You can turn your blog into a major money making venture provided you are consistent, committed and to endure the days of near zero returns.
That was how Jessica Ufuoma, turned her small travel blog into a 6-figure business with contracts with major airlines and partnerships with prominent travel brands.
Narrating her story, to mark the sixth anniversary of her blog and to encourage others, Ufuoma wrote on her twitter handle:
Exactly six years ago today, I sat down with my old MacBook Air 13 for seven hours and created a scrappy website from scratch using tutorials from YouTube. I published my first blog post and sat anxiously for the next hour waiting to see who had read it.
One hour later, no views. Two days later, 11 views. I soon realized that that’s not how the internet works (bummer) and you had to promote your work if you want it to be seen. So I reluctantly created an Instagram account.
As an introvert, putting myself out there in that way was grossly uncomfortable. And in some way, it still is today. But I really wanted to help people travel. I wanted to see more people who look like me, travel the world. So I chose my passion over my feelings of discomfort.
At first I would write about everything I loved. From fashion to football to travel, finance and everything in between. I soon realized that in order to grow and build my online presence, I had to niche down. So I did exactly that. I decided to go full steam on travel.
I blogged consistently every Friday for a whole year. I had a full time job (still do) but I committed to it. On my best piece, I got 50 views but I kept writing and writing and writing and providing all the best travel tips that I picked up as I traveled.
Two Years Later
About two years in, I started to see something weird happen. People started reaching out in my DMs, emails. They were asking for interviews, for my opinion on travel, for podcast features. And even offered to pay me for my time. What in the world was happening?
And that was only the beginning. Tourism boards reached out to create content for them, I got contracted for a year to be on a major airlines advisory boards, scored five figure $ partnerships for major travel brands.
By being consistent, committed and enduring the days of near zero returns, doing it for the love and desire to see others do the same, I was able to build this. Another big thing was niching down, especially in the beginning. It makes you grow x5 faster.
Sharing this story to encourage anyone who is starting something. Starting is hard. But what I wish for you the most is for you to stay. Stay long enough to see the rewards. And that you don’t give up too early. It will happen and when it rains, it pours.
And to show you what’s possible. I didn’t see that many Black women with full-time careers and a ‘weak’ passport truly make it in the travel blogging space so I hope this encourages anyone who belongs to even one these categories.
Today, I’m celebrating all the moments that have led up to now. The consistency. The hardwork. The resilience and all the successes (and failures) that have happened ever since. ..Cheers to the next six years. And thank you to everyone who has ever supported.