*This post was originally written in 2020 when I participated in a blogging challenge. I hope that these tips will still be helpful today.
Last week I hit my 6 month mark of my content creator journey. I was going through photos to do some purging and came across my first post that I did when I decided to take myself seriously as an aspiring influencer. It has not been easy, as I often say “content creation ain’t no ho!”. It takes a lot of time and effort and definitely consistency. Here are 5 lessons for beginning content creators that I’ve learned.
Even before I decided to participate in last month’s consistency challenge for blogging, I knew that getting serious about this was going to take consistent work. More than the work though, it has been my sheer determination that has gotten me through my toughest days. There have been many MANY days that I was overwhelmed, uninspired and drowning in self-doubt. Yes, I have done that nasty thing of comparing myself to other influencers and creators, some of whom started after me and seemed to have instant success. After I got out of my feelings and checked myself and my envy at the door, I got back to work. And I’ve been working hard and continuously learning and improving my work.
Below I’m going to list a few things that I have learned over these last few months in hopes that it will help someone, and even be a reminder to myself.
Lesson One: Consistency is Key
Being consistent pays off: I’ve always known this but let me tell you, last week was my ah-ha moment. I posted a photograph of some makeup that I’d seen the GOAT, Pat McGrath post for one of her mascaras. I recreated that look and gave it my own interpretation, and gave Mother Pat the credit for the inspiration on the post. And wouldn’t you know she, THEE Pat McGrath saw my post and commented on it? After I got over the initial shock, I gave myself a pat on the back for being bold enough to tag her in my photo. The lesson here: you never know who is watching, KEEP GOING
Lesson Two: Get Comfortable with Editing
Take the time to edit properly: Learning to edit my photos and videos properly has been a great investment and has helped me establish my overall look and theme for my pages. I am still a work in progress but with the tools such as Snapseed, and Lightroom, my photos have a consistent look every time that I post. Crop out any unwanted background and learn the editing features on your smartphone that will assist in getting editing done correctly. You can learn more tips about great photos from my blog post: https://beautybylmarie.com/2023/02/05/tips-for-taking-great-self-portraits/
Find Your Own Voice
Take advice but know who you are and what you’re trying to do: This part can be a little tricky as a content creator new to the game. There are many, many resources out here that help with stepping up your influencer game. Taking in all of this information is overwhelming, and what I found helped me was picking out the pieces that applied directly to me. The basics of learning how to interpret insights, page aesthetics, posting according to your genre or niche have all helped me improve my content. However, I have had to find ways to stay true to my mission and what I hope to accomplish with my content and the deals I will get. Staying true to myself and posting my authentic content has helped my followers know who I am. Take the advice that is essential but stay true to you.
Do your research on what hashtags and keywords work for your niche- If I’m posting a makeup look and not using any tags related to that brand or anything related to makeup, I can’t expect it to reach anyone outside of my regular followers. Following hashtags that I’m interested in and that have to do with my niche and branding has been very helpful. Not only can I draw inspiration from the post in the hashtag, but I can engage with likeminded accounts, Engagement can equal followers and more page views. Which brings me to my next point.
The Algorithm is Going To Algorithm; Create Anyway
Don’t let the numbers distract you from putting out great content: Listen, I get it, as stated above I have been guilty of looking at someone else’s paper instead of concentrating on my own. Follower count can be mad distracting and can have you thinking that you are getting nowhere fast. True enough, one of my goals is to secure brand partnerships and some of them do take into consideration if you have a following that is less than whatever number. However, that has not deterred me in the least. In fact, it has been my fuel to keep improving on my work and putting out to content that is meaningful and that I can be proud of. It’s just a number, and what I’ve come to learn is that engagements, post sharing and impressions can have a greater impact for brands who are looking for smaller creators. Don’t get discouraged by a follower count, engage with your followers, tag brands you mention and make sure your content is stellar.
Always Bet On Yourself
My last piece of advice is to ALWAYS bet on yourself- You can’t lose when you are your biggest cheerleader and you believe in you more than anyone. I got this, YOU got this. We’ve seen this influencer life get so big these last few years and there is still room in the game for me and for you. And if there isn’t room, make room.
These are some of my personal lessons that I have learned, sometimes the hard way, but learned them nonetheless. I ‘m not even close to where I want to be, but I’m challenging myself every day to keep my content fresh and make my niche clear. Posting at least 3 times a week has kept me from burnout and kept my content updated and consistent. Next up, pitching to brands. I’ve been doing my research and got my media kit together, so stay tuned. What’s the BEST that can happen?