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Ask enough people in Bangkok what they do for a living, and one will eventually say “travel blogging”. On this episode of the podcast, we break down some of the myths and mystique surrounding that title.

Evo recently traveled to Manila in the Philippines to deliver the opening keynote at TBEX Asia Pacific 2016. It’s a travel blogging conference, catering to, well… travel bloggers. Which are legion. Coupled with the service providers, tourism councils, and hospitality companies; and there’s sizeable market.

Travel blogging means different things: Some make a full time living traveling from place to place writing content for their blogs. Some are local experts writing content on their blog for people traveling to their city. And some don’t even have a blog at all, doing all of their posting on social media or publishing content on third-party sites.

For all their diversity, travel bloggers aren’t universally loved. Cynics say that DMOs (destination marketing organizations) shower these people with gifts, swag, free food, and more simply to gain overly-positive views that lack real substance. Is that a valid concern? Are the benefits provided by these so-called influencers just self promotional crap? Or are the two parties — the blogger and the client — reaping real benefits of the partnership?

There’s a third element: the audience. It’s the smart travel blogger who provides his/her audience with the content their audience wants to read. They aren’t, by and large, journalists, guides, or critics. Still, travel bloggers have the freedom to choose what to blog about, some of which can be a little harsh. Have you read the internet?

So should you quit your job, start a travel blog, and start attending travel blogging conferences like TBEX? Well… you’ll have to listen to find out our thoughts on that.