Hello my lovelies! I often get questions about how I started blogging, how I find it and what advice I have for a new starter. I’ve tried to summarise this into 5 points but if there’s something you’d like to know but I haven’t quite covered, please feel free to comment/email me directly :).
1. Define Your Purpose
This is the first and most important thing. Why are you starting a blog? Are you truly passionate about it or just the idea of getting freebies, attending glamorous events or simply for the money? To be honest, I don’t judge people who go into it just for the money because just like every other career, influencing is one too and we must all eat. The key thing is to ensure you have something special to offer which is very difficult now as the industry is mega saturated. Many influencers are getting more and more frustrated, blogs are getting abandoned daily because for some, they haven’t progressed as quickly as they expected and others, they simply just didn’t realise how much effort and creativity goes into it.
“You basically need to pin point your end goal for starting a blog”
If you’re wanting to start a career in it, what kind of audience are you wanting to attract/appeal to? Have you defined your niche? When I first started my blog, I went around in circles and I still do sometimes. One day, I want to be super high fashion and cool, the next minute I want to be classic, no trends etc. It is always obvious to the general public when you’re quite confused about what you’re trying to achieve. However, on the flip side, sometimes you have to go around in circles to find yourself, your vibe and your tribe.
2. Resources: Time, Effort, Money etc.
Oh the joys of influencing! Late nights, early mornings.. It’s not all glamorous you know? I can’t remember the last time I went out to eat and had my food hot. I say this because food is very important to me, obviously lol. I’m constantly trying to get a good photo of what I’m eating and after photos, a video etc. before I actually settle down to eat. There are times where I’ve shot an outfit for a campaign up to 3 times because the photos weren’t coming out right (and now I’ve just found out I won’t be getting paid for this campaign as the influencer platform has filed for bankruptcy but that’s a story for another day lol). If you work/study full time at the moment, consider most of your weekends gone because it will involve shooting content and participating in activities based on the kind of content you can get from them. Expenses include getting a good camera/phone (depending on the kind of content you want to create) because great photos are key, initial funding of your content before you start getting paid collaborations and setting up your website. However, if you’re truly passionate about it, these will come through effortlessly.
3. Keeping Up Appearances
There is always a new fad in the industry. From beauty ones to fashion ones e.g. hair colours/styles, new restaurants, Gucci bags lol etc. Some of these can make you feel like less of an influencer if you don’t have them/ haven’t done them but hunny, you better not go broke trying to keep up. You don’t have to do what everyone is doing, do what is right for you, what you feel is appropriate for YOU.
4. Fear of the Instagram Algorithm: Beginning of Wisdom?
Instagram changed its algorithm from a chronological order to God knows what- I wish I knew! It never fails to amaze me, one day your engagement (likes and comments) are up and the next day you’re wondering if only a portion of people can actually see your posts because of how low the engagement is. For influencers that make a living from Instagram through brand collaborations, it is absolutely nerve wrecking because for many campaigns, you get approached because of your level of engagement. Just a heads up as I don’t know the solution to this yet but you’re not alone.
5. Unhealthy Comparisons: From Yourself and Others
Last but certainly not the least, please be prepared for comparisons and see how to beat it here in this post. You will try to benchmark yourself against other influencers but it becomes a problem when you enrol yourself in some kind of imaginary competition with them. Try to remember that everyone is on their own personal journey and running their own races. Comparing and contrasting can also blur the lines of what your purpose is and what you want to achieve from blogging because you may start trying to emulate what your “competition” is doing whereas their own end goal will most likely be different. I think it will be fair to say everyone goes through this phase and the important thing is to come out victorious (strong word but I think it can be a real issue that affects confidence). On the flip side, I’d also add that its important to have other influencers that you look up to, people that appear to have similar end goals as you do or people that are achieving what you want to achieve. Theres a very thin line between admiration and jealousy and we all need to be careful not to cross that line.
Photos: Elena (@elgola)