I came to terms with not fitting in a long time ago. I never really fitted in. I don’t want to fit in.
— Alexander Mcqueen
Whether you’re a fledgling fashion blogger or contemplating starting a blog, learning from our experienced cohorts is essential to succeeding in the blogosphere. As a novice blogger, I have had many questions about generating traffic, networking with other bloggers, and developing partnerships with brands. Independent Fashion Bloggers has helped extensively, but there is something to be said about talking to other bloggers one-on-one about what has and hasn’t worked for them. The following interview with Blyss of Debutante Diary is Part 1 of an ongoing series of bloggers helping bloggers. I hope this is helpful!
1. Why did you begin blogging? And how long have you been blogging?
I began blogging over a year and a half ago because I have these passionate loves for things like fashion and I figured that I should start sharing with all the people I could possibly reach. I find it so moving to think that someone somewhere is benefiting from how I see things or appreciates the parts of life I take pleasure in as well.
2. How do you keep yourself motivated to write regularly?
I love what I do, but I believe that it is ok to take a break! Take a vacation from blogging when you aren’t feeling so motivated or inspired. I love to sit on Tumblr for hours looking at photos, flipping through old Vogue’s, sitting in a coffee shop with a Venti drink just reading other blogs I love and searching for inspiration in all its forms. You have to believe in what you do above all else and never compare yourself to other bloggers.
3. What has been the biggest challenge you faced as a blogger and how did you solve it?
I still face this today and it is not seeing the numbers change. When I post something and only get 20 views and no one comments it can be really discouraging because they’re other bloggers out there with 100+ comments almost immediately and 1000’s of views in minutes. I have to remind myself that those bloggers have been doing this for a lot longer than I and have established their brand. I am still getting my name out there so I have to reality check myself so to say!
Also I have had to learn to re-work my blog when something isn’t working or I feel as though I have lost my voice or am not being original! There is no shame in changing things up and getting rid of what isn’t working for you!
4. What’s your secret to generating traffic?
Shameless self promotion! Use every social media site you have and tell people about your blog! If you aren’t going to talk about your blog why should anyone else?
5. What social media sites have been most helpful for generating traffic?
I think my biggest generator is Facebook right now, every time I post on my blog I post about it on Facebook. The key is to grab people’s attention and make them want to read your phentermine weight loss posts. Don’t give it all away up front, just tease your audience.
6. How do you network with fellow bloggers, and has it been helpful?
IFB has been the best thing I ever did! I cannot stress enough how important it is to join IFB or a site like it. IFB has given me the opportunity to meet other bloggers and get priceless advice from people who are either experienced in blogging or who know what it’s like to be right where I am. The most valuable thing about IFB is the industry knowledge is endless and so is the support! You can not only talk to other bloggers but read IFB’s blog to find answers and get honest advice right when you are looking for it. I am constantly reading the posts on IFB to find ways to improve and make myself as a blogger and Debutante Diary the best it can be!
7. How do you maintain a readership?
I keep myself in my posts. It is really that simple. Readers like your blog because of what your voice is; mine is a mix if naughty and nice which means when I post about manners you aren’t going to hear your grandma talking you are going to hear a girl who wears leather and Manolos. Many times I have posted something and deleted it because I realized it wasn’t “me.” I believe strongly in quality over quantity and am not afraid to delete things or re-work Debutante Diary because it is no longer a grade A site.
8. What would you recommend to a new blogger?
Be yourself. This was the most valuable thing I took from an IFB Conference last year, and while it seems like an obvious answer, a lot of bloggers are out there trying to be just like the Man Repeller or Blonde Salad. You can’t be anyone but yourself and, honestly, that can be a lot more exciting than a mimic of someone else.
You need to educate yourself on everything you talk about; if you are a street style blog read about the greats in street style photography, the girls who get photographed, know street style all over the world. Invest in your education and it will pay off in a big way on your blog because you can apply what you learn and give it your own twist and opinion.
Also you need to represent your blog in your everyday life. If you are a blog dedicated to a preppy lifestyle but you have never worn a Polo or Sperry’s, you aren’t going to get very far. I write about what I know and believe in, I was a Rebel Debutante and I try to tell that side of the story in every post. Lastly, if you love what you are doing do not give up just because you think you aren’t successful. Your big break might be right around the corner.
Have any questions we didn’t address? Join us for a Twitter chat (@stylecontext and @blyssamara) today (6/3) at 3PM EST. Ask your questions about blogging to Blyss Davis, founder of Debutante Diary, via hashtag #askblyss. Talk to you soon!