Many have a love for animals and some choose to take that energy and turn it into a career.
Ahwatukee native Amanda Yantos, a 2006 graduate of Desert Vista High School, has had a similar love for animals for most of her life, and now she has taken her passion and turned it into a career in an unconventional way.
Yantos is a pet blogger, operating her blog, Dog Mom Days, full time.
“It’s amazing because I get to sleep in every day…I have the flexibility to do everything,” Yantos said. “I always dreamed of being at home with my pets, and now I can do that and make money doing that.”
Yantos started the blog in 2013 and for the first six months she said she wrote something every day, but the blog just wasn’t gaining traction until one post on Twitter changed everything.
She tweeted out a picture of her soon-to-be-5-year-old Chihuahua named Winston, with the #ProPlanDog because she was feeding Winston dog food called Purina Pro Plan.
Not long after, Purina reached out to Yantos and invited her and Winston to the Purina Incredible Dog Challenge. “After that, things kind of exploded,” Yantos said.
By 2014, Dog Mom Days was making money, not much, but it was still something. It was at that point Yantos decided to make blogging her career.
It was hard at first, but eventually things took a turn for the better.
“I struggled for a little while, but come February of (2015) I started to make a lot more money,” Yantos said. “Since I quit my job I was putting all my energy and my focus into my blog, so I was able to build more relationships and spend more time (on the blog) and make more money.”
Yantos said the revenue for her blog, which averages around 10-15,000 page views per month, doesn’t come from advertisements on the blog (she has none on the site). Instead, it comes from product reviews that companies pay her to provide. She also has partnerships with brands that pay her for social media posts promoting their products.
In addition to the money, Yantos’ blog was nominated by BlogPaws, a leading pet blogging community, for the best new pet blog award last year. Although she didn’t win, the nomination alone was a boon for her business.
“It got me opportunities,” Yantos said. “It got me to be known by other pet brands, who in turn reached out to me and it just kind of snowballed.”
As the snowball rolled it afforded Yantos more and more opportunities, including her latest one: being invited to be a speaker at the 2016 BlogPaws Conference at the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort and Spa near Ahwatukee, 5594 W. Wild Horse Pass Road, June 23-25.
“BlogPaws is a three-day conference jam-packed with educational sessions led by leading professionals, networking with influencers, a busy exhibit hall, exciting brand events, more influencers, and lots of pets,” said Chloe DiVita, director of events and programs for BlogPaws. “In the world of pets, we began the conversation in 2010, and we have dominated it ever since.”
Yantos plans to speak about how new bloggers can get started in blogging and take them from the initial phases to making money.
“Just to be on the lineup, to be on the schedule, I’m so honored,” Yantos said. “I’m so honored to be in such amazing company. (The other speakers are) such amazing people.”
Professional blogging has been a profitable and fulfilling career choice for Yantos, and one she is glad she took. “The best part about living my dream is that I can help other people live their dreams,” she said. “My passion is helping other people get to where I’m at.”
— Contact Eric Smith at 480-898-6549 or email@example.com.
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