#Girlcrush - Ell Duclos

ell duclos

Tell us about yourself and your blog!

My name is Lauren (Ell) and I am the creator of EllDuclos.Blog & Boss Girl Bloggers. I started my journey a little over a year an a half ago (April 2017). I have always had this dream of creating a community for like minded women who wanted to pursue a lifestyle that made them completely happy! I am all about living the “freest” lifestyle! Not only finding financial freedom, but freedom to spend your time how you wish! 

What inspired you to start your own blog?

I was actually going through a dark time in my life, you can read about it here. I was extremely depressed, waiting tables for a living and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get ahead. Financially strapped was an understatement. When you know you are so unhappy that you start contemplating life… that’s when I knew I needed to make a change immediately. I always loved writing when I was in school. SO, I decided to start my blog! It began as a way to express my thoughts and pull myself out of the depression I was in. Little did I know that it would change my life in the best way possible. 

How would you describe your blogging style?

I would say that my style is “REAL”, I am not a “perfect” writer by any means. I write from my heart and I try to be as real as possible. I am not an uptight, grammar police, business professional! I don’t sugar coat anything. I think having your own voice and being REAL with your audience is HUGE. Being relatable is HUGE. You need to keep your audience engaged with your content, otherwise they will get bored of your content quick. Having your own style, personality, and voice is so important as a blogger. 

Can you tell us about your ideal reader?

I would say my ideal reader varies. I write a lot about how to pursue your passion and turn it into a full time career. (Blogging)… I also help other like minded females chase their happiest life. I believe that when your career and passion collide, that’s true happiness. If you think about it, you work a majority of your life… You might as well enjoy what you are doing!! I also write a lot about beauty and lifestyle too! I don’t like to stick to one topic because there are so many things I enjoy writing about! 

ell duclos

How do you structure your days?

You could probably say I am the most unorganized person. I try to be as organized as possible but sometimes I find “winging it” works a lot better for me! I like to wake up, get coffee, and go with the flow. 

Is blogging your profession or hobby?

It’s my profession and hobby! I love blogging but this year I was able to turn it into my full time job! For that I am thankful. 

What has been your most successful blog post?

I would say my most successful blog post is my How I Turned My Blog into a Full Time Career post. 

Describe your writing process from start to finish.

My writing process is pretty basic. When I have ideas I jot them down in my phone notes. Then, I create a rough draft on my phone and transfer it over to my wordpress editor. After, I reread and make finishing touches! I then have to add all necessary links, photos etc. Hit publish and BOOM, there’s my new post! 

Where and how do you work best?

I definitely work best in a quiet atmosphere. Sometimes I will put on some jazz music to get inspired. (don’t know why it inspires me! HAHA) I find that if I feel inspired, I need to act on it immediately. 

What were the first few steps you took to get your blog up and running?

I honestly went out on a whim. I started on wordpress .com and quickly realized I wanted to move to self hosting. I did that, chose a theme that I loved and got to writing. The thing about blogging is, there is a lot to learn!!! If you try to learn it all right away you will drive yourself insane. Just continue to write what you love and learn along the way. You can always go back and make adjustments when needed. 

ell duclos boss girl bloggers

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your blog and attracting an audience?

I definitely think my Facebook group Boss Girl Bloggers was where it all started. Having my group helped me to connect with my audience on a more personal level. Personal connections go a long way when it comes to growing an audience. 

Then I started to get into Pinterest and that helped TREMENDOUSLY. The combination of the two has taken my blog to a whole new level that I am forever grateful for. 

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

I think my biggest challenge so far has been time management. I manage a lot on my own. For example: My 2 Instagram accounts, My Facebook Community, My 2 twitter accounts, My own Pinterest, 5-7 Pinterest clients a month, My own blog and so much more! 

I tend to take on more than I should. I just can’t help myself! I need to practice better time management for sure. I also tend to work ALL the time. I try to take time away but since I love my job so much I can’t help it. 

How did you overcome these challenges?

It’s still a work in progress but I find that making a list at the beginning of the day from most important tasks to least important tasks helps! Then I will set a timer and start working on my first task… When the timer is up I will stop working on the task. If I didn’t finish the task, I put it at the bottom. Then I continue down the list repeating the same process. I find this helps to make sure I am not focusing on social media or a specific task for too long. 

I also try to set a time where I put my computer away and hide my phone so I don’t get caught up in my job. 

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

It can be tough but I find that when I watch certain shows, like Gossip Girl (as weird as that sounds) and play some jazz music, I feel more motivated and inspired… Something about the city really inspires me! I also like to scroll through Pinterest. It’s very motivating and inspiring on there. BUT, there are times where I just need to take a break whether it’s a day or weekend.

ell duclos boss girl bloggers

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

Honestly, I don’t even know who my competitors would be. I like to think I have my own voice and style. It’s really hard because there are tons of people out there who want to take the easy way out. 

Example: My content has been copied and pasted onto other’s sites multiple times. It’s hard when you put in hard work just for people to steal and copy! 

For me, I try not to read other posts that are related to my niche. (I know it sounds unsupportive and strange) BUT, if you read a post you are more likely to feel inspired by that post and you then write your own post that ends up being EXTREMELY similar out of inspiration…This is always a fear of mine so instead of worrying if I may accidentally copying someones content, i’d rather just not read other similar topics all together. 

I always write from the heart. I also tend to story tell and relate my blog posts to my own life. A lot of people love that because it’s more relatable! PLUS - no one can copy real life situations. 

What do you wish you knew when you started your blog?

I wish I knew from the start how beneficial Pinterest is because that has made a SERIOUS difference for me. I also would have self hosted right from the start. AND all the tax/legal jazz would have helped! Taxes really get ya when you have your own business.

What blogging tools/resources could you not work without?

Again, Pinterest & Tailwind! GAME CHANGERS. I also love being self hosted. 

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

My biggest influence has always been my mom. She was a single mom who raised us on her own. My mom always put a roof over our head and food on the table even if that meant working 3 jobs. She really is my rock and best friend. I wouldn’t be the strong independent woman I am today without her! She helped push me to go after my dream of writing and blogging. 

What advice would you give to other bloggers?

My advice would be to have patience. There’s so much info out there it can be overwhelming. You have to remember, what works for one person doesn’t always work for another. If you aren’t patient you will want to give up right away. Blogging success doesn’t happen overnight. 

There are also MANY different ways to achieve blogging success. Always do what works for YOU. On that same note, consistency is key. You need to be consistent with your blog and your strategies if you are wanting to turn it into a career. Just like anything in life, being consistent helps! Can’t stress that enough. Don’t give up if you aren’t seeing results right away. KEEP TRYING.

ell duclos boss girl bloggers

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

I learned that I really can achieve anything I put my mind to. It’s all about how determined I am. I learned that I am more determined than I thought I was. I also learned that blogging full time is A LOT of work! Even if people don’t think it is, but I love every second of it!

Where would you like your blog to be 1 year from now?

I always hope to grow daily. I would love to see my income and blog continue to grow. I also hope to buy my own home soon! Those are my hopes but we shall see! (:

Where can we find you?

Instagram: @ellduclos , @bossgirlbloggers

Twitter: @bgbloggers

Facebook: @ellduclos

Facebook Group: BossGirlBloggers

Pinterest: @EllDuclos

Website: www.ellduclos.blog

Email: bossgirlbloggers@gmail.com

#Girlcrush - Ruth in Revolt

Tell us about yourself and your blog!

ruth in revolt

I’m Ruth, I’m 27 and I live in Aberdeen in the U.K., with my boyfriend, and my cat, Juno. I very rarely act my age - I’m a big kid, or an old lady, and nothing in between. As for my blog, it’s my very own happy space of the internet and one of the things I’m most proud of in my life. It began in April 2018, and has been going from strength to strength ever since.

What inspired you to start your own blog?

I was beginning a journey of treatment for depression and anxiety, but had already started to feel some benefits of it. I no longer felt hopeless or worthless, so I wanted somewhere to channel my positive energy. I wanted to share with others that, hard as it is to reach out and get help for mental illness, it’s worth it.

How would you describe your blogging style?

Uplifting - everything I do and write is with the intention of making myself and others feel a bit happier.

Can you tell us about your ideal reader?

I guess my ideal would be someone who is struggling - either with their blog, as I share blogging tips, or with their mental health because the focus is to make people realise they don’t have to settle for that life. It can get better!

How do you structure your days?

Generally, I create content first thing in the morning (unless my brain inconveniently decides to give me an idea at 11pm), then I’ll spend the early afternoon on social media, before diving in to learning new things in the afternoon. My evenings are mostly set aside for time with my boyfriend.

Is blogging your profession or hobby?

I work on it full time, but sadly don’t have the income to match (yet) so I suppose it’s somewhere in between.

What has been your most successful blog post?

My most successful blog post so far has been 8 Ways To Gain Twitter Followers As A Blogger (https://www.ruthinrevolt.com/twitter-followers)

ruth in revolt

Describe your writing process from start to finish.

An idea pops into my head, I’ll write as much as I can while the idea is there, and then I’ll edit it later. I sometimes leave it a few days before going back to it which really helps me approach it with a new perspective. That’s about it. I have to write when the idea arrives, or I’ve got no chance!

Where and how do you work best?

I work best at my desk with no distractions - which is kind of hard to do these days with social media and YouTube at my fingertips! My desk was originally in my bedroom, but I found it felt like I never really left that room, so it’s now in my living room next to the window and it’s perfect. If my creativity is lacking, I’ll just sit and stare out the window for 10 minutes. It helps me clear my mind and relax, ready to get back into it.

What were the first few steps you took to get your blog up and running?

Research was the big one. Lots and lots of research. The week prior to my blog launching, I must have read hundreds of posts and articles with blogging and social media tips.

The other one was getting my blog to look the way I wanted it to - trawling through lots of free themes. The look of a blog is so important to me, both as a reader and a blogger myself. I tried a free theme for a while, but eventually, I gave in and bought a theme which did everything I wanted it to!

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your blog and attracting an audience?

Twitter, without a doubt. The more I think about this, the more sense it makes. Instagram and Pinterest are very visual platforms, and that’s not my strong point. I can do it and even enjoy it sometimes, but words are what I do best so it’s logical that Twitter would come through for me. I also find it easier to interact with people and make connections on Twitter so I suppose the fact it’s my comfort zone helps along the way, too.

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

Learning to put myself out there and dealing with a lot of interaction. I’m a very reserved person, so laying my thoughts and feelings out there for strangers to read is quite intimidating at times. Being an introvert also makes a lot of socialising exhausting - even if it’s only done online.

ruth in revolt

How did you overcome these challenges?

When it comes to putting myself out there, I simply kept my mission at the front of my mind, and forced myself to do it for the people it could help. I can’t very well make people’s lives brighter by sitting here and waiting for them to find me! I knew I’d have to make the first moves in a lot of cases, and more or less had to accept that. For me, starting small helped. Reaching out to only a couple of people a day and building it up from there.

As for dealing with all the interaction, I’ve learnt to listen to my instincts. For a while, I would push myself to go online every single day because I didn’t want to ignore people, or make them think I’d just disappeared. Then, it reached a point where I wasn’t getting anything else done. I was spending the entire day chatting to others and it was exhausting for me because it’s such a contradiction to my personality. It was killing my creativity which was the whole reason I started to begin with! So, now, I’m not afraid to take time away from it. If I’m feeling overwhelmed, I’ll take a step back from social media, and focus on creating content.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

The first thing I do when things get difficult is mope. I realise that doesn’t sound very productive, but I’ve come to recognise it’s pointless to try and work through it. I can’t get anything done with that “what’s the point?” feeling niggling inside of me. So, I’ll sit in bed, watch Netflix and drink tea. I’ll allow myself to feel sorry for myself for an afternoon, or a day at the most.

But, I won’t allow it to last beyond that. Once that phase has passed, I’ll identify why I’ve been feeling demotivated. Too much time on social media and not taking enough breaks are common reasons. From there, I’ll plan the week ahead with these in mind. So, I’ll reduce my time on social media right down, or add additional breaks in.

Aside from that, I just always make a point of reminding myself of why I started. Ultimately, I wanted to help people. I wanted to put smiles on faces. Lots of people have reached out to tell me I’ve been able to do that for them, and that drives me forward.

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

Personally, I have no idea, so I’m going to base this on what other people have told me. Apparently, I am very down to earth, and people find it surprising that I still go out of my way to help brand new bloggers. I’ll admit, I am much busier than I was at the beginning, but helping those just getting started is something I’ll always be conscious of. I don’t ever want anyone to look at me and feel like I think I’m too good to help anyone.

When I worked in retail, I always kept in mind that the customers were paying my wages. Truth is, blogging isn’t any different. The people who read my blog, follow me on social media and share my work are making things happen for me. I realise I work very hard, but without an audience who supports me the way mine does? I wouldn’t be anywhere.

ruth in revolt

What do you wish you knew when you started your blog?

I wish I’d known how many amazing people are in the blogging community. I had this idea of bloggers being into beauty or travel or parenting, and I was terrified I wouldn’t find my place. However, there are so many wonderful people who are writing about all sorts and there really is a place for everyone.

What blogging tools/resources could you not work without?

Canva for creating my pins and Yoast plugin for keeping me on track with my SEO!

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

Since I started, I’ve had two main inspirations: Amie (www.thecurvaceousvegan.com) and Ell (www.ellduclos.blog).

Amie was among the first people I followed on Twitter. She seemed so lovely, and always managed to reply to everyone. I love her blog because it feels like sitting down for a cup of tea and a chat with her. I’m pretty confident we’d get along great in person!

Ell is probably the blogger I look up to the most. The things she has accomplished in a short space of time are mind-blowing - she has a fantastic Pinterest course, a Facebook group with thousands of members and an incredible blog. She has a heart of gold and has helped me so much since I started. Even though we’re more like friends now, a part of me will always be a fangirl first and think it’s the coolest thing ever when she tweets me!

What advice would you give to other bloggers?

My very least favourite piece of advice in life is “be yourself” but it’s so appropriate when it comes to blogging. It’s easy to be tempted by the idea of copying everyone else, especially when what they’re doing works, but it won’t feel right for you. You won’t attract people who you have a genuine connection with, and I imagine it will just feel lonely. So, stay true to you and your values, and the right people will come into your life.

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

I have two. The first is that I’m not as bad as I think I am. I made a promise to myself when I started blogging that I’d be 100% me (for the reasons I mentioned in the last answer) but I was terrified I’d be rejected. The response I had, though, was the complete opposite. For reasons which I still don’t understand, people really liked me, and it made me wonder if I’d been being unnecessarily harsh to myself for a very long time. Spoiler: I have, and I think a lot of others do the same thing.

The second is that I am a machine when I care about something. I’ve always been one to try my best with anything I do but, before blogging, I’d never really discovered anything I LOVED and wanted to pursue. I’ve never chosen a career, or put much emphasis on it, but blogging often feels like it’s what I’m supposed to do. It seemed to start a fire inside of me and I learnt about a different, driven side of myself that hadn’t been uncovered before.

ruth in revolt

Where would you like your blog to be 1 year from now?

First and foremost, I want it to still be a place where people go for a little bit of sunshine in their lives. I’d sooner walk away from it than see it evolve into anything else. There’s too much misery in the world and on the internet, so I want to retain that “ray of light” aspect, as much as possible. I’d like to still be providing blogging help for those who need it. And, of course, ideally, I’d like to be earning a full time income from my blog to reflect the time and effort I put into it. We’ll see what happens!

Where can we find you?

Instagram: @ruthinrevolt

Twitter: @ruthinrevolt

Facebook: @ruthinrevolt

Pinterest: @ruthinrevolt

Website: www.ruthinrevolt.com

Email: hello@ruthinrevolt.com

#Girlcrush - Jenn Barajas

#Girlcrush - Jenn Barajas

Jenn Barajas is an accountant turned fashion designer. She is the mama of two boys and she found a way to focus on her children and build a career at the same time! Her clothing brand, Desert Gloss, is a fun collection of t-shirts for adults and kids who love tacos, margaritas, puns, and parenting jokes! But she also creates custom designs, and for Girlcrush readers, Desert Gloss is offering 25% off with the code GIRLCRUSH! 

Read More

#Girlcrush - Jessica Alexis

MEET JESS!

Jessica started her blog, The Trendy Voyager back in 2016 as a way to express creativity and showcase her travels.

A year and a half later, she’s become a total #girlboss! Jess had become a part of many blogger communities, but noticed that there were no communities to connect with other Latina bloggers. So she created one! 

jessica alexis

Tell us about yourself and your business!

I am a NYC-based Latina Lifestyle Blogger. I started blogging two years ago and my content was focused around traveling and fashion. Throughout my blogging journey, I realized that there weren't many platform that I could relate to that spoke to me as a Latina. I wanted to connect with other Latinas and also find a place to talk about my challenges being a Latina Blogger.

While there are a few groups out there for Latinas, I felt it was too corporate and didn't feel comfortable in those groups. Therefore I decided to start my own group geared towards Latina Bloggers in 2017. The Latina Blogger Network is a group that is focused on creating more opportunities for Latinas in blogging and business through community, connection and empowerment. The group quickly started to grow once I decided to take the leap and post regularly in the Facebook group. 

What inspired you to start your own business?

What inspires me is knowing that I am making a difference in the lives of others. Seeing the girls support each other and relate to each other's content in the group. I feel inspired by their stories and love to see them support each other in the group. 

Is this your full time job?

No this is not my full-time job, but being able to do something I love is the goal.

How do you structure your days?

I work Mon-Fri, 8am-5pm and so I schedule my days using my Happiness Planner. Sundays are my days to knock out as many to-do's as I can for the week. This way, when I get home after work, I can focus more on writing a blog post, editing a video etc. Saturdays and Sundays are my days to get content and schedule posts. Whereas Mon-Fri I am having conference calls with other bloggers in the group at night. 

Where and how do you work best?

I work best from my beauty room. It's a space I renovated in my parents house with minimalist vibes with a touch of glamour. It's filled with positive quote decals and things that make me feel like Beyonce. I work best when my mind is at peace. Nothing begins until I have my Cafecito bumping to Ozuna or listening to a podcast like The Model Health Show. 

Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?

I am not currently running giveaways or contests at the moment, but I certainly will very soon.

Where is your business based?

My business is based in New York - with the goal of branching out to different cities.

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

One day, I decided to start a group. With no experience other than being in different groups, I created an account on Facebook and ran with it. It took me awhile to learn the ropes and figure out how I was going to manage it. Then I create an Instagram page called Boss Chicas Global. And now, I am working on building the website, hosting meetups and events. 

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and attracting new customers?

Honestly, asking questions has been the best tool for my business. I ask my members all the time for their opinions, and what they would want in a group for Latinas. This is for them and I want it to speak to them. Another thing is posting consistently and engaging with my audience. It's all about providing value but also having that value given to you. You don't always want to be the one delivering information - you have to listen to your audience as well. 

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

When I first started this group, I had no idea how I was going to get the engagement I wanted. I wasn't posting as much and I didn't really have a strategy. I was hoping girls would just start posting and engaging with each other.

How did you overcome these challenges?

I overcame this by picking one day to schedule posts ahead and organize the content for the week ahead of time. I posted polls asking them what they wanted in a group, surveys etc. I started to host livestream sessions once a week with a different guest and that really increased interest in the group.

How do you keep motivated through tough times?

You know, staying motivated is something I struggled with. Especially at the beginning when I didn't know what I was doing and I had my own personal problems going on at work at the same time. What kept me going is the comments I received from my girls in the FB group. Seeing them start to engage more, and asking them if this was valuable to them - then seeing they really loved the group kept me from closing down the platform all together. Knowing that I am impacting others' lives in a positive way is what has kept me going. I tell myself all the time - you started this and you're going to finish it. You've already come too far to give up now. 

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

I distinguish myself from my competitors by being truthfully and organically me as I can be. I am honest with my audience in the rawest way and they appreciate that. There's too many people out there trying to do the same thing - I am just going to be me and that's ok. It's ok to be different. In fact, people appreciate you more when you can be authentic and be honest.

What is the best advice you have received recently?

I recently read "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck" and in the book the author says, if you try something and it doesn't work out - you fail. If you don't try something, you'll never know what could have been so you'll also fail. So why not try it anyway ? There's so much potential to gain. 

jessica alexis

What do you wish you had known when you started your business?

When I started, I wish I had someone to push me to keep going or someone to steer me in the right direction. Sometimes you need support to get you going and keep you from giving up. 

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

My biggest influence has been @DianaChantel. She's a Dominican blogger I've been following for the last 5 years. I watched her start by making YouTube videos from her bathroom in the Bronx with no money, to then being so successful moving over to Los Angeles and collaborating with the biggest brands in the beauty industry. She's been a huge inspiration to my work and I hope to meet/work with her someday. 

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

My advice is, keep doing you boo. You got this. Don't be afraid to keep going. It's ok to have your day job and start your side hustle. Being an entrepreneur isn't always quitting your day job and trying to make ends meet. If you're not happy with the way your life is going, change it. Do something on the side that you love and when you're ready make that your full time job. There are so many tools out there for you to learn that don't cost any money - go get it. 

What business tools/resources could you not work without?

I cannot work without Hootsuite and the Preview App. The fact that I can schedule my posts and plan out my feed is such a big help for me. I also like Evernote for drafting posts and Google Analytics.

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

I've learned that people actually want to know about my life. They are super interested in what I am doing, how I'm taking care of myself and actually want to see more of me rather than me not showing my face with my voice in the background.

Where would you like your business to be 5 years from now?

I  see my business as my full-time job in 5 years. Thats the goal - to be able to do what I truly love as my job.

Where can we find you?

Instagram: thetrendyvoyager & bosschicasglobal

Twitter: trendyvoyager1 

Facebook: thetrendyvoyager

Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1925499701070514/

Pinterest: trendyvoyagerxo

Websites: www.thetrendyvoyager.com & www.bosschicasglobal.com (coming soon)

Email: contact@thetrendyvoyager.com & hola@bosschicasglobal.com (coming soon) 

#Girlcrush - Ashley Diana

Ashley diana

I am very excited about this #girlcrush interview because it is with my good friend Ashley Diana! Ashley has played such an important role in my personal life and business. I have learned so much from her, not only from her influencer course and amazing blog posts but also from long talks at happy hour and from running events about entrepreneurship and social media with her!

After reading this interview, I know you'll love her as much as I do! 

Tell us about yourself and your blog!

I am a wellness, beauty blogger, and business mentor located in Las Vegas. My blog shares stories, recipes, & lifestyle hacks on how to live a happier and more successful life. I help other women who want to build a brand around their passion and teach how to skip the stumbling blocks. Empowering women is my mantra for sure. :)

What inspired you to start your own blog?

My blog has REALLY evolved since I first started. I actually started as a food blog as I shared my plant based heath journey. I wanted to share with others how they could heal their body and be fit for life with a healthy diet, and to be honest, I wanted a blog so that I could have a business from anywhere in the world. Location freedom & financial freedom were super important to me, and I knew I could make it happen through my blog.

How would you describe your blogging style?

I’m pretty damn real. I’ve shared everything from my divorce, to my surprise pregnancy, and my breakup with my child’s father shortly after her birth (with lot’s of beauty, recipes, and wellness in between). I think it’s crucial to share realness online because so many people get caught up in the “perfect lives” of social media stars, and it’s just not how it actually is! The truth is that everyone has a story, and everyone has fucked up parts of their story. Through my blog, I want women to know that they are supported, they are worthy, they are not alone, and they don’t need to think small!

ashley-diana-las-vegas-instagram-influencer-speaker-fucking-beautiful.jpg

Can you tell us about your ideal reader?

Hip mom with a entrepreneurial mindset who loves taking care of her body, mind, and family. 

How do you structure your days?

Theming. We would get nothing accomplished if our days weren’t themed. Here is a breakdown of how we schedule our days. Basically I work 4 & 1/2 full days and the rest are family / self-care days. MON: Coaching Calls TUES: blog photos WED: relationship THURS: blog content FRI: Coaching Calls Sat: planning / self care SUN: family day

Ashley diana

Is blogging your profession or hobby?

Both! :) 

What has been your most successful blog post?

The Break Up Post. It’s very powerful and thought provoking, and it helped lots of women!

Describe your writing process from start to finish.

I actually have a really hard time getting started writing (and working in general lol!). I have to really get into my “zen” - candles, essential oils diffusing, buddha bar music playing. Alex makes fun of me bc he says I can’t work unless the environment is perfect, but whatever, I do what I want. 

Where and how do you work best?

I work best at home in my bed lol! I actually do have a huge office, but when I’m writing for a long period of time, I like to get snuggly in my bed!

What were the first few steps you took to get your blog up and running?

Oh Lordy, it took me YEARS to figure out what the heck to do. I messed up so much in the beginning. I would have no idea where to start bc it would be a novel! That’s actually why I created my Infinite Influence program - I wanted to give people a clear path to blog success and be sure they didn’t make the time consuming and expensive mistakes I did. 

In a nutshell, to get started I had a girlfriend help me create my first free Wordpress site, and she taught me how to put affiliate links in my blog posts. I also took a photography class so I could learn how to use my Canon camera. I had a professional photo shoot before launching my blog so that I had nice photos of myself on the site too. 

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your blog and attracting an audience?

Cross promotion and diversifying my following. For example, on our podcast we ask people to leave a comment on a certain Instagram post, or in our newsletter, we announce a giveaway but it leads to growth on another platform. It’s just guides people from one place to another, and I think that’s important.

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

My biggest challenge was that I completely changed directions and rebranded from a vegan food blog to a lifestyle blog and it wasn’t easy to say the least. I don’t recommend it haha. 

Ashley diana

How did you overcome these challenges?

Day to day it’s about the progress not perfection. I don’t get caught up in comparing myself to other influencers and bloggers. To be honest, I really don’t give AF, and comparing yourself only holds you back. I just do my thang and move forward. Best advice I could give anyone is to have laser focus and just do it.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

I REEEEALLY like champagne. 

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

Tha’ts a good question because I don’t think I fit in with a lot of other influencers. I think that’s good and bad! I’m not one of those “my life is perfect” influencers, I’m not a health-only blogger, and I’m not a foodie blogger anymore. It’s interesting because I share natural beauty and wellness advice, yet I’m pretty glam, so people think I should be hippie style, but that’s just not me. I guess I would say what sets me apart is that I’m a pink haired, business boss with a #Lilygoat who comes from a place of massively supporting other women to live their passion.

What do you wish you knew when you started your blog?

Oh girlfriend, where do I even begin?! I think the thing I wish I had known the most, was to have found a successful mentor. Guidance is key - and not just from anyone. You need coaching and mentorship from someone who knows how to build brands and has been successful in modern online world. 

What blogging tools/resources could you not work without?

I can’t live without Darkroom editing app. That’s it.

Ashley diana

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

My biggest influence is my daughter. I push myself because I want to give her an incredible life, and when she’s older I want to be able to have the flexibility to spend as much time with her as possible. Time is our most valuable asset, and I work hard now in order to to buy back my time. 

What advice would you give to other bloggers?

Don’t play a guessing game, and don’t rely on Instagram alone to be everything for you. Take Infinite Influence (shameless plug lol), have a badass mentor (Katie and/or myself hehe), and start building your online presence as a business. Find ways to authentically monetize immediately, and ALWAYS provide MASSIVE value. People will never care about you or what you do if you aren’t providing them value. If someone takes the time to visit your Instagram or blog, make it worth their time!!!

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

People don’t buy WHAT you do, they buy WHY you do it. 

Think about that, and let that sink in. :) Some of you will “get it.” That’s the most valuable business advice I’ve ever been given. 

For tactical advice: DIVERSIFY your following. Build your email list form DAY ONE.

Ashley diana

Where would you like your blog to be 1 year from now?

Who cares, I’ll be on a 1000 ft yacht in the Mediterranean with no Wifi. LOL LOL

Where can we find you?

Instagram: @missashleydiana

Facebook: @missasheydiana

Facebook Group: Infinite Infuence

Pinterest: @missashleydiana

Websitewww.ashleydiana.com

Emailashley@ashleydiana.com

#Girlcrush - Danielle Cevallos

 
danielle Cevallos

Tell us about yourself and your business!

My name is Danielle and I am the owner of Basic Girl Fit and Basic Girl Social Media!

What inspired you to start your own business?

I started a blog when we adopted our daughters and loved connecting with others online. I kind of ended up going down the rabbit hole of podcasts, webinars and online business trainings. I’ve played around for years with different things and feel like I’ve finally settled in and found my groove!

Is this your full time job?

No, not yet! I am a full-time English teacher and cheer leading coach!

How do you structure your days?

I work all day, coach in the afternoons, then head home, eat with the family and work for a few hours before bed. I do lots of work on the weekends as well!

Where and how do you work best?

I work best at home, in the middle of everything. I put my headphones in, listen to some music, drink all the coffee and try to get stuff done! 

Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?

They can use the code GIRLCRUSH for 15% off of their first order at basicgirlfit.com and get $100 off my Launch Package at basicgirlsocialmedia.com (perfect for coaches or shop owners getting ready to launch a program or product)

Where is your business based?

Right outside of Nashville, TN

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

I worked with someone to set up my online store, and then set up the website for my social media biz myself. I did some market research for both, threw some teasers out into a few FB groups to see if there would be any interest in what I was thinking, then dove right in. 

30724717_10156407228583453_433747673481216000_n.jpg

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and attracting new customers?

Since both of my businesses are so new, I am still growing everything. For my online shop, I’ve used Pinterest, IG and Google Ad Words. For my social media biz, I have really only used Instagram and networking in Facebook groups! Both of my businesses are less than 3 months old though, so I am still figuring this part out!!

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

Learning about running product based business - after doing service based businesses for so long was a challenge. Also, building EVERYTHING from scratch and changing gears was also a bit of a challenge! I am sure there will be more ahead, but I am still pretty new to these two ventures, so we shall see!

How did you overcome these challenges?

Research and hustle. I just kept learning, trying things, adjusting and working! I don’t think there is any type of magical way to move past challenges. You just need to problem solve, adjust and keep going!

How do you keep motivated through tough times?

My fitness apparel shop has a charitable focus: scholarships for young girls wanting to start a business. I am thinking a portion of my social media earnings will go towards the same. Having that as my “why” is critical to keeping me focused and hustling. 

danielle cevallos

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

I am still working on ways to do this well - but I think that for my social media biz, I am all about building relationships instead of just growing a following. I am also focusing on helping people with their launches - which is a slightly different niche than most social media managers. 

What is the best advice you have received recently?

Be patient, keep providing value and slowly you will see things take off. 

What do you wish you had known when you started your business?

I am still just starting…so ask me again in year :) 

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

Gary Vaynerchuk puts out such amazing content - so he has been a huge influence on how I’ve done business. I also admire Jasmine Star and Jenna Kutcher and the way they’ve build community around their businesses. 

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

Build relationships. Stop chasing dollars. Play the long game and be patient. Give more than you take and surround yourself with awesome people. 

What business tools/resources could you not work without?

PLANN, PayPal (I know - I’m boring, but seriously), Tailwind and Shopify. 

Where would you like your business to be 5 years from now?

I would love be running these businesses full-time 5 years from now, and able to travel with my husband! I would love for them to generate enough income to provide 5 scholarships a year for young women wanting to start their own business.

30729377_10156407259338453_5097381080835555328_n.jpg

Where can we find you?

        Instagram: @shopbasicgirlfit, @basicgirlsocial

        Twitter: @basicgirlfit

        Facebook: Basic Girl Social Media

        Pinterest: @shopbasicgirlfit

        Website: www.basicgirlsocialmedia.com  www.basicgirlfit.com

        Email: basicgirlsocial@gmail.com

 

#Girlcrush - Chevonne Thomas

 
IMG_6226.JPG

Tell us about yourself and your blog!

My name is Chevonne and I am new to the blogging world. I am currently experimenting with building my followers on instagram with the hopes of starting up an actual website. I am a planner and I have mixed followers that I would like to cater to. My esthetic of my page is clean, planning and lifestyle photos. 

What inspired you to start your own blog?

Wanting to share my love of planning 

How would you describe your blogging style?

Organizational tips for a more organized life

Can you tell us about your ideal reader?

Planners, bloggers, fashion and home décor lovers

How do you structure your days?

Morning photo of what’s on my desk, occasionally an outfit pic and office décor

Is blogging your profession or hobby?

IMG_7140.JPG

Hobby

What has been your most successful blog post?

Outfit and office 

Describe your writing process from start to finish.

Not much writing as I am just starting out

Where and how do you work best?

In my home office

What were the first few steps you took to get your blog up and running?

I have a name in mind and currently researching domains

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your blog and attracting an audience?

Engagement on other posts 

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

Getting exposure

IMG_7153.JPG

How did you overcome these challenges?

Interacting with followers and following bloggers with a good fan base

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

Look at my photos on my page and read comments 

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

People love what I post, my pictures are pretty good and I think if I get a little more exposure I will get more followers

What do you wish you knew when you started your blog?

Working on my writing process

What blogging tools/resources could you not work without?

My laptop

photo.jpg

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

Misstrenchcoat, Belinda Selene

What advice would you give to other bloggers?

Hang in there ☺

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

People are very particular when it comes to liking and commenting on your photos. 

Where would you like your blog to be 1 year from now?

In the first year I would like 100 subscribers

Where can we find you?

Instagram: @glamchevyplans

Facebook @ChevonneThomas

Website: Coming Soon

Email: awellplannedlife1@gmail.com

 

#Girlcrush - Lauren Romero

 
Facetune_19-02-2018-11-01-23.JPG

Tell us about yourself and your business! 

I’m Lauren Romero, 25, business owner, as some would call, the “Social Media Doctor”. I am from San Diego, CA, and currently live in Scottsdale, AZ with my 1-year-old Yorkie, Molly! I started my social media consulting and management business last year, 2017. My clients mainly consist of Real Estate Agents and people in that industry. It all started because I was working as a Marketing Manager at a mortgage company and EVERYONE kept asking to pay me to manage their pages. So now I do that and teach classes on Social Media all over Arizona and now the United States. 

What inspired you to start your own business?

I always wanted to eventually have my own company so I finally thought what’s the point of waiting until I’m older to have my own business when I can do it right now! So, I did! Everyone in my family has owned their own business at one point or another. 

Is this your full-time job? 

I work from home as the Social Media Director for American Title Service Agency in Scottsdale, Arizona. I do this as well. Social Media management is really full time in itself so I am always working on all clients 24-7. 

How do you structure your days?

I use my content planner to organize my postings and schedule. I normally wake up at around 6 am, go for a walk with my dog, eat breakfast and start my day. I normally post my first Instagram picture around 9 am and second at 8 pm, somewhere in between, I’ll teach a class or two, have a few meetings, take a break from about 4 pm – 6 pm and then start up again with a glass of wine. That’s when I do all my creative work.  

IMG_5487.JPG

Where and how do you work best?

I work from home so I can really work anywhere, it’s nice being able to travel often and work from the beach, that’s probably my favorite. I work best with a glass of wine when I want to be creative and in pure silence. Not even music! 

Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about? 

My latest contest; I’m giving away to 2 winners 6 custom photos for Instagram story highlight covers. Must be following me @LaurenTayRomero on Instagram and tag 2 friends in my last post with the comment “done”. Winner will be announced on my IG story in April. 

IMG_8183 2.jpg

Where is your business based?

Arizona / California 

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?  

My very first client forcing me get my LLC so he could officially pay me! After that, I was good to go and all of my clients were happy they could actually start working with me. I had at least 10 people waiting for me to get my LLC done. 

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and attracting new customers? 

Posting consistently. I have a big following on Instagram and Facebook and in my Real Estate industry in Arizona and it all really happened in about 2 years, a lot of people know who I am because I’m all over Social Media. I always tell my clients consistency is key and it really is, it works for me, I don’t even run any ADs yet.   

What have been your biggest challenges so far? 

Learning how to say NO to people ☺ 

How did you overcome these challenges? 

By doing some soul searching and learning to stand up for myself. 

Facetune 5.JPG

How do you keep motivated through tough times?

I keep motivated by always staying positive, I never let myself get down on anything because there will always be adversity.   

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

I believe in myself and my abilities, I don’t ever worry about my competitors. Rather than focusing on others, I’d rather concentrate my time into perfecting my craft. 

What is the best advice you have received recently?

Life is short, follow your dreams, and put them into action. 

What do you wish you had known when you started your business?

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get started and set up, there’s a lot of inexpensive or even free resources and DO MORE LIVE VIDEOS! 

Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?

My nana and papa, when they first met each other years and years ago, they had a common goal to make a million dollars by a certain age and they did it.  They started and ran a huge company and sold it eventually and retired young. Now they travel the world and couldn’t be more in love and happy. I admire their hard work, dedication, and persistence. They push me to be the best I can be! 

haute-stock-photography-berry-4 2.JPG

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

Don’t give up and youtube everything, if there’s something you don't know how to do, teach yourself, youtube it, I promise you’ll find your answer. 

What business tools/resources could you not work without?

Facetune_01-03-2018-16-52-55.JPG

iPhone apps: Over, Concept Office, VSCO cam, Canva 

Stock image sites: Hautestock, Social Curator, Creative Market

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

I can do anything I set my mind to, I’m actually a pretty good teacher and I HATE public speaking, practice makes perfect. 

Where would you like your business to be 5 years from now?

I would like to have other people working for me, and traveling the world speaking at conferences and training small businesses, or individuals on branding, marketing strategy, and content building. 

Where can we find you?

        Instagram: @LaurenTayRomero

        Twitter: @LaurenTayRomero

        Facebook: @LaurenTayRomero

        Facebook Group: AZ’s Social Media Real Estate Rockstars

        Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/laurenromerosocialmedia/

        Website: www.laurenromerosocialmedia.com

        Email: laurenromero.socialmedia@gmail.com