Reporting about Garance Doré's new monthly column in Vogue Paris got me thinking about what the term “top tier blogger” really means. We throw it around a lot, you throw it around a lot. But what does it mean? What does it quantify? What does it qualify? Really — what is a top tier blogger?
Having a seat at runway shows, making an income from your blog, and working with brands no longer qualifies you as “top tier” as it may have in 2007; now, we hear about how Tavi Gevinson has signed on to a Hollywood film with a major director, how The Man Repeller and Bryan Boy are under management by CAA (an agency that also represents Tom Cruise), and how The Sartorialist works on larger scale ad campaigns with J. Crew (just to name a few various examples off the top of my head).
The landscape of fashion blogging has consistently been raising the bar over the past five years. Appropriately following, the standards by which being a “top tier” have also risen immensely.
Which leads me to think, in this current day and age, what qualifies a “top tier” blogger? What is the cut off? The number?
“Top tier” can mean different things to different folks, sure. The Style 99 list, a list created by Signature 9 based on a wide range of numbers which includes page rank, link score, unique IP links, Alexa score, Twitter score, Facebook domain activity, Google blog links and so on, is one way of looking at it. But the list doesn't include how these bloggers are viewed by the general public, how much money they make, or how they work with brands.
In the most recent version of the list, which was last updated in Spring 2012, these were the “personal blogs” that made it into the top 50:
(note: I'm excluding more “editorial” sites like Refinery29)
1. The Sartorialist
4. Garance Dore
6. Cupcakes and Cashmere
7. Fashion Gone Rogue
10. From Me To You
11. The Blonde Salad
12. Cherry Blossom Girl
14. Fashion Toast
15. A Beautiful Mess
20. The Man Repeller
23. Jak & Jil
24. Style Scrapbook
27. Advanced Style
28. Style Bubble
34. Le Blog De Betty
36. Sea of Shoes
41. Bryan Boy
49. Karla's Closet
50. A Shaded View On Fashion
Just to give you a frame of reference, IFB is at 56, right behind The Glamourai at 55. While The Glamourai is not in the top 50, I believe most people in the blogging industry would include her in a “top tier” category. According to an article in WWD in November 2011, she stated she was getting about 4 million page views a month.
Outside of their Style 99 rank, here are some other examples of their reach in general:
The Sartorialist – regularly has between 70-120 comments on his posts
The Man Repeller – currently has 151,891 followers on Instagram
Bryan Boy – currently has 291,000 Twitter followers
Cupcakes and Cashmere – currently has 41,217 followers on Pinterest
The Blonde Salad – currently has 202,469 likes on Facebook
These numbers beat out most editorial-type fashion websites. So, is that what makes you a top tier blogger? Is there a metric for measuring the tiers of blogging? What do you think?
[Image Credit: Shutterstock]