I get asked for advice on how to start a fashion blog all the time. It mostly goes like this: “hmmm, I’ve always wanted to start a blog…how would I do that?” No lie, this almost always is that exact same line (lol). And my usual reply is, “Go for it! If you have any questions feel free to reach out.” And I mean it sincerely. I’m very open about helping others and growing together. But like any industry, the fashion blogging world can be quite catty and has it’s ugly side. So, it can be scary to ask other fashion bloggers for advice. But not to fear, that’s why I’m here!
I dedicate this post to all my fellow fashionistas who have ever thought of starting a fashion blog. Welcome to fashion blogging 101. Follow these steps to get you started!
8 Tips for Starting a Fashion Blog…
- Find your voice aka your “niche.” For example, shoes would be a niche. Let’s say you love shoes. Your target audience will be shoe lovers. Make sense? But what kind of shoes? Maybe it’s trendy heels. Now our target audience is most likely women, between 18-40 who love heels and can afford to buy the ones you share. You don’t want to post pictures of Air Jordans or Aresoles on this type of site because it would confuse your readers. Remember, you want to gain a following of readers that are into your topics. You want to keep them interested and engaged. You will not grow without that. If you don’t have a niche, take the time to think about this. You don’t want a blog that’s random (unless you are discussing something like trending topics) because you will not really have a target audience to work with. My blog covers fashion, beauty and lifestyle. You may want to cover more than one area of your interest and that’s ok, too. Just keep it relevant and limit how much stuff you cover.
- Choose a Blog Name. This is one of the hardest things to do. When I first started blogging, I named my blog “Lillie’s World.” It was under that name for almost four months until I decided I need something different. At the time, I had recently just returned back to New Jersey from living in FL for almost a year. I was extremely homesick and fashion deprived. I needed to be close to a city, close to fashion, events- and I terribly missed my old dirty Jersey! After writing lists, scratching words, I finally put the two together and came up with JerseyFashionista. So that’s my story in a nutshell. You can read more about me here. To start, make a list and ask 5 of your closest and even not closet- it can be a total stranger which is even better- to vote for their favorite one. You want something catchy, easy to remember and of course, easy to pronounce. And please try to keep it short- personally, if I can’t remember the name of a blog, I won’t even bother.
- Choose a platform. Blogger, Tumbler, WordPress, Weebly…. There are lots to choose from. If you want to go pro, WordPress.com is the way to go. If you’re in the begining stages and unsure of how serious you want to be about blogging, start with something free and user friendly. I used to have Blogger which I really liked and I had a lot of activity on there. When I did the switch to WordPress it did make a difference in appearance and professionalism but I lost my Google followers on the sidebar from blogger and it took more time to get noticed on here. Basically, choose what you feel more comfortable with.
- Choose a theme. Less is more. Choose a theme that’s easy on the eyes and not too busy. Think about successful websites. Facebook, for example uses one of the most simple designs and look how HUGE they are! Get a free theme to start off and then choose one you like. Try searching on sites like themeforest, for example. A theme will cost you anywhere from free to maybe $600. If you’re serious about blogging, it’s just like a business. You will need money to invest from time to time. And eventually, you will need to even do taxes.
- Buy your domain, get hosting. You have a great name and you’ve decided to stick to it. Your next step will be to buy your domain before someone else likes it too and decides to buy it. Domains can go for $10 and up (unless you get a deal!). I use HostGator which has awesome prices and packages.
- Invest in a decent camera. Don’t rely on your friend Joe who has a great camera to come take your outfit pictures, you need your own camera. Or if you cannot buy a camera right now, a good smart phone will do. Just remember to have good lighting and composition. Also remember, when using cel phone photos, email them to yourself and choose the “actual size” to get the best resolution. A blog with small grainy pictures is NO GOOD. Try apps like Afterlight, Piclab, and TimerCamera or VSCO to help you with edits, enhancements and taking pictures.
- Set up your social media. Bloggers rely on social media to grow their readership and following. You can schedule posts on most which makes it easier or you can do it one by one. With Twitter, Facebook, Pintrest, Google +, and Instagram,the social media marketing is a job in itself. Be prepared to dedicate some time to it. Focus on branding yourself through social media. Promote posts, post behind the scenes pictures, peeks to your outfit post, giveaways; etc. Do not post things that are irrelevant.
- Make a schedule. The best way to keep up with your blog is by scheduling your blog time. You do not have to blog every day. Set your schedule and stick to it. Here’s an example:
This is an example of my ideal schedule but it doesn’t always happen this way. Sometimes there are press events to attend, blogger collabs, meet ups, and networking events as well. If you can stick to something like this then kudos to you! The truth is, once you start your blog and are passionate about it, all you can do it think about it. And you will most likely spend way more time on it but it won’t feel that way because you love it and it’s a part of you. Also, keep in mind that in order for your social media following to grow, you will need to dedicate time to it. Time+ quality content + consistency = more followers.
Some fashion blogging tips:
- Follow other blogs
- Network with other bloggers
- Join blogging groups
- Invest in a photographer or a good camera and take a basic photography class
- Take a WordPress class or watch videos to get familiar with it
- Get business cards made
- Write guest posts for other websites- don’t forget to proofread!
- Write your little heart out and simply enjoy your new title: Fashion Blogger
I hope you enjoyed this post and found it helpful to get you started. If you start your blog, let me know! Post your links below so we can follow eachother. And feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Happy Blogging 🙂