Sunday, February 1, 2015

Top bloggers share their secrets to success

This morning I was reading the New York Times and I came across a very interesting article about bloggers and how they are cashing in on their followers. I just wanted to share it with you because I was intrigued by the shift from a celebrity driven culture to more of a blogger influenced culture. 

What really surprised me was that in order for a blogger to find success in working with a brand, it's really not just about the numbers. Per the NY Times "There’s no magic number, but the word “engagement” is thrown around a lot, meaning a social media influencer's ability to get followers to like, share and otherwise participate with a brand". Last year Women’s Wear Daily reported  that certain top-tier bloggers are now earning upwards of $1 million a year. Let that sink in.

I've been reading a lot about blogging lately, after all I am one of them  :) but there's so much to learn from the ones that have found runaway success. Here's some sound advice  for reaching the upper echelons of blogging from some of the top bloggers in the game.

Gary Pepper Girl has over 1 million followers on Instagram
"...And I think with the help of social media, it makes you global from day one, so if you want to build that momentum, then of course you need a strategy. And for me, from the very beginning, I just wanted it to reflect who I was as a person, because if you’re true to yourself, then it’s not hard work. And that’s why I started the blog—I wanted my customers to see that everything I was selling was stuff that I was wearing. For me, Gary Pepper is a true reflection of my personality. I’m very optimistic, so I want to make sure that it feels very warm and inviting, and people see the photos and maybe feel inspired or curious or confused—as long as it’s thought-provoking and it makes them feel something, then I think I’ve succeeded at my job. Because I think digital can be quite isolating sometimes. You can feel disconnected. So my goal is that for every photo I post, someone feels connected to it in some way" Read more here

Marianna Hewitt has over 350,000 followers on Instagram

Spend time on it! I spend so many hours by myself with a computer editing photos, filming videos, writing posts. It really is a full time job but if you commit to it and spend enough time on it … like
anything in life … it will show results! Read more here

Natasha Eubanks founder of the theybf,com 
I started on a zero budget and made no money for two years. It can be done. I would say if you're just starting out it depends on how hard you want to work, if it's something you're really going to give 120 percent to. I did everything by myself, so it was my priority. I used a free [blogging] service so I didn't put any money into that. It's just you and your computer, so you can just save your money. Try to find people, maybe interns or people who are just starting out, who you can barter your services. They can build you a website; you can put their name all over the website.
Just try to do things in the cheapest, most legal way possible. I think the biggest thing is realizing when you need to step it up. Don't just stay cheap forever. When I realized that it's all great and good to not pay to do certain things, I noticed that it ends up being wrong; it ends up costing me money in the long run. That's why I say 'the cheapest labor is the most expensive labor.' Don't do this whole Field of Dreams, "I'm going to have this big, huge website, and I'm going to throw $50,000 into it, and if I build it, they'll come." Don't even go there. Do what you're going to do as streamlined as possible and, as they come, that's when you build. Don't do it the other way around. Read more here

 BryanBoy’s site has over 4 million page views per month
It's really important to have a unique point of view. A lot of people start blogs to show off their outfits or because they just feel like they should be blogging. Mine really began as a travel journal. I started my blog in my bedroom in the Philippines after I went to Russia for a month, and I thought I would create a diary. People seem to forget the storytelling aspect—everything has to have a narrative. I think it's important to have a voice because so many people out there really just say, "OK, I want to be a fashion blogger, so I'm just going to post pictures of me wearing clothes." It has to go beyond that. And then of course, a lot of bloggers only want to sit in the front row and get gifts. It really doesn't work like that! The most successful bloggers turn their blog into a business. It's a full-time job, but a lot of bloggers are blinded by the glamour aspect of it. In reality, it's like icing on the cake. Read more here

Are you a blogger or an aspiring blogger? Tell me about journey in the comments section.

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