Over the last 12 months, I’ve learned a lot about managing and growing a blog. In my early work with Kristel Closets, I found lasting success because we spent time learning strategies to help potential clients find our website. It’s been over ten years since we launched that business, and as early adopters of SEO and Pay Per Click advertising, that site continues to provide a steady stream of clients. It’s why it’s been so hard for me to walk away from private client work altogether. The longer we’re in business, the easier it’s become to get high-quality customers. Go figure.
Blogging has proven to be a much different game. I have the capacity to handle insane work loads, so for me to say that blogging is a ton of work, it’s a TON of work. I didn’t start off with any intention of being a “blogger.” For years, The Well Dressed Life was a marketing tool. Its primary purpose was to help move traffic to Kristel Closets , help convert new customers and stay in touch with our existing client book. About two years ago we decided to change direction, and build out the blog, creating daily content for women across the country similar to our clients.
Once I dove into the blogging world, it was evident that most sites were targeting a much younger demographic. I couldn’t find a single site that spoke to me or my friends: the over 35 crowd, who are college educated, east coast living, working moms, who want to look modern, feel pulled together, but don’t want to be a slaves to fashion. On paper, we might technically be able to afford designer shoes and bags, but we also have tuition, a mortgage, and a retirement account that take priority. Why, I thought, was no one talking to us? So I got started creating the kind of content I wanted to see, and our readership very slowly started to grow.
A few months ago, I wanted to learn more about our readership, so I started to dive into our analytics and spoke to dozens of readers in real life. Our core demographic is female (obviously) 35 – 55 years old. The vast majority of them are in the work force in some capacity. Many are professional or entrepreneurs. Some have flex schedules while others are in a more traditional office. A few have hopped out of the work force for a bit to raise a family or are recently retired and focusing on other kinds of work. Whichever category of “work” they may fall in, our readers are busy, most our mothers, with children of all different ages, so their life is a constant balance of priorities, and none have time to obsess about clothes.
Like any business, maintaining and growing our readership is our number one priority. The more women who know about us, the more readers we’ll have, the more opportunity we’ll have to build more dynamic content. One thing I learned over all these years is that my primary market of women is the most underserved within this industry. Even when Kristel Closets was my sole focus my main clients were and still are women who just want a great fitting pair of jeans, and want to look modern but had no idea where to start or how to put things together.
Through our research, we discovered that a staggering amount of our readership read no other blogs, or online fashion sites, or even traditional magazines. Now, I had suspected this because the same goes for our private clients. It’s like how I am with baseball; I have a casual rooting interest. I like going to games, but I’m not checking stats on ESPN.
Here in poses the issue, when your target market is so underserved that it doesn’t frequent the places that you would traditionally promote your business, how are you going to grow? I have struggled with this question for months. Typically, if you want to build your readership, you do things like cross promote with other popular blogs, but if I start sharing pictures of chicks in $700 Louboutins, I’ll lose the very audience that’s helped us get this far. And, a lot of those sites don’t want to hear my more pragmatic approach to style. So no one wins.
For the last 12 months, I have made myself crazy trying to figure out our growth formula. I’ve read every article on how to leverage social media, watched every view about site optimization, and implemented all of those strategies. According to our data, from June of 2016 to June of 2017 we have grown our readership by 296%. Do you know why? This exponential growth is because you shared our content with others. That’s it. No fancy social media strategy, or complicated algorithm, just good old fashion word of mouth advertising. Most of which is happening on Facebook, so that’s where we’ll focus, for now.
My strategy going forward is to create even better, tighter content (more on that in an upcoming post) and just to ask you nicely to help us continue to grow. Every time you post a comment at the bottom of a post, or share our site with a friend, you get us one step closer to becoming a real force in the industry. A force of good I truly believe could change the narrative around beauty and style, and maybe make being a girl a little easier for future generations.
So, every month, for the rest of the year we are going to have a giveaway, with a focus on a different action to help us grow across multiple platforms. This month we’ll start with Facebook since that seems to be where collectively we spend the most time. I put together a box of some of my favorite items (pictured above), valued at $300, follow the simple steps below, and you’ll be entered to win:
- This floral kimono cardigan from the shop. It has been so popular we’re on our second reorder. Once announced, the winner will tell me their size. $58.00
- Our best selling envelope clutch in a pop of pink $45
- A cheerful tassel necklace from the shop (not even up yet!) that I love to wear with a simple white tee and jean shorts. $35
- My favorite diffuser I found in London by The White Company. $65.00
- Tata Harper Lip and Cheek Tint in a neutral pink perfect for a barely there summer face. $36.00
- Beautycounter’s Sunscreen, the best of the best. Long wearing, waterproof and easy to apply. $32.00
- The BIO IONIC Bluewave Nanoionic Conditioning Brush I recently discovered at my salon that gives the best blow out results. $45.00
To win you must follow the steps below, and yes, you need to have a Facebook account.
- Please “like” The Well Dressed Life on Facebook if you haven’t already.
- Please post on your Facebook page a link to The Well Dressed Life Facebook Page and encourage them to also like us. The more people who like us on Facebook the better.
- Come back to this post and comment, “I liked and shared!” You must comment on this post, please do not send an email.
That’s it! The giveaway will last for one week. There will be one winner selected by Random.org, announced next Monday. Also, please note that I will not reply to comments on this post because it will effect the selection process – but I read every single comment you write, so thank you!
I have BIG plans for this site over the next few months. I so appreciate everything you do to help us grow and promise we’re going to continue to expand with integrity always remembering the audience we serve.
Please note, this is not a sponsored post and all prizes have been purchased by Kristel Closets, Inc.