This Pro Travel Blogger Shares Her Tips for Getting Paid to See the World

Helene Sula likes to journey.

And at 31, Sula has seen extra of the world than most individuals will in a lifetime.

After packing her luggage and transferring from america to Germany in 2016, Sula traveled to 85 cities final 12 months — and earned $200,000.

Make no mistake, although — Sula isn’t being paid to journey (she truly solely accepts a couple of sponsored journeys per 12 months). As a substitute, Sula makes a residing via her highly-successful journey and way of life weblog Helene in Between.

Right here’s her story — and recommendation for anybody trying to make an enormous leap or change in their very own life.

A Blessing in Disguise: How a Heartbreaking Accident Modified the Course of Sula’s Life   

Sula began the Helene in Between weblog six years in the past after a mountain climbing accident left her on the sofa, recovering from a damaged ankle.

She writes on her weblog: “I used to be laid up at house, unable to go to work for weeks. My solely outlet was to pour my coronary heart into this weblog. It turned the silver lining.”

With a day job in digital advertising and social media, Sula realized she may put her skilled expertise to make use of to develop and monetize Helene in Between.

“I rapidly turned invested within the concept of rising the weblog,” Sula explains. “I loved the connections I used to be making, and I needed to develop these connections in a extra significant manner.”

Break the Guidelines: Running a blog Her Personal Means

There’s one running a blog rule Sula doesn’t observe — whereas heavy on journey content material, her weblog doesn’t match neatly into a distinct segment.

“Everybody tells you, ‘you want a distinct segment’,” says Sula. “I used to be by no means very inquisitive about that. I needed to have the ability to discuss my passions, and I used to be nonetheless discovering success regardless of speaking about quite a lot of topics.”

Along with running a blog constantly, Sula quickly realized the ability social media may have on her model. She started to spend extra time on Instagram, the place she now has greater than 128,000 followers.

“I noticed I may use Instagram as a technique to transition folks again to my weblog,” Sula explains. Her Instagram took off when she moved overseas, and Sula started utilizing the platform as a technique to share her day-to-day life along with her followers.

Alongside the best way, Sula experimented with varied monetization techniques, including show adverts to the web site and dealing with third-party advertising corporations to write down sponsored posts.

She finally stumbled into internet affiliate marketing, but it surely wasn’t till she launched her first on-line course that she knew she may truly flip her weblog right into a profession.

Transitioning into Journey Running a blog

The journey bug bit Sula early on.

Born and raised in Dallas, Sula had the chance to journey to Europe every summer season whereas her mother and father taught a examine overseas program in London. When she was 18, Sula begged her mother and father to let her then boyfriend, now husband Michael be part of them for a summer season in Europe. He fell in love with journey, too.

Sula and her husband, Michael, moved from Texas to Germany in 2006. Photo courtesy of Helene Sula

Sula and her husband, Michael, moved from Texas to Germany in 2006. Photograph courtesy of Helene Sula

“I noticed I hadn’t actually talked about journey on the weblog,” Sula explains. “I requested myself, ‘Why am I not speaking about this side of my life?’”

She began gradual, running a blog about previous travels, finally penning a submit about Tomorrowland, an digital dance music competition held in Increase, Belgium that she attended in 2013.

The submit went viral, exceeding 600,000 views and rating #1 on Google. Sula was hooked on journey running a blog. She discovered from the success of the Tomorrowland submit, and developed a signature fashion of journey writing, priding herself on weaving private tales and anecdotes with detailed journey data and suggestions readers can truly use.

“You learn journey items which can be very reduce and dry, however that’s not me,” Sula explains. 

From Texas to Germany

As Sula’s weblog grew, so did her want to journey.

“Michael and I had been all the time taking quick journeys overseas,” she says. “It was so fast.”

Newly married and recent off shopping for a house, the Sulas started considering a transfer overseas.

“The driving drive was a want to see the world in a fashion that allowed us to understand it,” Sula says.

The couple wasn’t rash of their choice to maneuver. They spent six months saving cash, after which moved to Nashville, Tennessee for a 12 months as a “check run” for being away from house.

Throughout that point, Sula stop her job and transitioned into full-time journey running a blog. With years of profitable running a blog beneath her toes, the time was proper to make an enormous transfer to Europe.

“We’ve all the time been tremendous aware about budgets and cash,” Sula explains. “We realized one of the simplest ways to see Europe and to do it cheaply was to maneuver there. I believe we’ve proved ourselves proper in that respect. Flights are cheap. It’s simpler to journey round.”

However the place would the couple stay?

“We did tons of analysis on the place to stay,” Sula says. “Our necessities had been that the vacation spot we selected was centrally situated in Europe, had a very good freelance visa program, spoke some English and fell inside our funds.”

The Sulas checked out a number of “finest locations to stay on this planet” lists and observed Germany popped up typically, and match their standards. They found Heidelberg, an enthralling city in southwestern Germany. Heidelberg had a European vibe, however was nonetheless very linked with quick access to the airport and different locations.

So in September 2016, by no means having set foot in Germany, the Sulas packed their luggage, two canine in tow, and moved to Heidelberg.

For the previous two years, the duo has known as Germany house, whereas working and touring the globe.

“I haven’t regarded again since,” Sula says.

An Revenue Breakdown

Sula has all the time been clear on her weblog about how she makes cash.

With an earnings of slightly over $200,000 in 2017, Sula earns 4 instances the quantity she made at her highest paying company job.

Interested by how precisely how Sula makes cash? Right here’s her earnings breakdown.

On-line programs and lessons (65%): Sula’s on-line course, Instagram For Success, and membership website, Weblog Boss Babe, make up the largest slice of her earnings pie. Greater than 1,200 college students have enrolled in Instagram for Success and Weblog Boss Babe is at the moment house to 250 members.

Internet affiliate marketing (15%): Internet affiliate marketing, Sula’s favourite earnings stream, permits her weblog and model to earn cash passively. “Internet affiliate marketing is a reliable technique to monetize what I already can be speaking about on my weblog. I take advantage of the whole lot I promote. Why not receives a commission for it?” Siteground, ConvertKit, Trello, and Trusted Housesitters are among the many manufacturers Sula promotes.

Sula visits the Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy. Photo courtesy of Helene Sula

Sula visits the Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy. Photograph courtesy of Helene Sula

Show adverts (12%): With 200,000 hits on her web site every month, show adverts assist Sula to earn money, although she says she is aware of they are often distracting to readers.  

Different (eight%): E book gross sales, earnings from customized Adobe Lightroom presets (the software program Sula makes use of to edit images), one-on-one teaching classes and sponsored posts make up the remaining eight % of Sula’s earnings pie.

Whereas many journey bloggers select to simply accept sponsored journey to earn a residing, Sula has taken a distinct strategy.

“I’ve discovered rapidly that the best way to become profitable for me is to present my viewers worth,” she explains. “That’s why I’m very selective on the subject of sponsored journeys. I’ve discovered that by specializing in different earnings streams that make me much more cash, I can concentrate on the journey I need to take.”  

Pondering of Making a Large Leap Your self? Comply with Sula’s Recommendation

For those who’ve needed to make an enormous change in your life or maybe journey extra, take be aware from Sula’s e book.

1. Make a plan

Making a plan was key to creating transferring overseas successful, Sula advises.

“After we began this concept of transferring overseas, we weren’t certain of what we actually needed till we began figuring it out. For those who don’t plan, you may not truly know what you need out of life,” she explains.

2. Discover a steadiness

Sula admits to battling hanging steadiness, particularly as a result of there’s a lot she desires to perform. For Sula, steadiness seems like investing cash into her enterprise and expertise, and outsourcing when attainable.

“You may’t enhance your expertise until you’re keen to study. Each time I spend money on myself, I make the cash again tenfold,” she says of the varied programs on pictures, Fb promoting and journey running a blog she’s taken over time.

Equally, Sula has discovered the significance of hiring folks she trusts to assist along with her enterprise — she lately employed her husband to hitch her enterprise.

“Hiring my husband 100% was the very best choice. He plans most of our journey and contract work and takes images of me, and I concentrate on the inventive aspect,” she explains.

three. Don’t fear about perfection

Being a journey blogger, you’d assume Sula spends lots of time on her telephone or utilizing her digicam to get the very best shot for her weblog or Instagram.

Preferring to spend time truly seeing the locations she’s visiting, Sula doesn’t fear about taking the right photograph, and even discovered a technique to rapidly batch edit images utilizing Adobe Lightroom.

“The world is simply too massive a spot to spend it trying down at my telephone,” Sula says.

four. Make the leap

The primary query Sula is requested is “How do I do know I’m able to _________?”

Sula believes nobody goes to let you know whenever you’re prepared, and whereas taking a leap could also be scary and drive you out of your consolation zone, you must go for it.  

“You need to take the leap of religion to simply do it,” Sula says. “I’ve discovered that it’s OK to fail, and it would truly train you one thing. Don’t wait till each single duck is in a row.”

Jessica Lawlor is the president and CEO of Jessica Lawlor & Firm (JL&Co), a specialty communications company. She has a critical case of wanderlust after writing this text.  

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