Looking at you kid

Hello again, apparently i disappear for ages and come back in spurts, just yesterday i did a small blog post talking about a few issues i´ve encountered recently, you can read Skin Deep here. And today i´m at it again, writing stuff and things, tho it´s not my strong.

We are after all here to help each others and share info, and for the past two days i found a new trend that i find worrying to say the least, whilst going thru requests for review copies for the ongoing Skin Fair i noticed a pattern with some bloggers (see point 1), see besides blogging i do other things, like everyone else in SL i like trying new stuff and helping friends. And so i also do CSR and support for a friends shop, that happens to be in this event.

With that job comes the responsibility of accepting and reviewing all blogger applications, either for the shop regular bloggers list or event specific requests. And funny thing i´m  not the only blogger who does it either, most shop blogger apps are not even reviewed by the creators themselves, at least not initially, there will be someone in charge of it either a csr/manager or a partner. So people don´t seem to realize that and apply as if talking to the owner, sometimes in even inappropriate ways.

But I´m not gonna talk about how you should fill in an app, I´m gonna talk about what i look at when i see your application.

1. I check your profile – I look at it for an idea of who you are and how you present yourself. Do you look professional and polished about what you do? Is your profile truthful? Would we be ok associating with it?

This seems pretty basic right? But sometimes i find the complete opposite of these simple things, today i saw the profile of a blogger, who in her picks thanked all her “sponsors” and in such list claimed several events also sponsored her, now this is a untruthful profile, because you blogged one edition of an event does not mean they sponsor or support your blog, btw most of the events i found on that list don´t even carry official bloggers, at all.

I get it you want to show your past experience when it comes to events, but put it down properly, say i officially blogged for: X event in 2103 and link to their list of official bloggers if available, trust me it’s not worth lying about, google will give an answer that is correct in seconds.

2. Your blog, i get that blogs are very different, we all have our own style and way of showing it, and believe me that goes into consideration, different audiences look for different things, and yet so do shops, why apply to blog poses if you don´t credit poses? Why apply for casual clothes if you only do RP related blog posts?

Some people do mix up styles and love going out of their comfort zones, SL is about dressing up and god knows i´ve been casual, sci-fi, goth and fairy, but not all bloggers do that, some are very specific in their style and maybe they should consider their style when they fill out applications.

3. Your extras, how diligent are you, with other platforms, are you on flickr, plurk, tumbrl, facebook, twitter or any of the others 10005 social media sites, for me that´s an extra means you´re organized and looking for new audiences.

A the end of the day these are things i personally look up when you present yourself to me, and i´m not even talking about quality of work or all the other small details that are usually in the app itself. How old your blog is, How often you blog.How is the overall quality of your photos and/or writing. How/If do you tag your posts If you add your pics to the store´s flickr groups, these are more subjective points or asked in the app itself, and trust me i will check to see if you answered truthfully.

Remember all bloggers are different and so are all store owners/csrs/managers and they all ask for different things from you as a blogger, but, being truthful, organized and polished are basic things when we fail at those, we give all other bloggers a bad rep, and it´s so easy to be all of those wether you´re blogging a street corner in a dark alley, or a runway on the finest built sim.

Skin deep

Hello peeps as you all know Skin Fair is starting, in case you hadn´t noticed yet, but i find it´s a great way to approach not just Skin Fair but other events that allow a big amount of bloggers for preview, and go thru some of the dos and don´ts for bloggers and how to approach such earlier access.

Skin: Glance
Eyes:Ikon
Eyelashes: Maxi Gossamer
Freckles: the skinnery

1. Read all the info, most events will have packets of info for the press, some can be quite extensive even, make sure you check the event blog, for the info this includes dates, lms, and general expectations for bloggers.
Again we can forget something and ask for a quick reminder and we´ll probably get help very fast, but no one likes to be seen as lazy or ill-informed, remember your duty as a blogger is to inform others, and for that you have to keep yourself up to date.

2. Manners matter, events can be incredibly stressful, to organizers, creators and even bloggers, because deadlines are always stressful, keeping yourself cool and polite, makes things easier for everyone, because no one needs the added pressure, of a pushy blogger or to have to answer the same questions over and over.
So be polite and be patient.

3. Review copies; this is a tricky one, most events have rules about this, make sure you read them, and then read them again, and if you have doubts ask other bloggers, one thing i know about good bloggers is they are always willing and glad to help. (now i´m gonna be a bit more specific about Skin Fair)

- The event rules say if designers are available or not for you to contact them about review copies, unless there is a sign saying how/who to contact them do not and i mean DO NOT im the creator asking for review items.

- DEMO before asking, don´t ask just for asking, try it before doing any asking, the creator has a transaction history that will show if you tried a demo or not.

- Be specific in what you are asking for, which skin tone you would work best for you unless you are making a complete review of all tones and makeups, in that case you better do that review.

- Do any asking once, don´t repetedly im/notecard the creator/csr for more, it just looks rude and greedy.

- Follow up on that request by sending the creator/csr a link to your post after it´s published.

4. Have fun. You see some people forget how fun events are, but it´s great to stop and chat to creators and fellow bloggers, it´s great to try all the new releases, it´s even better when everyone else is enjoying it also.

So let´s all have some fun, and i hope to see you all there.

[The Quest to Become OFFICIAL]

Greetings! My name is Vixie Rayna, and this is my first post as contributor for [SL] Blogger Support. I’m very excited to join this fantastic group to share tips and enjoy more of our fabulous community.

Vixie Rayna SL BloggerMy first post will address one of the most common questions I’m asked, “How do you become an Official Blogger for X Brand or Event Y?”  In my experience, I’ve been very blessed to be recruited or asked personally to become a blogger for different brands or events. I assume that this is most likely the way the majority of official bloggers are found.  Although, it’s not the only way to be considered. So the quest to become OFFICIAL begins…

As a PR/Marketing Manager for several brands, I receive blogger applications daily. Honestly, more than 99% of them are trashed. You may think this wrong but in fact it’s because they send an unsolicited, poorly written and impersonal blanket notecard. And while it’s a very complicated topic and there are no guarantees for success, I want to share TIPS on standing out in a SEA of people sending blanket notecards requesting to be an official blogger.

What is a blanket notecard? *Digs through the trash pile of her inventory*

“Hello! :) I’m interested in your store, you do really nice stuff and i’d like to blog for you. I make three/five posts a week. My blog is about a 1 year old. It’s syndicated to feeds http://www.bloggingsl.net, http://bloggingsecondlife.wordpress.com/, http://bloggingsl.net/, http://fashionfeedofsl.com/, http://www.gridsyndicate.com/, http://iheartsl.com/ http://www.sluniverse.com/feedme/
Here is my blog – xxx
Flickr: xxx
Hope you’ll like my work.
To contact with me: xxx”

This is an actual notecard a blogger sent unsolicited to me requesting to be added to a blogger pool. I’m NOT actually sure which designer she was requesting as I represent THREE different brands. If someone cannot take the time to PERSONALIZE a request, why should anyone believe you’d make a good representative for their brand?

You need to THINK like an Event Organizer or Designer when you send a request. Why you ask?  Well, let’s be frank. They probably receive 10+ requests daily to become a blogger for their brand/event. You may think you DESERVE to be added to their blogger pool but really, just like in real life you need to stand out. A blanket notecard is not a way to have anyone jumping to accept you.

Be sure to STAND out.  How you may ask?  Well, this part is EASY!  You should HIGHLIGHT the work you’ve done specific to THEIR brand or event.  If you are such a fan and have been a supportive customer, you want to showcase how you would be a good representative. Before you begin you need to do your homework! Be kind and respect their rules!  If they are not currently accepting blogger applications, then DO NOT send a notecard. Not sure of their policy? Then check the designer/event organizer’s profile, in most cases they address this issue.                          event profile pick      Profile Pick             As you can see from Sophia Harlow’s profile as PR Manager and Social Media for Collabor88 she is responsible for reviewing blogger requests. From her pick it clearly states they are not looking at this time. Do your homework first! Check profiles. Be respectful and do not submit a request.

If you have checked the profiles and believe you have the all clear to proceed, now it’s time to create a notecard with your request. 1. Provide exact links to your Flickr, Blog,  Facebook, Pinterest, Plurk with specific posts featuring their brand. 2. Use proper grammar. 3. Most blogs are in English but it’s AWESOME if you are multilingual . Be sure to highlight the languages you speak – this is a great selling point! 4. Highlight your history briefly. Be succint and to the point. 5. Submit the notecard to the correct person. Again, following directions is important!

Example:

“Hi, Vixie Rayna – PR/Marketing Manager of LeeZu! I love [LeeZu!] and have been a huge fan for YEARS. I’m very interested in becoming a blogger and wish to know if there is any way to be considered.

Here are links to my most recent posts featuring [LeeZu!]:

love&fashion Blog: http://www.vixierayna.blogspot.com/2013/07/hey-baby.html, http://www.vixierayna.blogspot.com/2013/03/bound.html

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/vixierayna/9296991104/

Posts to the [LeeZu!] Flickr Group: http://www.flickr.com/groups/leezubaxterdesigns/pool/24254368@N08/

I’ve been a blogger over 5 years with my blog syndicated on over 6 different fashion feeds. My work has been highlighted on the Second Life Homepage and in top SL Magazines. Thank you for any consideration!

Best, Vixie Rayna

love&fashion Blog: http://www.vixierayna.blogspot.com/

FB: https://www.facebook.com/loveandfashionblog

Now this is just an example and by no means a guarantee that you will be accepted as an official blogger. At the end of the day it’s best to be kind and informative while hoping for the best. Not every person is a good fit, and it’s important to respect their decision. If they say, “thank you for your interest but our blogger list is closed.” Then respect that and ask to be considered when they do open. Pestering them is a sure-fire way to never be included.

Other important points: 1. While everyone may die to be an official blogger for the Chanel of SL, the fact is they probably receive 100 times the requests of others. Maybe think about requesting to blog for a lesser-known brand that’s equally fabulous. 2. Check out links from [SL] Blogger Support listing designers/events who are actually recruiting people! Katya and team are ALWAYS keeping this list up-to-date and active. Check the Designers Looking for Bloggers page.

I’ll close with what’s always worked best for me. Simply put, I share my LOVE of fashion in SL.  By taking the time to focus on what I LOVE, I’m able to convey my appreciation for the work of the designer. If you truly love something, you’ll buy it and support the creator.  Being asked to be an official blogger is just the cherry on top of the already awesome sundae!

Be safe out there my little bloggers!
Love, Vi

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