IAB Panel-Honest MumYesterday was a whirlwind of a day as I spent it in London with my Mum (we arrived the night before) so I could speak on a prestigious panel for Mode Media first thing (Mode represent the display ads on my blogs) and set up this breakfast meeting with a panel on pro blogging and brand endorsement for a large audience of major UK brands.

The theme was on the evolution of brand endorsement and native advertising (online advertising that fits the form it is placed on) across multiple platforms to meet niche, engaged audiences and it was fascinating to be part of the discussion.

UK Editorial Director of Mode Media, Jess asked us lots of brilliant questions leading to candid views on the best way clients can work with us as influencers in order to make advertising meaningful to our audience.

Mode Media-Honest Mum

Audience-Honest Mum(Thanks to Izan at Mode for the pictures above)

Speaking on the panel alongside some of the UK’s biggest bloggers: Steve Booker, Sam of That Grape Juice, Cherry Menlove and Katie Snooks, we discussed our evolving relationships with advertisers and brand endorsement work across the genres we work in from beauty to style, entertainment and beyond.

…Steve is a men’s lifestyle blogger with over 100,000 youtube subscribers, fast becoming a star blogger, Sam is the CEO of That Grape Juice interviewing the likes of Janet Jackson and Mary J Blige, Cherry has a stunning homeware e-shop and book out (launching at Harrods no less) and Katie, a mass following with her beauty tutorials and blog.

…I talked about the apparent crossover appeal of my blogs both here and at mummysgotstyle.com that stay true to my passions: honestmum is focused on family life, food, beauty and film and its sister blog, style for parents and kids.

I emphasised my hopes that campaigns I work on fit and resonate with my audience, I only endorse products and labels I love and believe in.

…It was exciting to hear that Youtube and Instagram are becoming crucial to a lot of the panel (I really need to find more hours in the day to film more for the former) and as ever, it was inspiring to hear from bloggers outside of the parenting and lifestyle sphere to see how others are working with brands and generating exciting content.

Here are the top 5 tips from the panel I that I felt suited other bloggers best (the discussion was 2 hours long and covered a lot):

1. Write what you’re passionate about and don’t be afraid to say no as well as yes to campaigns that just don’t fit your blog.

Likewise you might be surprised by ones that end up really engaging with your audience so take risks sometimes too. Blogging means your are editor and CEO, you are your own boss and it’s liberating!

2. Be creative and start your own e-commerce site/shop if it suits your site. There are lots of ways to monetise your blog if you want to.

3. Look outward to lots of social media platforms and what your audience are using too and get using it yourselfg- be it Google + (I was banging on about that as always) which raises SEO like no other platform as well as Snapseed, video on Instagram and Youtube.

4. Bloggers are taken seriously by brands worldwide-FACT (a journalist in the audience commented to me later that he blogs now as well as so much work is online). Believe it, embrace, know your worth. 

The last 2 1/2 years in particular have seen blogging explode.

I’m personally paid to attend shop openings and events, model (my A/W shots for beautiful luxe bag company Nova Harley are out soon), for consultancy work as well as sponsored posts and advertising and brand endorsement and my clients vary from household brands to luxe designers.

After the UK, my biggest audience is the US then Europe and Australia with a lot of my work outside Britain coming from America and Australia.

5. Get savvy and know your medium, google what you don’t understand and try and hone a lot of the skills you need for success-some that instantly spring to mind in my daily job as a blogger are- negotiator, agent, writer, model, photographer, designer and parent!

I do hire an IT specialist and designer too who works with my regularly but I really need an assistant too (call to tender looking like January so keep your eyes peeled if you’re interested)…

So they offer some inspiration! For many more blogging tip posts head HERE!

…I’m always reaching outside of my own genre for inspiration and ideas when it comes to blogging, I want to know what other bloggers are up to and how I can constantly improve myself be it the way I document our lives to how my blog looks!

Most importantly I love the feedback my readers give me, to hear which posts they/you enjoy the most and I listen.

When I asked you on my FB page what you found most interesting and why, family and food came up on top with honestmum.com so I made sure I gave you more of what you want.

Blogging is a two-way relationship. In between I live my life of course (and I really LIVE it and enjoy it) then I document it.

…It was a joy and a privilege to speak yesterday and it’s added more fuel to my fire to keep following my dreams of taking my blogs further, I have so much I want to do and achieve, and as ever, everything so far has been down to PASSION and hard work, learning from mistakes and pushing onwards and upwards!…

The rest of the day was spent meeting with brands I work with ( I really do have to pinch myself that this is my job to be honest) and shopping (so nice to get quality time with my Mum who has spent the last two months recovering from a foot operation).

Fever London-Honest Mum

Fever London-Honest MumFirst up, I headed to boutique brand Fever London whom I collaborate and model for, to try on a lot of new pieces fro their A/W collection (isn’t that geometric print gorgeous?), selecting outfits for upcoming events and scheduling blog coverage for them.

Vicki modelling-Honest Mum

Wonderful in-house PR Lauren styled me up in the Utah chunky knit jumper and polka dot Minnie dress with green beads which I kept it on for the rest of the shopping trip! I also chose the dress I’ll be wearing at my birthday party this Saturday with my closest blogging friends.

Minnie dress-Fever London

Fever London-Honest Mum

Then it was on to a pre-loved couture and vintage boutique The Dresser in Portland Place where I picked up an Anya Hindmarch clutch and MaxMara cardiagan with flower motif that I fell over head over heels for. Shame the actual Chanel heels I’d been coveting didn’t quite fit)!

Anya Hindmarch-Honest Mum

For a snip of the prices you’d pay in Harvey Nicks, this place is a goldmine of gorgeous designer pieces and I’d urge you to check them out!

Then it was onto John Lewis, another client of mine where I picked up this Jaeger coat (half
price too) and with a big discount thanks to Mode (photo taken today once home again and sans make up for a change ), and my Mum selected a chic mid-length black coat from Windsmoor under the umbrella of another brand I collaborate with, Jacques Vert Group.

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I also tried on this stunning red coat from their other label Planet which will be gifted to me soon! I can’t wait to share it with you all!

Huge shout out to Tara and Hasmik below who looked after us so well, they are part of such an amazing, giving, patient team at Jacques Vert in Debenhams Oxford St!

Planet-Honest Mum

Wow! What a wonderful day-I am now back in Leeds drowning in deadlines but happy that I’m doing a job I love.

Hard work really pays people. Really.

Linking up to Mama and More’s #Allaboutyou

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16 Responses

  1. Mama and More aka Zaz

    You are always so open and sharing about your knowledge Vicki, and deserve the successes you’ve worked so hard for. Go you! And thanks for sharing on #AllAboutYou x
    Mama and More aka Zaz recently posted…All About You Link PartyMy Profile

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  2. Luci - MumsMakeLists.com

    Finally got to read this post, some great points Vicki, Alice and I over at MML are passionate that all bloggers should know and understand their value to brands – the brands wouldn’t be interested in working with us otherwise. But at the same time, this means you really do need to keep up the quality of your content and the quality of your communication with brands – in other words, if you want to be a professional blogger, run your blog as you would any other business, with high brand values and outstanding service to both your clients and your audience. Ooh gone a bit long with this comment (not like me at alll :))) xxx
    Luci – MumsMakeLists.com recently posted…20 Beautiful Washi Tape Christmas Craft IdeasMy Profile

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    • honestmum

      Totally agree, quality is King! Thanks for your fab comment! x
      honestmum recently posted…Official A/W Modelling Shoot for Nova HarleyMy Profile

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  3. Katy Hill

    See, I’ve been too possessive of my blog to monetise it yet, but good tips going forward, for the day I give in and finally decide to jump off that cliff into the unknown! And WOW what a busy day! x
    Katy Hill recently posted…It’s Beginning To Feel…My Profile

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    • honestmum

      I think it’s a personal thing, I love blogging and use my blogs as magazines and after editing a mag, don’t feel bad about monetising at all, it’s my full time job so to do it I need payment and earning power is brilliant, I earn more than when I directed in TV but this works around my kids! Thanks for your comment.
      honestmum recently posted…Official A/W Modelling Shoot for Nova HarleyMy Profile

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  4. Franglaise Mummy

    I love seeing how blogging has evolved over such a short space of time, the world really is our oyster these days 🙂 So gutted I can’t make your b’day get-together, will raise a glass to you from down here xx
    Franglaise Mummy recently posted…Top tips to get a good night’s sleepMy Profile

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  5. mummytries

    Sounds like it was an amazing day hon! Love those pics of you at Fever 🙂 With the right work ethic it really is anyone’s game these days xx
    mummytries recently posted…Book update: did I make my deadline?My Profile

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    • honestmum

      Thanks, I had a fabulous time and always love seeing Fever too!
      honestmum recently posted…A Luxurious Break at the Royal Garden HotelMy Profile

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  6. Honest mum

    Thanks, loved being part of it all and I had such amazing feedback, was a bit overwhelmed. I’m actually thinking I might need someone Leeds based who can come into my home office otherwise would have loved to work with you x
    Honest mum recently posted…Speaking about my Blogging Career for Mode Media at the Internet Advertising BureauMy Profile

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  7. Mel

    Those discussions must have been really interesting with such a brilliant (and diverse) panel. Was it filmed at all? Ma chérie, if you need a bilingual assistant, we could talk! x
    Mel recently posted…Happy Sausage Week with debbie&andrew’s (and a Giveaway)!My Profile

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