The American Blogger Making Six-Figures

Working simultaneously as touring the world would possibly sound like an oxymoron, but for Liz Carlson, it is just good business. Not limited to the aid of one medium, the 29-12 months-old chronicles her escapades on her blog, Young Adventuress, as well as on Instagram and YouTube. However, this pie-in-the-sky profession changed in no longer continue her truth. Building her brand over the direction of seven years, Carlson says it’s taken masses of labor, networking, and a bit little bit of faith to follow her dreams. In the start, “I was writing a lot approximately what it changed into like being an American ex-pat in Spain,” says Carlson.

The then-22 yr antique was an English teacher’s assistant through the country’s auxiliary de conersación software in Córdoba. She was in a protracted-distance relationship at the time and used the weblog as an outlet. Focusing on things that she wished she knew whilst she first moved to the united states, she wrote about topics like why do Spaniards eat cookies for breakfast and the way to swear and realistic subjects like the way to discover a rental and starting a bank account. To immerse herself in the enterprise, she could meet up with different travel writers in Europe at activities and conferences and avidly examine other blogs.

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Building a hit travel weblog

At the time, she was prepping to get her Ph.D. in medieval records; however, she quickly found out that she cherished travel an excessive amount to sacrifice it for five years of observing. And so, while her visa ran out in Spain, she moved lower back to Washington, D.C. For a year, and tried to blog as a whole lot as viable, specializing in building her brand and a target market. After 12 months, she had built sufficient side hustle and reputation to jump into tour running a blog full time.


“Everyone instructed me I was crazy to depart a corporate activity to end up a blogger,” says Carlson. “It was best because I didn’t circulate returned home and work at Starbucks in a few years that humans think I’m a hit.” Her facet hustle is her complete-time career, taking her on escapades like horse hiking in Kyrgyzstan or getting charged through elephants in Sri Lanka.

One of the primary milestones of her tour writing profession became the American’s first paid ride to Jordan. During that go to, she fell off a camel in the center of Wadi Rum, an enjoy that Carlson factors to as her style of “wild, messy adventure.”

Other mishaps gave that then have protected no longer knowing approximately the public nudity at a Turkish hammam and accidentally interrupting a pair in the middle of coitus simultaneously as snorkeling within the Maldives. Chronicling those so-referred to as “why me” moments with wit, Carlson has constructed an emblem on global misadventures.

“4to 5 years ago, in case you took a perfect image on Instagram, you were excellent popular. Now, every person has an amazing picture,” says Carlson. The Millennial “used to move viral all of the time”; however, nowadays, “there’s a lot of extra content material obtainable. The question is, how do you stand out?”

As the online global is being inundated with “vivid travel images” with the same filters and shots and influencers who buy followers, Carlson predicts the future will be more video content material and raw tales. “Everything is transferring toward live stuff,” says Carlson. “When I look at my sister who’s 16, it’s miles all images and Snapchat. They don’t know even textual content.”

Finding her home in New Zealand

Five years in the past, the Millennial sold a one-way price tag to New Zealand after the suggestion of some of her readers that she would love us of a. It has fairly easy visa laws for Americans beneath 30, and so Carlson determined to peer if she would like to stay there. The 29-year-old observed what she thinks is her forever home in Wanaka, a small metropolis in southern New Zealand.

“I can see snow-capped mountains on a lake that I can go down and take my paddleboard every morning,” says Carlson. “It nevertheless seems like America 50 years in the past; wherein human beings wave to you as you’re driving.” She becomes the first professional Instagrammer in the country, which helped her snag gigs.

Since then, Carlson’s been named New Zealand’s exceptional blogger for three years jogging and acquired a Society of American Travel Writers gold medal for a video she made about Norway’s polar bears in Svalbard. The brief film become stimulated by using considered one of her favorite childhood books, “The Golden Compass,” so prevailing the award “blew her thoughts.” However, Carlson doesn’t allow the achievement to get to her head. “A couple of months ago, I got demonstrated on Instagram and became like, oh my god,” admits the Millennial.

Battling sexism as a solo female tourist

Despite all the women who work in the tour area, Carlson says that she confronts much sexism in her daily work. She says, “I experience handled so differently as a female in this role.” When pitching brands, she says that she has to paintings more difficult to show herself to human beings and reveal authority right away. “If it’s coming from a guy, he’s assured. If it’s coming from a lady, you’re bossy,” she says. On press journeys, male bloggers will ask her if she is aware of using her camera properly. “It’s without a doubt demanding,” admits Carlson, who’s in reality sponsored with the aid of Canon.

Building a successful business online. With authenticity, the cornerstone of Carlson’s enterprise is her unswerving target audience – and they’re something that she won’t sacrifice for a sponsored submit or content material that doesn’t sense actually. “I always try to be a sell-out now not,” says Carlson. “Even after I wasn’t earning money, I would turn stuff.” Working with brands like Visa, Air New Zealand, and Adobe, Carlson focuses on pitching bigger campaigns a few times a yr, instead of operating on plenty of smaller stories.