Setting goals for your travel blog is an essential way to expand your readership, keep motivated to write, and stay on track with your objectives. The problem is that many travel bloggers have, especially when first starting out, is setting too many goals that are too vague.
In the new year you can get ahead of the game easily by cutting up your goals into a small set of defined categories, keeping them short-term, and being as specific as possible.
Goals With Deadlines
Often when you’re travel blogging you set goals well in advance or without any context in time. Some examples or goals that don’t have good time limits (or any at all are):
- I want to increase my RSS subscribers.
- I hope to make some money with my travel blog.
- I’d like to submit one Ezine, Hubpage, Squidoo article per week.
These are all worthy things to work towards but without wrapping them up and tying a deadline at the end of them you’ll find it hard to stick to and monitor how things are going. Here are the same goals but with some reasonable deadlines.
- I want to increase my RSS subscribers by 15 within 1 month.
- I hope to make $35 per month with my travel blog by July.
- I’m going to submit one Ezine article per week until I’ve completed 25 of them (i.e. 25 weeks).
3 months is a good amount of time, I’ve found, to set goals and see results from your efforts in terms of monetizing, increasing readership, or adding features to your blog. It’s long enough to make a difference but not so far in advance that you’ll start to slack off (too much) as the clock winds down.
Be Very Specific
You can take this lesson to the extreme. I set very specific goals for my travel blogs and it’s when I started doing so that they really began to take off. Most of the goals aren’t too glamorous although they are well defined. Get down to numbers (i.e. adding 30 new Twitter followers within 3 weeks) and then run them by a friend or blogging buddy. I run my quarterly blogging goals by my wife and a few travel blogging friends who keep me down to Earth or tell me when I’m being too conservative in my estimates.
Use Categories, See The Connections
It’s difficult to make money from a primary travel blog if you don’t have many readers, a poorly designed website, or haven’t been getting links for your travel blog. You need to see the relationships between your goals and your methods to make sure you’re setting balanced ones. The most important goal I always set, and has lead to everything else, is simple – I always try and write useful, informative, and interesting posts and produce the best content I can.
I’ve written a few posts on how I try and do that you may find useful.
- 6 Ways To Keep Your Personal Travel Blog Interesting
- The Basics Of Building A Successful Travel Blog Part 1
- The Basics Of Building A Successful Travel Blog Part 2
In the end people need a reason to read your blog (if you want more readers) and reason to pay you (if you want to make money from your travel blog) or a reason to link to you (if you’re looking to increase your Page Rank). Determine what those reasons are – or the reason anyone should help you reach your set goals and you’ll be one step closer to achieving them.
[photos by: Swiv, mikeyexists]
It’s an awesome post, Anil.
One should always break long term goals into short ones. Keeping short term goals is the first step towards it.
Thanks Nisha – you’re right, it’s fun to knock out those smaller goals and it’s good motivation to keep going.
I started writing down goals for my blog earlier this year, it really makes such a difference and you’ll feel more motivated. Now I realize I need to make them even more speficic though. Thanks for your tips. The last one is obviously the best tip because without good content, why would anyone want to read our blogs in the first place?
More and more I think most people (especially who want to make money with their blogs) forget this most important point. It’s easy to look inward but I think the question is, why would any read this/find this interesting/etc? As cheesy as it sounds, content is king.