Paloma Contreras - The Business of Blogging
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  • 1. THE BUSINESS OF BLOGGING: PALOMA CONTRERAS Founder + Editor www.LaDolceVitaBlog.com Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Facebook: @LaDolceVitaBlog
  • 2. • I started writing La Dolce Vita in July of 2007 during the very early days of “blogging” as a respite from summer boredom. • I began by writing random essays, but quickly tapped into my passion for design and established a unique voice for the blog. I also developed a focus for the content that would appear on La Dolce Vita. • Today, La Dolce Vita is a style blog centered around the elements that make up “the sweet life”: interior design, fashion, travel, and inspiring people and places. LDV also served as the launching pad for my interior design business. LA DOLCE VITA
  • 3. BUILDING THE FOUNDATION 1. Ask yourself why you are blogging. 1. Blog only about things that you absolutely love and are passionate about. Keep the tone positive! 1. Content is king. Post as much original content as possible and remember that while a blog is a powerful marketing tool, your blog shouldn’t feel like an advertisement for yourself or your business. If content is king, authenticity and transparency are queen!
  • 4. 4. Post regularly. Otherwise, you won’t get much traction. Do you have the time and desire to dedicate to a blog and social media? 5. Maintain an Editorial Calendar to help you stay organized and focused. An Editorial Calendar will also help you to establish content that is on-target and on-brand. 6. Collaboration is key! Reach out to other bloggers at various levels of their careers as well as to people in your industry/niche whom you admire. Guest post on other blogs and invite people to guest post on yours. BUILDING THE FOUNDATION
  • 5. ESTABLISHING YOUR VOICE & YOUR BRAND • My editorial content is carefully planned to reflect the overall style and sensibility of La Dolce Vita. I have established several regular series that my readers love and eagerly await each week. • My goal is to ensure that every post is on-target and on-brand, reflective of the aesthetic I have cultivated for La Dolce Vita and therefore, engaging for my readers.
  • 6. LEVERAGING YOUR BLOG TO MAKE MONEY
  • 7. HOW I MAKE MONEY • I started taking advertisers on my blog after writing La Dolce Vita for two years. • I will only partner with advertisers whose products or services I genuinely love and can recommend to my readers without reservation. • Since 2012, I have used affiliate advertising through rewardStyle for individual product links and banner advertisements.
  • 8. USE YOUR BLOG AS A SPRINGBOARD FOR SUCCESS • I wouldn’t be able to sustain my lifestyle on blog advertising alone, but it has generated very valuable brand partnerships, freelance opportunities, and is now a huge referral source for my interior design business. I wouldn’t call myself a career blogger, but I definitely owe my career to my blog. • Determine how you can use your blog as a springboard to leverage your talents into something else. What is your ultimate goal– starting a design business, writing a book, selling products or services, creating a product line, establishing yourself as a tastemaker and design authority? All of these things are possible through blogging!
  • 9. THE IMPORTANCE OF A MEDIA KIT • Once you’ve established a readership, you’ll need to create a media kit that you can send to anyone who contacts you about any type of partnership. • Your media kit should include the following: 1. An Overview of Yourself and Your Blog 2. Readership Statistics* (unique visitors, page views, subscribers) 3. Reader Demographics* (level of education, sex, income, location) 4. Press Mentions 5. Rates and Types of Sponsorship Opportunities (typically includes traditional advertising, sponsored posts, brand collaborations) *You can gather readership statistics and demographics through Google Analytics, SiteMeter, and Lijit.com.
  • 10. WORD TO THE WISE… • Remember, authenticity and transparency are critical in blogging. If a post is sponsored, you should disclose that to your readers. The reason advertisers turn to bloggers is because our readers trust our opinions and endorsements. • Before you consider taking on an advertiser, make sure that the partnership makes sense for everyone involved: you, your readers, and the potential advertiser. • No man or blogger is an island. Blogging is all about community. Get out there and leave comments on other blogs and engage with people in your social media circle. If you’ve featured someone on your blog, reach out and let them know. • Think of your blog as your digital calling card and ensure that everything is consistent in quality and style and reflects your brand.
  • 11. • Don’t forget to leverage your blog posts through your other social media channels. Send out a tweet, share the post on your Facebook page, upload images to Instagram, and remember to pin the images to your Pinterest account! • Always give credit where it is due. Link back to the original sources of images and content. • Make sure your blog layout is clean and attractive. If possible, hire a graphic designer to help you with your blog’s design. • Remember to engage your readers. Ask them questions and be mindful of what they like. Respond to questions and tweets as often as possible. Get out there and network, network, network! • Take time to for yourself to rest, recharge, and stay inspired. WORD TO THE WISE…
  • 12. THE PATH TO SUCCESS • Ultimately, the path to successful blogging is greatly dependent upon the foundation you’ve built. • Create original, inspiring content that is reflective of your brand, remain authentic and transparent, and you’ll be on your way to brand partnerships and countless opportunities that can generate
  • 13. THE PATH TO SUCCESS • Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Building a large readership will not happen overnight. Most successful bloggers have been doing this for years! It takes time to build an audience and to start seeing opportunities. • In this digital world, we see the highlight reels of people’s lives, but we don’t know what has ended up on the cutting room floor. Remember, everyone’s journey is unique.
  • 14. “There is no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs.” -Unknown SET REALISTIC GOALS & ENJOY THE RIDE Image via The New York Times