1. I’d love to know how you moved from website to book and then travel guide and now world-travelling speaker! Was it intentional? Do you have advice for others who want to follow that path?
I initially wanted to write a book to establish myself as the expert in the women’s travel market. I knew I had to launch a blog at the same time as the marketing arm but the site kinda grew out of control and I had to keep adding elements to it! The site first launched in late 2006 and the first book in early 2007. From there I started speaking and then started leading tours in 2008 (I now have 9 tours in 2012!). I launched WanderTours in 2011 to reflect the growing tours AND the fact that I was adding co-ed trips and I thought I was loosing men when they saw Wanderlust and Lipstick as the company name!
2. Whats next for you?
Oh boy. I think there are great growth opportunities with the Wanderlust and Lipstick website. And there’s less risk with it as compared to tours. So I may let the tours level off with 9 or 10 a year and then spend more time on growing the website. I really want it to be a place where women can find lots of information and inspiration before and after their travels. And I really want to help women with their travel writing and photography skills. I have a yearly travel writing contest now, but my wish is to actually be able to offer classes in travel writing and photography for women.
3. What role do your website(s) play in your business development?
They’re everything. They do my marketing and sales and the ads and sponsorships that come directly because of the site help pay the bills!
4. Do you have any advice for freelance travel writers? (or entrepreneurs in general?)
Plan to work long hours if you really want to build a business from your travel writing (or whatever business it is). You can’t sit still and expect that everyone’s going to find your great site, or book, or tour, or whatever it is your trying to get noticed for.
For more than 25 years, she has been traveling the globe as a contemporary Wanderer: combining her love for travel with volunteer work, adventure trips, travel writing and business. You can find lots of travel inspiration, tips and stories by Beth and her team of writers at Wanderlust and Lipstick or you can view the co-ed tours at WanderTours.
What would you like to ask Beth? Do so in the comments!