Wednesday, March 26, 2014

This Blog is Going...Where?

A couple of weeks ago I applied to something called BlogHouse through Navigate Media Group that will be taking place in Chicago this June. I only told a few people that I was applying because I didn't know how much of a chance I had in getting accepted. They market and advertise this conference publicly but only 15 or so up-and-coming bloggers are invited to stay at the house. The invitees would attend workshops, work with staff from Navigate Media, brainstorm ideas and learn everything they can on how to optimize and promote their blog to their appropriate audience. As an attendee, you would receive free marketing, SEO and web optimization services to make your blog/website look fantastic - all in the vibrant city of Chicago! I was sold on the fact that it was a chance to go spend time in a cool city - which I have not spent enough time in - and learn from experienced and novice bloggers alike. I didn't have anything to lose so I applied and hoped for the best.
However...I was not invited to attend this year's BlogHouse. It's not the end of the world because I will just continue doing what I have been doing: working on the blog by myself and developing it into the kind of blog I'm envisioning in my head right now. We'll see how that pans out in the next year. For now, I will leave you with the 'why' part of my application.
The vision for this blog:
My blog is called "Life in Transition" because I started it the year I graduated from college. Initially I wanted to use it as an outlet to write about the changes and transitions that I would experience during the next few years. I also wanted to share my experiences with others in hopes of offering advice and words of encouragement. The URL is in Spanish for two reasons: 1) lifeintransition.blogspot.com was already taken and 2) I speak and write fluent Spanish. I knew that I would be writing and translating some, if not all, of the posts into the language one day. I have written posts about neighborhoods and cities I've lived in, the post-college job search, book reviews, weddings, maintaining local and international friendships, studying and living abroad and tips on how to learn a language. I also hosted a few guest bloggers in 2012 who wrote about how their lives had changed over the last 5 years. While I have enjoyed writing about the above topics, I am hoping to take the blog in a new direction and do a complete redesign.
In the fall of this year, I will be moving to Spain to teach English for at least 1 year. I have followed several travel blogs and have done a decent amount of traveling myself over the last few years but I would like to make traveling a part of my job and turn my blog into a business. I believe that the timing of the next Blog House conference and my move abroad is perfect. The new direction I see for my blog is this: to provide 20-35 year olds with a realistic and affordable tips on traveling throughout the USA and Europe. I want to show people that traveling while you're young is not only possible but fun and enriching no matter what you are experiencing in life. The kicker is that though my target audience will be male and female young professionals, I want to target more than just English speakers. I want to especially reach Spanish and eventually Portuguese speaking travelers.
Based on the number of blogs focused on travel to Europe that I have read, I have noticed that there are very few blogs geared for speakers of these languages. I want to help showcase cities, hotels, hostels, restaurants and tours in Europe to more than just English speaking tourists.

**I can definitely see making travel a part of my career or my whole career entirely. The idea of turning this into a travel focused blog for young professionals excites me. I have an idea of what this blog might look like but I'm still in the planning stages and nothing is set in stone yet. I will keep you updated on future domain and other changes though!**

If you want to share some feedback, please leave me a comment below. :-)

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