Times are certainly changing. Digital nomads have been grounded for the moment, but frankly it’s still mostly business as usual for us. As location independent entrepreneurs, we are accustomed to working from home (or whatever our current home is on the road) with our flexible careers. And for many of us, those careers involve blogging.
Perhaps you’ve recently been inspired you to look into a blogging career yourself, with plans to eventually hit the road and learn to become a digital nomad. Or maybe you want to take your existing blog to the next level.
Great! Don’t worry about the travel bit. Not yet. I always strongly suggest that the first and most important step to becoming a digital nomad is to establish the foundations of your new career, and to do it before you start traveling, when you’ll find yourself dealing with a whole new lifestyle in addition to starting and growing your blog and online business. Trust me. I concurrently built my blog while traveling full-time, and I consistently did both badly while I worked out the sheer mechanics of how to be a digital nomad; there simply weren’t enough hours in a day, and thus I constantly sacrificed one or the other: travel experiences or business opportunities.
So, in this first step for somebody with digital nomad dreams, let’s take a look at three blogging courses and services that will (dramatically) reduce your learning curve and get you up and going quickly, with the help of some of the best in the blogging business.
This post was originally published in 2017. It has since been completely re-written and republished with up-to-date information and new courses.
I have audited (or had a friend audit) all of these blog courses and setup services, which were given to me (or my friend) for free.
In the case of the Superstar Blogging School, I have a long-standing relationship with the school and a deep respect for the content, which has taught even this old dog a whole bunch of new tricks.
In the case of Blog Setup Matters, I obviously didn’t need a new blog set up, but I had a friend in dire straits who was able to test their services for free and provide me with a detailed report about the experience so I can relay that information to you.
As for Pageviews to Profits, Kyle is the exact opposite of me in that he’s an analytical genius, and has the success (and bank account) to prove it – and his strategy applies to any niche.
In all three cases, if you click through to their sites from this page and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission. This is how I make my living, it doesn’t affect your price, and I appreciate your support. My promise to you is that I will only promote products and services that I have used (or had a proxy use) and can heartily endorse. Thank you.
SUPERSTAR BLOGGING SCHOOL: Best Blog Course to Learn How to Run a Successful Blog
Nomadic Matt and I started our full-time travel and blogging careers around the same time. The difference is, he took his online business much more seriously than I did, and it shows; today, he is one of the (if not the) highest-paid and most respected travel bloggers of all-time. He’s also a New York Times best-selling author, the creator of one of the leading travel media conferences (TravelCon), and the founder of a non-profit organization that takes underprivileged high school students abroad.
This guy has it all going on.
And in 2016 Matt developed an online academy called the Superstar Blogging School to help other people transform their lives and careers accordingly – and it is one of the best blog courses I’ve ever taken.
I audited his course The Business of Blogging in 2016, and even with 10 years in the industry at the time, I learned a ton. I maintain that if something like this existed when I was getting started, I’d have saved thousands of dollars (and the equivalent number of hours) futzing about trying to figure out how to run a successful blog. Since 2016, the course has been regularly updated and redesigned, and the changes keep making it better and better.
Here are just a few of the topics the course dives deep into:
- How to set up a blog: creating and setting up your site. (While the focus of this course is on the travel industry, the concepts apply broadly enough to help anybody interested in learning how to start a lifestyle blog).
- Choosing a niche, and building your brand.
- Time management, and maximizing efficiency.
- Tricks to writing content for the web.
- Writing tips and resources.
- Social Media mastery, with tips for using each of the major platforms.
- Working with media.
- Networking tips.
- A huge section on SEO, with beginner and advanced modules.
- Newsletters and email marketing.
- Affiliate marketing.
- Putting ads on your site.
- Creating digital products.
- Self-publishing e-books on Amazon.
- Tours, consulting, and other ways to make money with your blog.
- Product marketing tutorials.
- Preparing a media kit.
- Working with PR and brands on sponsored campaigns.
Not only is this course about how to create a blog, but more importantly, it’s about how to structure and use your blog to support your personal brand, and how to choose and implement the best monetization strategies for you. A blog can be so much more than a website; it is the centrepiece to a full online business, and this course will help you learn how to start a blog business.
Every couple of years, Matt has massively updated his course. But this year, he went all out and completely revamped it. Now, it’s not an online course; it’s a full-on mentorship program. In addition to the extensive course contents above that you can work your way through at your pace, you’ll get access to the following:
- Weekly Q&As and strategy calls.
- Unlimited tech support. (This is huge; I pay almost $100/month for tech support alone).
- Notes and edits on your writing––personal writing feedback!
- A community forum to interact and network with other students.
- Bonus webinars from the most successful online creators in the world.
- Real-world assignments to keep you motivated.
- Lifetime updates so you can have access to the latest best practices.
There’s So. Much. Stuff. If you’re remotely serious about making money with an online business and blog, this will dramatically speed up the process and increase your chances of success.
Business of Blogging Webinar Replay with Nomadic Matt and Nora Dunn
In April 2020, Matt and I co-hosted a webinar about the business of blogging, where we talked about the state of the blogging industry and how it has evolved (and continues to evolve), and we shared some of our best practices while taking questions from live attendees.
We spent a lot of time talking about how a blog is part of the larger construct of an online business, and how different that can look for everybody. We also spoke about streamlining, scaling, and outsourcing. I loved it when Matt said this:
“There’s always more money to be made, but you can never get your time back. So you don’t want to trade your time for money.”
We finished off chatting about his Business of Blogging program and everything he now offers. When asked why he redesigned the course this way, Matt replied:
“If you want free information, you can Google it. But if you want mentorship and free tech support and weekly strategy calls and feedback on your writing, come join Superstar Blogging; we’ll give you all that PLUS all the information you need.”
Because it’s an ongoing mentorship program, the fee structure has changed from a large one-time fee to a small monthly/annual ongoing membership platform.
If you pay monthly, it’s $25/month for the first three months (then it goes up to $49/month).
If you pay annually, it’s $375 for the first year (which gives you four months for free).
There’s a 14-day free trial, and you can cancel any time (you lose access to the course at the end of the month in which you cancel).
Like I said, the tech support on its own is worth the price of membership; I pay twice as much for that alone, and it’s just one of many features of this program.