August 29, 2014
Happy Friday! Today marks the start of a very busy holiday weekend for Scott and I. We are working an arts festival for four straight days and plan to stick around the venue to check everything out as much as we can.
The fun begins just after lunch time, so until then I’m partying it up… with coffee and study time. Woo hoo!
Per usual (and regardless of what is going on now or for the weekend) Fridays are meant for celebrating and sharing favorites. Below you will find a list of things that I have been loving this week and I invite you to tell me yours in the comments section and link-up as well!
Friday Favorites #52: Week of 8/29
• Younique 3D Fiber Lashes Mascara
A couple of weeks ago, a friend and former co-worker of mine sent me a sample of a mascara she absolutely swears by. It’s called Younique 3D fiber lashes mascara and comes in a fancy schmansy travel case.
Priced at $29 a kit, this stuff has to be pretty darn amazing to be the “new mascara that;s selling out at the blink of an eye”, according to AllParenting.com. Well friends… it is.
I have to admit that I had my doubts. I played along and tried out the product, but didn’t think I would feel comfortable promoting a mascara that costs more than three times the amount I am used to paying.
Before reading about how it works, I snapped some photos and assumed that one was the mascara and the other wand dried out, since it was fluffy and completely opposite of what I expected. So wrong.
Here’s how it works:
Step 1) Curl your eyelashes with an eyelash curler if you normally do (I don’t) and apply your regular mascara like normal.
Step 2) Apply a coat of the gel (the taller bottle) over your mascara coat.
Step 3) Apply a coat of the fluffy (the shorter bottle) fiber brush.
Step 4) Apply the gel one more time for one final coat.
It may sound like a lot of steps, but the whole process took the same amount of time I usually spend on fiddling with two or three coats of my normal mascara to make my lashes look their longest.
To show you the difference, I only applied my regular mascara on one eye, then used the Younique 3D fiber mascara over it on the other.
It looks like I didn’t even use mascara at all on one of them! Crazy, right?
To be completely fair, I do have considerably long eyelashes. I also wear false lashes from time to time for big events or special outings, and have to agree with the reviews that this mascara gives the illusion of eyelash extensions. I’ve never had them, but from what I remember from friends on my dance team getting them, the results are very comparable.
• How to Style Your Hair Before Bed via Howcast
For those days you actually spend time on it and want to keep it fresh for the morning.
I tried it the other day and barely had to style it the next day! Genius.
• BANDED headband + BANDED2GETHER
I received this BANDED Charcoal Sparkle headband (retails at $9.98) in my welcome bag at IDEA and laughed to myself when I saw that it was the same grey sparkly design I already have at home. I tried it on, loved the fit, and didn’t want to part with it.
It’s 1″ thick and a lot more obnoxious and sparkly than it looks in the photo. (I’m also wearing it in the mascara photos above!)
Plus, each band purchased provides three meals for a child in Uganda, which makes me want all of them. I just might order more since they have skinny, wide and plenty of patterns to choose from.
Looks like a great company!
• MapMyDogWalk app
(Do any of you use this? I do every time I run!)
I was intrigued by the title and decided to utilize the free download .
It was great timing since I was starting to think that both Roadie and I need some kind of tracking for all of the walks we go on…
(Don’t worry… the cocked head is a standard on all walks. He has to know what is happening all around him at all times.)
I use MapMyRun when we go running, but it’s nice to keep a log of our walks this way when we want to slow things down and enjoy the scenery.
(Using screenshots from the app for privacy reasons.)
I had it running yesterday afternoon while I was on the phone catching up with friends, and we ended up walking 3.45 miles in 1 hour and 15 minutes. I guess I need to start logging these into my dailymile!
There’s also a water feature that supposedly tells you where there is access to water. I haven’t actually found a water site yet, so if you have used this app, I would love to know how accurate it is.
• This mini-Friends reunion that happened on Jimmy Kimmel.
(Thanks for telling me about it, Olga!)
Scroll to the bottom video to see the full skit! I died.
• Reebok Yoga gear
I have mentioned this specific collection of fitness clothes several times on the blog, and as a thank you, received a surprise box from my friends at Reebok that also included a collection of burnout tanks and tees.
Ya’ll, I’m obsessed. Or should I say YO, I’m obsessed?
GA(H)! I seriously just keep wearing, washing, and re-wearing them. (Notice the tops in both the mascara and walk picture?) It’s almost embarrassing. But, considering my job requires little clothing outside of spandex, sports bras, and tanks it works out.
I would highly recommend all of these pieces to any yogis, fitness enthusiasts, or anyone that likes to wear awesomely comfortable clothing whatsoever. Word to the wise though: order up a size in the studio tank and burnout tee. I probably should have, and have been keeping those items far away from the dryer.
Thank you, Reebok!
I have no idea what took me so long to jump on the Spotify train. I downloaded the app a couple of months ago, but went on a grand total of two times before just a couple of days ago.
I knew you could create and share playlists, but I didn’t like that you couldn’t download the songs to your computer and make hard CD copies of your music. (Or can you do this with an upgraded membership?)
For whatever reason, I felt the urge to check it out again yesterday and fell for it within a couple of quick searches. I love that you can play entire albums and save them as well as hand-selected playlists to listen to whenever you want!
I’m sure I will still be rocking out to iTunes when I want to download tracks, but for now I am enjoying hearing songs I like without having to pay for them. I hope the group of you who have been nudging me into creating playlists here are pleased!
I don’t have many, but I certainly started out with a bang by grouping a couple of throwback favorites playlists from the 90s. Heck yes!
Anyways, I really do love Spotify and finally joined the world you all seem to have been living in for a while now. Let’s be friends.
• This Taylor Swift video I can’t stop singing (and dancing) along to.
I know… I’m a little late on this one, but it’s still the best. And I can’t even take her contemporary dance moves. She’s hilarious.
• favorite HWG posts
>> How To Approach Brands & Sell Yourself (tips from the pros who work with brands and hire bloggers for campaigns!)
>> A Day of Honey Roasted Almond Recipes (<- already dreaming of making more chicken “fingers”!)
>> AND… a guest post on how to get motivated to work out featured on South and Style. (<- love, love Andi!)
Have a wonderful holiday weekend! xo
*Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post, and merely features items I genuinely want to share with you. Please understand, however, that affiliate links may pop up on occasion. I always, always appreciate your support!
August 28, 2014
That is exactly what this post consists of, so if you aren’t into the idea turning your blog into a branded business, enjoy the pictures and I’ll see you tomorrow morning with Friday Favorites!
From what I gather, however, there are a lot of bloggers who click over here every now and then. I love that, and I hope you enjoy the tips I have learned from the pros along my journey on how to figure it out as well.
How Turn Your Blog into a Branded Business with Cassey Ho
You miiight have heard of Cassey from Blogilates before.
She created her first YouTube video in 2009 after moving from Boston to L.A. for her first job. Her goal back then was to produce a channel to stay in touch and share workouts with her customers and friends back home. She kept getting requests to do more and, six years later, now has over 1.5 million views a month! Yup… million.
With an obvious success in turning her blog into a money-making brand, she spoke to our group for just about an hour on how it all happened and what fuels her to keep going.
Curious about the details? Yeah… I was too!
Cassey claims that she only became successful because her focus wasn’t to make money. She started documenting her workouts to teach them to her friends and naturally grew an audience! She attributes a lot of her success to social media and preaches that utilizing it is what can take you and your brand to the next level.
Here’s the breakdown filled with business driving tips straight from Cassey:
>> Get Personal
Include personal tidbits in your posts and videos. People will be able to relate to you if you write in that style. Personally answer comments. Readers want to be heard, so try to answer as many as possible.
Don’t try to copy anybody else or be someone who isn’t you. Be YOU!
>> Increase Your Following
Utilize Instagram! Use hashtags on Instagram, and remember that you can also use the comments section for this. (<- great tip!)
Post full exercise descriptions and recipes on your photos. People on Instagram don’t want to leave Instagram, and it can take a lot unwanted effort to actually go to your blog since there aren’t direct linking capabilities yet.
If you are a YouTuber, be smart about what you name your videos. Consider word play with SEO in your tags and descriptions (temp pulling). Play off of the holidays and big events of the year. The first few words that you tag are more important than the last.
Example: Here’s a workout to get ready for the VMA’s!
>> Never Buy Your Followers
You know you’ve seen them… accounts with thousands or even hundreds of thousands of followers with barely any content.
Chances are, this person or company purchased followers to up their numbers, but there isn’t any true following behind them. The numbers might look good on paper, but the percentage of people actually clicking over to their website and helping their business grow is a small percentage. Work hard and allow your following to grow organically!
Connect with other people! Get to know people like you, then create a trusting and real relationship with them. Reach out to other bloggers and discuss content and contact information when you get the opportunity.
In return, offer your content and contacts right back. Most importantly, be genuine with co-hearts, companies, and in your content. Put your heart into everything you roll out!
>> Connect with Brands and Show Them Your Worth
Don’t underestimate the power of connecting with brands on Twitter and social media. Don’t be annoying, but be persistent and try to establish a connection in a couple of tries. Even something as simple as a tweet could turn into a future campaign or project with them.
Don’t be afraid to ask for a high rate. You can always negotiate, but have a rate sheet available to share when prompted.
>> Sell Merchandise
Make it official by making products. Merchandising is HUGE! People want a piece of you, even if it’s just a t-shirt. Everyone can have a store!
>> Keep Readers Engaged with Newsletters and Giveaways
Give away free content, but know when to draw the line. Don’t give away everything if you are hoping to sell products in the future.
Give away free plans or workouts to get emails for newsletters. Give away free workout calendars to email subscribers. Give away workout samples. Share a synopsis of a workout plan through your newsletter, but require a click to the online download for a full breakdown of everything!
Even if you have nothing to sell – but and want to build your following – get a newsletter! The main reason is to stay in touch with your followers.
>> Be Selective
Only work with brands that you believe in.
(Remember my recent post all about this?) If you get approached with a huge sum of money, be careful. If it doesn’t make sense for what you do, don’t sign up for it. Always trust your gut!
Previous Blogging Related Posts
Well that was fun. I’ll be continuing on with my IDEA session notes over the next couple of weeks, so keep a look out if this is something that interests you. I’m off to study (finally making some kind of progress here… finally).
See you in the morning!