Always on the Way Travel?
In January 2017, I will launch a free guide for my blog subscribers: “How to travel around the world for free”. It covers how to score ultra-low airplane tickets, and low-cost and free accommodation and meals. Its mission is to inspire more people to explore the world, and you do not need to wait till you save a large sum of money to travel.
Thank you for hanging out with us today Julie! I really appreciate you taking the time to answer my questions, and I am going to be on the lookout for your guide. I am sure many people will be interested in your cheap travel ideas!
Be sure to check back next week for another #bloggerstarshine interview!