So, You Want To Be A Travel Influencer? Here’s How To Get Started
By Kelsey Marie
What started out as blogging and sharing travel photos online has turned into an entire career. We are living in the age of the travel influencer, people who get paid money to travel to various destinations and post about it.
Travel influencing has become vital for brands and tourism boards because of its impact and reach. Influencers have built audiences that value their opinion and would visit certain locations because they’ve been there.
So, what does it take to become a travel influencer? For starters, it takes dedication, consistency, and passion, but there are other pieces to the puzzle when it comes to being a full-time travel influencer.
The most important part of establishing a career as a travel influencer is to be yourself. People can usually sniff out when someone isn’t being real.
Whatever kind of traveler you are, there are people who can learn from what you have to share. Start branding yourself as the type of traveler you are in real life. For example, if you’re the type of person always looking for deals on flights and hotels, you don’t have to feel pressured to post about luxurious travels.
Post what you love and your audience will find you.
Build Your Audience
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to have hundreds of thousands of followers to be a travel influencer. In fact, nano-influencers and micro-influencers are on the rise in terms of landing brand partnerships.
What you want to focus on is building an audience that engages with your content. Part of building an engaged audience is actually communicating with those who comment on your photos. Responding to DMs and comments go a long way and your followers will be more likely to continue engaging with your content rather than just scrolling past it.
Learn Your Audience
Now that you are building a loyal audience, it’s time to figure out exactly what they like. Sure, you should post what you like but you also have to consider your audience when posting.
As a travel influencer, you’ll most likely be in and out of various time zones, so knowing which times to post is key. If most of your followers are on the east coast, you’ll want to take that into consideration when posting from a different time zone.
Also, it’s important to learn what kind of posts your audience usually gravitates to. Do they like it when you post about flight deals or do they prefer to see you at beautiful locations? Once you figured out what your audience follows you for, it’s easier to plan your content going forward.
Put Yourself Out There
A big part of being a travel influencer is working with brands. This is how you will earn money and turn travel influencing into a real job. If brands aren’t knocking on your door yet, try reaching out to them.
Don’t be scared to pitch to the brands you want to work with. Just remember to be concise, respectful, and show them what you can bring to the table — send them a pitch they just can’t refuse.
Be prepared to get “no’s” but also you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the “yes’s” you’ll get.
Do Your Best When Working With Brands
Ok, so you’ve landed your first brand collaboration. Now it’s time to really show them what you’ve got.
Remember that this is a job and you have to put your best foot forward. Create the content you know your audience would love and the brand would be proud to share on their platform.
You never know, if you do well enough, the brand will use you in their next campaign.
Too often we put too much thought into things and end up resenting them. Being a travel influencer is hard work but it doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be fun.
Enjoy what you’re doing, share your content, grow your audience and at the end of the day — live your best life.
Kelsey-Marie is an NYC girl who currently lives in Johannesburg, South Africa. You can keep up with her on Instagram at @kelseydashmarie