Today we’re talking about free blogger travel!
Did you know that you can get paid and/or get free travel, accommodations, and airfare for being a blogger? Yes, it’s true!
I’ve done it and I know many other bloggers that do it too! Read on to learn my secret tips plus 5 words that will help you get free blogger travel!
How to Travel for Free
It’s pretty simple. As a blogger, you are an influencer. You have an audience and a following. These readers trust you, listen to your advice and if you make a recommendation, they will listen and potentially buy. Brands know this and with influencer marketing on the rise, there is some big money to be had in the travel industry.
So, how does it all work?
You give something, you get something. So, as a blogger, you are sharing a travel destination with your audience. This means you are writing a feature, doing a review, showcasing a video, sharing to your social media network, emailing your subscriber list, or other similar action that will share your travel experience with your readers.
In return, you can get free travel and possibly much more!
Now, just because you’re a blogger doesn’t mean you’re going to score free travel but you certainly can! On my 2 week old blog, I managed to secure a free weekend stay at a luxury hotel in a big city including free parking, breakfast, drinks, and appetizers at their lounge!
Did my brand new blog have hundreds of thousands of readers or followers? Nope
Did my blog have a super huge email list? Nope
So, how did I do it? Using these 5 words:
These 5 Words Will Help You Get Free Blogger Travel
Ok, so here are the words:
“All opinions are my own”
Not what you were thinking? Ok, let me explain.
The key to banking free travel as a blogger is to know which travel destinations to target. There are thousands of travel destinations all over the world. You could spend all day emailing every one of them but without targets in place, you’ll get very few leads and waste your time.
Using the words above help cut down on the sourcing time by A LOT!
So, what you’ll do is go to a search engine (like Google) and type “all opinions are my own + destination blog.” An example would be:
All opinions are my own San Antonio blog
Here’s what the search results page looks like:
You’ll see in the search results, all kinds of sponsorships appear. If you want to target resorts or hotels, just add the word “hotel”:
All opinions are my own San Antonio blog hotel
You would be surprised how effective this little search trick is.
So, that’s step 1 in the process. It’s super important because sourcing warm leads will get you better results than sourcing cold leads. That means you will likely have more success scoring free travel accommodations from brands that have gifted free accommodations in the past. Makes sense? Here’s an alternate method to finding warm leads.
Using social media to find leads
Using social media is another effective way to find travel brands that have given free travel in the past. My favorite network for this is Twitter.
Here are some hashtags to check out:
You can also stalk your favorite travel bloggers to find past travel destinations they may have been gifted, then target those establishments for yourself! Sneaky but it works.
You can also do the reverse of this and check out travel brands of interest and look their feed to find retweets or features from bloggers that tweet their stay. This could be an indication of a gifted trip as well. Now comes step 2, the pitch!
Secret wording to use when you pitch
In step 2, you’ll be writing your pitch email. When it’s time to actually pitch, you’re going to craft a well-written email with this secret wording:
- Sponsored travel
- Hosting bloggers
- Media rate
You will use one of these phrases (not all). You want to write your email addressing a specific person (if you have that information available) like the head of PR or Media team, then, introduce yourself and your blog. Clearly express your intent to be traveling to the area with dates and ask if they offer sponsored travel accommodations, if they host bloggers, or if they offer a media rate.
The first two phrases are for complimentary stays. A media rate can include a complimentary stay but more often than not, it means a discounted rate, so keep that in mind when you pick which phrase to use in your email.
Here’s what else you want to include:
- Your blog stats (pageviews, unique visits, etc.)
- Social media stats (number of social media followers, networks, your reach, etc.)
- Examples of past features
- Media kit (if available)
Now, if you have a new blog and you’re not proud of your numbers yet, play up your other strengths like your background, expertise, professional skills, etc.
Share specifically what you will offer. Here are some examples: email blast to 800 subscribers, a 1,200 word post, custom graphics, etc.
So you see, it can be done! You can score free blogger travel, even as a new blogger. Many bloggers get compensation in addition to complimentary accommodations. If you receive a healthy number of readers every day and have a strong social media following, feel free to pitch compensation as well.
For some tips on how to price your sponsorship, check out these helpful articles:
How to Price Yourself for Sponsorship Deals
Use these tips above to book your next complimentary stay. Have you successfully booked a free travel engagement as a blogger? Share your tips and experience with us down below!