What I’ve Learned About Travel Blogging the Past Year
Hey everyone – I’m Steve. For those of you that haven’t noticed, there’s been another strange voice here at No Mas Coach for the past year. That’s not to say that any of us are completely “normal”. There’s just been a third weird guy that joined the party. Well, today officially marks my one year anniversary at No Mas Coach.
It’s pretty crazy how fast time flies by. It felt like not long ago that I was still learning WordPress (spoiler alert: it’s not that hard). Along the way, I’ve gotten to share some really cool experiences. Since I’ve gone from a reader to a writer (and still a reader), I’ve learned a few things along the way. I figured I’d peel back the curtain a bit and share some of the things I’ve learned along this journey.
It’s Not Always Easy
One of the common lines of thought about travel blogging goes something like this: “I like travel and know a few things. I could do this easily.” While that might be true in part, it’s harder than it sounds. What do I mean?
It’s easy to tell your friends and family members a few key points or to share a travel deal on occasion. What’s not easy is continuing to tell them new and interesting information every week.
Over the past year, I wrote 83 posts. While that doesn’t sound like a lot, it’s still nearly two a week. That’s without repeating myself and avoiding fluff posts. It can be really difficult to come up with new topics to write about on a regular basis. When in doubt though, I’ll always choose quality over quantity. If we post a bunch of crap, you’ll eventually stop reading us. Rightfully so. I don’t think either of us want that, so we’ll keep trying our best.
That’s not to say that blogs with multiple articles a day post bad content. Quite the opposite actually. I have a newfound admiration for the folks that are able to consistently pump out quality post after quality post. Sometimes, I feel like those people have more quality posts in a day than I could in a week or month. It’s truly impressive.
It’s Not Glamorous
Another common misconception about travel blogging is that its a glamorous lifestyle – you spend all your time in the air sipping champagne and every minute on the ground being pampered. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Don’t get me wrong, this hobby has given us the opportunity to enjoy some really special experiences. It’s just not all glitz and glam like you might think.
To be fair, Jon and Ben told me that up front, so I knew what to expect. The reality is, most of the blogs you read on BoardingArea are run by people that work full-time jobs. Gotta pay the bills somehow. ðŸ¤·ðŸ»â€â™‚ï¸
During the time I’ve been writing from No Mas Coach, I’ve gone back and forth between a full-time job and working on my MBA. It’s not easy to always find the time to write. Sometimes you have to make time. I’ve been half asleep and hopped out of bed to fire off a post because I found a deal. I’d probably sleep better if I stayed away from my phone at night, but…dealz.
Aside from working and studying, life inevitably happens. You still have a social life and other responsibilities outside the blog. You still have family events, vacations, and get sick, just like everyone else. The only difference is, you still need to write.
It can be really tough to keep things going during those times. Luckily, we have a great team that can pick up the slack when someone else is tied up.
It can also be a tough balance between trying to enjoy a trip versus documenting it for the site. On one hand, you truly want to enjoy the experience. On the other, it’s important to try to get the best information for you. It’s a balance I continue to struggle with to this day.
It’s Incredibly Rewarding
Wait, but I thought you just said it’s not glamorous. Well that’s true. Aside from the top 1% of the top 1%, travel blogging isn’t exactly financially lucrative. That’s not what’s incredibly rewarding though. It’s you.
Sorry if it sounds a little cheesy, but you’re really what keeps me going. Seeing someone comment, “My in-laws have never flown business class, but thanks to your post they’ll be flying for the first time.” makes it all worth it. Even if only one person takes advantage of a deal or finds my advice useful, that’s one more person than if I didn’t have this platform.
Jon and Ben Are Awesome
Before joining No Mas Coach, I didn’t know Jon and Ben all that well. I just thought of them as some super cool, jet setters who ran a fun blog. While they definitely do some unbelievable traveling, they’re also incredibly down to earth guys. Whenever I have a stupid question, they’re always there to answer them for me. And trust me, I have PLENTY of those.
While they’re more than happy to help and answer any questions, they also let me be creative. From Day 1, they’ve given me full control over what I post and choose to write about. For better and for worse. Writing is so much easier to write when you get to write about things you’re passionate about. I really consider myself lucky to have this kind of platform with this amount of freedom.
Now excuse me while I go wipe off my nose…
Usually, I reserve this last section for my final thoughts. Instead, I just want to use it to say thank you. Thank you to Jon and Ben for giving me this platform to share my thoughts. Thank you to all the other BoardingArea bloggers who have made me feel welcomed and given me advice. Most of all though, thank you to you – the readers. You’ve put up with my shenanigans for a year and haven’t run me out of town…yet. You make every post worth it and I’ll always be grateful for your support. Here’s to making this next year even better.