As I looked around the room at the We Are Thirty Plus Blog Awards this week, I found myself looking at a whole host of amazingly talented writers. Each one I knew, I knew them because of not only their blog, but what their blog was known for. There was the chick who blogs about high street fashion with the A* photography skills, the gal whose social media is so consistent and so ‘her’, the one I go to for her straight up, no nonsense, beauty reviews and the woman whose nails are always as beautiful as she is. Each of these women embody a brand for me. They are recognisable by their faces, domain names, social media handles and their blog ethos.
Then I looked at myself. What am I known for? I’ve been told that people visit my blog because of my voice. My writing style is unique because it’s 100% me. I don’t hide behind words like ‘swatch’ or ‘pigment’ and you’ll never hear me utter a sentence about the cut of culottes. You will hear me drop 14,000 F-Bombs and talk openly about promiscuity and penises however. So does this mean I’m not a ‘brand’? Because when it comes down to it, what am I selling?
On a recent #gbloggers Twitter chat (Friday 7-8) , lots of bloggers defined a ‘brand’ as the voice behind the blog. Whereas others said that the ‘brand’ is what the blog is selling. Either, the blogger themselves are the brand, where everything they do and write represents their blog’s ethos OR the brand is the image or product the blogger is trying to sell.
If being a ‘brand’ is the latter then I can’t class me and my blog as a brand because I’m not selling dating apps or vaginas and that’s what I seem to be writing most about lately. However if my brand is me, then I think I’m doing it pretty well.
If you look at my Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and blog, there is no gloss. Sure I filter everything to death because HA INSECURITIES but everything is me, what I’m doing, who I’m seeing and occasionally who I’m wanting to avoid for the rest of my life. If a brand is about being consistent across all platforms then I think I can confidently say that me, Vix Meldrew, is a brand.
As a brand, will I ever be commercially successful if I’m not selling something though? That’s something I’ve thought more of recently. Most bloggers started their blogs as a way to showcase their thoughts and to find their voice. If they photograph nicely in outfits or can flatlay like a pro, they might eventually be sent products to review and perhaps even be sponsored to write posts, once their following is big enough. But what about me? I don’t review beauty products. I’ve tried and I just don’t feel like my voice translates well. I steer clear of fashion posts because I’m too poor to buy clothes and I don’t have an awesome photographer that’s going to make me look like a cloud of perfection. It’s just not what my brand is. So how can a ‘brand’ like mine ever turn this hobby into a money spinner? You tell me! But for now, it’s not what’s important to me.
Do I have ideas for how I can write funny and relatable posts that can also showcase other brands? Sure! Do they listen to my ideas? Not yet. Being commercial starts with having a large following and being influential to those followers and whilst I know all my lovely readers are engaged in what I do, I’m also very aware that they don’t come to me for beauty advice or to see what I’m wearing AND THAT’S FINE.
Maintaining my brand is all about writing posts that make you laugh, make you nod your head and make you tweet me going, ‘OMFG Vix this is so me!’ and if that’s what my brand is, then I’m pretty damn happy.