This is my first time attending a conference designed specially for bloggers who blog about travel and also for the key industry people in tourism. There were many people at the conference especially from the tourism sector (ministry people, hotel owners, tourist guides, tourist spots owners etc), marketing people from various corporate groups (AsiaMedia, Maxis, etc), PRs from distinguished organizations and then finally, you throw in the bloggers. Put all these people together in one room and what I get as a blogger?
Opportunities at your grasp.
But what concerns me now is my "rojak" blog. I love travelling but staying loyal to that one niche is hard because I'm not a hard-core traveler like this blogger. As one of the speakers, the well known David Hogan Jr puts it, "The narrower the niche, the broader the opportunities."
Not to mention the UGLY TRUTH about travel bloggers as shared by the famous Alistair Watters (Founder & Owner of Travelblog.org) and Shane Dallas (The Travel Camel blogger of travelblog.org), blogging about travel in truth don't earn them much money. They do it because they are passionate about it. Shane Dallas also shared with us that all his trips were self-paid. He was strict to himself by saving money from his job as a government servant. And he's single. (Don't know why I have to mention this. LOLOL) In fact, money came from writing for printed/online publications or maybe from pictures that possibly National Geography are interested to buy and also getting invited to give talks about it. That's where the actual money comes from. Most likely caused indirectly by the buzz of your blog. Overall, I'm truly inspired by their stories. =)
|From left: Alistair, ME!, and The Travel Camel.|
I don't think I can continue this blog as a travel blog with ignorantbrat as the URL name despite bagging an award in the Tourism Travel Blog category. (And gosh, I feel I don't deserve it after attending this conference!) Haha. Popularity votes by the public does have its ups and downs. But hopefully will continue to blog on it as a personal blog. =)
I met several individuals that made my whole experience at the conference joyful.
Mr. John Phang (owner of CP Welness Sanctuary)... who sat next to me throughout the whole conference.
|Mr Phang, my seat neighbour. Very cheerful.|
|Jessi from thejessicat.com!|
|James Craven of Hybrid News Ltd UK and Sheila Scarborough, Writer, |
Speaker and Trainer Specializing in Tourism, Travel and Social Media
|From left: Sheila, Anuradha, Anis, emcee, Ali, Shane, James, Hogan and Dr Mridula.|
Ps: Here's Ali's experience on MITBCA.