13 Jan 2019 24 comments

Finding My Way In The Online World.

A bit of a debrief…

Here it is, my first rambling personal post of 2019! And you know what? I’m going to do more of these, a sort of digital heart to heart with you guys. It feels good to get things off my chest and not worry too much about who might see this, or how it could be perceived.

I started a version of this blog almost ten years ago, I was 19 and didn’t have a lot else going for me – I was fresh out of university, with a degree in a subject I no longer cared for. I wanted to write and channel some creativity, so I wrote about something I was passionate about; beauty!
I took photos in my tiny bedroom with its floral sheets and terrible lighting, and I stuck at it. Not always, I’m sure there were lulls where life took over… but in the grand scheme of things, I’m still here! With nearly ten years of posts behind me. It’s a pretty impressive feat, really!

In that decade, so much has changed. More than we could have imagined! I said once that a regret of mine was that I didn’t take blogging seriously sooner, it wasn’t even a pipe dream for me back then – I really had no sense of what could come of it.
It’s interesting though, because of course my content now has surpassed what I could only have dreamed of, but I feel like my blog was better a couple of years back. I cared less, I posted more, I didn’t have some of the pressure I do now. A few years ago, it was less about likes and more about the quality of the post. You shared what you loved and that was it, and I so miss that.

I want to share some thoughts I’ve been having lately about where I stand in the online world. I like putting these thoughts out there, and hopefully it will encourage conversation and inspire us all to put a bit of 2016 back in to our blogs…

Going Back To Basics

I think one thing a lot of us self-employed folks find is that we put too much pressure on ourselves, and even the smallest of tasks grow arms and legs and then become so overwhelming and too daunting to start. I know for me a lot of the time, I get these ideas for posts or photos but I feel the need to take them to the next level. I mean, I love that about myself – that unchallenged commitment that completely takes over – but I also like an easy life. It’s a double-edged sword!

I want to find balance with that this year, find a way to meet my own expectations and still fulfil all those fun ideas I have. It’s totally doable – I love the realness and the spontaneity about blogs and blogging in general, so it’s definitely time to run with that again.
This year is all about going back to basics for me, in a way I want less of a content calendar and more “oh this is how I’m feeling right now and yeah I’m going to write an entire blog post about it”, as well as those posts that are just photo diaries with little text!

Blogging in 2019…

I sometimes find it hard to be content with what I have, especially when there’s so many people out there making incredible content, with millions of followers and a super engaged audience.

I always wonder if there’s room for me, someone who just likes to capture beautiful imagery and share updates with the world, regardless of numbers.

I don’t have any clear aims with this blog, I just want to post consistently and improve on my content. Better images, more personal posts and collaborations with my favourite brands.
I hope to make KLV.com my main platform again, and I think I’m already off to a good start!

Sponsored Content & Me

I had this sort of realisation about my sponsored posts last month. Christmas is, as you would expect, a busy period for paid work so I was a little worried about how much I had going live (as it happens, I didn’t need to be because you guys are amazing and TOTALLY GET IT!)

I started thinking about what the purpose of my job was, I was looking at the captions I had written about beauty products I was promoting, and at the way I presented my photos to my audience.
I was analysing the insights and how the posts performed, and I guess I was trying to find something meaningful in it all. I wanted to know what my own purpose was, in some ways.
Without sounding ungrateful (because believe me when I say, I am thankful for every single person that follows or engages with my content in any way!), I realised I don’t have the kind of super engaged audience that hangs off my every word. I know how that sounds, but bear with me!

I think a lot of what I share is achievable for the average working woman, perhaps a little aspirational, and my audience (you lovely lot!) like that – maybe you want to know how to style your apartment, or see what’s new at Topshop worn by someone who is your size or shape. Maybe you take one trip a year and you want recommendations on where to visit – Edinburgh or Bali? New York or London?
I think the bloggers we follow give us something to almost strive for; daily inspiration to live happier and go after what we want.

I also think that the people who follow me and my fellow blogger pals are pretty clued up; you know a moisturiser probably isn’t going to change your life, and you won’t stop what you’re doing just to buy a pair of shoes I wore one time – but instead, when it comes to the next time your moisturiser is running low, or you’re in the market for a new pair of winter boots, you’ll look to the bloggers you follow for recommendations. I love that we can inspire people to have a happy life and feel good about themselves at the same time.

I think from a brands perspective, they look to bloggers to create dreamy set-ups that capture their brand. They find people that encompass their whole essence, so it’s a mutually beneficial relationship, and the result is a curated campaign that is unique and personal. My favourite part of what I do is looking at a brief from a brand, deciding on a theme or working on a moodboard, shooting the photos and putting the images together to tell a story. I never feel like I have to talk my audience in to buying anything, my captions don’t need to be pushy or disingenuous, and a lot of the time I can let the imagery speak for itself.

What’s next for me…

This is the year I give this blog a little extra TLC; for too long I’ve been concentrating on other platforms, spreading myself thin trying to do everything – but this blog is my passion, and I should follow my heart with it a bit more.
I want to leave my comfort zone more with my photography too; find locations for shoots, plan ahead for content (not just paid opportunities) and make this blog a bit more interesting in general.
The perfectionist in me also needs to take a back seat sometimes too, I hate the pressure I put on myself to do everything on a big scale; sometimes the smaller posts are my most loved!

I’m feeling a whole lot happier in myself now I feel like I have a place in blogging – I really do believe there’s room for everyone, no matter what your follower count!
Thanks for all your support over the years, I hope you still find my blog interesting and relatable.

How do you feel about blogging in 2019?

Shop the Post

  • Lisa Autumn

    Girl you are amazing I always enjoyed your blog and can’t wait what 2019 will bring you!

    x Lisa | lisaautumn.com

  • Faye

    I really love how personal and beautifully written this post is Kate!

    As one of your long time readers, I completely agree with you when you say you’re aspirational. I know that I can come to your blog looking for advice and recommendations for any area in my life and I know that they will suit me, that I can trust your word and that, maybe most importantly, it will fit into my budget. Throughout your successes over the years, I love that you stay true to yourself with what you like and that, while you’re partial to a beautiful handbag (that chloé…), it’s not all that your ‘brand’ is about. Don’t get me wrong, there are bloggers that I do truly love, but aren’t necessarily aspirational to me personally as I can’t afford to buy myself a new bag every month like I can with that moisturiser or a skirt from Topshop, that you have recommended? I’m not sure I’m making any sense heh.

    I absolutely love your Instagram and your YouTube channel but your blog was the first platform I found you on – back in the ghost parties days! I’ve always been a huge supporter of yours and I find myself returning to your blog daily to re-read your posts, so I’m excited to see what you create!

    Faye xo
    http://www.laviedefaye.com

    • Aw Faye this was (as usual!) so so lovely to read! Ahh the good old ghostparties days – thank god I rebranded 😉
      You are forever my hypeman! Thank you so much xx

  • Lovely post! I think as long as you have a passion for your blog and the content you upload then you will be successful! You should never compare yourself to more established bloggers- your blog is unique! x

  • Believing in our passion, nurture the fire in us, keep our faith and everything will work it’s way out. Having a passion combine with a drive to excel will take us far in places. Wonderful post as always.
    Happy Sunday.

    🌸🍃ROSES FOR FRIDAYS 🌸🍃| by mia | A Creative Lifestyle Blog

  • Victoria

    If you haven’t seen it already, I think you’ll find the recent post on sponsored content on A Life to Style interesting. You might also get some ideas for engagement on midlifechic. A different age market for sure, but with very good insights into both blogging and retail.

    • Patricia

      I’m an avid blog reader and I second this comment! Avril’s recent post on A Life to Style would definitely give you food for thought. I love Nikki’s blog midlifechic and I often comment on it – she has built up a very engaged audience. As far as I can see, she replies to each and every blog comment – it might be a couple of weeks later, but it definitely helps to build up a relationship. Her blog is right up my street anyway – I’m 58 – but look! I read your blog too and enjoy it very much, probably for different reasons. Your photos are so beautiful and I love to hear about your life in Glasgow, because I’m a Scottish expat. (And the travel is lovely too!)

  • Yes, I do miss blogging as everyone’s main platform! <3 I remember when I first started blogging in 2015, blogs were so popular, and there was a lot more engagement on blogs too! Always love your content and how genuine you are, Kate! Can't wait to see more from you this year!

    XO, Elizabeth T.
    http://clothestoyouuu.com

  • I’m such an avid reader of your blog, and so seeing all of the new stuff on here already this year is making me so excited for what’s ahead! Tbh girl, you could post anything and I would 110% be obsessed with it – I find you very inspiring and relatable, and your photography skills are phenomenal. Can’t wait to see what 2019 holds in store for you!

    • Hahaha thank you!! I’m definitely embracing a more relaxed style of blogging and I absolutely love it x

  • Wow can’t believe you’ve been blogging for 10 years! That’s so amazing❤️

    Arianna | Southernbelleforever.com

  • Alright, Kate dare I say this, I think this is my favorite post you’ve shared. I love how real it is and I can totally relate in many ways. Being a much smaller blogger I feel the pressure to put out certain content a lot. It’s definitely not fun especially when you put so much time and work into a post and few to little people recognize it. I’m very excited to see more ‘on the real’ posts from you. That will be very nice and liberating for you.

    xo
    Juliana | Ohhjuliana

    • Aw this was just a dream to read – thank you for taking the time to comment! It felt SO liberating just putting it all down in a post and I’m glad you guys get where I’m coming from x

  • I love hearing about others plans for 2019 whether it’s for themselves or online platform. I feel big things are happening with the world around me and that’s wonderful. Keeping the posititve attitude and a strong work ethic will get all of us where we want to be. You got this, Kate! x

    Darianne | http://www.dariannemariegrimball.com

  • Karlee Snippa

    I first found you through Instagram a couple of years ago and your style is so inspiring!

    http://www.whatkarleedoes.com

  • Natalie Redman

    Wow you’ve been blogging for so long!

    http://www.upyourvlog.com

  • Ottilia

    <3

  • I’m super-excited you’re going to spend more time on your blog this year because reading blogs is my own personal way of unwinding after a long day at work. Every time I hear people say that blogging is dead, I roll my eyes. Dude, it’s totally not. I’ll take a well-written blog over Instagram and YouTube ANY DAY.

    • Thanks Vanessa, that means a lot to me! I’m a big blog fan too, I hope this is the year that make a full comeback! x

  • Liesbeth Van Vynckt

    Oh of course there is a place for you! I never comment, but ready your every post. In fact you’re one of the only bloggers with interesting / beautiful sponsored content so go you! We follow you for being you and creating things you love yourself, so just keep doing you and we’ll all still be here!

  • Vicki Bouchard

    What a refreshing post for me to read. A new year, a fresh approach! I’ve just started blogging at 63 and it did me a world of good to read your thoughts and feelings on your very successful blog that you have built over this past decade. Congrats on your success and I wish you a happy year ahead, creating your dream content and having a lot of fun with it xo

  • This year I would love to be able to concentrate on my blog as well! Sometimes I get so distracted with all the other channels people are doing well on, but I’m trying not to do that & instead just focusing on me! 🙂 xx

    Claire | Rose Tinted