From blogging, an opportunity arises

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Buena Paz Lara Montero with husband Paul and their two children in Funchal, Madeira.
Buena Paz Lara Montero with husband Paul and their two children in Funchal, Madeira.

Jackie Friedman, president of the host agency Nexion, has seen new travel agents coming from all walks of life: teachers, nurses, law enforcement officers and more.

But one more recent trend she’s noticing is that some travel bloggers are becoming agents and, in turn, using their blogs as vehicles to help sell travel.

Buena Paz Lara Montero is one of those bloggers. Montero originally worked on the East Coast in the telecom industry, but when her husband’s company relocated, they moved to Texas. She didn’t go back to work right away and ended up having two children, so she became a stay-at-home mother.

Before her children, Montero and her husband Paul were frequent travelers. They feared having children would mean the end of their travels, but to their surprise, it didn’t — they continued trekking around the globe as a family, even with a child as young as 3 months old.

That led Montero to start her family travel blog, Bon-Bon Voyage, this spring. She wanted other families to know they, too, could travel with their children. She offers both location-specific posts, like “Venice with Kids: Know Before You Go,” and specific travel tips, like “Traveling with Kids.”

Montero said her daily focus is still on her children, but as they have gotten a bit older, some of her time freed up and she wanted to go back to work. Her husband suggested she follow her passion, traveling, and find a job in the industry. After some research, she enrolled in the Travel Leaders of Tomorrow program, and Nexion started hosting her in the summer.

Now, Montero’s blog is growing in popularity, and with that growth have come leads from readers interested in traveling.

Montero said she has also booked travel for an unexpected group — fellow bloggers. She has had some interest from other travel bloggers who are too busy to book their own travel, as well as bloggers she knows in person (Montero is a member of the Dallas Blogger Society) looking to book a trip.

Blogging is becoming an increasingly popular way for agents to connect with potential clients.

Friedman said she is seeing some agents start off as bloggers, using their blog as a platform to establish their expertise, like Montero. Additionally, she said, “we are starting to find a lot more of our agents going the other way and actively blogging to try and build their customer base. So we’re seeing it in both directions.”

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