My 6 Takeaways of Brittany Hennessy’s “Influencer Building Your Brand in the Age of Social Media”

*This is not sponsored, these are my own opinions.

I truly enjoyed reading the “Influencer, Building Your Personal Brand in the Age of Social Media” by Brittany Hennessy. I kept seeing it all over Instagram and naturally thought I had to read it. It’s interesting how I even came across buying it, I was at Target of course and felt the need to visit the book section, I look over to the bottom shelf and saw this little ray of light shine on the book. It was the last one and it was on sale. How could I pass it up?!

 

 

I thought this would be another book full of “fluff” and thankfully it proved my assumptions wrong. There are so many highlighted pages and written notes I made, so you know it’s good information! For those individuals and businesses seeking to understand what Influencer Marketing is, this book is for you. Keep reading to check out my 6 Takeaways!

1. Influencer Marketing is Misunderstood.

Brittany Hennessy states that influencer marketing leaves a bad taste in most people’s mouths, due to the misinformation spread about it. This is unfortunate because influencer marketing is only getting bigger and better. This type of marketing is allowing small and large brands to connect better with their audiences. Which leads me to my next point.

 

2. B.H. Goes into Depth of Your Audience and the Work Required at each stage of your Follower Growth.

  • Don’t commit hashtag abuse, 5-7 will get the “job done” or you’ll end up inviting the wrong people (those lovely spam hair pages) to your account. Which can distort your actual follower count.
  • Find your “why” (what are you passionate about enough to share the many aspects of what you love?) This is a great exercise to constantly update, as your views change and grow along with your passions.
  • I love how she points out that we all started with “Zero followers”, it’s a reality check that you have to put the work and effort into engaging with your audience.
  • On p. 63, I preach this to my clients, “Comments are the lifeblood of content creators”. If your audience is taking the time to comment of the work you just posted, it’s ideal to respond. By doing this, you’re conditioning your community to engage with you. Also another great point, try asking questions at the endof each post to truly engage with your audience, remember they are the backbone for why you’re an influencer.

 

3. Track the metrics that matter.

  • If you can bring more than being just a pretty face to the table, you’ll have a higher chance of being booked and busy my friend.
  • Along with running your blog and staying engaged with your audience, it’s good business to track and understand your metrics. Google Analytics is your best friend, as it helps you understand the demographics of your followers, so you can create more content based on this data.
  • I also learned that there is an Engagement Formula, it’s [Likes + Comments]/ Followers @ time of post= engagement rate.
  • Other great resources to check out, influencermarketinghub.com and hyprbrands.com (free search & more detailed information on your audience p. 80)

4. This is Still Work, You Know?

  • Being a part-time & full-time influencer takes effort. This position is just like any other job and requires the same, if not more, professionalism in this industry.
  • Here are some important skills to have when working with brands so you can stay booked.
    • Know how to pose for a photographer, model experience isn’t required but since most brands have a schedule to shoot, it’s best to have this skill perfected.
    • Know how to speak on camera, you may have to work the red carpet from time-to-time and take direction well. (more on p. 82)

 

5. To Take or Not to Take the Opportunity

  • Whether or not you can take the opportunities emailed to you, please respond in an appropriate manner and within a good amount of time. When B.H. stated that most influencers have money just waiting in their emails, I made sure to highlight that chapter.
  • Also make note of “The Five Fee Factors”, again new stuff I learned about. When dealing with contracts, along with knowing your worth, consider these 5 Fee Factors:
    • Follower Count
    • Engagement
    • Quality of Content
    • Name/Facial Recognition/Skills
    • Demographics
    • Now take these 5 factors and get the rate you should charge
      • “Distribution fee + Talent Fee = What you should charge”
    • READ YOUR CONTRACT!!!
    • Lastly, B.H. also provides email examples of accepting opportunities, passing them, negotiating your contract and proposing brands yourself. That’s all of Ch. 5 read it, highlight, take notes because it’s the meat and potatoes.

6. It’s never too late to start

What I enjoyed most from Influencer, was chapter 8, “The Goal”. B.H. wrote that it’s not too late to begin this journey. Brands are still trying to figure out influencer marketing as well, so that means there are millions of dollars out there to be made. I encourage you to take the time to read this book, especially if you’re in the beginning stages of building your brand. This book is also great for established businesses to read, as it gives you insight on how influencer marketing works.

 

Have you read Influencer yet? If so, what did you take away from it? Tell me in the comments below. You can find it where books are sold, I found mine at Target, thanks for reading!

 

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3 Tips to Get Your Retail Business Holiday Ready

I know it’s been a long time since I’ve written a blog post, life and work has really taken time away for me to write, but that’s no excuse and with that said I’m sorry. But Spookieloo is not over, I’m just getting started! While I’ve put my blog on the pause for awhile, I’ve been building my consulting business, including a new site! I. CAN’T. WAIT. The site will still include my personal style blog, but also more aspects of my consulting business. What can you expect from Spookieloo’s Consulting? More of my personal style, educational resources geared towards small retail businesses and digital marketing tips starting with this post. There will be something for everyone.

Is your business holiday ready?

So for my retailers, small business owners, with online and physical stores, this post is for you. 

With the holidays right around the corner, does your business have everything in place to have a successful holiday sale season? As the scope of retail changes frequently, it’s imperative that you are you doing these 3 holiday activities to stay afloat.

Have a Retail/Service Inventory Management Plan

Make sure you’re fully prepared for shoppers and potential clients seeking your services. If you’re out of stock on a product, you just lost a sale, try doing daily to weekly inventory checks. As for service based industries, keep in mind if it’s just you this season. Are you a baker? Hair stylist? Masseuse? Or offer non-tangibles? Then get clear on what you offer best, especially if you don’t have a team just yet. Offer 3-5 good services so you can put your best effort into it, your customers will thank you.

Solidify Your Marketing

It’s September and you needed a marketing plan as of yesterday. Don’t worry, take this month to plan in-store events, sales, specials, product launches, etc. Is the marketing budget low? Get your social media campaigns set and start drafting emails to send to your customers, especially if you plan on sending coupons. Do you have a physical store? Plan shopping parties and in-store events, big retailers can’t really do this, so TAKE ADVANTAGE of the opportunity. Your customers will appreciate the personal touch.

Set staff schedules and hire seasonal help

If you can afford to, please hire some extra hands, this can impact your sales depending on the shopper’s experience. If you’re understaffed, you can’t tend to your customers as much. Also hire for specific roles that are important for your store’s performance. Get someone who doesn’t mind lifting and placing your inventory, if it’s still in boxes it won’t sell. Seek friendly sales associates that have 6 months-1 year of customer service experience.

Although there are many other aspects of getting holiday ready, retailers and service providers need to focus on these 3. If you have a team, be sure to communicate your business’s holiday sales plans, include these talking points and anticipate an increase in profit! 

Did you find this article helpful? Well be nice and share it with your other business friends! Need help with navigating these activities? Leave a comment below. Thanks for reading!

Lessons Learned: How Facebook is changing the Way You See Content

Last week I watched a webinar from Social Media Examiner, titled “How to Survive as a Marketer In a Changing Social Media Landscape” which I’m glad I did. I learned quite a few lessons and want to share them with you. As a social media manager in the retail and wholesale industry, it is imperative that I stay on top of trends and the changes going on with social media.

Since I manage several social media accounts daily, I need to know this information to better help my clients stay on top in their industries. Ok class, get your notes ready!

 

  1. Smaller Numbers Will Engage

  • If you’re a professional in the creative and digital market, you understand that content is “King”, especially if you’re constantly sharing your expertise. While this is true, engagement with your audience is becoming more important to gauge how relatable you are. Your customers, clients, etc. are looking for “meaningful social interaction, inspiring engagement, and conversation” when consuming content. With my niche being in retail & wholesale, I am noticing that those smaller audiences that engage with you more via social media are the ones who eventually buy and become loyal followers. I know we are constantly taught to cater to a bigger audience, but understand that “a smaller more relevant audience is more important than a larger, less engaged one”.
  1. Live Video Gets 6x as much Interaction than other types of video

  • Live videos are becoming necessary to keep your audience engaged especially for the retail/wholesale industry. Although there are numerous articles saying “retail is dead” it’s not all true; it’s how these companies are doing business that is dead, and that includes social media marketing as well. With videos, especially live ones, you can reach your customers on another level of interest. We are a visual society, so implementing live videos in your social media marketing plan will increase your chances of your products being seen and bought. If you’re a retailer (online or Brick and Mortar), think about how you can apply video to your products. Do you sell women’s and men’s clothing? Try doing weekly style videos of new arrivals. Are you an online make-up line? Then use videos trying the product, or do weekly live streams to answer questions about it.
  1. Episodic Storytelling

  • This term is not new, but it’s effective when posting on social media. For instance, if you sell wholesale artisan jewelry, your posting can build your audience up to engage with you from how the jewelry is made to which retailer you can buy it from. You can try these 3 steps below:
    • Post your image and caption stating where this specific piece came from and how it was made; “This handmade leather cuff was created in a 100-year-old family business in a small village of Milan, Italy”. Something like that.
    • Then the next day, show a video of how the product is being made, and the environment the products are being made in. Your audience will appreciate the exclusive behind-the-scenes of your business. Doing this adds that human and relatable touch needed to maintain your business.
    • Lastly, you can show the full product line and how it is displayed in the store. Take it further and show how a customer wears the handmade leather cuff!
  • I like implementing this type of storytelling because it shakes things up from your average caption and it engages your audience, which allows them to imagine themselves using your products. With this strategy you want to take the time to think it out or hire someone who can do this, you don’t want to just “post and go”.
  1. Facebook Advertising

  • At this point in the social media marketing game, you’re going to have to start using paid advertising, especially with your more info-filled posts. Although Facebook is wanting to show more content that is of value to viewers, you will eventually need to pay for traffic. Organic traffic is great, but your business will eventually grow and will need that “extra” ($$$) push to reach a bigger audience.
  1. Other Lessons Learned

  • The right kind of video is VERY valuable; Facebook is looking for intent and repeat viewership (critical)
  • Vertical videos are watched more with the sound on
  • Retarget people who watch your videos and then promote your products
  • Try doing weekly interview features with customers, product reviews or industry news
  • Have a weekly news show; discuss what’s going on each week in your business, industry, or subjects that your customers care about. This keeps you relevant and creates meaningful interactions

Key takeaways:

  • Ask yourself, are you ready for the changes in social media marketing? If not, let’s work together to make sure you are prepared!
  • Implementing live videos into your social media marketing can increase engagement & awareness of your brand.
  • Take the time to plan out your content, by using Episodic Storytelling!

Thank you for reading. I hope you gained some new knowledge, please feel free to share this information or share your opinions on the Facebook changes!

The Importance of Receiving Love

Would you believe me if I told you it was difficult for me to receive love, compliments, and nice things from people and the universe?

 

I’ve started dating again, and so far so good. This particular experience I’m currently having, is shedding some much needed light, on my fear and difficulty of being open to love. Now it’s too early to share those words “I-Love-You” to the guy I’m currently dating, but I’ve noticed in myself that when he’s treating me like a queen (planning dates, initiating engaging conversation, showing genuine interest, and rubbing my feet ) I freak out on the inside.

 

When I have these freak out moments, I’m asking myself “Jazz, he’s a great guy so far, why are you lookin for bad shit to happen”? Why can’t I fully accept his niceness, the sweet little gifts he’s given me, and the compliments he freely shares?

WHY IS THIS SO HARD?

So me being naturally curious, I did some research, and found that a lot people deal with the difficulty of receiving love. Which sucks, because we all deserve to feel it in our lives. With my research and jotting down my own thoughts, I came across 3 main reasons why it’s hard to receive.

 

1. We Feel Guilty and Selfish

I know in my experience, whenever someone offers me a compliment or gives me a “just because”gift, I get this bewildered look, thank them and feel weird about why this person is being so generous to me. Without diving too much into my life, I remembered being taught that you must always give in order to feel good or to always help someone in need, even if that meant giving your last to someone. When someone even thinks of me to give me something, I feel so obligated and anxious that I didn’t reciprocate anything. Giving from an empty cup is not good for anyone’s sanity.

For instance, the guy I’m currently dating cooked me dinner one night (which was so good!) and followed up with a foot rub out of this world. I was caught off guard, and thought what did I do to deserve such treatment? And when we embraced each other, he put his arms around my waist and stomach and just relished in the moment. I’m still self-conscious about my “not-so-flat” stomach, so him embracing that part of me felt weird and good at the same time.

Other than the obvious reasons (in which he was not pushy about), it was hard for me to enjoy this simple, intimate gesture to the fullest. Instead of being mindful and just enjoying the moment, I kept thinking of how I didn’t deserve to indulge in this feeling.

 

2. We Don’t Feel Worthy of Receiving Love

Not being able to receive love and constantly worrying about why you don’t deserve it, is a personal hell to experience. Something in your life has to happen for you to not feel that you’re worthy of being loved. What makes this so hard, is having to undo a lot of negative self-talk and thoughts. As cliche as it sounds, you have to love yourself first before accepting anyone else’s love, gifts, etc. This process is not overnight, trust me, it’s a daily journey of pouring goodness into yourself.

Wrapping my mind around possibly being in love with someone else is already overwhelming, so I have to be patient with myself because I’m an imperfect human. Yes I do deserve to be loved and to feel good with someone else (that was tough to type out) but it has to start with me fully loving myself and understanding my worth. I AM WORTHY OF GREAT THINGS IN LIFE AND BEING LOVED. (Say this to yourself everyday until you feel comfortable receiving love)

 

3. We Hate being Vulnerable

This is a big one for me, especially since I have a hard time to expressing my thoughts clearly. When people first meet me, they assume I am just this quiet, reserved soft-spoken girl; I am that but more. I’m very thoughtful, I listen well and I am constantly wanting to learn something new. But I’m also always in my head a lot, thinking and thinking. When the opportunity comes for me to vulnerable, I’m so overloaded with my thoughts I just keep them to myself, not wanting to overwhelm anyone. So I give them the time to share about themselves instead of me, I’m back in control.

Again, this is not the healthiest way to live life, especially if I want to experience true love one day. Being vulnerable is apart of a healthy relationship, something I’ve never witnessed or experienced. So with this dating journey that I’m on now, I am putting in the effort to be more mindful and receptive of the good. As well, I’m making sure that I am feed myself goodness first, knowing that I am worthy.

 

Being open to receiving anything; love, gifts, compliments, etc. can be hard, so try being mindful of the moment and just saying thank you and truly appreciating what this person is doing. I know it may be hard to wrap your mind around this concept, but it’s a start. When we start opening ourselves up to goodness and love, more of it will find its way into our lives. Just take that small step.

 

Thank you for reading and allowing me to share my thoughts, remember you are worthy!

[Sponsored Post] Spruce up your Spring Hairstyle with Black Hairspray!

This is a Sponsored post. All opinions are my own.

Looking for new ways to spruce up your hair, and protect it at the same time? Then shop Black Hairspray! They provide high-quality crochet faux locs, for styles that are hot for this season. I also love the variety of styles that can be done and the reasonable pricing. I’m thinking about trying this one below. Which one is your favorite?

 

Outre Synthetic X-Pression Curlette Braid – Small 10″

 

When the weather heats up, I like to protect my  hair with a protective hairstyle, and crochet locs help stimulate growth. You can see which style you like here, I also love the shorter styles because I can put my real hair up and away from my neck when as it gets hotter in Texas! Not only does Black Hairspray carry amazing hairstyles, but you can also find all of your favorite beauty and hair products for the low-low too. From deep conditioners to travel size hair moisturizers, they have it all!

Outre Synthetic X-Pression Curlette Braid – Small 20″

 

If you need ideas on which hairstyle to choose, be sure to check out Black Hairstyle’s site, they have everything you need!

 

Thanks for reading loves!

The Ebbs and Flows of Life

“ebb and flow

 a recurrent or rhythmical pattern of coming and going or decline and regrowth.

This expression makes reference to the regular movement of the tides, where ebb means move away from the land and  flow move back towards it”.
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Wow, it’s already February? Who else needs a restart? I know I do, the beginning of the month for me was not what I wrote on my Quarter 1 vision board goals, but I’m still here in a new month. We thank God!
With the second month on a roll, I’m already learning lessons and rewiring some old thinking habits. One habit that I HAVE to change, is my health. I had a not-so-great doctor’s visit, resulting in me being pre-diabetic, meaning I need to get my blood sugar down to a healthier level, by exercising more and choosing better foods for my body.
Easier said than done though, on top of working full time and running my consulting business, I’m a busy lady on a mission. That’s no excuse to put my health on the back burner, so I need to change my mindset, because my health is on the line.

Orchid Black Jumpsuit

 

When I heard those words, “pre-diabetic” I cringed, and wanted to just say fuck it, but I can’t keep doing that. That’s one of those habits I need to break, especially when things get tough in life, I can’t just throw in towel, I have to go with the ebbs and flow of life. This means putting in the effort to fight for what I want (healthy body and mind) and not being afraid of success anymore. Yes, you read that right, I’m afraid of succeeding, it’s a weird concept, but another thinking habit I need to change.

 

Eye Heart You glasses in Black

With the extra frustrations I’ve had this past month, I’m going to make it a point to focus on what I can fix instead of fixating on the ebbs, I just want to be the best Jasmine I can be to myself and those around me.

“The Shady Baby” glasses in Silver

 

“The Shady Baby” Glasses in Black

 

 

What thinking habits are you changing this month?

 

Style Details:

Orchid Jumpsuit (Plus Size) from Black Orchid Boutique

All style Glasses from  Shady Baby Co.

Photography Goddess Kristianna Davied 

 

Thanks for reading loves!

Sorry Y’all, I’m not Bringing a Date home for the Holidays…

Hey everyone, it’s been 2 months since I’ve written anything or posted, but life happens of course, so I have to deal with it appropriately. Anyway I am coming to you all with my heart open and full of learning lessons, in regards to the dating world.

woman-flowers-holidays-girl-6270

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You know that feeling in your gut, when you know something has gone awry? Or that you know when a relationship has fizzled out? That’s where I am at this moment, recognizing that my relationship has lost its passion and the warm feelings I once had, as well as his too…

I kept thinking to myself, do I need to share my dating story? Do I really need to let everyone in? And then I realized, this is isn’t for you, but for me. (But if it helps in any way, I’m happy that it does).

With dating this particular person, I learned what I did NOT want and what I DO want in a relationship. I never want to feel like I am not a priority to someone I’m dating ever again. I never want to settle with someone, knowing they aren’t right for me, just to say I’m in a relationship, I’d honestly rather be single and enjoy the wonders of life. Loneliness used to scare me and still does at some time, but I don’t want just anyone taking up meaningless space in my life, it’s too draining.

At times throughout dating this person, I would notice I would initiate most of the communication and do most of the “work” to keep this thing going. But I realized that I was the only one really into this relationship, and that my friends, is not a place where I wish my worst enemy would go. Plus it was a long distance relationship, and the only means of communication were calling each other on the phone or video chatting, texting too, but none of that was happening as much.

I expressed my concerns in an adult manner about how we don’t talk as much and what we should do to make it work, I guess he heard me, but wasn’t listening…at this point I waited around for as long as I could, but nothing changed, nothing progressed. I had decided I would break up with him, it took me a week to do it, and my stomach was in literal knots.

The break up didn’t go as horrible as I thought, but it felt like a relief, almost…I was perfectly content without communication with him, I felt like my old self again. What happened after we broke up, was that he started talking to me more, and initiated the conversation! How the hell does that happen? Why couldn’t he get it together while we were dating?

giphy-downsized

I haven’t been in many relationships, but when it would go wrong or I’d get rejected, I would take it personal and believe it was all my fault. With growth and going through a couple awful dating experiences, I learned that I’m a FUCKING AMAZING WOMAN and that anyone I date, should be damned proud to be in my presence. (I just needed to vent that, it’s been in my spirit for the longest lol)

Anyway, let’s get back to focus, what I’ve learned in my experience with dating, is that you have to work at it daily, especially if you love someone. Saying you love them, is just the icing on the cake, you need to show them you care, learn who that person is, know their quirks, etc. Cultivate the relationship in order for it to grow and blossom into something great…

 

About a week and a half later, I found myself getting back together with him (big mistake) and nothing had change, he said he was getting better. In this instant, I realized you can say all you want, but where is the action? How are you going to show you’re actually doing better? And then I looked at myself, and knew this is not a relationship I wanted to be in, with empty promises and pretty lies. I honestly wanted to make it work for the sake of saying I was dating someone, and to bring a guy home for the holidays. But that’s not a good reason to be with someone, especially if they aren’t making an effort to be with you.

createherstock-christmas164-isha-gaines

During that time we had gotten back together, there was a chance for him to truly show he cared about me, it basically involved me being stuck in his same city, in a Greyhoud station with a 5 hour late bus. I told him the situation, and he seemed sympathetic towards this frustrating experience, but didn’t budge to come see me, only offering a dry ass “hope you get home safe” text. I knew for sure what place I held in his life, and it hurt, but thank God I was with my best friend and not truly alone. But to know the person you’re dating is in the same city, stuck in a dusty old Greyhound bus station and you don’t even bother to come see them, that was my big ass sign that I need to move on from this, whatever it was. And before you ask, “Well Jazz, was he busy doing something at the time?” Nope, he was home chillin…

 

I leave you with this last thought, don’t compromise your standards when dating someone. That person will eventually show you who they are, especially in sticky situations, I personally feel you will do all you can to make sure your mate is safe. I hate that I haven’t had many long-lasting relationships, especially when I feel like they’re the right one, and want to introduce them to my family and friends. But I refuse to bring someone around that can’t do the basic shit in a relationship, I can’t and I won’t. Until then, I’ll be single for a while, enjoying myself and embracing those that do love me, for me.

 

Remember to always take care of YOU first, good night loves.

xoxo,

Jazz