FAQs - All About Blogging

Saturday, December 2, 2017

I've been getting an abundance of questions recently about blogging: how I got started, how to get paid for blogging, etc. It brings me great joy to know that there are people out there that share my same passion for blogging + photography. I want to help in any way that I possibly can! I've gathered all of your questions, and I'm answering them here. I do my best to reply to each e-mail, DM, Facebook message, etc. but this allows me to give you all a reference to use, and one that you can share with others. 


A little background as to WHY I started:

(I feel this is important - If you start a blog with the mind set "I need to get paid for this" odds are, you wont get paid. You have to really enjoy blogging and enjoy what you're blogging about)

INSTAGRAM - my largest motivator. I remember scrolling on Instagram and I would continue to come across these beautiful Instagram feeds. I wanted my Instagram to look like that. I've always had a passion for fashion *Kanye voice* ha, but no really, I have. I've always loved home d├ęcor, drinking wine (of course), my dogs and photography. I decided that I was no longer going to post that blurry drunken pic from the bar on Insta. Instead, I would start taking photos of the things that I loved and share them with my Instagram family.

So, I had the Instagram, now what? I soon learned that all of these beautiful feeds that I had aspired to be like, also had blogs associated with them. Friends and family kept telling me that I should get one of my own. It sounded completely stupid at the time + I'm a horrible writer (my grammar sucks) but, I got one any way. It was a great way to share all of the things that I love in one place, and write about them. Moment of truth: I was talking to myself for at least a year. NO ONE was reading my blog (but my mom - haha!) the #glowup is real, though. I kept writing, kept blogging, despite who was reading/looking. Soon after, I began to receive so much awesome feed back from readers and brands. I began getting shout outs from brands linking my blog, etc. Moral of the story: keep going. 

How did you get started & when?
Important: Make your Instagram public!!
I got started by tagging brands on Instagram and using the brand's distinct hashtag(s). For example, If I bought something from Target, I'd photograph it, post it and tag @Target #targetstyle #target 

Mostly all brands have a distinct hashtag that they visit, in order to see who is posting their stuff. You can find this by going to their Instagram page - it will be in their bio. Use THEIR hashtag, always. That is how they will notice you and your photo. Disclaimer: by using their hashtag, you are pretty much giving them permission to use your photo on their page (after all that is what we want, right?) Most brands will ask first, before using. Let them! This is how you get noticed, follows, etc. 

I started blogging about 2.5-3 years ago.
This just goes to show that success in the "blogging world" doesn't happen over night.
I'm still not where I wanna' be. #workinprogress

What kind of camera do you use?
Canon EOS Rebel SL1 
click here
I LOVE this camera. It's one of the lightest DSLR cameras out there -- which was basically my deciding factor. I didn't want anything heavy while trying to take product photos.

I also use my iPhone quite a bit. Make sure to ALWAYS wipe your lenses on your phone before taking a photo. You will be surprised how fast that thing can get dirty, and it makes a huge difference!

How did you get people/brands to notice you?
Proper tagging & proper hashtags. 
+ clean, clear, bright content.

Are tags & hashtags important?
when using hashtags, make sure that you are using hashtags that aren't "spammy" Instagram will block content from a lot of spammy hashtags.
Examples of spammy hashtags: #love #cool #awesome 
Examples of hashtags that are important to your post (depending on what your post is about): #bloggerstyle #styleblogger #instafashion #instastyle
^ this will draw an audience to your Instagram (and then your blog). Not just any audience, but the audience you want. If your IG/blog is about fashion and style, then fashion and style lovers are the ones that are going to be looking at those hashtags. 

Another Important thing:
Make sure that your blog link is in your Instagram bio!!
Also, make sure that your email address is in your Instagram bio!!
(this is how people and brands reach out to you for collabs and sponsorships)

How did you start getting sponsorships?
A company reached out to me asking me to join their network. This company connects brands with content creators and vice versa. When you start blogging, you'll get a lot of emails. Make sure they are legit, do your research. I always start with looking to see if the company has an Instagram and then go from there. This is a no brainer, but never give anyone your card information or anything too personal. If they want to work with you, they shouldn't be charging you for anything, any way. 

Do you do sponsorships on your Instagram for a living?
I have a full time job outside of blogging. That is why I do not blog as much as I would like to. The sponsorships are GREAT side money, right now. A great way to rack up that savings account. However, the goal is to eventually be able to work from home and become a full time blogger. 

What exactly is a campaign in the blogger world?
When you do sponsorships with brands, you have due dates and guidelines. They are campaigning for their product. They usually have a specific way that they want the post to look. They also provide the hashtags that they want you to use when posting, etc. 

What is LIKEtoKNOW.it?
It's an app where fashion bloggers are able link all of their looks and make it available for the viewer to shop that particular look. 

- How do you become affiliated with them?
I'm not affiliated with them at this time. I will occasionally use the hashtag to gain viewers. 
You must apply to become an influencer with them. It is up to them whether they hire you on. 

How do you get your IG bio to return to the next line?
Type your bio how you want it to look in a Facebook status, then copy and paste it to your IG bio.

What photo editor(s) do you use?
VSCO in the app store
Facetune in the app store
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

How do you become a Brand Ambassador?
If a brand wants you to be an ambassador for their company, they will reach out to you and ask you to fill out an application.

Any other Q's, just ask! 

Editing your template can sometimes take 2 computers & A LOT of coffee (or wine)-- haha.
Blogging is not all roses and sunshine. If you want to be successful, you will have to devote many, many hours. Last night, I worked on my template/design/header from 6pm to 11pm. That is not even including taking the photos, editing the photos and creating the post. I feel like another key to successful blogging is advertising your blog, connecting and responding to your readers. Utilize all social media apps & websites! Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook are huge. Link each blog post to each social media website. 


Forewarning: Behind the scenes can leave your house looking like a completely disaster :)
When taking pics, I try to always use white/light backgrounds
use props to give your photo character!

One last thing, never compare yourself to other bloggers, it will only bring you down.
Do you, Boo Boo!
HAPPY blogging!!

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