There’s so much advice out there for people looking to get started in the world of blogging and lots of it, understandably, emphasises the importance of picking a name for your new blog. From the length of the name to how memorable it is, from making sure your social handles are available to considering if people will be able to spell it, there’s a veritable whirlwind of things to consider before taking the plunge and buying a domain name.
Despite actually having worked in the digital world for many years before going travelling and deciding to blog about it in the process, we considered none of these points. Sat on the sofa with our belongings boxed up I insisted Rob think up a name for our online ramblings as I was seriously lacking inspiration. When he piped up with Not Another Travel Blog I thought it was sufficiently amusing and we bought the domain and stuck a quick WordPress blog up. We’ve put a little more time into the design along the way, playing around with travel guides and tweaking the logo, but we never really thought too much about whether the name was right – it just kind of stuck.
Until now that is. We realised recently that our return flight back to the UK from India is booked for the 8th March, so around a week’s time. As we have many exciting travel plans set out for the next few months it’s unlikely we’ll be making our flight. We did however need to decide what to do with it – and have settled on pushing it back to early July, one year after we left on our epic journey. That’s the plan anyway, and after that we’re currently unsure of whether we’ll take one last extended trip before job hunting or if we’ll head straight for new jobs and getting stuck into building a new life in the U.K. Either way, we’ll be back to the 9-5 at some stage sooner or later and whilst travel will always be a huge part of our lives, as it has been since we got together, we won’t be full time travellers anymore like we are now.
So if we’re not just travelling, surely this shouldn’t just be a travel blog? Yet we’ve rather pigeon holed ourselves with Not Another Travel Blog, and whilst it may not entirely matter, I’d rather have a name with a wider scope if we’re going to be blogging about broader subjects. And I think we will be, as we’ve unexpectedly really enjoyed blogging. It’s been a huge challenge in many ways, from taking notes and making time in our days to write, through to adapting to poor internet connections and trying to stay inspired through the dull days where there aren’t so many adventures to talk about. But it’s also been fun and an interesting learning curve. One of my favourite things about blogging is that it’s put a degree of pressure on us – making sure we take loads of pictures (for the blog), making sure we take daily notes of what we’re doing and spending (for the blog) and making sure we’re actually doing loads of stuff (so we always have things to write for the blog!). Now, chances are we would have done a lot of this anyway, but having a blog to update kind of sharpens the mind when it comes to creating a travel experience you want to remember, write about and share with others.
It’s been an interesting thing to do for me personally as well. Writing openly about what I think and do doesn’t come naturally to me as, despite studying English and working in marketing, I’m definitely more of a facts and figures sort of a girl. Posting continuous updates on social media, writing about my experiences of travel and putting myself out there for PR opportunities has taken me right out of my comfort zone which can only be a good thing. The fact that this has lead to us achieving numerous features in other travel magazines / websites and even a couple of paid writing gigs has been awesome. Rob’s been able to keep his technical skills sharp in between freelance projects and has learnt more about marketing online as well as just developing websites while I’ve flirted with social media and affiliate marketing with a reasonable degree of success. Reading other blogs to see what works, experimenting with formats and styles and just that routine of writing down experiences and memories has been a great part of this journey, which means that we don’t necessarily want to stop blogging just because we stop travelling full time.
I know a lot of travel bloggers head home and try to limp on for a bit, going back to old adventures in search of new content and documenting weekend breaks, but I don’t really want to take that direction. We’d rather make a break now and acknowledge that whilst we’ll always write about travel, we’ll also write about other things as well. Whether it’s a dog walk in the countryside, a new recipe we’ve discovered or an exotic adventure, we want this site to be a place for all our stories. After all, when we do get home we’ll be embarking on a new stage in our careers, possibly a new house, maybe a new hometown and who knows what else, and we’d love to write about all of those things as well as our travel adventures.
So whilst we have a few ideas in mind, we haven’t come to a final decision yet and would be really interested to hear what anyone else thinks. Are we mad to rebrand after just a few short months blogging? Are we overly optimistic in assuming that we’ll continue to write when we slide back into a 9-5 lifestyle? Will anyone even read about anything we do outside of travel, as we’re not necessarily the most exciting people in the world?
I don’t want to be accused of taking ourselves too seriously, we’re hardly mega famous bloggers so it probably doesn’t even matter. Given the topic though, it felt like something we wanted to write about to help get our thoughts clear on the subject as we go through the process of deciding whether we will rename our little corner of the Internet. We’ll be remaining as Not Another Travel Blog now, but watch this space in case there is a change in the coming months. Hopefully we’ll be able to bring all of our amazing readers and followers along with us if we do move to a new name, the last thing we want to is to undo any of the hard work that’s gone into this or lose any of the people we’ve been lucky enough to get to know online through blogging. It’s a bit of a toss up between sticking with what we’re doing as it seems to be working and being careful not to rock the boat, or making a change early on so we feel the site fully reflects what we want to write about and fits with the direction we’ll be taking over the coming months.