Authenticity Reigns Supreme

fashion blogging

Guest Post By Amber Alexander, Beauty & The Street

Nowadays, image is everything. From your blog’s design to its content, it’s the driving force to earning a slew of devoted followers. However, what if that image we see isn’t really you? What if you’re raving about crazy expensive designer shoes you’re not digging very much just because it’s ‘of the moment’ or making outfit posts that mirror other top tier bloggers in efforts to match their popularity? I have some disturbing news for you, you won’t go very far.

Sometimes we get so caught up trying to “keep with the Jones'” that we lose our own voice in the process for the sake of notoriety. Sure, having thousands of adoring readers and 10 times that amount of hits a day is enticing, but it won’t happen if you’re busy trying to be someone you aren’t. It is counterproductive, kills your creativity, and readers can see right through the fallacy. In fact, it’s actually quite disrespectful of you to think that they are too dumb to catch on – and we don’t want that right? I hope not.

I used to have feelings of self-doubt; that the blogosphere wouldn’t take me seriously if I began speaking on the topics that I am truly passionate about. Growing up I was the elephant in the room and I darn sure wasn’t going to allow that to happen to me in the field I wish to pursue—no way! I racked up on fashion glossies and ate up every bit celeb gossip religiously to keep up with the latest happenings. As a result I blogged about ridiculously pricey clothes and an elusive lifestyle I wasn’t actually living.  It earned me followers and invites to showrooms but eventually I lost my sense of self and joy in blogging. Reality set in, I stopped writing, and my readership tanked. By then I wanted to give up but I couldn’t because fashion is big part of my existence. I deleted the blog, did some soul searching, and asked myself ‘What do I really care about?’ Eventually, I began writing solely about fashion that I liked: an unconventional mix of street, contemporary, and luxury style influenced by my personal experiences. Since then I’ve gotten people commenting on my blog, more likes on my facebook page, and feedback from my peers! I am also more confident in my work.

Take a moment to think about who you really are and what you like. Maybe you prefer streetwear over high-end fashion or can relate to plus-sized models over thinner ones. Is there a particular subject you enjoy writing about but you’re afraid that no one will care? Write about it anyway! (As long as it relates to your blog, of course). Whatever the case may be, let it reflect on your blog. After all, we are the best representations of ourselves, why not let it shine? In the end you will find blogging more enjoyable and before you know it, like minded individuals will follow. All in all embrace the true you because authenticity reigns supreme.

[Image credit:  Kevin Sinclair in this editorial from Marie Claire Australia’s]

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20 Responses

  1. Chaucee from Streets and Stripes

    I used to think a lot about what I THOUGHT my readers wanted from me. When I saw readership and stats decline, I just decided that since no one was reading anyways (ha, irony) I was just going to write how I wanted and about what I wanted. From there readership increased and I’m more passionate about my blog! I’m constantly thinking of new ideas and jotting down notes of what to do and way to improve while at my 9-5. Transparency is DEFINITELY better. Only you have what you can offer and it’s always going to be unique if you stay true to yourself.

    Reply
    • Yazmina Cabrera

      You know what? That’s exactly what has happened to me too. In the beginning I used to create content that “I thought” would be cool for my readers… But every time I had to write a post I got SO BORED and often left it undone.
      Then I started writing on a tone that I would enjoy and about things that I’d love to read in other people’s blogs. And guess what! Just like you: my reader stats went up! But the most important thing was that I was having LOTS of fun doing it 🙂
      Cheers from Milan

      Reply
  2. C.

    I always try to write about the topics that really interest me. No matter whether they’re of the moment or not, or whether it might not be ‘super fashiony’ etc. Actually, I think if people want to read the newest post about a certain designer collaboration they will read them at the top bloggers any ways. Medium and Small size bloggers are out there to discover something new, not repeat religiously what all others write. 🙂

    http://www.fashionfetishism.com

    Reply
  3. Deb

    This post is so motivational for new bloggers like me. I just started writing about things I like or want to talk about and was scared my blog is no way near to other high end fashion blogs. I have enjoyed writing what I like and look forward to find fellow like minded people.

    Elegantlyfashionable.wordpress.com

    Reply
  4. Cynthia

    I think not writing about “it” things costs me readers and invitations. I’m sorry, but if I can’t wear them – even try them on – then I won’t write about you. One reason why I hardly ever write about shoes. I’m a size 4 1/2 or 5 and they, especially 4 1/2, are hard to find (and not to mention, I get weird looks from salespeople when I ask for my size. To the point that I don’t bother going to shoe stores or departments unless I know the brand or store very well).

    Reply
  5. Chelsie

    Great insight!
    I just gave my blog a total facelift. I was too busy spitting out posts just to post; eventually I got burned out. Like you said, bloggers need to really stop what there doing and really think about THEIR content. Quality over quantity.
    -C
    http://mossypants.com

    Reply
  6. moiminnie

    I love photography and I often do photo diaries on my blog. I noticed those posts get the least comments and views but I don’t care. As long as I enjoy my photography and cherish the moments/objects captured, I’ll be posting diary posts. After all, it’s my blog and I first started it to document my style, thoughts and spontaneous snapshots. And I’m happy with it! I just posted one today, you can take a look here:

    http://www.moiminnie.blogspot.com

    xx

    .

    Reply
    • Cynthia

      @moiminnie: For me, outfit posts get the most comments while everything else, including food, travel and general lifestyle posts will get comments every once in a while. Do you think people just don’t “get it”? I’m technically a lifestyle blogger outside of The DelectablyChic! Closet (my main site, DelectablyChic!, focuses on style (including tech once in a while), dining, travel and events) and I’ve found that at least here in Toronto, the bloggers that get the most press are either fashion bloggers (think Backseat Stylers, Styleblog.ca etc…) or Mommy Blogs. A grown-up-focused lifestyle publication gets NOTHING.

      Reply
      • moiminnie

        Actually, it may just be the case. Or they’re just not interested in the things you are. But generally speaking, it’s hard to get a good readership if you’re not mainly a fashion blogger. I’m a designer and a stylist, and my blog really IS first and foremost a fashion oriented blog, but I also really love architecture and photography and find good photos & interiors/exteriors really inspiring for my outfits, as well as my visual identity. But I see a lot of people look no further than Lookbook or any fashion blog they come across, inspiration wise. They like things signed, sealed and delivered to their feeds, ready to be instantly copied. So your (and mine) situations are not so surprising at all 🙂

      • Maya B

        @moiminnie and @Cynthia:
        I have to disagree a bit with you guys. My blog is about fashion and architecture as those are my two main interests (also about other stuff in between like art, music, life). I do get lots of hits on my ‘other than fashion’ stuff.
        You are right that they don’t get as much comments as the main outfit posts, but still one of my purely architecture posts is 2nd in my all time most viewed post. Maybe commenters just find it easier to comment/reply on something I’m wearing? As it’s something they can relate too. Because the numbers still indicate that all my ‘other’ posts get really high views too. And I haven’t seen anyone not liking my blog because I post about so many other things as well.
        Well anyways I’m still a newbie blog 🙂 but I get new readers every day so there must be something they like there 😀

    • Karen Buckley

      Hey, yes I also share a lot of photos on my blog and its great to hear about people like myself blogging for the love of blogging! I hear lots of bloggers comparing stats and coverage and then quitting when there rating drop because the novelty has worn off and people have had enough of thier forced… look at me im so hot posts… which personally I dont get much satisfaction out of reading. I think what we need to see is individuality and personality; thats the most important thing! X Karen
      http://Www.aestheticsousveillance.blogspot.co.uk

      Reply
  7. Emily

    Hey guys! So I don’t know if you know, but I’m an aspiring comedian and I need YOUR help! Basically I really want to apply to become a potential member of “WitStream”, which is a Twitter based comedy circle/group of comedians who tweet absolutely hilarious things. It’s totally interactive, which is one of the many things I admire about it. HOWEVER, under the guidelines of acceptance, you have to have at LEAST 200 followers before you send in your application — I have 86 followers. I’m not a famous celebrity, obviously, so I really have no way of acquiring this many followers on my own. What I am asking you guys is, if you have a Twitter, to please check mine out HERE [www.twitter.com/eber57] and if you enjoy my tweets, to follow me. I do admire and respect EVERY single one of my followers and, in the past, when I’ve asked you guys for help you’ve always been there for me.

    In summary, it would really mean the world and a half to me for you guys to read this and follow me on Twitter [www.twitter.com/eber57]. This is my dream and I don’t know of a more accepting and loving group of individuals as you guys. If you could please reblog this post and send it around it your friends it would be so kind of you.

    Anyways, thanks for sticking around to the end of this post (I know it’s long!). I really hope that together we can get me to 200 followers! Thank you guys SO much, in advance. I love you all.

    XX, Emily

    [www.twitter.com/eber57]

    [www.twitter.com/eber57]

    [www.twitter.com/eber57]

    [www.twitter.com/eber57]

    [www.twitter.com/eber57]

    Reply
  8. Jenn Staz

    This is a very topical post for me! I was just introduced to “multipotentialism” via PuttyLike blog which supports brands/blogs/businesses that cover a variety of interests but have one overarching theme.

    Both this post and PuttyLike is really causing me to re-think who I am and what I most like to write about, and both foster authenticity.

    I appreciate your post!

    Reply
  9. Megan

    I hate when I post and I’m not entirely proud of it, or I feel that I didn’t put my all in to it, but at the same time it can be exhausting putting my all into a daily post around a 9 hour day job where I am encouraged to push push push to get to the top, and having a boyfriend who doesn’t do the ironing or the cooking! I find that I need to plan my posts in advance, possibly writing 3 in one evening to give myself a break over the next few days. What makes the difference though is that 99% of the time I genuinely can’t wait to get my posts out of my head and on to the paper! It may keep me very busy and sometimes exhausted, but I always enjoy it, and I started out just writing for me, maybe 2 views a day max, I kept going anyway because I love what I write about – and that is 2nd hand fashion and charity shops.

    http://lookfabulousforless.wordpress.com/

    Reply
  10. India

    I think it’s something most writers have been affected by at some point or another. I guess it’s something you learn with time, I certainly find writing about subjects I truly enjoy a million time easier that trying to string together an article about something I have no interest in whatsoever anyway….
    http://www.simplystylemagazine.com

    Reply
  11. snowblackblog

    This is one of the most important topics IFB has brought up. So many times I go on blogs and see people imitating well established blogs as a way to get readership. I will admit, I have felt pressure to perform but since this summer IDGAF anymore. When I started my blog, it was an online diary. Yes, fashion is a big deal for me because I work as a model, but if my makeup posts don’t get as much attention because I am not a makeup artists, but rather experimenting, then so be it. I haven’t felt myself lately when blogging and feel like I need to blog about x, y and z in order to get press or invites to wherever. At the end of the day people either take it or leave it. I am not a publication aiming to please a specific demographic. I am ME. A struggling model who loves clothes and travelling, trying to share her life with the world on SNOWBLACKBLOG. Thank you and have a nice day everyone.

    Reply
  12. Monica Da Rosa

    I try to keep to this mantra since I started blogging five years ago and although other bloggers have come after mine & have more readership I like to think that by blogging about what I truly like others will like it too. For me this is still a hobby so I have nothing to lose

    Reply
  13. Jacinda

    I try my best to keep my blog something that’s my own. I try to think about it on a more personal level – do I need EVERYONE to like me? There will be people who enjoy my interests as well and people who don’t. My blog is a place for me to talk about my interests in fashion and so on. I try not to worry too much about whats “popular” right now if it doesn’t interest me. And besides, sooner or later there will be readers who like your blog because its yours. Not someone everyone else wants to read.

    http://misfitmaybe.blogspot.com

    Reply
  14. New York City Style

    I love this post. As an advertising student, I can tell you the first thing you learn is REACHING A TARGET AUDIENCE REQUIRES A NEW PROSPECTIVE. No body wants to read more posts about which MAC brush is #1 or why the Kardashians inspire you. The fashion followers will do this. CREATORS will be inspired by the things around them.

    http://www.newyorkcitystyle.blogspot.com

    Will follow back. Networking, baby.
    xoxo
    India

    Reply