To learn more about Val, check out the Val Around Town spotlight

Valerie Carmona, creator of the blog Val Around Town, is a working mom, stylish fashionista, DIY maven, and proud Latina that strives to be a platform for her community by encouraging leadership and being a voice of the people. Her mix of cultures, corporate experience, dislike for cooking, mom life, and creative spirit can speak to many women at any stage in life. And in the past year, Val has also grown her business, increasing her blogging income by 100%!

Read on for Val’s tips on how to increase your blogging income!

How long have you been blogging?

I started blogging almost 3 years ago when I worked for an IT consulting company.  Many of the developers had blogs as passion projects and they encouraged and helped (technically) me start one. I’ve always been the person my family and friends go to for fashion advice, beauty tips, and entertaining ideas so it was natural to use blogging as a fun way to express myself and document the things that I was already doing in my life.

When did you realize that you could monetize your blog?

I realized that I had to opportunity to monetize my passion for blogging when I attended my first blog conference.

What is your trick for balancing sponsored and unsponsored posts in your blog? Is there a ratio rule you follow?

I try to keep it 60/40 but sometimes the demand at certain times of the year changes this. Even though a post may be sponsored, I still focus on telling a story and providing value other than just mentioning a product.  

Earlier this year you won a scholarship for Monica’s Pruett’s course on “9 Essential Steps to Rock Sponsored Posts.” What was your experience like?

Absolutely wonderful! The class changed my blogging world. I was able to bring business principles to my blog and have a tribe of women to support me. Monica has been a great teacher and so helpful in many ways. Not only has she been an incredible resource and income generator for my business but she is also a gem of a person. She has continued to help me after the class and I was ecstatic that I was able to meet her when she visited Houston.

What were the top 3 key takeaways from the course?

  1. The need to focus on income generating activities
  2. How to successfully create unique and captivating pitches to brands
  3. The need for a tribe to learn from and lean on

Did you see your income increase after taking the course? If so, by how much?

Yes! My blogging income increased more than 400%!

How does learning from other bloggers help you become a better blogger?

You connect with a community of people that are facing or have faced some of the same struggles so they can offer valuable support and tips.

What are your top 3 tips for bloggers looking to increase their blogging income?

  1. Research different ways to be successful because not everything works for every blogger
  2. Focus on high quality content and photos
  3. Network with other bloggers and influencers

What strategies have you found to be most effective for reaching your program milestone in Linqia programs?

Since Linqia compensates influencers based on the number of clicks driven to program content, I only accept campaigns that my audience will like and ensure that I am creating enticing social media posts with photos.

What was  your favorite Linqia program? Why?

I loved the program with Kona Grill. It is one of my favorite places to go and the idea of a moms night out always gets me excited!