By Ally Biring
Fashion blogging used to be an outlet for frustrated wannabe Vogue editors. Nowadays, the top bloggers are massively influential and mind-blowingly well paid. There are so many in the blogosphere, however, that it might seem like an impenetrable territory.
All you need is a serious interest in the industry, have an eye for future trends, and something personal and unique to say. With these building blocks, you can become a popular, money-making fashion and beauty blogger.
Where to Find Motivation:
The architects of the ‘fashion blog’ include Bryan Grey Yambao, who set up BryanBoy in 2004 and is now a judge on America’s Next Top Model. In 2010 he was getting 1.4m page views a month and earning $100,000 from his blog. Marc Jacobs even named a bag after him. However you measure success, Bryan has achieved it.
The top brands have been known to pay up to $50,000 for promotion on his highly successful blog. Historically, companies have paid bloggers through ‘gifting opportunities’ – free samples of their products. Don’t expect this to happen straight away; you’ll have to earn those goodies!
Where to Start:
If you’re new to blogging, you might want to start off with Blogger.com as a platform, their WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) method is free and easy to use. You can still personalize and prettify the blog without having to get into the technical IT side. However, if you're serious about your blogging endeavors, I highly suggest getting set up on the paid version of WordPress — there's a step-by-step tutorial here.
You'll need to brand yourself. Sit down and think about what you do best. Are you the witty critic, the make-up maverick, or the blogger who mixes high fashion with affordable high street? You need to find a name for your blog that’s catchy, short, and represents what you want to portray with the blog.
Make sure that your website is going to be attractive to readers, fashion brands and potential advertisers alike. Produce interesting, unique, and appealing articles with beautiful images. These can be as simple as a lovely snap of an outfit that’s inspired you.
Who to Watch:
Every year, Marie Claire names the top beauty and fashion bloggers and influencers which can be a great place to gather inspiration. Harper's Bazaar has a similar list of Instagram influencers in the fashion industry.
For the most up to the minute fashion news and creative ideas, Twitter is the place to be. From backstage catwalk gossip and photos to movers and shakers in the fashion industry, this is where you’ll find the news first. Check out the following fashion tweeps:
How to Make Them Watch You:
Don’t just watch these people – talk to them, comment on their blogs, swap notes. Why not arrange to meet up with local like-minded bloggers and writers to see how you can all help to promote each other? A great way to make friends with other bloggers is to offer to write guest posts for them. Good quality content is hard to keep churning out, so if you can prove yourself, they’ll welcome the input!
How to Make Everyone Watch You:
Promote yourself on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram and write for other blogs (as detailed above). Showing examples of your work through image sites like Tumblr and submitting outfit ideas to Lookbook.nu will also get your name out there. Ensure that your images are top notch, though, nothing blurry. Newspapers, magazines and magazine format shows love to use bloggers for sound bites, and statements so jump on opportunities to do this. Make yourself available around key events in the fashion calendar, such as the Fashion Weeks. Check out Women’s Wear Daily’s calendar.
Most importantly of all, keep your blog regularly updated. Readers will expect you to update each day, so make sure you can commit to this. If you suddenly disappear when they’ve been looking forward to reading your news, they won’t return.
How to Get Paid:
To make a living from fashion and beauty blogging, you’re going to need to be on prospective commercial partners’ radars. To achieve this you’ll need to make appearances across the web, in the ways we’ve discussed earlier in this article. By following our advice, you’ll be able to prove to advertisers and brands that you have a consistent following, that you are a credible blogger that people listen to and that you are worth investing in. It’s all about making a name for yourself and really networking to make it a viable work option. It’s not easy, but the rewards are worth it!
Are you a fashion or beauty blogger? How are you monetizing your blogging efforts? Drop us a note we'd love to hear from you!
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How To Make a Career Out of Blogging About Fashion & Beauty was written by Ally a freelance writer, currently working with FeelUnique.com.