This week on Blogger Starshine, I had the opportunity to ask a few questions of Eric the creator of The Bucket List Project. Eric is a member of a blogging group I run on Facebook, and he is a really cool person. He has a great sense of humor and is always full of positivity. His blog is rather inspirational, especially for those with a love of travel. I am super excited that he took the time to chat with us 🙂
What is your niche?
My niche is a bucket list niche. With The Bucket List Project Blog, I hope to share once-in-a-lifetime experiences, people accomplishing them, and hopefully will inspire you to go out and do them. In an overall category, I often and can easily fall under travel and adventure blogging. However, I break my blog down into 5 major categories:
- Adventure Travel
- Adventure Activities & Experiences
- Personal Growth
- Things I wanted to do for others
- Opportunities to Make Amends to Others
Do you take and edit your own photos?
When it comes to photography, I am a total novice. I guess the best way to describe me is a lazy boyfriend of photography. You know, the guy you ask to take your pic, but he groans and tries to get out of it. I essentially use my cell phone (an HTC One(R) M8 Harman/Kardon(R) edition) to take photos wherever I am. However, I think I have a good eye when taking photos and have learned to use the tools on my cell to take some nice photos.
What is your favorite social media platform for blogging promotion?
Great question. I still think Facebook is king for me when it comes to connecting with everyone and getting quality traffic to my site. I like it best because not only does it help me connect with Bucket List Project fans but I can double my marketing with my own personal page. I have been playing more and more with StumbleUpon and occasionally it sends me a nice amount of traffic as well but it’s still sporadic. I am currently promoting on Twitter, Google+, and Instagram but I find that they tend to just catch me the random looky loo but I am still learning about those platforms.
In what ways have you monetized your blog? What has been most successful?
I have monetized my blog in several ways thus far. I have google ads on my site, some, where if you click on them it gives me a trickle of the pay per click pennies out there. I also have several affiliate programs that I have connected with or have approached me. You can find them listed under my “Recommended Tools for Your Bucket list”. As I have said, I am still new to this, so Google ads and Affiliates have only added some trickling of dollars. Although I love promoting affiliates to my fan base in order to hook them up with great sites or deals, I think my ultimate goal will be, after getting a solid following, to work as a travel/bucket list reviewer of products, services, destinations, etc. I have read of adventure type press trips where you get paid to not only travel to a destination but then to review the tour group, products offered, or the actual area you traveled to for the board of tourism. I would love to work to that ultimate goal of being what the blogging industry calls an “influencer” where I can get paid to promote/market for a company/product/travel destination for both these companies and my fan base.
What is your most active piece? What do you think is the draw to that particular post?
Currently, my most popular individual post is “The Second Bucket List”. It tells the story of a young woman named Nicole who had 2 bucket lists as she was losing her battle to Ovarian Cancer. I am good friends with Nicole’s friend, Jeanne, who tells this story on my blog. In September, I published this story and promoted it everywhere. Not because I wanted to drive traffic to my site but because September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness month, and I wanted to not only get Nicole’s story out there to the masses but also wanted to help promote awareness of Ovarian Cancer. Nicole was barely 35 when this disease took her from her husband and children. So I made a commitment to Jeanne to get Nicole’s story out there during September to make other women aware. I think Nicole is the Draw! She was an amazing woman and mother.
Is your blog your day job?
Well, I am a “victim” of the massive layoffs being seen all over the pharmaceutical industry. I was a sales rep in New Orleans for nearly 12 years for one Pharma company up until April 1, 2016. However, I am blessed and am now able to take a bit of time off to pursue this blogging full time. Don’t get me wrong, I am always keeping an eye out for opportunities to return to the industry. However, I was offered a gift to take a gap year or so and pursue major bucket list items on my own personal list and to explore this blogging as a possible avenue for income. Therefore, I am taking advantage of it 100%. Currently, I have developed a weekly plan of attack (POA) where I spend about 4 hours a day or more working on different aspects of marketing, promotion, and blog writing.
Do you have any “side hustles” or ways to make extra cash while you pursue blogging?
I currently do a little bit with survey taking and I have a side hustle where I promote pharmacy discount cards. It pays enough each month for me not to worry about my monthly bills while I am in my gap year. One of my bucket list items is to be an extra in both a movie and a tv show, so I hope to start pursuing those two soon, not only to fulfill my bucket list items but make some fun money. However, I am focused on my current Bucket List blog because I tend to get distracted very easily and if I had too many “side hustles” I would never get anything done…Oh LOOK…SQUIRREL!!
“It is Better to Live 1 Day as a Lion, Than 1,000 Days as a Lamb”
Eric, Thank you so much for taking the time to answer these questions! I really love the concept of your blog, and I am glad I was able to share your insights here. I am sure you will have a couple of new readers making their way to your pages right about now 🙂
Check back next week for another #bloggerstarshine interview!