Looking to become a fashion blogger, a fashion stylist or a fashion influencer? You’ve come to the right place!
“I didn’t start Coco & Vera with the intention of becoming an influencer – in fact, I’m not sure the term “influencer” even existed in 2010!”
If you’re serious about becoming a fashion blogger, and you’re ready to sacrifice your time to be successful, Cee’s story is for you. Read on to know more about her!
What is your name or what should we call you, and how long have you been a stylist/blogger/influencer? Do you remember the year (maybe the day and month, too) that you started?
My name is Cee. I founded my website, Coco & Vera, on June 4, 2010.
Do you have a specific style?
This is a hard question – I’m not sure what I have so much as a colour palette. I’m willing to try almost any garment once, as long as I can get it in black, white or grey. While I gravitate to simple styles, I’m probably not what anyone would call a minimalist…!
Why did you want to become a blogger or an influencer? Was there anything that happened that triggered you to become one? Did you see something or someone online, or was it because of your avid interest for fashion?
I was a blog reader and a fashion enthusiast, looking for a creative outlet, and blogging at the time had little to no start-up costs, so it seemed like a perfect fit. Plus, it allowed me to justify the size of my wardrobe, which has always been large.
How did you start? Did you start with social medias first, then made a site? Or did you start off with a website together with the social medias?
I started my website first, and slowly added social media platforms over time. I started with Twitter first. I was quite late to joining Instagram, but it is my favourite social media platform now.
Which website are you using for your blog (WordPress, Blogspot, etc.)? Do you have a reason as to why you chose this website? If so, what were they?
I started Coco & Vera using Blogger, because this was the simplest website to use. I left blogger after about five years to move to Squarespace, which I really wasn’t a fan of, so I transitioned to WordPress about a year ago – it turned out to be the best decision I’ve ever made!
Which social medias did you use in the beginning? Which one do you think was the most helpful one in terms of reaching your audience? Why did you think that it was the best medium to use?
When I started blogging, reaching an audience was much less about having a presence on social media and much more about visiting other blogs, to comment on posts and interact with the writers of those websites. I built my audience in that way primarily, but have also been active on Twitter for a very long time.
Do you use more social medias now compared to when you were just starting? If so, which social medias have you added?
Absolutely. As I said, I started my site first and then built up social media, starting with just Twitter and Facebook. I use Instagram, Tumblr, Snapchat and YouTube now as well, and those have all been added at different times over the years.
How often do you post on your social medias when you were in the beginning stages? Was there a specific time that you thought was the best to post?
I’ll be honest and admit I knew nothing about social media when I started out – everything has been a learning process for me. It was years before I even considered if there might be times that were better to post on social media than others!
What camera were you using when you started? Did you have a photographer or you took the photos by yourself? Would you be able to compare the quality of the photos from when you were just starting and to how it is now? What were the changes?
My husband is a photographer, so he has always done the photography for my blog – I don’t know if I would have thought to start a blog if I didn’t have a photographer, really. We had a Pentax camera in the beginning, but have been shooting with Nikon for many years now; we currently use a D300S, which I love.
Was there a specific blog post or social media post that made you go “Wow!” because of the amount of likes, follows or interactions it received? What was that post?
While I can’t think of any posts specifically, I will say that I think it is fascinating to see posts that do unexpectedly become very popular on various social media sites, because they are never the ones that I expect – in fact, often, they are ones that I don’t love. But I think sometimes those posts really resonate with people, because they are more authentic.
How was your first year of becoming an influencer? Others have said that the first year is the hardest, for any business in fact. Was there ever a point that you didn’t think it would work? Did you ever get demotivated? If you did, what happened and how did you go through that obstacle?
I didn’t start Coco & Vera with the intention of becoming an influencer – in fact, I’m not sure the term influencer even existed in 2010! To be honest, I still don’t think of myself that way; I just happen to have a serious passion for fashion and I enjoy sharing with like-minded people, connecting with them both online and off. For me, social media is really about that – not about being influential, but about being connective.
As an influencer, there must be a lot of times that you were contacted for a collaboration, do you remember the first time you were sponsored by a brand? Do you remember which brand it was and what it was that you received?
You never forget your first time…! Of course I do remember the first time a brand contacted me about gifting me an item, because I was so flattered. I was contacted by a local brand, Keltie Leanne Designs, and the designer sent me a beautiful pair of earrings. I still have them – and lots of other pieces from her collections, too. We collaborated often over the years and have become good friends.
Receiving that from the brand, how did it make you feel? For many bloggers, that must have been such an achievement! Did you celebrate when it happened or was there anything that you did in particular to celebrate?
I am still always surprised and humbled when a brand contacts me to work on a collaboration. Not all collaborations are the right fit, but I am happy to be considered. With that said, I wouldn’t say that I really celebrate these collaborations specifically, but I have been known to indulge in champagne now and then.
Do you have any advice to the future influencers/bloggers/stylists? Do you have any few words for them that they could keep in their minds to keep them motivated or inspired?
No amount of free clothing and beauty products is worth it if you don’t love what you do – the best advice I can offer is to say that if you start out in this world with the goal of being influential and don’t have a genuine passion for what you’re sharing, or the medium you’re sharing it in, then it’s probably not for you, and that’s okay. Blogging is a huge amount of work, most of which goes unrecognised because it isn’t obvious in the final product, so it is a labour of love.
Finally, do you have a motivational quote that could surely motivate you whenever you are feeling demotivated? If there is, what would that be?
I don’t put a lot of stock in quotes for motivation – although I definitely get enthusiastic about the font quotes are written in, if they are good ones! But in times when I have considered leaving my blog behind, I have always looked back and told myself to remember why I started. It’s always worked so far.
Follow her on:
Bloglovin: Coco and Vera
Website: Coco and Vera
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