Yesterday I was asked to speak on an influencer panel by one of my blogger besties, Amanda Kushner from Glitter and Spice blog! She’s seriously the sweetest so if you don’t already follow her, you should! The panel was taken place at SMU (where I went to law school) so there’s no way I could miss out! It was nice to walk into SMU knowing that I didn’t have to go to class or taken an exam– such a bittersweet feeling!
For today’s blog post, I thought I’d answer a few questions that were asked at the panel and maybe this will help you if you’re on the fence about the blogging industry!
3 QUESTIONS FROM THE PANEL FOR BLOGGERS
HOW DO YOU MONETIZE YOUR BLOG?
When I first started blogging, I didn’t have the intent to make it my own business. Blogging was a hobby for me, a way to relieve some stress from how structured law school was. After a year of blogging part-time, I slowly started to receive emails from brands wanting to pay me for posting on my blog and/or Instagram. I had no idea how to handle those emails– I did tons of research on how bloggers make money and what the protocol was. Now of course after a few years, I’ve gotten a handle of what to do and what I should expect when working with brands. Next With Nita is my business… it’s me! I’m my own business. It sounds a bit weird to say out loud but that’s the truth. Once you have a little experience blogging and know the ins and outs, you should evaluate your worth and determine what you should be charging. Every brand is different and you don’t want to charge the same rate to a large reputable brand as to a small start-up. However, you should almost always be charging if you have the experience and the loyal, ride-or die following. My biggest advice is if you’re wanting to start blogging, I would go into with the expectation of not making money. Do it for fun and because you love it, then let everything else fall into place. Anyway, enough rambling, here are a few ways bloggers make money:
In almost every single Instagram post, you guys have probably seen me tag @liketoknow.it. That is from rewardStyle, a pay per sale platform! There’s two affiliate pages that I play with, rewardStyle and Shopstyle. The difference between the two is that Shopstyle is pay per click v pay per sale. I mostly use rewardStyle because I convert better with them and which is why you’ll see @liketoknow.it all over my Instagram! I do mix things up and incorporate Shopstyle in my blog posts though– both platforms are amazing!
Here’s a quick rundown on rewardStyle. Bloggers that get accepted into rewardStyle have access to an app where we can upload our photos, tag what we are wearing, and then from there liketoknow.it creates a unique URL to where we can post on Instagram. This way, if someone were to click on my rewardStyle link and want to shop something, they can actually track my clicks and sales! Bloggers don’t earn a lot from one sale (we’re talking pennies to low dollars) but if you’re really good at what you do and make multiple sales, you can make a lot!
If you’re interested in shopping from my affiliate links, you have options! You can download the new @liketoknow.it app, search my name and all my shoppable Instagram posts are right there for you. If you’re not feeling the app, you can just check out my blog and shop everything under nextwithnita.com/instagram!
Bloggers can also make money from retailers that are interested in working with you through rewardStyle directly and you typically get a flat rate from that!
There are tons of PR firms out there that connect brands with bloggers! You can either sign up to an agency (non-exclusively) and apply to campaigns through there or the PR firms can also reach out to you directly on behalf of a client.
This one by far is the most exciting for me! I love receiving emails for brands, either small or large and working with them directly. You get rid of the middleman all together and get right down to business! I don’t accept a lot of emails that come my way though. I make sure that each collaboration I take on fits with my personality and it’s something that I truly believe in or would believe in.
This is another way to monetize your blog, simply by placing ads on your website. You’ve probably seen banners or other ads our blogger’s website and usually it’s a pay per click ad. Again with this, we typically earn pennies per click! However, if you have a lot of blog traffic, the ads really add up! 😉 hehe!
WHAT’S A TYPICAL DAY LIKE AS A BLOGGER?
You guys, this one is tough because every day is honestly different. Each week varies based on what kind of collaborations I receive and their deadlines. However, I do try and stick to a routine as best as possible. The thing with being an influencer is that there really are no days off. When I’m on vacation, I’m working. If I don’t respond to emails fast enough, I may miss a campaign. If I don’t post on Instagram, I don’t get paid. I spend over 40+ hours a week working on the blog and that includes responding to emails, brand negotiation, applying to campaigns via third party agencies, posting on social media, editing photos, writing blog posts, working on SEO, going out for photoshoots, engaging with other bloggers on social media, writing contracts, and the list goes on and on and on. I typically try and do most of my shoots on the weekend (maybe one or two during the week) and write my blog posts a night or two before. I spend an hour or two on emails everyday, that’s the first thing I actually tackle in the morning!
WHAT’S YOUR NICHE?
If you haven’t figured out your niche yet, that’s ok. Although good to know, it’s perfectly acceptable to be unsure and create your business around your own lifestyle. That’s what I did! I started blogging and shared current trends, beauty favorites and a little bit of what was going on in my life. I also shared a lot of animal advocacy stuff because that’s my passion. As you dive into the industry, just know that the most important thing is to stay true to yourself and accept partnerships/business transactions that are in line with your lifestyle. If you’ve been asked to promote a product and you don’t actually use it or like it, why would you share it with your audience? Your readers will see through the lie and you’ll lose that trust within seconds. Believe in the value of your audience because they are the reason you are here in the industry today, and they deserve your honesty.
Although I created my business around my lifestyle, I have developed a better understanding of who I am and my style/business over the last few years. I always try and post what is on trend and modern with a pop of color.
There were a lot more questions asked at the panel but I wanted to keep this post pretty concise! If you enjoyed reading this and learning a more about blogging, let me know and I can definitely do more blogging series posts to help you guys as you get started! Always remember to stay true to yourself and be you. Love you guys and as always, chat soon! 💙
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