Guest post by Carly Jacobs from Smaggle who’s recent trip to New York City for the Independent Fashion Bloggers Conference made us extremely jealous that we had to ask her to guest blog about it for us.
In my mind, the IFB Evolving Influence Conference is a blur of coconut water, magnums, constant tweeting with Wendy Brandes and a giant Missoni for Target doll that kept staring at me. I did, however manage to write down a few notes, I hope they make sense. I was experiencing a fairly intense Tropical Coco Bella high.
Bloggers who advertise for free are seriously frowned upon
Of course it’s easy for US bloggers to say that because Australia is slightly behind in the brand support stakes but value for post was discussed at length at the conference. For instance some bloggers won’t review a product unless they get an additional fee and some bloggers think that a $200 pair of shoes is just compensation for an in post blog advertisement. The general consensus was that a cheap bottle of moisturiser or a bag of cookies is not worth your time as a blogger unless you are being paid an additional fee.
Don’t be bullied by big brands in a collaboration. They need you.
Mrs Woog has written oh so eloquently about this matter so I’ll keep this brief. It’s your blog, your brand, your voice and if they want their product to appear in your space, they play by your rules.
You don’t have to write about everything that you receive. Be honest.
If you receive a product that you don’t like, write an honest review, send it to the company and have them decide whether or not they want you to publish it. Never lie in a review. It’s better say nothing at all.
Always engage with your readers. You’re never too important for this.
No matter how big your blog gets, it will always be reliant on your readers. Be good to them.
There’s no point in approaching companies unless you have something to offer them.
This one’s a little harsh and came straight from the lips of Ari Goldberg of Stylecaster. He said that if you have a grand total of 53 people reading your blog every day, don’t even think about approaching advertisers. You have nothing to offer them. Spend time building your readership, then come back to advertising in the future.
There are very few bloggers who make money on their blog alone.
Kelly of the Glamourai makes and sells jewellery, Scott of The Sartorialist is a professional photographer, Coco Rocha is a successful model. Personally, I’d call bullshit if someone claimed to be a full time blogger and had no blog related side income, no ad space on their blog and no sponsored posts. Think of your blog as a portfolio for whatever talent you’re showcasing because that will probably be your most lucrative income stream.
Most blogs are crap.
Again, from the mouth of Ari Goldberg. Luckily for you, he’s right. So there’s plenty of room for more exceptional and successful blogs.
Don’t just write you want. Check your stats to see what people are loving.
Your stats are your friends. Use them.
Make sure you’re actually saying something. Don’t fling around words like ‘amazing’ and ‘fabulous’. Say what you mean.
I believe this piece of info came from Grechen Cohen of Grechen’s Closet. She said to be honest and to use your words wisely. Flowery language doesn’t help anyone.
Don’t always make it about you. Personal blogs are great but they can get boring.
True that. I’ve stopped reading many blogs because it got boring watching a one-woman fashion show. Give your readers something interesting to read.
Brands need interesting tweeters. Apply this to your blog.
When you write well, we know who you are.
If you’re getting all jealous because other bloggers are getting mad campaigns or are writing for magazines, have a think about what image you’re presenting. Key note speaker Joe Zee Creative Director of Elle US, said that if you write well, magazines know who you are. Make people share your work. Make sure people look forward to your updates. Be an expert. You can’t toe the line, be like everyone else and expect to have Vogue knocking on your door.
Some happy snaps from my day at the IFB Conference