I think one thing you learn as a business owner during this era of modern businesses is how to grow with limited resources and how to position these limited resources to work to your maximum advantage. In example, business owners once had to use expensive services such as Magento to build a site, the web was limited at connecting them to vendors whereas now we have Shopify and Squarespace to run our e-commerce and there’s multiple resources to connect you with vendors all over the world. Furthermore within this era we were presented with one of our biggest tools that businesses prior to us did not have -- social media.
I’m self taught. I see myself as a strategist - especially in the beginning, I was constantly carefully strategizing each decision and move I made in order to make sure everything ran seamlessly. Although our business is more properly structured and we no longer operate in a way that requires such hands-on attention, I will say that it disciplined me to remain conservative in the way I operate my business on a day to day basis. It’s not to say this is the only way to build a business, but for me this is how I came to be where I am today.
I see each of the separate components it takes to make a business as pieces of a puzzle. For me, learning and understanding each of the areas as a business helps to have better perspective on how to make each area grow as an individual entity and as a whole. Welcome to Dear Blogger -- this is a series I am starting which will discuss my experience from both ends as a entrepreneur and designer as well as a blogger/influencer.
One of the biggest mistakes I made throughout the years is something I would say a lot of businesses have made - working with the wrong influencer or going forward with a collaboration that just didn’t feel right. Every influencer and every brand has a place, but I learned the hard way that not everyone is supposed to work with each other.
When I started my brand, bloggers were just starting to become a thing. From the outside, it’s easy to be blinded by a blogger’s portrayal of their cool life and beautiful things. As a brand, one must be more intentional with their collaborations than this and unfortunately I personally viewed them as this sort of celebrity. In the first year we expanded into blogger activations, there was no strategy. We literally made a list of 100 or so girls and sent product. Although this type of mass seeding can raise brand awareness for some, it’s so important to really think about if it’s fit for your business.
Understanding your audience and how to best curate a brand for them is very important for the growth and success of your brand.
This first part of this series will help business owners begin the first steps to knowing what demographic they can and should reach via bloggers/influencers & social media. It will also allow bloggers to better understand which brands align best with them.
Asking yourself the following 5 questions will help you align your brand better with a strategy that is best fit for it. Be sure to be as detailed as possible.
Note to bloggers reading this exercise: Sub where it says “influencers” with “brands”.
Who is your audience? List your demographic in as much detail as possible (Region, age group, household income, gender, household size, interests, do they tend to have any specific careers/jobs?
Is this audience reachable on social media? If so, what specific part of your audience is on social media? Not everyone you sell to is guaranteed to utilize social media (i.e. there’s a smaller percentage of senior citizens who shop online, and especially utilize social media. In cases like this it is important to consider alternative marketing options that will help you reach bigger audiences)
What is unique about your brand? What characteristics sets your brand apart?
List influencers you find that you personally like, and list what appeals to you about them. Since it’s your brand, your audience is going to be a reflection of you.
List influencers and what their blogs are about, as well as how they parallel with your brand’s story. How do you see yourself collaborating to create content with the influencer/s and how will this help your objectives? (Objectives: gaining followers on instagram, gaining new quality content)
Hope you guys enjoyed this post. Let me know your thoughts and what you want me to share insight with you on next in the comments below.