Blogging Tips and Tricks

In the past 2 1/2 years running Dear Serendipity, I've received many questions from both old and new friends alike re: running a blog. Many people throw around "I want to start a blog" like it's "I need to drop off my dry cleaning today", but in actuality it's a full-time job. Between responding to e-mails 24/7 (not just from 9-5 like a day job!), writing and editing content for posts, taking photos, planning outfits and research (the most fun part!), it easily turns into a full-time job. Here are some tips and tricks for either those of you wanting to start a blog or those of you who are just getting started. I hope they're helpful! 1. Stay consistent. You need to decide early on what you want your look to be, the vibe you want readers to get when they're on your site, things as detailed as fonts you love and a color-scheme and the voice you're going to use while writing. It throws readers off if one day your post is extremely casual and conversational but the next is as formal as a thesis paper. If you decide these things early on, it will save you a lot of headaches later on.

2. Use only high quality images. This is honestly the key -- you can be a small-time fashion blogger but if you have high quality images, people are going to think you've got your shit together in a big way.

3. Prepare to work your butt off. I think many people think fashion blogging is posting pretty pictures and shopping all day. If you think that's what blogging is about, you should spend a day with a fashion blogger. It's constantly challenging and hard work, but it's also a hugely rewarding experience.

4. Set boundaries. When you have an iPhone in your hand, iPad in your purse and MacBook on your desk and you work on your own time, it can be really hard to unplug and put down the devices. I'm definitely guilty of responding to e-mails at 11 o'clock at night in bed, instagramming at meals and surfing my favorite blogs at work. But implementing boundaries and saying "phones off at dinner" and "blogging ends at 5 PM" will help keep you sane. Plus, very few e-mails are actually that important that they need to be responded to right away.

5. Don't be afraid to reach out. Most likely, you aren't going to get offers from huge companies to collaborate or send you clothes the first month of fashion blogging. If you don't have any experience collaborating with brands, no huge name is just going to reach out and send you fabulous things. But, since you have to start somewhere, reach out to brands about collaborating and be honest about what you can offer them (this is where #6&7 come in -- building a readership).

6. Build a great social media presence. Most of the success that I've had blogging comes about through Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest. I love finding new brands on social media, reaching out to companies I love and building relationships. Prepare to spend time creating and cultivating your social media accounts. Posting consistently on these sites and following new people is a great way to build your following.

7. Build relationships. Fashion blogging isn't just about work and collaborating with great brands, it's also about building relationships with fellow bloggers. Tweeting at bloggers you love, leaving comments on favorite posts and liking or retweeting things is a great way to build those relationships.

I hope these help! If you ever have any specific questions, feel free to contact me.