In the past twenty or so days I have transformed this travel blog from a hobby into a serious business in the black to the tune of over $1,000 US. I sold out! But the potential earnings from this new business is well worth it. At least I am not trying to sell a dumb travel or money making ebook. Right?
How the business works:
I am earning money from advertisers.
The key to this business is that I figured out a surprisingly simple method of finding quality sales leads. I am not cold emailing these leads but how I find these leads will remain a secret. Just know it takes very minimal effort. At the end I am dealing with online marketing companies who have clients in the travel business. Clients include airfare search engines, hotel chains, and others.
At this point each company has paid for sponsored travel articles or reviews with a few links to their companies. It is this reason you may have noticed some out of character articles published on this blog. Some companies provide me with an article while others have me write them.
That’s when I outsource the writing to an NYU English major graduate for a small but fair sum. He logs into my website to write, format, and ultimately publish each article. Outsourcing the writing means I get to continue spending my time writing as a hobby rather burning out while writing about places I have never been nor care about. This particular copywriter is also a way better writer than I am which means these articles are actually pretty interesting, even if its just a long advertisement.
I can easily see myself outsourcing the entire business in the near future to either the copywriter or another person. They would negotiate with leads and manage the other processes.
Since I began every single lead has responded to me within three days. I believe around 3/4 of all leads contacted have agreed to advertise on this website. The amount of leads I receive now is quite small but there is no limit to how many I will receive in the future. I have a proven process for finding leads which is very easily scalable to hundreds of times larger than it is now.
What I find incredible is that this travel blog is pretty tiny with relatively few regular visitors. What I am getting at is that there are tons of travel blogs with a lot more visitors that I receive. They should obviously be earning more. But somehow my blog will earn more money than those blogs 100-500 times larger than mine, even though they are also actively seeking income.
I never in my wildest imagination thought i’d earn more than a few cents from this hobby. I started my travel blog around five years ago. I never really enjoyed writing but kept at it for years because I felt good sharing my travels. It’s kind of funny to me because in the past year reached a level of satisfaction with my other businesses. I completely gave up on developing them more and went along for the ride with no intention to work anymore than I needed. If someone asked me a month ago what new business idea was in the works I would have laughed. And a few weeks later I now have another thriving side business.