Six strand necklace from The Pearl Shop
ASOS wallpaper print dress; Salvatore Ferragamo peep-toe pumps
Like I said the venue was packed and it was extremely gratifying to look out and see people interested in what I had to say, paying attention, contributing....when I saw the first person taking notes it was truly surreal.
The panel was called 'Blogging My Way To The Bank: Blogging As A Profitable Business', myself and Abiola Aloba of Maestromedia were invited to speak about how we turned our blogs into lucrative businesses. It was moderated by Ijeoma Ndekwu CEO of Redrick PR and Style Editor at large of Bella Naija, and the session involved her asking Abiola and I various hard-hitting questions in order to demystify the methods we employed to ensure our blogs earned money for us. This was followed by a very lively Q & A session at the end, which got a bit heated at some point even.
It was held as a part of GUESS Fashion Day and all the events of the day were sponsored by GUESS.
At this point I'd like to say a massive thank you to Uche Pedro of Bella Naija and Ijeoma Ndekwu, their support for Third World Profashional has been constant and unwavering.
I can't seem to find a video of the session anywhere but the minute I do I'll put it up here. In a nutshell I explained how I make Google Analytics work for me, how I employ affiliate marketing to earn commissions, how I develop several revenue streams as an offshoot with the central theme being the blog and fashion etc.
I don't want to give too much away here because I'm currently in the process of penning a "How-To" tome, not necessarily dwelling on how to make money from blogging though that will feature heavily but just simply how to find your niche and become successful in whatever blogging field you choose.
In concise terms, I'm writing a book on blogging, I haven't decided if it will be a self help book running into hundreds of pages or 40-50 page pamphlet style, bullet pointed, DIY mini book. As I go along the content I amass will determine the direction it will take.
And yes...it will be for sale. The general idea is the business of blogging :)
Don't know what I was explaining at the time to make me look so pained, must have been deep.
Ijeoma, Abiola, Me!
I remember the day I decided to start Third World Profashional, I had just finished reading 'Fabulousity' by Kimora Lee Simmons (I'm a fan, don't judge me) and there was a little blurb somewhere where she said a blog was a good way to show your originality and discover hidden depths about yourself. I thought about it and in the next second was like naaahhh, no way I'd be able to talk about myself and post pictures up on the internet for anyone that wanted to see and criticize or admire, whichever the case may be. This was August 2008 and my close friends will remember 2008 as being a trying time and I was just starting to get over it, so a blog seemed like such a silly, flighty, childish thing to take on.
Fast forward a few months to October 2008 and I was in my room in Bwari on one of those eternally long weekends when law students don't escape to town and Friday to Sunday just seems to stretch interminably and I was texting my friend Nwabugo trying to describe what Bwari and Law School were like, and I thought "why don't I just show her". So I powered up my computer and wrote this post, my first ever blog post. Going back to read it now it seems so immature and so funny, I can't believe that was me at some point.
Several times in the past four and a half years I've quit, taken breaks, blogged religiously but through it all I have loved it. I loved it in the beginning when the Nigerian blogging community was a small tight knit family with Naija Fine Boy, Bumight , Afrobella, Original Mgbeke, Afrobabe, Nigerian Drama Queen, Zena, Temite, RocNaija, Bombchell, Anya Posh the original Bella Naija. When I discovered my first Nigerian fashion blogs; Cranberry Glitz, Jadore-Fashion, Ovay West, Kemberley. When we all discovered Twitter and Blogville (as we called it) became ghost town, EVERYBODY was tweeting. When I used to write poetry and random snatches of fiction........
I've loved it up until now when its become a little more plastic and less fantastic, when every post feels like a competition; people racing to rack up comments and views and Facebook likes. Now that its slowly turning from a hobby to an actual viable business I love it still.
I'm very happy in the fact that I've taken several turns here and each one has being the right one, that I didn't lose the joy I get every time I hit "publish", that I've managed to maintain my own voice and my originality and that people like it *in Sally Field voice* they really really like me.
That has probably being the most surreal aspect because back on October 24th 2008 when I hit the first ever TWP "publish" I sincerely thought only my family and friends would read it but it has far surpassed whatever I thought it would be. Seeing the comments, the emails, people approaching me in all sorts of places to say they love my blog, even people I personally admired...the gratification I get from that is completely beyond. I know it happens to me on a ridiculously small scale so I wonder how celebrities cope, my head will be turned permanently if I received the kind of adulation they must receive daily.
I guess what I'm trying to say is I'm happy I took the plunge, I'm happy I took Kimora Lee's advice, lol. The positivity I've received over the years far outweighs the random snatches of negativity that tries to sneak into my space.
This is turning into a Robin Williams type acceptance speech, I'm really sorry about that, I just wanted to illustrate how much this blog and the lovely people who support it mean to me.
Thanks you guys, for everything.
Love and light xx
ps; You can check out more photos from the GUESS Fashion Day over on Maestromedia.
photocredits: maestromedia,blogspot.uk; social media week lagos instagram page