As part of the relaunch, I am bringing in a new category; ‘blogging for business’. A little while ago, there was a buzz on Twitter about Bloggers Ball, organised by Scarlett Dixon of Scarlett London. (click here to view her blog.) I love her blog, so I emailed over some questions.
Firstly, how where you introduced to blogging?
I actually set up my blog in 2011 as an aspiring fashion and showbiz journalist so my initial aim was for it to be an online portfolio of my work. I didn’t even know what a blog was at the time (oops) but then I discovered this emerging new world on Twitter and started following a number of inspiring fashion bloggers. My eyes were opened and I then started writing about more personal stuff on my website, gradually making the transformation into a ‘blog’.
What inspired you to blog?
Probably answered this above 🙂
How did you come to your blog name?
Looking back, I actually have no idea! I guess ‘Scarlett London’ sounded a tad more snazzy than ‘Scarlett Dixon’ which is my actual name – and I wanted to make it apparent from the outset that I was blogging all about my favourite city in the world!
What do you think about blogging for business?
I think it’s exciting that blogging is an evolving and emerging new industry – it’s an incredible outlet! I think it’s super inspiring that girls and guys have carved an entirely new career for themselves using only the tools available to them by the digital world!
How did you go to being a full time blogger?
I gradually made the transition after five years of blogging as a hobby. I was graduating University and had to make the decision as to whether I wanted to start the job search or see if I could do this full time, for real! Luckily, it’s worked out so far – and it’s the dream! It never feels like work as I love it so much!
What do you think about working with brands?
It’s super exciting but also can be tricky to manage at times, because you want to stay integral and honest and maintain that trust you have with your audience. I always follow the mantra and ask myself the question ‘would I genuinely use and buy this product, or do I love this brand regardless?’ If the answer is yes, we take things further and look to work together. But I have turned down large sums of money because the brand or campaign doesn’t fit with my values or doesn’t stay true to me. So it’s all about sticking to why you started blogging in the first place – because you want to share the things you love!
Do you have any tips with regards to this?
I’d say it’s important to retain creative control and put your spin on things, even if it’s sponsored or branded content – so this is something you have to ask from the outset. It’s super fun to do a sponsored campaign, because I can devote the time to creating something even more exciting than usual and I can order in props and hire incredible people to work with too – so often my sponsored stuff is the campaigns I’m most proud of! They allow you to really get your creative head on and explore what you’re passionate about – but obviously to do this, both you and the brand need equal creative control. Otherwise you may be following a strict brand campaign or guidelines – which can be tricky if you want to weave in your personality and creativity – which is the thing your audience love about you!
Could you take us through your routine, day to day?
Every day is different – some days I might be heading into London for meetings and photo-shoots, others I might be at home in my pjs doing emails and editing videos! But I absolutely love being my own boss and knowing what I put into each day, results in what I get out of it!
How did you set up your blog to run like a business?
It’s tricky because my blog was always my hobby – and still is, so putting a business head on was difficult initially. I have no business experience and I’m still such a novice, but I think the best way to learn is through trial and error. Also you have to put value on your work and know what your time is worth. Knowing your worth is key!
What inspired your posts?
Everything and anything! I often have brainwaves and lightbulb moments for posts at 2am – so I always keep a little notebook beside my bed to jot things down!
Are there are downsides to blogging for business?
Not really! I guess people don’t see the less glamorous ‘admin side’ to the job, but to be honest – I enjoy that side of things too! So really, I can’t complain!
What inspired you to create your own blog events?
I really wanted to meet other like-minded creatives and bloggers in London so started the events in 2013 as a way of getting such people together. The first one was a pizza party with ten bloggers, we had lots of cocktails and chatted the evening way. Over the years, they’ve got bigger in size – and now each event usually has around 200 guests, which is super exciting!
For a day at the office, what would we find in your handbag?
I always carry my phone, a good book (for the train), chewing gum, snacks and a lipstick. My favourite right now is ‘Heaven’ by Bare Minerals, it’s the most gorgeous nude pink shade!
For bloggers who wish to follow in your steps, do you have any tips?
I actually filmed a whole video on this recently [see above] : but to sum up – just be YOU and let your personality shine! It’s going to be your niche and what your future audience will invest in, so don’t be afraid to show it off!
Thank you to Scarlett Dixon to answering my questions!