26 July, 2016

Bloggin' on a Budget | The Pressure of Blogging and Spending

how bloggers afford shopping and make money
I was recently having a conversation with a friend about my blog - specifically about how I felt a bit stressed out and some pressure to have the latest and greatest products in beauty and fashion, go on trips, and "invest" in situations that would allow me to create interesting content. 

As a blogger, we have to keep up with what's trending, pay attention to popular searches, sales, new launches, and make sure that our blog is up-to-date with SEO keywords.  This can often lead to me feeling like I need to drop big bucks in order to have pieces to feature and to make sure I'm staying in the loop.

Many times we're blinded by more well known, more "successful" bloggers and content creators.  I'd be lying if I said I never compare myself to others jet setting to Greece, eating lavish dinners, and wearing beautiful designer pieces that would put me into debt.  But here's where we need to take a step back: Everyone's journey is different, and we cannot compare our point A, B, or C to someone else's point Y or Z.  Success arrives at different times for different people, but the common denominators are hard work and creativity.

When I start to feel frustrated and pressure to over-spend out of my budget, I talk to my friends and family about ways to get creative with my content.  I never want readers to look at my blog as an unrealistic lifestyle, because trust me, the struggle is real.  I just recently started to "splurge" on nicer pieces for my wardrobe, handbags, and realized that Forever 21 clothing isn't bound to last forever.  But don't get it twisted, I will always find affordable, budget-friendly pieces to incorporate into my wardrobe and my blog posts!

A few ways to keep your content relevant while trying to save some coins:

Stay up-to-date with online sales by subscribing to your favorite retailers: You don't need to actually purchase anything here.  If you're creating a post about your favorite coats for the Fall, search for a range of pieces and create a collage or board to share.  You can still link to the pieces and monetize your links, put out quality content, and engage your readers.

Use your friends: Maybe your friend has an awesome trendy or vintage piece.  Either ask to feature it in a post, style it, or have a fun coffee date and girls day and snap some photos of her to share too.

Repurpose older content: Don't go overboard with sharing old content, and don't copy and paste.  But there's nothing wrong with taking a post you created months to a year ago and repurposing some older photos or posting a throwback.  Chances are you've gained new readers or subscribers since then and it will be new to them!

Apply for a program like RewardStyle or ShopStyle Collective: Chances are you've heard of these if you're a blogger, or you recognize the name from links you've clicked.  Both RewardStyle and ShopStyle offer widgets that are extremely easy to create and add to your blog and your new posts.  There are tons of different options to choose from, and you don't need to spend a dime to feature products in them.  They'll send you alerts for big sales (ahem, Nordstrom Sale happening now), and they'll provide their best tips, analytics, and SEO recommendations.

Let me know if you've felt this pressure, and leave your best tips to get creative in the comments.
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