We asked our community of Eco-Bloggers to tell us how they’ve benefitted from our blogging competitions and the Terra Incognita Eco-Blogger Network, and how we can better support them in future.
Thirty-five bloggers from Europe, North America, Asia and Africa took our 2020 blogger survey. Collectively they’ve visited and worked in over 50 countries across Europe, North America, South America, Asia, Africa and Pacific. Here’s what they had to say.
Over 90% of bloggers who took the survey have entered at least one Terra Incognita blogging competition: Travel Blogger of the Year 2020 or Wildlife Blogger of the Year 2018.
There were several important motivators for entering a blogging competition, including the opportunity to publish their writing, join a community of eco-bloggers and win prizes. The strongest motivator, identified by 25 of 35 bloggers, was the opportunity for bloggers to boost their profile.
Other motivators included the challenge of the question, a love of writing and the chance to and hone their writing skills, plus the opportunity to raise awareness about important issues.
When we asked bloggers what the best part of the blogging competition experience was, they identified several benefits:
- Discovering other bloggers as part of an online community and reading their stories
- Sharing their stories and experiences with others
- Contributing to a meaningful cause by sharing relevant messages
- Receiving recognition and positive feedback
“Actually writing something personal to me and getting praised for it – made me realise that I could do something with my writing for a career”
- Challenging themselves as writers and advancing their skills
- Gaining exposure and online support and involving a wider community
About half of bloggers who responded felt they benefitted considerably from the competition, but the range of responses shows there’s lots of room for improvement. Bloggers had great suggestions for running future competitions, including displaying entries in as fair a way as possible, to ensure all have equal chance of being read and voted for, and ensuring that the topic is one that really speaks to bloggers and inspires them to write.
When we asked bloggers what they like most about the Eco-Blogger Network, several themes emerged:
- Connecting, networking and collaborating with a global community of eco-bloggers and conservationists that share similar interests, values and goals
- Sharing their work and learning from creative and inspiring bloggers
- Promoting responsible tourism and supporting the planet
“I see creativity and personality. Most bloggers [are] original and specialize in their area of interest.”
“…it encourages meaningful and creative writing”
“…the stories shared give you more reasons to save the planet”
Bloggers also told us what they’d like to see more of in the Eco-Blogger Network:
- Collaboration and networking opportunities – possibly via a different platform that supports better communication and chats
- Opportunities to reach wider audiences
- Sharing advice, knowledge, skills and practical tips
- Paid work opportunities
- More competitions
- Stories written by local eco-warriors, giving them a global voice
We asked bloggers what would be of most interest to them if they worked with ethical ecotourism operators. Bloggers who participated were strongly motivated by service (raising awareness about ecotourism and travel for good), followed by the experience (the tour itself). Recognition / profile boost and Pay were less important.
Lastly, we asked if bloggers would be interested in writing for Terra Incognita.
What stood out most?
When we looked across Eco-Bloggers’ reasons for joining blogging competitions, their motivation for joining the Eco-Blogger Network, the actual benefits they received and what they’d like to see more of, two main themes emerged:
1. Community – Connecting with like-minded people who share similar interests, values and goals
- Collaboration and networking opportunities.
- Learning / Education – Sharing knowledge, skills, practical tips and examples; honing their skills and receiving critique; being challenged and creative.
- Contribution – Using writing to raise awareness about ecotourism, connect people to wildlife and benefit the planet.
2. Promotion and Profile – Opportunities to promote their work to wider audiences, boost their profile, get exposure and find paid work
We’d like to say a huge thank you to all the bloggers and writers who participated in our survey. Based on your feedback and the results of our Ecotourism Operator Survey, we’re exploring new ways to connect Eco-Bloggers with ecotourism operators and the wider community. Stay tuned!
In the survey, 90% of bloggers said you’d be interested in writing for Terra Incognita – so here’s your chance to share your work with a wider audience! If you’re a blogger or writer who’s passionate about creating positive change for people and planet through travel, you can learn more and apply here.
We also welcome requests to join our Eco-Blogger Network.