How I reached million+ people with my work and my message - without having one Million followers

When I started writing my blog in 2011. I couldn’t have imagined the ripple effect and the positive impact that decision would have in years to come. I was in third year of journalism college – juggling marriage, frequent visits to the hospital due to my late father’s illness, lectures, exams, writing articles and interviewing people for my university assignments, and cooking vegetarian food on a daily basis in a country where even ‘vegetarian’ pizza was the only available thing on the menu to order in only one place in my city and there was no ‘isle’ with vegetarian products in shopping malls, like today. Luckily, as I’m married to an Indian man and I had traveled to India, I was familiar with plenty of vegetarian recipes and spices, but I was wondering how many other people in Balkan were out there who were also struggling with the same challenges, without the knowledge that I had. My desire to help others who were facing similar challenges like me lead me to start a Facebook page, and later on a blog, where I shared recipes and advice about vegetarian cooking. 

In the beginning, I barely had 100 followers and my blog posts 50-ish views, but I kept on posting helpful content regularly. My schedule was very tight, so I decided that I would stop watching television, so that I could carve out the time for blogging. After some time, the founder of a new health and lifestyle web portal ‘Kreni Zdravo’ reached out to me with a collaboration proposal. I agreed immediately, as I loved their content and their mission, and started writing articles for them. That portal grew really fast (recently they were acquired by a large media group, and last I read – they’re having 2 million readers per month!), and over the course of five years I wrote more than 300 articles for them (200+ on the topic of vegetarian nutrition and healthy lifestyle, and 100+ on the topic of personal growth, after I became a life coach), which are still (as I was told last year by the founder) very popular amongst their readers. Thanks to the collaboration with them my blog went ‘viral’ in 2013. and had over 1 million views, I became a ‘famous vegetarian blogger’ in the region, grew my Facebook following (organically) to 14 000+ people, and link for the download of free recipe book that I put together with the recipes I shared on the blog was clicked on 57743 times! Thanks to the success of my blog and the popularity of the articles that I was writing for Kreni Zdravo, I got an opportunity to start earning as a freelance writer for different magazines before I even graduated from Journalism college, and I also started getting a lot of media features – from TV appearances to press. 

In 2015., after working for two and half years as a freelance writer, I decided to pursue my ‘dream job’ and become a life coach. As I witnessed prior while growing my blog the power of collaboration with media outlets and web portals in sharing my message, I decided to use the same approach for growing my coaching practice. I started sharing the advice on self development and personal growth on my own blog, and then writing for different web portals and magazines in my native language and in English. I’ve been blessed over the years to become a columnist for the magazines I love reading, and I once dreamed about writing for while I was in Journalism college – such as COSMOPOLITAN, Sensa, and LJEPOTA&ZDRAVLJE. Reading the promotional words for one of my articles by Serbian edition of COSMOPOLITAN magazine in July 2016. stating: “If you want to live your dreams and not just dream them, Danijela Jokic Vaislay Life Coach has some excellent advice for you” felt surreal!

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Over the years, I wrote 550+ articles, out of which more than 350 were on the topic of personal growth, and I was also privileged to be interviewed for many popular magazines internationally (two ears ago, I was even interviewed for the beautiful South Ko*ean women’s magazine POPOPO!). 

Once I started doing live and online workshops, corporate workshops, workshops in schools, and later on motivational speeches, I realized that speaking was another way to reach large groups of people with my message (my first speech was to a group of 50, and over the time my audience grew to 5000).

My advice on success, life transformation, confidence building, and strengthening self worth has been featured in numerous magazines and web portals over the years – COSMOPOLITAN, Sensa, LJEPOTA&ZDRALJVE, Lepa&Srećna, THE HUFF POST, BOSSBABE.INC (yeah, ), Tiny Buddha, Mike Dooley’s blog, The Ladies Coach, and many other magazines and web portals who have large audience (f.e. 80 000 subscribers for print edition, 200 000/ 2 million visitors per month online, 2.5 million/ 3.5 million/ 6 million audience across their social media platforms, 1 million subscribers on their e-mail list…) which made it possible for me to reach est. 1 million+ people internationally with my work and my message, even without having 1M+ audience on my own.

Note: (While estimating the number of people reached over the last 12 years, I calculated the exact number of people listening my speeches/attending my live and online workshops, number of visitors on my own platforms – both of my blogs and web magazine, exact number of paid subscribers/ average sales of print magazines with my articles and interviews published, and for the web platforms I took a conservative estimate of my articles/posts/columns being read by 5% of their overall social media audience, monthly visitors, and e-mail subscribers – not taking in account TV appearances, many of my articles being reshared on other magazines and blogs with a smaller audience + translated in Spanish and other languages – as those are difficult to track, lol, and the share count numbers for my articles, which on platforms like used to be 1.2K and +).


Besides being able to reach million+ of people and make a positive impact with my knowledge and insights, while doing what I genuinely love (writing + sharing personal growth advice), and also achieve success as a life coach in a way that felt aligned, fulfilling, and meaningful to me. Many of my clients signed up to work with me after reading (one of) my articles in COSMOPOLITAN and other magazines, but what I was not expecting was that people would be ‘discovering’ me and deciding to hire me, enrol in my online programs, or buy my book – after reading an article that I wrote 5 or 7 years ago! Not to mention that people are still reaching out to me saying how much my (‘old’) articles have helped them to turn their life around, get better paying jobs, make career transitions, advance in their careers, build confidence, etc. 

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That made me reflect on the impact potential that a long term form of content can have (such as an article, blog post, podcast episode, or a YouTube video), over the short term content (such as a social media post). I am not at stating in any way that social media is not a great marketing tool and that high value content on social media cannot have a positive and significant impact – of course it can , but my point is that no one remembers (including me!) what I posted on social media 5 years ago or 10 years ago, and no client hired me after seeing something that I posted on Facebook or Instagram 7 years ago, or told me that a social media post from five years ago had changed their life. Of course, paid ads on social media and/or posting high value content (such as carousels with valuable information, infographics, or videos with impactful advice) can be very helpful to people consuming it, and help with attracting ideal clients/customers and increasing our own audience, but my personal opinion is that if energy, money, and time are going to be spent for making a ‘short-lived’ content, it is wise to convert that into a ‘long term’ content that can keep on helping and educating people (and attracting ideal clients or customers) for years to come, or vice versa (create a piece of long term content and break it into series of social media posts). 

The reason I wanted to share my journey and write this blog post was to leave you with some powerful insights, inspiration, and ideas that can hopefully help YOU in increasing your impact and reaching more people with your work and your message. Even though you may not be having million followers, here are some ways you could reach million+ people, and trough collaborations with large web platforms/ media outlets/ organizations/ influencers grow your success/ impact/ visibility FASTer, which you can brainstorm on:

  • Writing articles for magazines or web platforms with 1M+ audience (or 2X with half a million, or 4 with 250000…);
  • Being interviewed for 1 magazine with 1M+ audience (or for 2 with half a million, or for 4 with 250000…) – you might consider working with a publicist or a PR agency for getting more media features;
  • Being a guest on a TV show with 1M+ viewers (or on 2 with half a million, or on 4 with 250 000…);
  • Being a guest on a radio show(s) with 1M+ listeners
  • Being a guest on a podcast show(s) with 1M+ audience
  • Speaking to an audience of 1M+ people (over a period of time)

I love working with/helping executives, entrepreneurs, coaches/consultants, and thought leaders who want to make a positive impact in the world with their work/ business/ message, and therefor I hope this blog post serves you and inspires you to think bigger and reach/help/positively influence more people.

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