Social Media Marketing + Content Creator.
I had so much fun meeting people that follow me, but also being able to share my knowledge with these ladies was so rewarding. Many of you guys always DM asking questions on how to start a blog/social media etc. and to be honest it’s sometimes really overwhelming because as much as I want to help there is only so much you can tell over a message.
“I know it sounds so cliche, but it’s truly about being yourself. Showcase what you are truly passionate about, sometimes it’s okay to not just be in one certain niche, be in a variety of stuff you truly like”
So I have answered some of the questions we went over during our panel and hopefully they are helpful to you guys. If you do have any other questions feel free to comment below!
What would you say is the best formula for making yourself appeal to brands?
I know it sounds so cliche, but it’s truly about being yourself. Showcase what you are truly passionate about, sometimes it’s okay to not just be in one certain niche, be in a variety of stuff you truly like. The worst thing you can do is post about things that you think other people want to see and not truly be passionate about it. Why? Because when you do that you are faking a life and it is very hard to sell anything by not being authentic on how the products help you.
Post what you want brands to see. For example, if you want to appeal to athletic companies, you need to appeal to them by showcasing your athletic lifestyle and showcase how you rock those cute workout clothes. If you are a beauty guru like me, post about beauty procedures, makeup, skincare tips etc. When you are true to what you love those brands will see that and reach out to you.
What is your strategy for growth?
At the beginning I would do a lot of following and unfollowing people, but we all know how annoying that is. Then I joined many comment pods in order to grow, I must say that I think that helped me grow a lot. Now I try to stay as organic as possible and just post amazing content. So my strategy now is to have content that captures peoples attention. No one wants to see another basic picture on Instagram. Instagram is full of cool pictures and cool people, so you really grow by making content that others don’t have and truly listening to what your followers want. Also, don’t think that numbers are everything because they are not. Please do not buy followers or give in to those loop giveaways. Build your following organically because that is how your engagement will also grow. Everyone hates seeing someone that has 50k with 200 likes.. like girl. Get your life lol
Let’s talk about how you monetize. Explain how you monetize your blog, YouTube and/or social media.
I actually answer this question in this video.
When working with brands, how do you merge your brands together? And how do you keep your content authentic?
The best way to merge brands together is by researching and studying the brand you’re working with as much as possible. See if what they are doing and stand for matches your brand, and if it does partner with them. If it doesn’t, don’t just take products or even money just because, it’s okay to say no sometimes. Be sure to always tell your followers how you incorporate that product/service into your life, add a story to it and BE AUTHENTIC. I have turned down several campaigns before because how can you possibly be authentic when you hate the product? You can’t.
When merging brands, don’t just get the product and shoot it however you want. Shoot it how the company would shoot it. For example, when working with Fossil I took a really good view at their brand, I studied to see what they were looking for and how they wanted their products shot. Why? Because not only does it stay true to their brand but it also helps you. The more you stick to a brands aesthetic the more likely you will get reposted and they will want to work with you again.
Do you feel like in person networking or online networking is more impactful?
I think online networking always leads to in person networking. I think because we spend most of our time on social media you can really connect with people on there easier, however, sometimes when you want to collaborate or work with someone it is important to set up meetings to see if it’s a good fit. You can also talk more in person, it is kind hard to say everything you want to say online. I personally like in person networking because I am such an extrovert that I love meeting new people and just talking away.
Do you spend more time on content or growth/ audience reach?
I think by having great content that is how you grow and audience reach. Don’t be boring. Try to really think outside the box when it comes to your content. Your Instagram is your resume. If you do a crappy job at it other people will tell and trust me, you won’t reach an audience by doing so.
Is it better to be independent or to be represented?
I think it would be amazing to be represented later on in life when I have too much on my hands however, at this point in time I am independent. I personally love closing deals, going to meetings, and just creating my content alone. I’m such a control freak that I would have to be insanely busy in order to bring someone else on board.
What is the best way to scale how much you should charge?
At the beginning I would do a $10 per 1k rule for IG. So when I had about 3k I charge $30 for an IG post, obviously as that grew I would increase the price. Then as far as my blog posts and videos, I scale that according to how much work goes into it and also the amount of reach I know it will have. If you have low engagement, I would consider lowering your rates but if you pay close attention to your analytics and you KNOW you have a good turn around then yes mark those prices ALL THE WAY UP. Lol jk
What is your best advice for someone trying to take their social media serious?
Take it seriously. It’s hard work, especially if you are trying to be a full time blogger-influencer. You have to do shoots all the time, so if you don’t have time or if you are not creative I would not jump all in. Sometimes you have to create fun things to have content and even if you’re tired you will have to plan shoots and make sure you create quality content for the brands you work with. Also, know it is like homework, sometimes brands give you deadlines so staying organized is KEY. Schedule your shoots, edit your content, write your captions, and make sure it looks cohesive on your feed before posting.
How do you handle brands that don’t want to pay you what you’re worth?
At this point in my blog (10k) I just pass. Mostly because I already have everything I could possibly have and just saying yes to things for free product actually overwhelms me. I would have a room full of packages if I just said yes to everything and I don’t need that stress of having to shoot everything when I am not even getting paid to do so.
So I say I pick your battles. I always, give out my rates but if a company is unwilling to pay me and it’s not really beneficial to me, personally I don’t take it. I don’t need another watch, another beauty product, etc. I just know that I take a lot of time to execute one picture so If a company can’t see that I’m like NEXT but if I think there is potential with a company to work with them again in the future for a paid partnerships then I might take working for free in the beginning. Also, if it is a high profile brand I might do the deal in order to add that to my media kit, but most of the time I will pass up on deals. Just be wise, know which things to say yes to and know that saying no is okay sometimes. Of course, at the beginning I took more free things and I would always be scared to give companies my rates when I had 3k but I learned really quick that these are companies with a marketing budget (if no budget at all). They have thousands of dollars that you are definitely missing out on if you don’t at least ask.
Do you think having a nice camera and/ or doing professional photo shoots is important?
My thoughts on this is just answered by two simple questions. What kind of brands are you trying to work with and what kind of blogger do you want to be? I actually tell myself this when I’m tired and just want to take pictures on my iPhone. Huge bloggers that work with the best brands work with them because they have amazing photographs most likely taken by a professional photographer. Brands see the quality of pictures, and if you have that quality the more likely they are to reach out to work with you and they may even pay you more for your photography. Now, there’s some girls on reward style that need to showcase hundreds of outfits and take pictures on their iPhones and do just fine or there is insta-famous people that take super cool pictures on their iPhones too. But again, if you are trying to be the real deal, Instagram is your resume. Take a look at the kind of blogger you want to be like and imitate what they are doing by looking really close at their quality.
For me, I love having camera shots for everything. I think having sharp and nice photography always wins but every now and again I will take iPhone pictures when I don’t have my camera to take pictures of random stuff. Now when shooting for brands I always hire a photographer I feel like having that quality also increases my chances of working with a brand again. At the beginning of course I started off with an iPhone but I definitely invested in a camera QUICKLY, again, in an Instagram world QUALITY is everything. No one wants to see a blurry, pixelated picture anymore.
Here are my fav photographers:
-Do you have a mentor? And if so, do you think you’re further because of it?
I do not, but I did have one at the beginning. He told me that companies need me not the other way around. Which is why valuing your time is everything when dealing with brands. This is your business so even when I was at 3k I would still charge companies. I mean I really did not need that coffee scrub, so if they were willing to pay me I was up for it, if not, I would go along my way. I think just being strict on that kind of stuff has made me learn how to close deals and negotiate with companies to make sure it’s a win win situation.
Hopefully this was helpful guys! Comment any other questions below!