This blog just turned 8 years old a few days ago. I can’t believe it has been that long. At the start it was more of a general luxury lifestyle blog that included beauty, fashion, food and home. Then for a few years I predominantly did beauty reviews (often budget options) and DIY/crafting tutorial posts & recipes. Then in the last few years, I focus 70% on luxury beauty and skincare, 10% luxury style and lifestyle and 20% on luxury travel. If you asked me now to describe this blog in two words, i’d say beauty and luxury. Due to the fact that i’m predominantly a beauty writer and content creator, I wanted to share some tips for those perhaps starting out on this journey, on how to work with beauty brands and also some of my favourite beauty bloggers I think you should follow!
Top Tips for Brands on Working With Bloggers
There are lots of different content partnerships that brands can do with bloggers. From entire sponsored blog posts (in return for payment), to sponsored blog paragraphs/reviews (in return for payment), to review posts in return for free products, to posts that offer blogger’s followers an exclusive discount code, to engaging a blogger to shoot imagery for the brand’s own channels, to giveaway posts where the brand supplies a giveaway prize. The types of partnership really are endless and new ones get added all the time as new platforms and technologies develop. There are so many opportunities, so now is an ideal opportunity to start a blog.
My main advice for brands would be to not just think of a blogger in terms of their stats. Value them not just as a number, but genuinely love and understand the value of the content that they create. Make your partnership fit on a level that goes beyond these vanity metrics. This will make your campaign have better results and will develop a more long-standing relationship with the creator when your brands are truly aligned. Respect that hard work that goes into creating content, and make sure that the blogger is being renumerated properly and not taken advantage of. How brands and bloggers can work well together is something that both sides should be mindful of.
If a beauty brand is new, the people running it might not have a budget to hire a PR firm and might not have any experience of working with bloggers or influencers. Marketplace sites such as GetBlogged can help connect these brands with creators in the beauty bloggers UK niche. It’s a great, affordable, hassle-free way for brands to grow in popularity as the experts are taking care of these relationships and bookings for you.Top Tips for Working With Beauty Brands
Working with brands has always been something that’s a long process. It has never been something that could happen overnight. Not until you could prove you had a strong following and a large readership. Whilst that’s still true, things have become a bit easier over the last couple of years, with the appearance of some new apps and collaboration platforms offering opportunites to bloggers and content creators at all stages of their journey. UK beauty bloggers would normally need to have a reasonably high Domain Authority in order to be considered for a lot of sponsored opportunities; but now that marketplaces are on scene, we are seeing more and more paid opportunities for everyone with over a DA10+. Whilst you’ll get a much lower payment that you would if you had a high DA, it still allows bloggers to become familiar with how collaborating with brands works right from the early days of their sites.
Similarly, Instagram beauty content creators who, perhaps, have less that 10K followers and not attracting a lot of attention from brands, are able to get in on the partnership act through apps such as Tribe. This is definitely an app for those with not a huge following as the payments are quite low, but it again gives new content creators the chance to make a bit of money and gain experience on the process of working with a brand, including the content approval process etc.
Creating Professional Images
Phone cameras are so good now, that for social media, I think it’s fine to use your phone camera if it’s a good one. For blogging, I think you still do need that slightly higher resolution that a DSLR/compact-DSLR offers, since the image will be shown at much larger a size. These don’t need to be expensive. The one I use is a Canon compact-DSLR that’s around £400. It has lasted me for many years too and is showing no signs of giving up any time soon. If you want to be a successful beauty blogger, I would definitely recommend that you make the investment.Beauty imagery is getting more and more creative and stunning as each month passes and most of these are images are created with the help of some key editing apps, where you can add anything from light flare and shadows, to moving sparkles and illustrated elements.I invest in Adobe Lightroom for £10 per month and i’d definitely say that this is more than worth it to do all the basic photo editing such as brightness, sharpness, contrast, and noise reduction etc. I also love the TouchRetouch app for quick ‘object removal’. Adding in some key editing apps to your Instagram routine will really help. This works best on very small things e.g. a distant person in the sea in the back of an otherwise clear holiday outfit shot, an eyelash that ended up in your crisp white backgrounded flatlay or a red spot right on the end of your nose. With this app, you can flawlessly remove these things in seconds. For larger objects, closer objects or objects against a pattern, things get more tricky because the app replaces the object with a ‘swatch’ from nearby; meaning that a pattern will no longer look completely as it should etc.
Building a Following
Building a following takes time, but it’s not all that difficult as it’s pretty much common sense. Social media is called ‘social’ for a reason – you need to be social and interact with fellow creators, especially when you are starting out or still wanting to grow. Comment on lots of posts from creators in your niche and you’ll get comments back, for example. Also share other content creators creations to Twitter or Instagram Stories and tag them – it’s always good to help other people rise and help their audiences grow as if you are in a true community, others will go this for you too. Make sure you follow me on Instagram too, so that I can interact with your content. Genuine engagement breeds genuine engagement.
3 Beauty Bloggers You Need to Follow
If you want to be the absolute first person to know about a new beauty launch or to know about the latest special beauty free gift or money-saving offers, Ree will have shared them. She is so much on the beauty pulse it’s unreal. I would definitely say she is the most popular beauty content creator in the UK. She has so much experience and has such long-standing relationships with brands that she always has the info first. You can really trust her opinions too.
Jane is another blogger that has a wealth of experience and is also a beauty journalist. Whilst Ree is more about beauty news, first impressions and sharing beauty deals, I feel like Jane is the go-to for really detailed and carefully considered skincare reviews. She also understands the blogging industry like no-one else, so if you want to read musings on blogging and brands (she doesn’t hold back) and understand how the two work together, Jane is the one!
Whilst Victoria is more of a fashion blogger than a beauty one, her accounts and sites are great for tutorials and reviews of the really high-end luxury brands beauty offerings, such as Dior, La Mer, Augustinus Badar, Victoria Beckham, Dyson etc. She is really down-to-earth and shares some great application tips.
You can see more of what i’m loving, and what i’m doing, over on my Instagram.