I’m having one of those days. I’ve already texted Jen who I usually go to when I’m feeling pangs of defeat stemming from blogging. I just heard that a blogger got a five figure huge campaign. This has to be like the 3rd campaign in a matter of a week that I’ve heard about through the grapevine paying out huge payments. I am happy for these bloggers, because like me, they are women of color and like Issa, I’m rooting for everybody black. But I can’t help but sometimes feel like I’m a little behind. I expressed this recently in an Instagram Post and the responses I got were overwhelming. I have been blogging for 8 years and last May, I almost quit. I’d been in a huge slump and no matter what I did, I couldn’t seem to get ahead. For every step forward, I felt I’d taken two steps back. After I wrote this post, so many people encouraged me to keep pushing. So for a full year, I’ve been posting regularly 2-3 times weekly, putting out quality content and Fashion Steele Magazine. I make time to hone my writing skills, step up my styling and really dedicate myself to blogging because I love it. I have come a long way and I have been so fortunate to work with amazing brands but more than that I’ve been able to inspire people.
[one_half padding=”0 15px 0 0″]Blogging, if you consider it a business can cost you a lot of money. I didn’t see that return for years. I’ve spent a total of $3900 on blogging to date from January 1, 2018 alone. I’ve been blogging 8 years by the way, so you do the math. I keep track of all my blog expenses each month. Most of that goes towards site maintenance, upkeep and add-ons, photography, camera rentals & equipment and travel expenses. I have no problem spending money on myself and on this space, because I know it takes money to make money. The more I invest in myself, the greater the reward when it comes to working with brands. I know there is a huge market of bloggers, specifically black bloggers, out there and there is enough money for us all. I make a very small percentage of money back from affiliate links. You know when I suggest something and hyperlink it, or include a get the look photo and you click it and buy something from that site, I get a commission from that sell.[/one_half][one_half_last padding=”0 0 0 15px”]My commissions from sales make up roughly 3%-4% of the money I make from blogging. It can literally be .62 cents- $60 roughly on what I make from a sale. It’s hardly ever more than $3 a sale on average. Please don’t think bloggers, especially micro-bloggers, especially black micro-bloggers like me, are out here getting filthy rich from affiliate links. More over, please support me and bloggers who take the time to find those links to include for you by purchasing from the link. Every little bit helps and it’s just a small token of appreciation you can show. Don’t be that person that doesn’t click links because of that. I find that highly offensive especially if you’re coming here for all the tea and then choosing to just go to the site yourself. That’s really messed up. Yeah, I said it. Support this here space if you can. Most of my money comes from brand collaborations and from selling my template packages. Speaking of which Fashion Week is just around the corner so you may wanna go ahead and check these out.[/one_half_last]
Photography & Editing by Denisse Benitez (Stay tuned for this Preset she’s dropping soon too!)
Grana Silk Dress get similar Here || Oversized Denim Jacket || Mango Clear Bag (currently on Sale) || Chanel Pearl Mules (Check out my Box Opening Video of them Here) || Half Sunglasses || Vintage Chanel Earrings
GET THE LOOK
Now there are people who cut corners. You know the ones who jump 20K followers in a month on Instagram. The real tea is those like bots that like random accounts photos to get those accounts to follow them. Or even worse those follow, unfollow bots that people have following accounts and when they follow back, unfollow them. You can easily see who is doing this by looking at your followers likes: are they liking random accounts photos every few seconds/minutes even in random hours of the morning? Well, they paid for that. The thing is they usually don’t have quality followers or engagement (comments or likes proportional to their following). The math is pretty simple. I’m not knocking any one who has bought followers. Like I said, I don’t judge people for the choices they make in life. I’ve even succumbed to the temptation and promptly lost the followers I bought in an IG sweep. Karma really is that bitch. It didn’t feel good. So I decided never to do that again. But the temptation can be strong when I see those who don’t really work at this thing, reaping all the benefits. What I have to remember is what’s for me is for me and I know how hard I worked to get here.
WHAT I WISHED BRANDS KNEW
I know Fohr has had some heat on them lately but personally I’m glad that companies like theirs exist. They are one of the first to try to actually authenticate genuine following and engagement. Yes, there are ways to fake engagement by using comment pods and loop giveaways that get peoples following up (Denisse who took & edited these photos wrote a great blog post about this very thing). So people can still kinda fake engagement but what Fohr is doing is a real start. I want brands to stop looking at that number on instagram and wise up. Take a look at someones blog. Do they post regularly? Are they getting any comments? Actually read their blog posts and captions. Do they have anything to say besides: Outfit on Fleek? Then brands wonder why they don’t get the return on their investments. Of course Instagram algorithms are f*cking everybody over at the moment so it’s harder to decipher, but I can’t wait until authentication is a rule, not the exception.
PS. If you blog or are looking to be an influencer, I highly recommend this book to get you started.